Why go: A feast for the eyes and the palate. The setting, with tasteful prints and sculptures, is a respite from the strip mall outside, and the cooking—from carefully composed salads to slow-simmered curries—is just as exciting.
What to get: Batter-fried squash with a vinegary, spicy dipping sauce; fermented tea-leaf salad with garlic chips, dried broad beans, and lime dressing; chicken chili with a sweet-spicy sauce; stir-fried vegetables and pork belly offered with or without fat; farluda, a dessert of noodles and squares of custard in sweet, pink rose-syrup-infused milk.
Best for: Impressing a date or client on a tight budget. Warm hand towels and pretty surroundings make you feel as though you’ve gotten a free upgrade.
Insider tip: Lunch specials from 11:30 to 2:30 weekdays include rice and egg rolls.
Open Wednesday through Monday for lunch and dinner.
>> See all 2009 Cheap Eats restaurants here