Cheap Eats 2017: Kao Sarn Thai

About Kao Sarn Thai

Thai, Vietnamese
6795 Wilson Blvd
Falls Church, VA 22044

At first glance, the menu at Arin Lapakulchai’s tiny Eden Center storefront isn’t terribly exciting. It looks like the usual shortlist of satay, spring rolls, and drunked noodles—standards you’ll find in any old Thai restaurant. Andrew Zimmern might pass it by, but you shouldn’t. Few places turn out these staples as deftly, and when you ask for something “Thai spicy,” the kitchen doesn’t hold back. Lapakulchai’s khao soi, the coconutty curry soup with crisp egg noodles, pickles, and shallots, is a straight-up masterpiece. Also good: Boat Noodle Soup; pork belly with string beans.