>> Ras Noodle ก๋วยเตี๋ยวคุณรัตน์ | Eat the World Los Angeles

Saturday 20 March 2021

Ras Noodle ก๋วยเตี๋ยวคุณรัตน์


COVID-19 UPDATE: Before dine-in restrictions were eased, a table just inside the door simultaneously blocked customers from entering, was the point of sale and where pickup orders were placed, and pre-made desserts were displayed. One table was just outside. Please check with the restaurant for updates on their policies.

There is something like an outward spiral emanating from Wat Thai of Los Angeles on Coldwater Canyon Avenue. While the weekend market at LA's largest Thai temple continues to stay closed during the pandemic, an array of Valley restaurants and online vendors starting in the Panorama City and North Hollywood area make for quite a few delicious options.

One favorite of Valley-dwelling Thais but relatively unknown in wider Los Angeles food media is the almost seven year old Ras Noodle, which does not focus on any region in Thailand but presents some of the most delicious noodles in the city.

Their version of ก๋วยเตี๋ยวเรือ / boat noodles (above) is just about perfect. There are good cuts of pork, beef balls, liver, and tripe, and the broth is deep and dark from blood, soy sauce, and spices.

In better times you can come and order small bowls of each noodle offering, a way to test a lot more offerings in one sitting. Unfortunately for now during the pandemic only the large size of each is available, but they pack it up all nicely for putting together later, so do not be afraid to order a bunch of items for eating at home over the next few days.

Ras actually sounds more like "rad" or "rat" in Thai and is the nickname for Rattana, the common name of the proprietor. Since they get mostly Thai customers, their conversations and expectations concerning spice levels are quick and confident. These orders were made in Thai, requested for medium, and all still came packing plenty of good heat.

The ก๋วยเตี๋ยวต้มยำ / tom yum noodles (above) are also a winner, with notes hitting every sector of your tongue on each bite. Missing of course from in-person meals is the table puang, the condiment caddy with different types of chilies, spicy sour vinegar, and sugar to add to your noodles as desired, but they pack little portions of each with every order!

Last but not least is their excellent เย็นตาโฟ / yen ta fo (above), made its distinct pink by a specific bean curd paste. Try this with thin vermicelli noodles, which will have squid, fish balls, shrimp, tofu, and white mushrooms all piled on top.

While noodles dishes are the focus, other plates excel as well, like the ข้าวหน้าเป็ด / roasted duck (below), served alongside rice. Thin cuts of the delectable duck will force you to pop in one after another until the dish disappears.

Another wonderful non-noodle option is ข้าวกะเพราหมูกรอบ / basil with crispy pork over rice (below), even if the pork cubes lose their crispiness for takeout. Do be aware that those are not bell peppers accompanying the basil and string beans, that is pure fire.

Pure fire is also a good way to describe Ras Noodle, despite seeming so humble and unassuming in a quiet strip mall. Highly recommended!


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