Time to put on your big boy pants, Los Angeles. It’s Jitlada time.
This city does Thai food better than anyone, so to consistently rank among the best, you better be bringing the goods. And at Jitlada, the goods come in the form of real-deal, no holds barred Southern Thai cuisine. It’s not that the menu is inaccessible either. You can still find your pad thais and your pineapple fried rices. It’s just that at Jitlada it all boils down to one thing: spice. And a whole lot of it.
Spice at Jitlada is not a choice, it’s an ingredient. And to ask to have your entree come with less of it, you will receive a subtle “........” in return. These kind of rules are bound to alienate some customers but frankly, we don’t think Jitlada cares. The two hour wait at its kitschy East Hollywood locale tells us they’ve got plenty of believers in their process. And while dining in at the eccentric space is certainly a must, the pro tip here is to utilize their well-oiled take-out program as often as possible. Your not as well-oiled patience will thank you.
To say that the menu at Jitlada is expansive is an understatement. You'll find everything from crispy catfish salad to khua kling Phat Lung (a beef curry thought to be one of the spiciest dishes in the entire city). But you don’t become the premiere Thai restaurant in Los Angeles because you give customers crippling acid reflux. It’s because you give them taste. Bold, brash, and not always for the faint of heart, these are some of the most authentic and fully-realized flavors you’ll find this side of Bangkok. And that's exciting.
Sure, we all have our neighborhood go-to spots and weekly corner hangouts. But what’s life in a city of 3 million people if you can’t allow yourself to step outside your comfort zone every once in awhile? Jitlada is waiting with open arms.
This is what 70% of all customers will order and that's ok. Because godd*mn it's delicious.
Buckle up humans. This sh*t is not messing around. One of the boldest curries in town, you will need a few napkins for this dish. One for your lap and a couple for your forehead.
One thing to realize early is that Jitlada features a ton of Catfish dishes. And rejoice in that. This sweet, light salad is the perfect kick-off before the heavy flavors make their entrances.
This is a dish for everyone, packing so much flavor you might order another one to take home. We’ve done it before.
A traditional Thai dish not often seen on American menus. Making this even more of a must-order.
Do it. Just do it. Dance like no one’s watching. And by dance we mean put this sh*t in your mouth.
Jitlada nails almost all of their lamb dishes, and their basil lamb is arguably the strongest.
Koreans aren’t the only ones who can make a chicken wing you won’t forget. Jitlada’s thai wings are absolutely phenomenal and come with a kick that puts any buffalo sauce to shame.