Thai Cuisine Express is a Thai restaurant in Buena Park. It stacks its lunch menu with specials that draw in office drones and working-class guys to this curious stretch of OC, culturally more La Mirada, Artesia and Cerritos than Buena Park — more 91 freeway than anything else. The pad Thai is fine, the curries better, the fried fish nuggets with mint leaf perfect. But Thai Cuisine Express specializes in seafood dishes for Thais: giant fillets simmered in ginger, funky boat noodle soup, and soft-shell crab fried as good as anything from the Chesapeake Bay. A whole trout garnished with apple relish? Spectacular.
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Sometimes, our culture's current fetishization to try the most "authentic" ethnic food available hits hilarious detours, and that's what happened with my repeated visits at Thai Cuisine Express. We're long past the age of Thai food ...