100 Favorite OC Dishes, #60: Pla Duk Phat Phet at Vientiane Thai Laos Restaurant

Laotian cuisine is currently having a food moment, showcasing its famously pungent offerings that sets it apart from its neighboring Southeast Asian countries. This past year alone has seen the openings of Royal King Elephant and Spicy Lao, both in Garden Grove. That’s also the home of Vientiane, Orange County’s longest-standing Laotian restaurant. This one has brought on the fire for over a decade with its funky dishes, none better than their deep-fried catfish fillet.

A crisp whole catfish is dissected into sharable morsels, doused in a luscious spicy coconut curry sauce, then finished with a toss of aromatic Thai basil and red bell peppers for a sweet bite. The crunchy skin and moist, flaky fish resonate with the deep flavors of palm sugar, fish sauce and creamy curry. Be sure to order a side of sticky rice for mopping all the leftover panang curry, and bow down to the OG of OC’s Lao scene. 

Vientiane Thai Laos Restaurant, 10262 Westminster Ave., Garden Grove, (714) 530-7523.

The List:

61. Risotto Con Burrata at Taverna 
62. Pineapple Float at Jollibee 
63. Szechuan Fries at Wok N Tandoor 
64. Banh Xeo at Quan Mii 
65. Chanko Nabe at Torizo 
66. Hamshuka from Hummus Bowl 
67. The Reuben at A Market 
68. Everything Cake from Slice Deli And Cakery 
69. Spicy Shrimp And Eggplant from Brio Tuscan Grille
70. Crawfish Mac & Cheese from The Wharf
71. Malasadas from Dough Doughs Hawaiian Cafe 
72. Salsas from Salsa Bandolera 
73. Chorizo Breakfast Bagel at Spigas Bakery and Cafe 
74. Whole Chicken Combo at Falafelo  
75. Toothpick Lamb at Sichuan Impression 
76. Hainan Chicken Rice at Baos Hog 
77. Fruit- and Ice Cream-Topped Waffles at Crave 
78. Garlic Shrimp Poke at Costco 
79. Chimichurri Fries at Piaggo on Wheels 
80. Torta Cubana at Cancun Juice 
81. Adobo Bowl at Irenia 
82. Garlic Noodles at Krave Asian Fusion 
83. Broccolini at SeaSalt WoodFire Grill 
84. Spicy Tuna Roll at Yard House 
85. Amber Roll at Orange Roll and Sushi 
86. Frito Chili Cheeseburger at Burger Parlor 
87. Maui Sunrise at The Original Banzai Bowls 
88. Meals from The Performance Kitchen 
89. Pizza-Sized Quesadilla at Los Sanchez
90. Filipino Brunch at EATS Kitchen And Bar
91. Mexican Chocolate at the Pie Hole 
92. Biscuits at James Republic 
93. Mushroom Flatbread with Kale and Kumquat Salad at Lemonade 
94. Mexican-Style Gelatins from Santa Ana’s Gelatina Goddess 
95. Hot Pastrami Caesar Salad at Bruxie
96. Jalapeño Pupusas at Las Cazuelas
97. Meatball Sliders at Fresh Brothers
98. Buffalo Cauliflower at Mead’s Green Door Cafe
99. Raindrop Cake at Sunmerry Bakery
100. Doughrito at Surfin’ Donuts

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