Langbaan: Portland’s Culinary Gem Wins Top US Award

Langbaan Portland's Culinary Gem Wins Top US Award

Langbaan: Portland’s Culinary Gem Wins Top US Award

Langbaan Portland's Culinary Gem Wins Top US Award

Portland’s Langbaan Named Best Restaurant in the US

Portland, Oregon, is known for its vibrant food scene. Recently, it added another feather to its cap. Langbaan, a Thai restaurant in the city, has been named the best restaurant in the US. The recognition came from the prestigious James Beard Foundation at their 2024 awards ceremony in Chicago.

Langbaan: A Culinary Journey

The restaurant is not your typical Thai restaurant. It offers an immersive culinary experience that goes beyond the standard fare of pad Thai and green curry.

History and Concept

  • Founded: The restaurant was established 10 years ago by Earl Ninsom.
  • Vision: Ninsom aimed to showcase the diverse and rich heritage of Thai cuisine.
  • Philosophy: The restaurant’s name, Langbaan, means “back of the house” in Thai, reflecting its focus on authentic, home-style cooking.

What Sets The restaurant Apart?

Several factors contribute to The restaurant’s exceptional status.

Unique Dining Experience

  • Ambiance: The restaurant’s intimate setting, with only 24 seats, ensures a personalized dining experience.
  • Menu: The restaurant offers a multi-course tasting menu that changes monthly, featuring seasonal and locally-sourced ingredients.
  • Presentation: Each dish is a work of art, meticulously plated to highlight its unique flavors and textures.
Langbaan Portland's Culinary Gem Wins Top US Award

Authentic Thai Flavors

Earl Ninsom and his team bring the true essence of Thai cuisine to Portland.

  • Traditional Techniques: The chefs use traditional Thai cooking methods, including slow-cooking and fermentation.
  • Ingredient Sourcing: They import rare ingredients directly from Thailand to maintain authenticity.
  • Flavors: The dishes are a symphony of sweet, sour, salty, and spicy flavors, balanced to perfection.

Highlights from the Menu


  • Miang Kham: A betel leaf wrap filled with dried shrimp, peanuts, lime, ginger, and coconut.
  • Sai Ua: Northern Thai sausage served with fresh herbs and a spicy dipping sauce.

Main Courses

  • Gaeng Som: A sour curry with fish and vegetables, known for its tangy and spicy flavor.
  • Moo Hong: Braised pork belly in a rich, aromatic sauce, a southern Thai specialty.


  • Khanom Krok: Coconut-rice pancakes served with a sprinkle of green onion.
  • Tub Tim Krob: Water chestnut rubies in sweetened coconut milk, a refreshing end to the meal.

Key Takeaways from The restaurant’s Success

  • Innovation: The restaurant constantly innovates while staying true to traditional Thai cooking.
  • Consistency: The restaurant maintains high standards of quality and consistency.
  • Customer Experience: Exceptional service and a memorable dining experience are at the heart of Langbaan’s philosophy.
Langbaan Portland's Culinary Gem Wins Top US Award

Quotes from the Award Ceremony

Earl Ninsom, the mastermind behind Langbaan, expressed his gratitude at the James Beard Foundation awards:

“We started The restaurant 10 years ago just to show that Thai food has much, much more than what America has seen,” he said. “This award is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our entire team.”

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What makes Langbaan different from other Thai restaurants? A: Langbaan offers an authentic and immersive Thai dining experience with a focus on traditional cooking techniques and high-quality ingredients.

Q: How often does the menu change at Langbaan? A: The menu changes monthly, featuring new and seasonal dishes to provide a unique experience each time.

Q: Is Langbaan suitable for vegetarians? A: Yes, Langbaan offers vegetarian options. However, it is best to inform the restaurant in advance to accommodate dietary preferences.

Q: How can I make a reservation at Langbaan? A: Reservations can be made through their official website. Due to limited seating, it is recommended to book well in advance.

Langbaan Portland's Culinary Gem Wins Top US Award


Langbaan’s recognition as the best restaurant in the US highlights Portland’s dynamic food scene. It also showcases the richness and diversity of Thai cuisine. Whether you’re a local or visiting Portland, a meal at Langbaan promises an unforgettable culinary journey.

For more information and updates, visit our Facebook page or contact us.

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