Night + Market, the West Hollywood Thai restaurant that's become known for its loving renditions of the food of Thailand's northern countryside, is opening a second location in Silver Lake. Kris Yenbamroong, Night + Market's chef and owner, says he hopes the new location will be open by the end of the summer.
As first reported by the Los Angeles Times on Friday, the new location will be called Night + Market Song, song meaning “two” in Thai. We spoke to Yenbamroong over the weekend about what we can expect from the new location.
“It was never really my intention to start where I am now,” Yenbamroong says of his current West Hollywood location, which is the adjoining space to his parents' restaurant, Talesai. “I always pictured it in Silver Lake. I kind of like it out there. I spend half the week [in Silver Lake], because my girlfriend lives there. And the biggest thing for me is that I've always wanted to have a good neighborhood restaurant.”
Yenbamroong thinks having a neighborhood restaurant will go further toward normalizing the lesser-known Thai dishes he serves. “If people can just tumble down the hill from their house and eat, then it will feel a lot more common to eat what I serve. Now we're a destination restaurant, so it doesn't feel that way. I mean, pad Thai was exotic once, and I think the reason it's not anymore is because it's in people's neighborhood restaurants.”
Yenbamroong says he pictures the restaurant being fairly similar to what he's doing now in West Hollywood, though a different crew and location will affect some things. “I want each place to have its own personality,” he says. He's planning to do lunch and brunch in the Silver Lake location, which he doesn't do in West Hollywood. For brunch, we can expect a somewhat different menu that what we're used to.
“I might do Thai breakfast staples, but I might do diner breakfast as well, stuff I like to eat. I think when people open places serving the food not of their heritage, there's often this emphasis on authenticity, like they want to recreate exactly some experience they had on vacation. I don't have that chip on my shoulder — I know I'm Thai, so I don't have anything to prove. So I might do white toast with an egg.”
He also admits that he doesn't know exactly what the new location will be like. “None of it is mapped out exactly. I mean, there are scraps of paper all over my bedroom, but none of it is set in stone. I want it to be simple.” He says a huge part of his inspiration came from a small restaurant he ate at in Peru, which had two dishes and one beer on tap. “I like the idea of that signature dish. I don't think a ton of options do anyone much good, at least not in what I'm trying to do.”
Yenbamroong won't divulge the exact location, but says it's “basically at Sunset Junction.” He sent us some photos of the 1,400-square-foot space, which you can see below.