I realize this is hardly cutting edge news in the food world but am curious. I knew that Pok Pok had opened a location in NYC and I think I remember hearing it was closed. It’s still going strong in Portland, Or and in fact I just ate there in January. Delicious as always. I was just curious if any posters to this topic had tried both locations, what you thought about them respectively and what the buzz was surrounding the closure. Maybe logistically difficult for the owner? I notice the one in Las Vegas seems to be open still, makes me wonder if they’re giving Lotus of Siam a run for the money??
Never been to the Portland one, my 2c are for Brooklyn. It was very hard to get to (pre-Uber/Lyft days), very hard to get into, with little around to kill time during the wait (they opened the bar later). The food was very good.
Now this was all ostensibly part of the “design” or “attraction,” but there is enough other delicious food available here with fewer hoops to jump through that I only ever went again with visiting friends.
I don’t know why they actually closed - I’m sure there’s an eater article - or several - on the subject.
Thanks for the reply, I don’t blame you for not wanting to go often - no fun to queue up & wait.
Pok Pok in Portland usually has a wait but it’s not too bad and you can get drinks from the bar. Tasty drinks. And always wonderful food. Will have to try the one in Las Vegas next time I’m there.
Do you happen to have the Pok Pok cookbook? A little daunting but the dishes turn out really well. There is another cookbook that was published 2-3 years ago called The Drinking Food of Thailand. Interesting in its own way.
Wish I could retitle the topic name to why did the Brooklyn location close? Think it happened about 6 years ago, so people are probably going huh???
I never did eat there, between the weird location and epics waits and a lack of vegetarian options it never seemed like the best option.
Basically NYC is stupid expensive, sales were down, lease was up and rent was probably going to skyrocket. Excellent food doesn’t mean a restaurant can survive here.
I’ve eaten at both (Portland in 2009; Brooklyn maybe a few months after it opened). Food was good at the Brooklyn locale and yes, there was a very short line, but I remember brown-bagging beer from the “packie” next door (that’s a Massachusetts term…basically a convenience store with beer and wine) so it was a festive wait. It wasn’t easy getting to in the days before Uber/Lyft so getting there was part of the fun (at least to me).
BUT…to me, there was something magical about the Portland location. It felt like a dinner party had exploded in someone’s lovably ramshackle house and then expanded to accommodate the crowds. And that was 10 years ago. it was so much fun but it was crowded. I can’t even imagine what it was like in more recent times. Kinda s#!t show-ish but I’m just guessing.
ETA: I saw I repeated some sentiments of @Saregama
Your description of the Portland location is so apt. I’ve been several times over the years including this past January. Still the same, atmosphere - enjoyable,and food always delicious. Andy Richter, the owner is a real stickler for authenticity; I did ask our server if the curry pastes were made in big mortar and pestles, his answer was that some of the food was made off site but he thought the pastes were made in big food processors because of the large volume needed.
Think we can put this discussion to bed now, curiosity has been satisfied!