When I started my new job in August, I was excited to move back downtown one day a week because of the abundance of food options in the area. Although I didn’t love my position at my first post-college workplace, the best part of my day was eating lunch with my dad and/or sister at different sites downtown or in Chinatown. Dad knows all of the most delicious places to go, so dining with him for lunch was a special treat back then and now. On my second week in the office, dad took me to Olay’s Thai-Lao Cuisine for arguably one of the best complete meals of my whole life (my partner mocks me for saying everything I eat is the best ever)! Olay’s Thai-Lao Cuisine has ample room in the inside area as well as a breathtaking al fresco dining section with tables and picnic benches surrounded by lush flora. I absolutely love Thai food and I knew my dad would order the tastiest dishes on the menu. Even though there were just two of us, dad ordered four dishes (+ sticky rice) with two being appetizers and two large entrees. You’d think we hadn’t eaten for days! We started with an order of spring rolls filled with long rice, carrots, onion, and kalo served with a fish sauce vinaigrette and the lemongrass fried chicken wings marinated in lemongrass, Thai herbs, and spices and dipped in a sweet chili sauce. Both of the appetizers were golden and shatteringly crispy with the most abundant savory flavors I’ve tasted in a while. Neither were greasy at all, but instead crushed in my teeth and melted away. Our first entree was the gaeng kari or yellow curry with coconut milk, tofu, carrots, potatoes, and onions and we asked for a side of the chewiest sticky rice. I loved ladling the spicy soupy curry on top of my sticky rice as the sauce instantly absorbed into each rice morsel. The coconut milk was cooling so my tastebuds didn’t burn and each vegetable was cooked and softened to perfection. Our last Thai dish was pad siew that had chow fun with a house shoyu sauce, eggs, Chinese broccoli, and crispy beef. I’ve never tried Chinese broccoli before, but the bitter leaves played nicely against the sweet noodles’ sauce and salty, tender beef bits. I’m a total sucker for chow fun and I could tell each noodle was freshly made with its texture being chewy and light. This whole meal was phenomenal and I can’t wait to go back again (on dad’s dime of course)!