Cuisine is the real thing

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By Arin McKenna

When Joe and Ratchanida (Nam) Lovato opened Thailand Thai Cuisine a week ago Thursday, they were caught off-guard by the response.
“The first two or three days they just kept coming. It was rough. We didn’t expect that,” Nam said. “But it’s good, because people are excited, because they love Thai food, and we always hear, ‘Oh, your food is so good.’ It’s all about positive comments. We’re really happy with it.”
That rush of business has made for some slow service, since Nam was the sole chef until just this week. She is currently training another cook in how to make the complex Thai dishes.
Thai cuisine is very labor intensive.
Nam and Joe have spent several nights working until 2 a.m., preparing fresh vegetables and other ingredients for the next day. But every dish is made to order.
The delicate blend of spices that goes into each dish does not come from a premade sauce or mix, but is prepared one dish at a time by Nam herself.
According to Joe, who manages the front of the house and the accounting, they have averaged 100 tickets a day, with two to three people per ticket. That means that petite, 24-year-old Nam has been cooking approximately 225 meals a day.
“And it’s fresh. That’s why Thai food takes more time to cook,” Nam said.

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