The inspiration for Khong River House emanates from founder John Kunkel’s passion for the celebrated foods prepared in the rural villages and city markets of Thailand, which he became enamored with while living and traveling extensively through its northern provinces.
Chat Chow talks to Executive Chef Piyarat Potha Arreeratn (known as Chef Bee) who hails from the small town of Ban Sankhohiang in the Chiang Rai region. The cultures from Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam and other surrounding countries are the influence behind Khong River House's Northern Thai cuisine.
"Everybody has sticky rice," says Chef Bee. "But we serve Burmese Sticky Rise that is soaked overnight with turmeric and salt. So its nice and yellow. The next day it is steamed with flash-fried garlic. The smell and aroma is beautiful."
A Thai temple in Homestead, Florida is importing all the produce, giving a new meaning to farm-to-table. Even the decor at Khong River House is authentic with license plates and a tin roof. The restaurant was even blessed by Thai Monks.
"Traditional Thai people want somebody with a beautiful mind, beautiful heart, someone superior to give you a blessing."
Watch the video to learn about Chef Bee's favorite dishes including Curry Boat Noodles, Pork Belly Curry and the eponymous "Killer Bee" cocktail.