A Local Thai Great: Penn’s Thai House

Surely there is nothing more pleasing or satisfying in my business than the serendipitous discovery of a restaurant that one truly loves, especially because it is as rare an occurrence as a hummingbird sighting.

Last week, though, in the nether reaches of Henderson, hard by the underbelly of the 93 Freeway near Sunset Rd., I had such an experience, sort of.

I was led to pasture, but not made to drink at Penn’s Thai House, a whitewashed little place run by a single Thal lady, Penn Amarapayark, with occasional help from a Thai speaking friend who takes food orders in the dining room. And in a city chockablock with Thai restaurants, this one truly stood out. The food here is homey, generously portioned, and to a fault, glorious.

What’s more, it will come as a major surprise, given the surroundings. This is a bare bones place, with a few Thai objets d’art, white walls, and the obligatory portrait of the Thai king, Bhumipol, the world’s longest serving monarch. (The Thais love him dearly, and any word against him is punishable by imprisonment in the “Land of Smiles”.)