Zabb Elee

Manhattan – East Village

Zabb Elee

75 Second Ave.
Manhattan , NY 10003

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Thai fanatics have persistently declared you have to go to Queens to get the real thing—food that's not tamed for American tastes. Not anymore, thanks to Zabb Elee (whose original branch is in Jackson Heights). This appealing East Village eatery is devoted to specialties from the Isan province in the north, bordering Laos and Cambodia. It's cause for some explaining by the sweet staff since the menu lacks familiar fare like pad thai and spring rolls. Larb—an exciting blend of ground meat, shallots, mint, scallions, cilantro and chili powder that comes with duck, crispy pork or catfish, among other selections—is a necessity for every table. (The food can be incendiary, so if you have a sensitive palate, you may want the kitchen to defuse it just a little.)

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