Dish & Drink KC: Pad Thai at Noodle Bar and curry at Lulu’s
Lulu’s Thai Noodle Shop becomes a triumvirate in the KC foodie scene
Lulu’s Thai Noodle Shop has added a third location in Overland Park, along with a new cocktail menu that features the Noir Sour, a pinot noir/Mezcal hybrid with lemon and demerara syrup.
The Wild Mushroom curry is bright and not just in terms of visible color. The dish itself is a beautiful rainbow of ingredients with carrots, peppers, onions, peas, and wedges of lime and lemon. But it also has a rich, vivid taste. The red curry is sweet and drinkable, right down to its dregs.
While less photogenic and simpler, the Massaman curry is also luscious. It’s tangy and mild, containing potatoes, onions, and peanuts, and served with a side of jasmine rice.
Lulu’s Thai Noodle Shop has three locations at 2030 Central St., Kansas City, MO 64108, 2701 W. 47th Ave., Westwood, KS 66205, and 7921 Santa Fe Dr., Overland Park, KS 66204.
Noodle Bar embodies the Pad Thai pipe dream
Eating a bowl of Pad Thai should make you feel like the main character in a romantic comedy. It’s late. You’re experiencing emotional turmoil. Your home is a mess, and you’ve used an entire box of tissues to stop the snot from streaming down your face. You’re searching for solid ground—and you find it in your neighborhood Thai restaurant.
Noodle Bar is family-owned and operated, tucked away in a strip by the Legends Outlets. It relies on a super small team for all of its fresh-cooked food, so its dine-in availability is limited during the week and nonexistent on weekend evenings.
In an area dominated by chains like Whataburger and Jose Pepper’s, Noodle Bar managed to survive COVID because of its loyal customer base and savvy management.
The Seaweed Salad is drizzled in soy sauce and a sweet vinaigrette, and sprinkled with sesame seeds. It’s light and perfect for the wannabe cultured or the health-conscious, as seaweed is packed with antioxidants and underutilized in the culinary scene.
The Pineapple Fried Rice is the dish for pineapple pizza champions. It maintains an excellent balance of sweet to savory with onions, garlic, cashews, and scallions, as well as pineapple and raisins. It also comes with shrimp, although I prefer the chicken protein option.
Noodle Bar’s Phad See Eaw is the reason why I’m obsessed with soy sauce. Flat rice noodles mix with eggs, yellow onions, garlic, broccoli, mushrooms, and your choice of protein in a delicate yet salty sauce.
And, of course, the Pad Thai is gorgeous. For those looking to step cautiously outside the comfort zone of this classic order, try the Panang Pad Thai, which has the addition of curry and whole roasted peanuts. It has a rich, nutty flavor, and the portion size can easily serve two.
Noodle Bar is located at 10940-F Parallel Pkwy., Kansas City, Kansas 66109. It is closed from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily.