Kin means to “to eat” in Thai, and this West Village restaurant does serve complex curries, chewy noodle stir-fries, and lettuce leaves stuffed with spicy laab (ground meat). Still, it’s really more Thai-inspired than authentically Thai (partly because nothing is diabolically hot). The original Top Chef champ Harold Dieterle is the chef-owner here, and he has come up with creative dishes like a fried pork and crispy oyster salad served with a flurry of celery leaves, peanuts and a chili-lime vinaigrette. He’s a genius with duck—the duck laab and roasted duck with red curry are incredible—and curry, which are flavored with housemade spice pastes.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.