I tried the new Lotus of Siam in NYC in December, it’s the outpost of the Vegas well-known and quite excellent staple. It had been opened just a month or so and I had been very curious. I was massively disappointed, and I'm not surprised in the least that the place appears to be imploding. The family from the Vegas restaurant has apparently split with their New York partners, and are separating themselves from the New York restaurant. http://boardingarea.com/blogs/viewfromthewing/2011/01/27/lotus-of-siam-new-york-begins-to-implode/ The New York version strives to be a more fine dining experience than the Vegas location, and also it seems to adjust the food to the New York palette. While there are certainly Thai places in New York, they’re not known to be particularly outstanding by world standards. And having grown up in New York, I can say that New Yorkers don’t really do spice. At least not Thai spicey. So how would it translate? Not exceptionally well. The tasting menu was $65. They say they tailor it to your preferences, I go to Thailand every year and enjoy Thai spicy. I explained my preferences as they should do whatever the chef was most proud of, but to serve whatever would be served to good friends. Thai friend. And not to worry that it might be too spicy, if that’s how it was intended to be. That’s the kind of thing I might have asked for in Las Vegas, and gotten amazing food. Here they didn’t really pay attention to my preferences at all and sent out seemingly random dishes at whatever pace the service staff got around to it. Service was completely off, they delivered multiple courses at the same time — our soups with a separate appetizer — and other times had significant delays. They delivered all three entrees together, perhaps that was intended but it’s odd for a tasting menu. And it seemed to coincide with craziness on the floor, staff were running around and didn’t seem to be especially well-orchestrated in doing so. And the food itself was equally erratic. Here’s the dining room, it doesn’t look particularly Thai-themed which in and of itself is fine. It’s also quite dark, perhaps geared towards New York romance (having grown up near the City, I wouldn’t want to look at me too clearly over dinner, either!). It wasn’t conducive to my habit of discretely snapping food photos but I think they still do offer a reasonable glimpse into what was offered. We began with a tuna tartare that was also a larb. It made me think that we were in for a really interesting fusion experience, it was spicy and flavorful. Next came a mix of fried rice, with ham and peanuts and onions.. a bit salty but tasty. Then things began going downhill. The stuffed chicken and smoked shrimp in fried rice paper were bland and uninspired.