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Nipaporn and Desmond Holman. Courtesy photo.




Daw Kun 

Address: 2626 Brown Ave., Manchester 
Hours: Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 8 p.m. 
More info: Call 232-0699 or visit facebook.com/DawKunThai 




A taste of Thailand
Authentic Thai restaurant opens in Manchester

05/25/17
By Angie Sykeny asykeny@hippopress.com



 When married couple Nipaporn and Desmond Holman opened their Thai restaurant Daw Kun in Manchester earlier this month, they had one goal in mind: give customers the most authentic Thai dining experience possible.  

Shortly after moving from Thailand to New Hampshire in 2010, Nipaporn got a job cooking at a local Thai restaurant. While she enjoyed being in the kitchen, she was disappointed to find that the food was very different from the food she used to make and eat in Thailand. So she decided to open a Thai restaurant that stays true to the traditional dishes and cooking styles of Thailand. 
“Most Americans who loved the food in Thailand will complain when they go to a Thai restaurant [in the U.S.] and order [a dish with] the same name as in Thailand, because it’s not the same,” she said. “Why [call it a] ‘Thai restaurant’ if it’s not the same food? That’s why all the food I cook here is the real food people eat in Thailand. It’s the food I grew up with.” 
The menu opens with appetizers like Thai-style crab rangoon, curry puffs and deep-fried shrimp egg rolls, followed by a list of 18 lunch specials including curries, vegetable dishes and fried rice and noodle plates, all of which have the option of adding chicken, beef, pork, fish, shrimp, squid, scallops or salmon. Then, there are house specialties like pla rad prik (fried fish in chili sauce), pad thai talay (seafood pad thai) and khao mun kai (steamed chicken and rice), and dinner plates like pad ped kai (spicy stir fry chicken), pad kra tiam (pork garlic sauce) and pad ka prao (chicken or pork basil sauce). The rest of the menu is broken into curry dishes, salads, soups and noodle soups, fried rice and pan-fried noodle plates. For dessert, there are Thai favorites like mango sticky rice, fried banana ice cream and mor kang thai (a custard dessert). 
While many of the dishes on the menu are common in Thailand, the recipe variations are original family recipes that Nipaporn has been cooking since she was 10 years old. 
“These recipes aren’t online. They aren’t Americanized. These are 100-percent authentic Thai recipes with Thai ingredients and the Thai style,” Desmond Holman said. “We want you to feel like you’ve actually stepped into a restaurant in Thailand.”
Named after Thailand’s national flower, Daw Kun also recreates the aesthetic atmosphere of a genuine Thai restaurant through its open dining room layout, wooden tables and booths, vibrantly colored walls and large Thai paintings and art prints. Even the menu design follows that of menus in Thailand, which feature a photo of the prepared dish for every dish listed. 
In the future, the Holmans want to expand with an alcoholic beverage menu, Thai-style sushi bar and outdoor patio. 
Aside from the authentic Thai recipes, Nipaporn said it’s the level of care she puts into each dish that sets Daw Kun apart. 
“It’s not just business; I cook with love. Everything I cook, I make sure it’s good, and if it isn’t, [it goes in the] trash, and I start over,” she said. “We want people to keep coming back and to feel like this is family.” 





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