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I’m beginning to think my love for Thai food is really just an obsession with peanut sauce. I’d eat most anything if it were doused in the condiment—but only if the balance of thick-thin, crunchy-creamy, sweet-salty is just right. At Thai Monkey Club, owner and Thailand native Joy Phom serves the ideal blend (and gets extra points for adding chopped nuts).
The restaurant’s three outposts serve authentic fare—papaya salad, larb, green curry, pad see-ew—but the don’t-miss item is the Thai Peanut. Order it with chicken and build a bite with stir-fried cabbage, broccoli, carrots, and bean sprouts, then sweep it all through the silky sauce. Judicious diners wrap up half of the dish for a second meal. For me, however, that never happens. Multiple locations, thaimonkeydenver.com