After seeing a film on a recent Sunday, some friends and I realized Thai food was the only thing that could make the day better. We did a quick search for the closest place and found Zangna Thai Cuisine off Shackleford.
The interior of the restaurant provides modern decor, ample seating, and pleasant lighting. To begin, one of the group ordered larb as an appetizer. Larb is shredded chicken marinated in lemongrass, chilies, lime, and fish sauce then tossed with lettuce and onions. I’d never had it before, but was quite pleased with the tangy citrus flavor. I selected pad mixed vegetables ($11) for a main and was more than pleased. The rich, slightly sweet sauce coated the vegetables and soaked the fluffy rice. The chicken was more tender than I’ve come to expect from such dishes, while the vegetables still had life in them. I even had enough to take home for a midnight snack, which I’m never opposed to.
One of my companions ordered yellow curry, which she was less than pleased with. The curry liquid was somewhat runny, and the mild flavor was almost too mild. Another ordered pineapple fried rice with tofu. While the overall dish was well executed and flavorful, the tofu could have been crispier. Additionally, though the description on the menu included peas, there were no peas in what was brought to the table.
Finally, the pad eggplant. This dish was arguably the star of the show. The beautiful purple of the eggplant contrasted beautifully with the green and red peppers, making for a great presentation. The eggplant was still firm instead of mushy, and the combination of textures was interesting in the best way. The tofu, though tasty, suffered from the same lack of crispiness as the previous dish, but the rich flavors compensated for it quite well.
While I wouldn’t make a special trip, Zangna is a nice spot to grab Thai food if you’re in the area. The service was quick and friendly, and, minor issues aside, the food was flavorful, generous in quantity, and reasonably priced for dinner.
2604 S Shackleford Rd
Little Rock, AR 72205