Local Thai mini-chain Lers Ros, which has its roots on Larkin Street in the Tenderloin, is expanding once again, this time with a slightly different concept in a space across the street from the original Lers Ros. It's called Esan Classic, and we first heard about the spinoff going into the former Olive space a full two years ago, but of course, because it's SF, there were major delays getting the place open.
Owner Tom Silargorn and his wife Oah Budsabagorn decided to branch out with their fourth restaurant, following on Lers Ros branches in Hayes Valley and the Mission that opened in recent years. They've hired family member Chanon Hutasingh to serve as chef, as Eater reports, and the menu will focus on the food of northwestern Thailand known as Esan (or Isaan), which is heavily influenced by the cuisines of Cambodia and Laos.
Check out the full dinner menu here, which features some dishes familiar to the Lers Ros canon like alligator curry, and frog legs with basil, but also features some Esan dishes like fried sun-dried calimari, a pork liver salad with shallots and cilantro, and an Esan bamboo salad with chili powder.
Silargorn also told the Chronicle that "the menu will feature ingredients that are harder to find here in the United States, like neem leaves and sesbania grandiflora, an edible flower used in Southeast Asian cooking."
Esan Classic opens Saturday, September 9, and it will then be open for lunch and dinner daily.
Esan Classic - 739 -743 Larkin Street - Open Sunday to Thursday from 11 a.m. to midnight and Friday and Saturday until 2 a.m.