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Phayathai, Lake Ronkonkoma: Chef-owner Veerawat Satsri cooks with (Credit: Alessandro Vecchi)

Phayathai, Lake Ronkonkoma: Chef-owner Veerawat Satsri cooks with skill and subtlety and will give you the heat level requested. Recommendations: electrifying shrimp hot and sour soup; radna, a comforting main course noodle soup; drunken noodles with chicken; crisp, juicy basil duck; and Penang salmon with chopped shrimp and a coconut curry sauce.

Phayathai Restaurant

Phayathai appears to blend into the nondescript Lake Ronkonkoma strip mall it's tucked into, but not once you sample a spoonful of chef-owner Veerawat Satsri's dishes such as his chicken coconut soup.

Phayathai in Lake Ronkonkoma. (Nov. 10, 2012)
(Credit: Alessandro Vecchi)

Phayathai in Lake Ronkonkoma. (Nov. 10, 2012)

Courtney Ensslin and Chris Rezai, both of Stony
(Credit: Alessandro Vecchi)

Courtney Ensslin and Chris Rezai, both of Stony Brook, peruse the menu at Phayathai. (Nov. 10, 2012)

Phayathai co-owner and chef Verawat Satsri of Lake
(Credit: Alessandro Vecchi)

Phayathai co-owner and chef Verawat Satsri of Lake Ronkonkoma. (Nov. 10, 2012)

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Chicken curry is cooked in a wok at
(Credit: Alessandro Vecchi)

Chicken curry is cooked in a wok at Phayathai. (Nov. 10, 2012)

Waiter-host Tirapat Numsinvichiefchai double-checks an order before bringing
(Credit: Alessandro Vecchi)

Waiter-host Tirapat Numsinvichiefchai double-checks an order before bringing a plate to the table while assistant chef Jun Kromyai, in the background, works in Phayathai's kitche. (Nov. 10, 2012)

Phayathai

Phayathai, Lake Ronkonkoma: Chef-owner Veerawat Satsri cooks with
(Credit: Alessandro Vecchi)

Phayathai, Lake Ronkonkoma: Chef-owner Veerawat Satsri cooks with skill and subtlety and will give you the heat level requested. Recommendations: electrifying shrimp hot and sour soup; radna, a comforting main course noodle soup; drunken noodles with chicken; crisp, juicy basil duck; and Penang salmon with chopped shrimp and a coconut curry sauce.

Phayathai's tom kha gai -- chicken coconut soup
(Credit: Alessandro Vecchi)

Phayathai's tom kha gai -- chicken coconut soup -- has a sly electric undercurrent all its own. (Nov. 10, 2012)

Penang salmon at Phayathai is a thick, perfectly
(Credit: Alessandro Vecchi)

Penang salmon at Phayathai is a thick, perfectly seared fillet plated over spinach and topped with chopped shrimp and a coconut curry sauce.

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