Sun-Mon 11AM - 9PM
|Crunchy Thai Chip Basket
|Fried Pork Momos with Two Sauces
|Chicken Spring Rolls
The Fried Pork Momos ($4.79) are much tastier and less healthy than the steamed variety, coming with four dumplings and two sauces, a mildly spicy red tomato chutney and an almost white sauce that reminded me of very well-blended hummus. The Fried Chicken Spring Rolls ($4.29) come with a sweet and spicy sauce infused with chili peppers, but for the price I would expect more than two, both of which were consumed post haste. They were savory and crunchy, containing cabbage, bean sprouts, and a few other unknown vegetables, and, beside the small portion, they were also excellent. The chicken satay ($4.99) is also good with four skewers of grilled chicken accompanied by a decadent peanut sauce and zesty onion and cucumber relish.
|Phad Phak Ruam Mitr
|Green Curry ($7.69) with Beef ($2.69)
I was told that there would be a $1.00 up-charge for substituting potato for bamboo shoots! Considering the fact that potatoes are one of the cheapest staples in the produce department and much more pricey than an equal weight in potatoes, I declined and simply asked for the dish minus the water chestnuts and plus beef ($2.69 extra). The green curry was delicious, spicy enough for the pallet but not too much for my acid reflux. The bell peppers (red and green) were a bit too crunchy (raw) for my taste, but the dish was excellent. The "Jasmine" rice, which accompanies most dishes, seems to be merely white rice because I could neither taste nor see any hints of Jasmine. The beef, which I paid nearly $3.00 extra for, consisted of 3 or 4 pieces of thinly sliced beef and 1-2 inches in length, nearly non-existent. If there had been MORE MEAT, the dish would have been perfect, beside the fact that a couple of chunks of potato would have also been nice!
The Phad Thai ($7.29), a classic Thai stir-fry with rice noodles, eggs, bean sprouts, scallions, cilantro and peanuts in a mild red curry sauce, was robust and delicious. Looking much like an Italian pasta dish, it had nothing else in common with Italian cuisine other than the noodles, and was perfectly seasoned. The vegetables were well cooked and not raw, the dish was sprinkled with small chunks of peanuts and stir-fried in a mild red curry sauce, for a vegetarian dish it was scrump-diddly-umptious!
Zen Zero has become a staple in our house and we will be returning frequently in the future, so expect updates to this review as I try the red, yellow, and "dry" curries, among other dishes, in upcoming months. Good restaurants are not abundant in Lawrence, particularly downtown, but Zen Zero is a welcome addition!
CombatCritic gives Zen Zero 9 OUT OF 10 BOMBS ... Bombs are good!
Title: Quality, Reasonable Asian Fusion in Downtown Lawrence
Key Words: zen zero, zen, zero, Lawrence, Kansas, Massachusetts, street, Thai, Nepalese, Japanese, curry, noodles, stir-fry, 66044, CombatCritic, TravelValue