We were wandering around the edge of Soho where it borders the Lower East Side and City Hall, when we spied Lan Larb, a restaurant featuring classic Thai cuisine. The Soho location of Lan Larb is a favorite among nearby workers, so we stopped in for a quick lunch. Overall, we found the space to be acceptable–it wasn’t too loud despite all he hard surfaces. That’s not to say the space is serene–it leans towards live–but a drop ceiling may have helped to absorb sound. Otherwise the space is filled with the catalog of noisy design choices: tile floor, lots of glass, and a mirrored wall. But the other wall running the length of the space had rattan mats attached to it which may have minimized reflection.
As usual, there was background music. Once again the music choice was at least as offensive as the fact that music was playing at all. Namely, the music was courtesy of a radio station that featured dance music. Why this genre? We don’t know. There was no obvious reason other than someone must think that the customers enjoy it. They don’t.
Fortunately the other diners were fairly quiet, so the noise level was fine. In the end, Lan Larb is the kind of place you go to for a quick work day lunch. It’s nothing special, just a good meal at a decent price. And while it’s not calm, it isn’t terrible either. You could do worse.
11:30 a.m. to 10:15 p.m. every day
227 Centre Street (betw. Grand and Broome Streets), New York, NY 10013