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Husband and wife team, Ornon Jilandharn (Art) and Ornchulee Puntupatch (Claire), have served the rich and exotic tastes of Thai cuisine in Vermont since 1999. During a trip to Montpelier to visit friends, they discovered a space on Elm Street available for lease and The Royal Orchid soon opened its doors in September of that year.
The cuisine of The Royal Orchid is based on the meals that Art’s mother prepared. As a boy, Art helped his mother in the kitchen and learned her secrets. Today these same flavors find their way into each of our dishes.
Art came to the US in 1987 for further education but ended up working in a shipping company, an airline factory, and three years in the restaurant industry, learning the ins and outs of running a restaurant in Portland Oregon before moving to Vermont. Claire met Art in 1992 visiting the US from Thailand. Her family runs one of the best and oldest restaurants in Ayutthaya, the old capital of Thailand.
Over the years Art and Claire have branched out to offer their cooking artistry to neighboring communities. In 2005, they opened Thai Orchid in Morrisville. In 2008, Ocha opened its doors to the Waterbury community, and in 2013 Sabai Sabai began serving Middlebury residents and visitors. Their latest venture, Thai Dishes, opened in Burlington in the spring of 2014. They hope to bring delicious Thai food with a joyful atmostphere to all their customers.