Sticky rice with mango is a traditional Thai recipe served at King and I.

Rays of sun on a bed of rice

By Amber Williams There is something about Asian foods that just feels guilt-free. Even at dessert. Somehow a meal can be hearty enough, loaded with flavors and food groups and ...

Tandoori Chicken is served at India Star Restaurant.

The chicken tandoori waltz

By Amber Williams It so often seems when dining out that the appetizer, as delicious and thrilling as it might have been, is gone too soon. Rarely does anyone complain ...

Chicken Chaat is served at India Star Restaurant.

Chicken chaat is more than a ‘snack’

By Amber Williams Chaat. It’s as fun and easy to say as it is to eat. And isn’t that the expectation of a qualifying appetizer? Fun and easy. One common ...

The Contents

Caramelized BBQ duck and chicken hang on display in the warmer at the counter, where staff will pull orders and customize each.

THE PRODUCER- A taste of Hong Kong in Des Moines

By Chris Kelley Kevin Le, founder of Le’s Chinese Bar-B-Que, has served ...
Stranger In The Night is a signature martini exclusively served at Wasabi Chi and Wasabi Tao.

THE DRINK- The lychee key

By Amber Williams The continent of Asia has many wondrous sights, tastes ...

THE CHEF- Chuckee Nguyen

By Chris Kelley Q. How long have you been cooking? A. I’ve ...

Asian Restaurants of Des Moines

Sushi and sashimi platter at Wasabi Tao.

THE FEATURE- Asian restaurants of Des Moines, A remarkable diversity

By Jim Duncan Asian restaurants have been part of Iowa’s café scene for more than 110 years. Their early days were rather notorious. Des Moines’ first Chinese café opened in 1903, and several others quickly followed. Those owned by George Wee were frequently raided by police. Newspapers reported that “scantily clad women scurried out windows,” […]

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THE DISH- Scrambling and confusion

By Jim Duncan Even before the Younkers fire displaced several restaurants, the first quarter of 2014 was a time of scrambling and confusion on the local scene. A record of nearly 400,000 Iowans were classified “food insecure,” though critics argued the criteria for that classification changed more than the actuality. Food inflation reared its ugly […]

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