Provo has a lot of great international restaurants, but some may not know where to go for the most authentic food. Taking from those with international experience, here is where to find genuine international cuisine.
Thai food: Jacob Newman, a student at BYU studying linguistics, served in the Thailand Bangkok Mission. He said Phad Thai Siam has great food and is the closest to food he had on his mission.
“It’s always fun to go to Phad Thai Siam because all of the employees are Thai and that gives us the chance to speak Thai,” Newman said. “The restaurant even smells like Thailand.”
He recommended tom kha, a coconut milk and ginger soup, massaman or panang curry and spicy beef salad.
Italian food: When it comes to a taste of Italy, Charlie Roberts, a senior studying public relations, suggested two different places. Roberts, who served in the Milan Italy Mission suggested Gloria’s Little Italy for pasta and Terra Mia for a pizza craving.
The gnocchi at Gloria’s Little Italy is a family recipe. Roberts also said he enjoys the other pastas, sauces and appetizers. The margherita pizza at Terra Mia is “the most original authentic pizza you can get,” according to Roberts.
Hispanic food: Jeanette Johnson, a public health major from Dundee, Iowa, said she hasn’t found a restaurant that totally puts her back in the Guatemala City South Mission, but Taquero el Vaquero gets pretty close.
She typically orders tacos de lengua, the regular carne asada and a rosa de jamaica to drink. She said she also enjoys the condiment bar, which houses fresh limes and a great salsa verde.
Besides the food, she said the atmosphere is great.
“You order in Spanish and the TV is always on some soccer game or Telemundo,” Johnson said. “The hole in the wall status is a plus. All my favorite restaurants in Guatemala were simple and down to Earth.”
Brazilian food: According to Stanley Fujimoto, from Boise, Idaho, Braza Express offers food that is much like what he ate on his mission in the Brazil Sao Paulo South Mission. He said the restaurant is run by a family, giving the atmosphere and the food a more homey feeling.
He enjoys the salads, which he said are typical of something he would have eaten on his mission. Last time Fujimoto went, he ordered risotto, black beans, fried plantains and coxina, which is a chicken dumpling of sorts that has been deep fried.
He also suggests putting farofa on top of rice and beans. The flour-like powder adds flavor and texture to a Brazilian staple.
Indian food: Whitney Lawter, a recent BYU graduate, spent a month last summer in India on a nursing study abroad. When she wants to remember her travels, she gets a table at India Palace. While the authenticity of the food is comparable to other area Indian restaurants, the service and atmosphere edge out the competition.
“I would recommend chicken tikka masala, butter chicken, and mango lassi, (it’s) like a mango smoothie,” Lawter said. “The naan is also a crowd-pleaser. I (like to) stick to the basics when it comes to Indian food.“