East & West Café on Tacoma Mall Boulevard reopened this week after a month hiatus. I just got off the phone with owner Vien Floyd and her son, Joe, who operates the Thai and Vietnamese restaurant with his mother.
So what happened? Here’s what Vien and Joe told me.
They lost a key kitchen staffer temporarily so Vien and Joe said they opted to close for a month. “We could have stayed open with the staff we had, but we didn’t want to put out an inferior product,” said Joe. The staffer had to tend to some personal matters, he said.
“It’s hard to find a good cook and I’m very picky,” said Vien, who dismissed the notion of hiring a chef temporarily. “It takes too long to train someone to cook the flavors we cook,” she said.
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Back in the kitchen now are cooks she trusts, she said. She said she refuses to run the restaurant with less staff than the restaurant needs.
Here’s another story we wrote in 2008 when the restaurant closed for remodeling and retooling.
TIP: We’re writing about the East & West Café in Proctor in a roundup review of 10 Proctor restaurants that will publish tomorrow. My top picks for menu items: larb gai and green curry. Read about it tomorrow.
East & West Cafe Tacoma Mall Where: 5319 Tacoma Mall Blvd, TacomaPhone: 253-475-7755Hours: 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Mondays-Saturdays and noon-8 p.m. Sundays