Tuk Tuk Real: A 'Thai taqueria' for South Street

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The future Tuk Tuk Real at 429 South St.

What is a Thai taqueria?

We're about to find out.

Thai chef Alex Boonphaya, who owns Circles Contemporary Asian Cuisine, is partnering with his Mexican-born sous chef, Silvestre Rincon, on a place called Tuk Tuk Real, which they describe as a taqueria merging Thai and Mexican influences and ingredients.

They've secured 429 South St., a former french fry shop, and hope to open the 45-seater in mid-August.

So who's the boss? We shall see that, too.

Boonphaya and Rincon will preview TTR's menu during what they bill as a "knife fight" at the Circles at 812 N. Second St. in Northern Liberties, at 6:30 p.m. July 24.

They'll sell seats to the six-course dinner for $40, and patrons won't be told which chef prepared which course. The chefs must use oregano, tarragon, cactus, poblano peppers, lemongrass, Thai chilies, coconut, maitake mushrooms and tortillas in their dishes.

The chef whose dishes amass the most points during the meal will win a Korin Japanese chef knife and the executive chef title.

Tuk Tuk Real - the "Tuk Tuk" from the Thai vehicle and "Real" from Real Madrid - will offer dine-in, takeout and delivery during lunch, dinner and late night daily.

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