Thai Express and Boba Tea open

By Judd Weil
Dodge City Daily Globe
Team member Manda Soe, left, and owners and operators Ei Khaing and Erik Esparza, right, of Thai Express and Boba Tea, located on 208 W. Frontview Street.

Ei Khaing and Erik Esparza have seen consistent and healthy business since opening their food truck, Thai Express and Boba Tea, to the Dodge City community on Dec. 5, 2020.

Thai Express and Boba Tea specializes in authentic Thai cuisine, much like that found in the Kanchanaburi Province of western Thailand, all prepared and cooked by Khaing.

Originally, Khaing had reservations about going into business with her cooking, despite the encouragement from Esparza, her boyfriend.

“She’d cook for me and I love her cooking and I’d tell her that and I kept telling her that we should open something up,” said Esparza.

After a year of this encouragement that other people would enjoy her cooking, Khaing and Esparza had the truck built in Texas and delivered to them in Dodge City.

Khaing’s sister, Manda Soe, joined the small team to help prep food and take orders.

“So, we actually do lo mein, fried rice, Pad Thai, we actually cook these full meals in the truck,” said Khang. “We basically describe ourselves as a restaurant on wheels. A lot of people come for the Pad Thai.”

In the future, Thai Express and Boba Tea will add Thai curry and other options to its menu.

Khaing’s family is no stranger to the restaurant business, ever since immigrating to the U.S. from Thailand when she was 3, and is no stranger to cooking, either, having learned by assisting her mother.

She looks forward to bringing to Dodge City what she calls, “Authentic Thai food from the heart of Thailand, something that’s not Americanized.”

As business continues to grow and as more items become available on the menu, Khaing expects Thai Express and Boba Tea will evolve to a bigger food truck or into an actual restaurant setting.

Since opening, the positive response from the community and their comments about enjoying her food have made Khaing more confident that what she is delivering to Dodge City is indeed a unique culinary experience.

Thai Express and Boba Tea is located at 208 W. Frontview Street and is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday to Friday and 2 to 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.