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Some Asian eateries catch flack for unrelated Secret of Siam probe

Police officer outside of Secret of Siam on Wednesday, Feb. 16
Posted at 10:28 PM, Feb 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-17 11:00:21-05

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Las Vegas Metropolitan Police officers raided Secret of Siam, the Thai restaurant accused of serving tainted food, on Wednesday amid an investigation into multiple reports people felt high and tested positive for THC after eating there.

Many victims and regular customers said they'd lost faith in the restaurant after the investigation began.

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Across town, diners like Bradley Christie said they'd be sticking with Thai places like Lotus of Siam, despite the similar name.

"My wife and I love it," Christie said.

Other customers heading into Lotus of Siam said they'd taken a pause when first reading "Secret of Siam," fearing their favorite place to grab a bite was in trouble before realizing the establishments are completely unrelated.

"I was shocked," Christie said. "I actually just read about that a little bit ago on Facebook, and it shocked me that something like that would happen."

Luckily, Lotus of Siam, a 20-year staple of Las Vegas, will continue to serve customers hungry for quality.

In a statement, co-owner Penny Chutima said her restaurant takes pride in serving customer quality food:

Our name is just similar and that’s where the similarities end. Our restaurant is called Lotus of Siam, located on Flamingo and Paradise. You can’t compare every Asian restaurant to each other, just like you wouldn’t compare a steakhouse, an Italian restaurant or a Mexican restaurant to each other. 

We take pride in using quality ingredients and we make everything in-house. My mom opened Lotus of Siam over 20 years ago and we’ve upheld the highest hospitality fundamentals and food integrity since then, and we will continue to do so.  
Penny Chutima

Asian Chamber of Commerce Board Member Bill Wong, however, said people often generalize one restaurant's problems to the entire Asian community when something negative happens.

"It's so sad that we've seen people get sick in a restaurant," he said.

Wong was in the restaurant business for 47 years. He said people should judge each site based on its own merits and not paint the entire community with the same brush.

"They should focus on the restaurant and what happened there and resolve that issue," he said.

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