This contemporary Thai restaurant located in a restored stone courthouse downtown is one of the restaurants leading the capital city’s emergence as a culinary hot spot. Blue Orchid occupies a high-ceilinged space that offers a spare, Asian aesthetic accented with oversize bamboo stalks and Asian tapestries. The overall atmosphere is urban and sophisticated, although the high ceilings and bare surfaces can make for a noisy meal.
Lincoln is full of avid Blue Orchid fans, who tend to rave most about the drunken noodles, pad thai and yellow curry dishes. On our visit, we tried the ginger-flavored spring rolls, chicken stir-fry and sea scallops. The spring rolls and scallops were excellent, with the sides of fresh baby veggies adding welcome pop to the scallops. The stir-fry was presented in a hollowed-out pineapple half. Some of our party found the presentation novel; some found it to be an unnecessary attempt to jazz up a fairly typical stir-fry.
Our service on a Sunday evening was mostly efficient, if a little cool. We had to remind our waiter about our order of coffee after dinner, and we would’ve preferred that they hadn’t seated another party directly beside us on an evening when the restaurant was wide open. Prices run on the high side for Lincoln, with dinner and a drink running $30 or more per person.