Mon-Fri, 11:30am-10pm; Sat-Sun, 5pm-10pm
N, R at 23rd St.
American Express, MasterCard, Visa
10th St. to 30th St., First Ave. to Ninth Ave.
When he took over his father’s Bangkok Café after a dozen years, Shan Pooviriyakul didn’t just strip it down to original brick walls and wood floors. He also worked the lucky number nine into elements of Rohm’s lounge-like décor, from nine-bulb light fixtures to nine gold-leaf wall sconces. If only the good fortune flowed to the kitchen. Though its cooking crew is Thai, Rohm plays it safe, delivering middle-of-the-road standards with diluted flavors. Only a few dishes taste unrestrained, like coconut soup pungent with lime or red-curry chicken with real heat and bite. Pooviriyakul himself works the floor, along with a friendly, chatty waitstaff; even when confusion reigns at busy dinner hours, they charm. The mellow, hip vibe attracts a young, good-looking crowd of neighbors, office workers, and NYU students. Rohm, by the way, means “secluded” in Thai—a bit of poetic license for this subterranean spot on a quiet Flatiron block.