While many 21-year-olds are working their way through college or are trying to figure out what they want to be when they grow up, Ben Misay has been studying up on running his first business, ThaiCafe.
Misay started working at the Thai restaurant seven years ago at the tender age of 14. He wanted to help his cousin, Spanky Sisoukrath, start up Mount Airy’s first Thai food eatery.
“I started here day one. I wanted to help out in the new restaurant. At first I was bashful and stayed inside the kitchen,” said Misay while sitting in a booth at the restaurant after the lunch rush last Thursday.
While working at the restaurant, Misay said he was also in and out of school learning the skills of the trade.
After Sisoukrath’s father passed away, he and his mother decided to open another location in King.
“I had no clue he was interested in selling the restaurant. It came as a complete surprise,” said Misay.
The two restaurants have the same look, but are under different ownership. Misay and his family took over the Mount Airy location on May 31. The restaurant that started out as Thailand Cafe, is now called ThaiCafe. There’s a bright new sign out front and some renovations were completed inside as well.
“Everying is running smoothly. We work together so well as a team,” said Misay. He has help from his sister Amanda and his mom Pathana Bourommadong and stepdad Kaysone Bourommadong.
Misay was proud to say that everything in the restaurant is made from scratch every day.
He said one of the major misconceptions is that Thai food is spicy, but he said the menu is set up to cater to the things Mount Airy citizens enjoy eating. He said the staff is always willing to talk to guests to figure out what types of food they will like if they are unsure about what to order.
“I believe there is sometthing for everyone to try to break out of their shell,” said Misay.
Reach Mondee Tilley at email@example.com or at 719-1930.