Hailing from Nakon province in southern Thailand, Mr. Lirtpanaruk emigrated to the United States in the early 90s and helped pioneer the Americanized style of Thai food with a restaurant called "Spice," which he and a business partner opened in September, 1997. The duo opened their second location two years later and suddenly, business was booming. At it's peak, his restaurant group had over 24 locations, including brands such as Peep, Lantern, Cafetasia, Zabb, Lé Da Nung, Naga and SEA (South East Asian). In 2016, Mr. Lirtpanaruk broke into fine dining, partnering with Chef Arun and Mr. Schermerhorn to revive this storied Chicago temple of Thai cuisine. He hopes to expand the brand over the next few years and, eventually, bring Arun's to all of America's major cities.