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THAI native looking for Authentic thai

I find that most" thai "restaurants here really doctor up the delicious taste and uniqueness of authentic Thai food by making it sweet, less spicy and tasteless but still they do a good business!! So I need to find out from some Thai food experts just where I can find authentic thai food in the greater new york city area. Burmese and Laos food will also be considered I was also appalled by finding that many thai restaurants charge extra for RICE !!!!!! this is just terible....the american restaurants never charge you for the platter of bread that they offer with your meals...must change this !!!1
thank you

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  1. I'm no expert, but reportedly, Sripraphai in Woodside, Queens is authentic and good.

    1. On the corner of Fulton & Gold there is a place called Benny's Thai - although not as good as Sripraphai it is a less Americanized version of Thai food than most other places and they don't charge extra for rice!

      1 Reply
      1. re: wingman

        I ate at Bennie's on Fulton on Satuday. I sometimes go there. For those who haven't been, this place is pretty much the acme of a New York City zero-ambience restaurant. Years ago, the space must have been used for an Italian restaurant, because on the wall outside there is a large mural showing Venice -- gondolas, etc. True story! Anyway, I ordered the Pad Ped-Khing and had a Singha beer. Service tends to be good, food is satisfyingly spicy, not sugary or greasy -- doesn't aspire to culinary masterpiecedom. Price is right. No idea if it is "authentic" or not.

      2. Sriphaphai is the most authentic and plenty of Thais dine there. It's a very popular restaurant but worth the wait & trip out to Woodside. They do charge for rice also, $1 a bowl.

        1. Let me join the chorus and sing Sripraphai's praises.
          Check the Outer Boroughs board for more details. And as you'll see there, there is a very good Burmese restaurant nearby.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Brian S

            as to other outer borough choices, you have both Chao Thai and My Thai in Elmhurst both of which have gotten great reviews on chowhound and elsewhere; although they're not sri-killers, they are quite good. and sri is not the sri that it always was, so they might be catching up.

          2. Sawadii krab, Surgeon

            As mentioned above Sripraphai is the closest thing we've got...

            Most of the Manhattan places are truly awful, but a few that are worth considering:

            -- Zaab City (13th St) cooks solid Isaan food...the somtam is better than Sripraphai i think...the laab moo was even hotter than one i eat in Chiang Mai...

            -- Jeeb on Orchard St. in the Lower East Side...the regular menu is so-so, but one of the cooks, a woman named Lat, has cooked some excellent meals for me in the past that were not on the menu (e.g. a duck& green curry stir fry)...

            Sometimes, to try to get a decent Thai meal in Manhattan, i chat w/ the staff a bit in my (pathetic) Thai and then ask them if they'd be willing to serve me whatever the staff meal was that day...once in a while this has worked as they've liked the novelty of serving a farang the staff meal and i've had some decent curries that way...

            Enjoy NYC!

            1. I suggest Pam Real Thai located at W49th St. & 9th Ave. in Manhattan.
              Dishes are wayyyy HOT, not toned down for the western palate at all. The ambiance and decor is somewhat lacking, but the food makes up for it.

              5 Replies
              1. re: mopotofu

                pam real thai is great, always a pleasure to dine there. I prefer the old restaurant over their new modern look one, which is a block away.

                and of course, you can always ask them to dial up the spice if need be.

                1. re: bigjeff

                  I haven't had a good meal at Pam's in about 4 years, even though I intermittently tried it since then just in case I was missing something. I know that the owner and staff are really nice and know Thai food, but they haven't been serving it up when I've gone. Last time, the sticky rice couldn't even stick together in a ball, making it impossible to eat with your fingers.

                  I've had better meals just up 9th Ave at Wondee (the tiny one). Not everything there is good -- the jungle curry is useless-- but I strongly recommend their yum moo yang (grilled pork salad), on the "specials" card. Beef salad is good too. They also had a nice miang kham appetizer using dried fluffy pork, which I don't see too many places.

                  1. re: mary shaposhnik

                    Ohhhh the miang kham pork....! My grandma used to make me sandwiches out of two pieces of white bread, mayonnaise and dried fluffy pork, when I was a kid. I thought they were so weird and gross (just wanted a ham sandwich like the other kids) -- but something tells me I might appreciate them now. Ah the memories....

                    1. re: mary shaposhnik

                      pam is definitely my go-to spot in manhattan, last I ate there was maybe 2 years ago, but I've always had great meals; their twice-cooked pork is good, various curries, their whole fish, etc. I've had bad thai south of them on 9th ave; have had some decent meals at wondee, yes. but anywhere else in manhattan, I just don't usually like. good thing I live in queens!

                  2. re: mopotofu

                    I second that. Pam's Real Thai is probbaly the best I've had in the city.

                  3. Surgeon,
                    Sri Praphai is good, and worth the trip out there. It's probably the closest you'll get to authentic Thai in NYC. There's also a cute little place in the East Village called 'Fake Orchid'. It's run by two Thai kids from Bangkok, and seats about 6. It's on 9th st between 1st & A. I dunno if they've toned down their food, but when they first opened they were pretty authentic. (I visualized them calling their moms on a daily basis -- "hey mom, how do I phaw phiat sod again??") You may want to clarify with them that you can eat Thai style just in case.

                    Where in Thailand are you from? I live in Bangkok and I've yet to find a restaurant which doesn't charge for rice.


                    1. I'm also no thai expert, but there's a great new thai place at 1565 2nd Ave (btw 81st/82nd), Land Northeast Thai, they do a fantastic $8 lunch special, and you can join the staff lunch between 3:30-4:30 for $10. I found their pad thai on the sweet side, but other dishes are excellent, especially the drunken noodles and green or red curries. They are also happy to make it super hot. There's a Land thai restaurant on the upper west side that I found to be better than a lot of NYC thai, but uniformly too sweet, the Land on the east side is much better.

                      1. Wondee, the small one has a separate menu in thai and will cook you whatever you like if you can ask for it. The regular menu is not exceptional but the Thai and special menu on card are very authentic and great cooking.