HOME > Chowhound > Outer Boroughs >


REAL Thai food in Brooklyn?

Where in Brooklyn can a guy get some real Thai food (like in Thailand) and not some modified Chinese crossover industrial hybrid?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I've spent a pretty fair amount of time (3 weeks) in Thailand and I've also lived in Brooklyn for 14 years - (ahem) - and for a long time Rice Thai Kitchen on 7th Ave & 8th St was really authentic. They would even actually make spicy food - which was fairly rare in Mew York. . .but they've been slipping as of late. I wouldn't recommmend the lunch special there.

    2 Replies
    1. re: yuriwebboy

      I went to Rice about 3 or 4 years ago and everything was awful, gloppy, greasy and sweet. What really amazes me is the popularity of the dreaded Lemongrass Grill.

      1. re: yuriwebboy

        I had the same experience. Last time I was there, a few months ago, they made the food bland, then brought us a hot pepper tray and some prik nam pla. Even that didn't help the fact that everything was so sickly sweet.

        1. Seriously just suck it up and go to Queens.

          1. in Brooklyn? NOWHERE.....

            1. I've never been to Thailand, but I've been to Sripraphai, Zaab, and several super-good Thai places in Chicago. The closest in Brooklyn I've found to that is Chili Basil (used to be called Am Thai) at the corner of Albemarle and McDonald. The curry puffs, larb, and drunken noodles are all really good (especially if you beg for spiciness, like I do). A caveat is that it's tiny, and much more of a takeout/delivery operation, although it is possible to eat there - they have a couple of tiny tables and I've eaten there before.

              1. Can we just stipulate that there is no authentic Thai food in Brooklyn, no good Indian food worth eating anywhere Queens, no superb Chinese takeout in Park Slope, and no place really great for lunch close to the Brooklyn Museum?

                4 Replies
                1. re: gnosh

                  Huh? There's awesome Indian food in Queens. I assume you're opposed to the offerings in Jackson Heights, so have you been to the places in Richmond Hill? Punjabi Kebab House (Lefferts at Atlantic) is the best North Indian place I've been to outside of India or London.

                  1. re: fat_hot

                    I think gnosh made a typo. Probably meant to say "anywyhere outside of Queens" or the like.

                    1. re: Yaqo Homo

                      I'd agree.

                      Queens is pretty much an accepted ground central for quality Indian.

                      1. re: Yaqo Homo

                        Sorry. That's what I meant. I am a big Spicy Mina fan....

                  2. This is one of my never-ending quests also. You would think that, by now, there would be something beyond what's in Queens that comes close to authentic Thai food?
                    Where is the celebrity chef who's going to step up and champion authentic Thai ingredients and flavors so that the bar can be raised and we can expect more than just the usual Westernized blandness? And don't get me started on the ubiquitous chopsticks. oi..

                    Anyway. Joya on Court is OK. Not fantastic but I have had some very good meals there. Also, Watana Siam on 7th Ave has been good lately. I chatted with the hostess before ordering, told her about my travels in Thailand, and they managed to make the food almost as spicy as it is over there. Getting it spicy enough is half the battle.

                    The problem with most of these places is they are not consistent. You could have a great meal once but it'll be lousy the next time. I think they get away with this because they just assume that most farang will not know what good Thai food is supposed to be like anyway.

                    And what about Royal Thai cuisine? In the past 20 years I have come across only one resto in the USA that served it and that was in San Francisco.

                    also, save the red hook ball fields!

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: Gnu23

                      Ugh, I hate Joya, I think it's one of the super-Americanized offenders. In Brooklyn I have only ever liked Siam Orchid on Metropolitan. Cute place, nice owners, who are willing to make a few off-the-menu options if you just ask! I've gotten suprisingly spicy larb off them.

                      1. re: NancyC

                        Actually I have also gotten great meals from Siam Orchid, but that was when they first opened. Still it is not authentic Thai, it is american Thai fast-food. Joya definitely does not deserve the '25' (or whatever it was) that Zagat gave them. It is pretty mediorche, and loud and annoying with that boom boom mishugas they play.

                        As for Queens, I still have yet to explore it Thai-wise. For Indian jackson Diner has gone WAY WAY downhill. Years ago (early '90's) they were in a small space on that same street, and it was sublime. Oh how I long for the Chana Masala of the bygone days...

                    2. Yes PlanEat Thailand was excellent for the time. Certainly 100 times better than Lemongrass Grill (which was just as bad then as it is now). But I don't know if it would stand up to Sripraphai. I do remember eating there once (and my only time) soon after they moved to their current absurd space. What a disappointment.

                      1. i've never been to thailand, so i can only offer thai places that i actually like. chai(williamsburg), thai sky(park slope), am thai(kensington).

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: elenab

                          I also had incredibly spicy food from Wetana in Park Slope. I told them spicy and boy did they do it - I was in pain! (And that's a good thing.) Their seitan with chili basil is really good - I ask for it extra spicy and with less oil.

                          1. re: elenab

                            We've also been pleasantly surprised by Chai. Obviously, it's no Sripraphai, but pretty good!

                            1. re: chompchomp

                              One day last week I went to Chai's mid-town location with a good friend who travels to Thailand several time a year (I have also been to Thailand).It was really really good and very authentic. I plan to check out the W-burg location ASAP.

                          2. Chao Thai in Queens. I go there every time I want Thai food. I'm in London now. Pity me.

                            1. Try Bangkok Thai House Restaurant 6735 3rd Avenue Brooklyn. If you eat pork, you'll want to try all three of the ribs, maybe a few times, to pick your favorite. The owners are a very nice Thai family, its not fancy but the food is really good.