Best Thai and Chinese in Durham?
For regular Chinese food, I like Eastern Lights on University Drive or China Palace (Chinese menu only) at the Garrett Road/Old Chapel Hill Road intersection. For dim sum, Hong Kong on Guess Road is the best I've tried.
For Thai, I like Twisted Noodles on University Drive (same strip mall as Saladelia) best even though the menu has changed. I dined at Thai Lanna at least three years ago but I wasn't that impressed and haven't returned.
Here's a list of Thai places in the Durham/Chapel Hill area that my (Thai) wife and I have tried or have heard reviews of. Our goal is to find tasty and truly authentic Thai food.
5410 NC Highway 55 East, Durham, NC
This is an excellent Thai restaurant, and is one that we would definitely go back to. It is located in the Greenwood Commons Shopping Center.
2501 University Drive, Durham, NC
)We rated this place as fair-good
4201 University Drive, #112
Has some good food reviews but service is sketchy and atmosphere is nil. Cheap.
Thai Palace Restaurant
1206 Raleigh Rd.
Chapel Hill, NC
Has had very good reviews.
That's a tough one. It really depends on what you consider to be "great Chinese." I haven't been to the Hong Kong in a while but I'm gonna have to head over there next weekend. Two places in Durham which make some nice dishes which are close to what you might find in China are China Palace and Eastern Lights, but you have to choose carefully from the menus. Eastern Lights has some nice noodle bowl dishes and basics such as pork with spicy peppers and stir-fried greens. I like China Palace's fish congee and their green onion pancakes arent' bad (only on weekends). For a little more upscale Chinese restaurant, which imo uses better quality ingredients, I would recommend heading over to Chapel Hill to Red Lotus and ask for their Shanghai menu. They also have nice steamed dumplings on the regular menu. It's listed as "Shanghai bum" (sic). My friends swear by Twisted Noodle - not sure if the service is still sub-par, but I know a lot of people go there for Thai take-out.