You ask it it's worth trying out, so here goes. The food booths are good. But for me Wat Thai is not about the food, but the experience. I had been going about once a month for a number of years and it's a shame they closed the food booths. I started going when the food was served in the little downstairs room. The great thing about Wat Thai is it's a real community place for the SE Asians. It has always been about 80-90% SW Asians. I have a picture of the people eating from last year's Songkran event and it's almost all black haired people.
If you go enjoy the crowd, check out the entertainment on the 2 stages, go into the temple for a moment of peace. Shake out your fortune telling stick! Bring food to donate to the temple.
And enjoy the food!
I met some friends here today, and since I wasn't expecting incredible food, I had a great time. I had some sweet sticky rice and several forgettable bites, but the people watching and vibe was cool.
Female Muay Thai boxing, excellent, while drinking in the Singha party corral.They had these beer towers you could buy, 100 ounces of beer in an attractive plastic tap with ice in the center.While watching the Miss Thai USA pageant I saw Dennis Hof of Bunny Ranch fame trying to get back stage.
I also saw various LA characters throughout the day, and listened to some truly awful music at the corner of Hollywood/Western.
All in all, it was a lot of fun and I'll do this one again.The Wat Thai Songkran should be able to deliver the good eats.Lookin' forward to that.
Well, here's what I found worthwhile:
I hadn't had issan sausage before, and it's pretty good. Nice and sour.
The squid on a stick was (much) better last year.
Possibly the best food came from Simpang Asia, an Indonesian place. I tried several different forms of curry surrounded by starch and fried.
The best Thai dish I had was a bite of papaya salad. I have no idea which booth it came from. It wasn't as good as Jitlada's, but it was available.
Ngoma, a pan-African restaurant, had a very tasty chicken curry, enough to make me want to try the restaurant. It looks a little pricey for the hole-in-the-wall food that I'm used to (entrees $14-15) but they have $7 lunch specials Tu-F 11-3.
I think the draw here isn't so much that the food is amazing, as that the food is pretty good and you get to buy a bunch of things and wander around eating them.
It's fun but I didn't think a lot of the booths selling food were that good. The good news is that you are in the middle of Thai Town and there are amazing restaurants on every block. It's not like the old Wat Thai, but it is fun. I"m a sucker for New Year's Festivals. We go to the Tet Festival every year and it's always the same.
I've never been to Thailand during Songkran but I've heard that it is open season on tourists and you totally get soaked (it's a Water Festival for New Years). Thank God there wasn't anything like that going on.
So glad this is not an 'I went and it was great' post but rather an in-advance-of-the-thing thread!
Found a mention of some details here:
Says: The 2009 Thai Town Festival will take place on Sunday, April 5th from 10 am till 7 pm. On Hollywood Blvd. between Western and Kingsley, you will find over 150 booths, music, performances and a lot of curry. More details coming soon…
And this looks like a more complete set of details likely:
And this concurrent CURRY FESTIVAL :D
Songkran (Thai New Year) Festival at Wat Thai of Los Angeles IS happening this year April 11-12. There is parking at Kaiser Hospital with a shuttle van from 9am-6pm.
818-780-4200 ext.601, 609 for more info.
Wat Thai of Los Angeles
8225 Coldwater Canyon Ave, Los Angeles, CA 91605