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Oct 26, 2009 07:51 AM

Authentic Thai restaurants near Ann Arbor or metro Detroit

I have not found an authentic restaurant for Thai food in Michigan. Any recommendations? I have been to Bangkok and just love their Tom Yum Goong there. It's loaded with spices, herbs, chicken and prawns. But most thai restaurants I have been to serve a wimpy vanilla version with almost just clear broth with pathetic pieces of chicken and mushroom floating around.

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  1. I'm guessing your search might be in vain. I'm sure people will come in here and talk about their favorite thai place but i strongly suspect most of these restaurants serve mainly americanized thai cuisine.

    1 Reply
    1. re: moose734

      While the reply above is probably correct for the most part, I can guaran-stinking-tee you that Pi's Thai Cuisine (at least the Hazel Park location, but probably both of them) does, in fact, do different food for their Thai customers than for the vast majority of the American ones. In fact, when I've inquired about certain dishes I've seen other people eating, I've actually been told "That's not for you." by the proprietors. Total off-the-menu stuff.

      I also know that the tom yum soup I absolutely love at Pi's is sweetened up for the American crowd. Viva la difference!!!!

      I guess what I'm trying to say is that, wherever you go, you'll need to impress upon said people that you honestly want, and have had experience with, honest-to-goodness, down-home Thai cooking, and that you really want it in true Thai style/fashion. I'd start that way, and go from there.

    2. Thai waitress I befriended in Ann Arbor: There is no authentic Thai food in the area.

      American who had lived in Bangkok: Siam Square in Ann Arbor is pretty good.

      I don't know who's right--I've never been to Spain, much less Thailand. I personally like Lotus Thai, which is a branch of a Bangkok chain. I also like Siam Square, and I see Thais eating there--they may, as Boagman says, be ordering off-menu.

      1. Thai Thai (734) 572-1999

        2612 Washtenaw Ave., Ypsilanti, MI 48197

        1. These "looking for AUTHENTIC Thai" posts and the responses "it's all Americanized" puzzle me to no extent. Who are the people who are looking for authentic Thai and where have they had it before; in Thailand, at a friend's house? Do any of the local Thai restaurants do ANYTHING that's authentic, or is it all totally made up and passed off as Thai food? It's a puzzlement.

          3 Replies
          1. re: charlesbois

            Sounds like the same fight for "Real" Chinese food.

            Is Pad Thai the General Tso's of the Thai world? Although I never order Pad Thai....but I have to admit I love good Tso.

            1. re: JanPrimus

              It's a somewhat accurate comparison, although I believe Pad Thai is an authentic Thai dish, just that it's been "tinkered" with for american palates. ( or rather what is thought to be a typical american palate)

            2. re: charlesbois

              It's a pretty simple explanation. Many foreign restauranteurs , for a number of reasons ( lack of availability of native ingredients, belief that their cusine would not be accepted by american palates, etc.) either create new dishes or alter dishes so that there is very little similarity between what you're served and what the dish would actually look like in its country of origin . It's obviously hugely prevelant in Mexican and Chinese cuisine.

            3. Just heard about this place today....


              While not a restaurant I am feeling compelled to find out more. There is not much on the site about the food but I heard that it is the real deal. I may need some practice meditating anyways. :)

              1 Reply
              1. re: JanPrimus

                Dhammasala is actually a Thai temple (out on Beardslee Rd, near Perry). The only food there is what is brought to the temple by the lay folks (mostly Thai) - and yes, it is authentic. The monks there do not really teach meditation, although the 30-odd acres of land offer some great places for one to self-meditate.

                Beardslee's Restaurant
                3135 E Howard City Edmore Rd, Edmore, MI 48829