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Jan 6, 2010 01:25 PM

MSP Thai Restaurants?

Do any of you fellow chowhounds have a favorite Thai restaurant you frequent? Is it a hole-in-the-wall type place or super chic? I've been to Mango Thai in St. Paul lots of times and find their food pretty delicious (although they could be a bit more generous with the meat included in the dishes). Now, I'm ready to branch out. Let your Thai restaurant choice be known! Throw in some dish recommendations if you like, too :)

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  1. There are a lot of threads talking about this subject. However, my vote goes to Bangkok Thai Deli in St Paul. I love the place! My favorite dish is stir fried beef with basil. I also like their papaya salad (Thai style), chicken fried rice, stuffed chicken wings, etc, etc.....

    1. Ditto on the Bangkok Thai recommendation - ambience leaves something to be desired in terms of "fine" dining but their food is awesome. The restaurant reminds me of homey basic places in Bangkok but keep in mind it's probably not a date worthy restaurant.. However, if you're a foodie and are willing to overlook the ambience factor, this is probably the best find I've had on restaurants in the last 6 months.

      1. My favorites are as follows

        Lemongrass Thai - In Brooklyn Park. Not only do they nail the basics, but they have a sausage appetizer that is to die for.

        Bahn Thai Cuisine - In New Hope. My former favorite. What I appreciate about their food is that they hit the sour notes just right. If you are a fan of Tom-Kha-Gai, this is your place.

        Chai's Thai - If you like Mango, it stands to reason you'll like it's sister restaurant. Chai's is famously BYOB to boot.

        Ruam Mit - I haven't been there since the re-opening, so take my recommendation with a grain of salt.

        As for Bangkok Thai, I should note that I had a bad experience there and that they are (or were recently) having issues with their space. I'm waiting before giving them another shot. The critics are inexplicably gaga over True Thai, which I have found to be bland.

        1. I just found True Thai on Franklin Ave SE in Mpls. Outstanding food. The Pad Thai Cafe on Grand Ave in SP is ok too, havent been in a while since i discovered True Thai.

          6 Replies
          1. re: vinman

            I am allergic to msg and have been bummed to find that the majority of Thai places in the twin cities use it. I have been following a Thai food thread on a competing board and people spoke highly of Naviya's Thai, which is now closed. I found Naviya's cell phone on their facebook page and called her- she said she is looking for a new space, and doesn't use msg, is allergic herself. She grinds a lot of her own spices, her food sounds great although I never made it to her place on Lyndale and 64th. She is in discussions with Midtown Global Market....waiting for a call question to hounds here is, would you go to Midtown for some great healthy Thai food? I sure would, I think they could use her. Opinions?

            1. re: faith

              I was at Naviya's a few times....both Lyndale and Penn. I thought it was pretty good...a little on the expensive side, but good. I would definitly visit them in a Midtown location.

              I agree with Keven47 on True Thai. Their pad thai is solid, but everything else is pretty bland. I don't understand why the critics love it. I've had microwave reheated chicken a few too many times there. There are too many other great Thai places in the Twin Cites.

              My favorites are Lemongrass That in Brooklyn Park, and Gangchen on 18th and Nicollet. Although Gangchen isn't really Thai...more of a variety of Asian dishes.

              I've also been to happy hour at Amazing Thailand a few times lately and thought it was a great value for drinks and apps...they were reasonably priced and delicious. Looking forward to going back for dinner or the lunch buffet to see how everything else is.

              1. re: faith

                Thanks for the heads up on MSG and Thai food, faith! I knew a lot of Chinese places (perhaps more the American-Chinese restaurants than the authenic ones) had MSG in their food, but I didn't know that so many Thai restaurants did. In regards to your question, I would totally make the trek to Midtown for excellent Thai food. I hope she ends up finding a spot there!

                1. re: faith

                  Ruam Mit Thai in St. Paul states on their menu that you can ask for your food without the MSG.

                  1. re: ShinyCake

                    thanks ShinyCake.............most places that use msg usually will say that, but I have learned that if they are used to using msg, food without it won't be that great, or more likely, it will still have enough msg to be noticeable because it's in their sauces already, products they buy already prepared.....and I know that's an issue with many places unless they are making a lot from scratch. So, that's why I am extra impressed with Naviya and other people(SIngapore, Saffron) who grind their
                    own spices , and like to support them.

                    1. re: faith

                      Thanks for explaining that, faith. Makes sense.

              2. Don't go to Chiang Mai Thai in Calhoun Square! I got some takeout from Chiang Mai a couple of years ago and haven't recovered, psychologically, yet. Thanks for the thread frogger8. I'm looking forward to trying some of these recommendations and getting over my fear of sitting down to a plate of Thai that tastes the way a dog smells...(what is that? rancid oil?)

                2 Replies
                1. re: Gr8Marlys

                  I think getting takeout once, from a place a couple years ago, should hardly put it in the never ever frequent category.

                  Chiang Mai Thai is great for drinks and appetizers. I also quite like Pad Sri Racha/Chili Sauce Stir Fry, which is really quite tasty, especially after a couple cocktails and some spicy cashews.

                  And, they do make some fine jalapeno cream cheese wontons.

                  Authentic, no. But then I can't believe takeout could psychologically scar anyone.

                  1. re: MplsM ary

                    You're right, MplsM ary, I'm employing a bit of hyperbole when I say I was psychologically scarred by my meal at Chiang Mai Thai. That being said, I'd had probably four meals in the good-to-gradually-mediocre range at Chiang Mai before the bad takeout experience. Yes, they have some decent cocktails. Yes, I'm sure many good and average and downright bad meals have been served there since I last went...and still, my takeout meal experience was terrible. So bad I'm going to skip going there until and unless I hear numerous reports of delicious meals being served there.