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Authentic Thai Food in San Diego

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Does anyone know of any authentic thai restaurants anywhere around san diego? I'm looking for very traditional not americanized. Can anyone help me out?

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  1. Search for "Sab-E-Lee" - board darling and as authentic as it gets.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Ewilensky

      thanks didn't realize sab e lee was thai. Should have done a quick search instead of being lazy.

      1. re: Ewilensky

        The location in Linda Vista is mainly northern Thai, but the Santee location has more Royal Thai dishes.

        Personally I prefer the Santee location, but it's hard to drive out there

      2. Also worth mentioning is Sang Dao in El Cajon. Great authentic Thai and Lao style dishes.

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        Sang Dao Restaurant
        5421 El Cajon Blvd, San Diego, CA 92115

        1. I know you post quite a lot on the Vegas board and so I don't know if you go reguarly to Lotus of Siam in LV. Sab-E-Lee is the most authentic Thai food in SD but I found it not so great compared to Lotus of Siam.

          2 Replies
          1. re: honkman

            Funny, I went to Lotus of Siam but didn't find it all that exciting, and yes, I scoured their boards for the most authentic dishes and ordered them. Underwhelming but decent is what I would label it. Have not tried Sab-E-Lee.

            Sang Dao is delicious though. It's my buddie's aunt's place so he always brings it over. But he is always bringing over the laotian dishes but then again, for some dishes you can't tell.

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            Sang Dao Restaurant
            5421 El Cajon Blvd, San Diego, CA 92115

            1. re: honkman

              I can't speak to authenticity - though SEL seems pretty good and not dumbed down. I also love LOS, but I have had a couple of dishes there over the years that were less than stellar. For me, the item that gives the nod to LOS is the wonderful selection of German rieslings and the staff's remarkable ability to pair wines with foods. Nothing like that at SEL.

              But returning to the OP's question, I can't imagine someone not appreciating the flavors and spices at Sab E Lee. Head & shoulders & most of a torso above any other Thai I've eaten in SD.

            2. Spice and Rice

              1 Reply
              1. re: J M S

                Spice and Rice is painfully Americanized.

              2. Yesterday my wife was jonesing for Thai food and I suggested we go to Sab-E-Lee as it seems to be a favorite on this board. The place is in a nondescript strip mall in Linda Vista. The restaurant is also nondescript having just a half dozen tables in an small room. That said, the place serves delicious Thai food. The Panang curry was one of the best I've ever had. The duck larb was also very good. The pad thai was good as well.

                Authentic? Hard to say. I've never had Thai food outside of Thailand that was the same. Some ingredients, I suspect, just aren't available. That said, Sab-E-Lee was about as close as I've seen to the food I've eaten in Thailand.