great Thai midtown or downtown for a first date tonight
I need to recommend a Thai restaurant for a first date. So many Thai places that are wonderful are also kind of grubby. Any suggestion for somewhere with a nice atmosphere and great food downtown, or maybe midtown? Thanks!
Hate to be a downer, but there really aren't any 'great', or even 'good' thai restaurants in Manhattan-- especially with the ambience prerequisite you've given. I'm loathe to suggest it, but maybe Spice Market? the food isn't great (but not awful), but it's a 'scene' more friendly to romance than other Thai restaurants in the City. (Then again, I've had incredibly romantic dinners at Wonton Garden in C-town, under florescents).
FWIW, Talent Thai on east 34th is surprisingly good, and a step above the bare-bones aesthetic you are trying to avoid.
Still, you'd be better off splurging for a car-service and going to Queens for the real thing, if thai is really what you want. Part dinner, part adventure, and even with care fare, you're still getting off cheaper than apps and drinks at Spice Market.
403 West 13th Street, New York, NY 10014
210 E 34th St, New York, NY 10016
Maybe Laut? Better than average decor, I haven't tried the Thai food there, only the Malaysian. Pinto Thai also looks very promising, I haven't tried the food but other 'hounds here really like the lunch special. The other place I can think of is Kittichai which is much more flashy and expensive.
60 Thompson St, New York, NY 10012
15 E 17th St, New York, NY 10003
Pongsri Thai has branches on 49th St and 23rd. The decor is good enough for a date and the food is pretty good. No, it's not Sriphaphai but neither is anyplace else in Manhattan. I've always found the service to be attentive.
Recommended dishes - Nom Sod, Pad Key Mao, and Pad Gra Prow (your choice of chicken, pork, or beef). If you ask for things spicy they'll oblige you.
They've got a number of higher priced dishes which I've never tried. I have no idea if they're good or not but the basics are all fine.
I've eaten in both locations and I think they're equivalent. You can pick the spot that's most convenient.
165 W 23rd St, New York, NY 10011
I know they are different cuisines, maybe Indochine? (Viet) Great date place.
430 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10003