Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Austin >
Dec 26, 2010 08:00 PM

Thai Groceries

Hi there,

Can you pls send recs for a good thai grocery store? I'm specifically interested in fresh veggies (thai basil, ginger, etc), and fish sauce, shrimp pate... I live in Bee Caves, but plan to go to the Central Market on N. Lamar. Any stores near there? Dont have time to travel too far... Thanks!

Central Market
4001 N Lamar Blvd # 100, Austin, TX

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I live in South Austin, but this isn't a long drive from Bee Caves.... it's probably just as far to the North Central Market:

    I've never been in there, but I keep meaning to go. Also, if you just head down William Cannon from there a couple of miles, you run into Westgate, which takes you to the South Central Market.

    Central Market
    4477 S Lamar Blvd Ste 100, Austin, TX 78745

    1. I don't know if there is a Thai market in Austin, would love to know it if there were.

      I have noticed a lot of Thai goods at pretty much every HEB in the Asian section. Parmer and I35 HEB has the widest selection that I have seen in the mainstream grocery store.

      MT and Hong Kong supermarket also have a lot of Thai goods. Both markets cater to a large Vietnamese clientele. Many products used by Vietnamese are actually made in Thailand and have a Vietnamese as well as Thai label because they are used by both communities, specifically the jarred/bottled items like fish sauce (like Squid brand or Tiparos) and shrimp pastes, shrimp and chile ground together, palm sugar in chunks, etc., I know they do have Thai basil and many vegetables common in South East Asian cooking. However I have not looked for fresh items like green peppercorns or those tiny Thai pea eggplants.

      Do let us know if you find a jackpot of Thai products and veggies all in one place.

      1. I've looked all over for fresh kafir lime leaves and have never found any. Instead we just planted one in the backyard although after this current cold weather, it is looking pretty sad.

        3 Replies
        1. re: ebloom

          awww, that is also sad.

          has anyone gone to thai fresh for groceries, food, or cooking classes?
          there was a groupon for thai cooking classes and i was wondering how it was.

          1. re: ebloom

            Central Market has kaffir lime leaves sometimes. But last time I saw them they were $80/lb. 5 sets of leaves would have cost $2.50.

            They have kaffir limes (or sometimes labeled makrut/magrut) for $3/lb, about 6-8 to a pound. The rind/zest from those are even better than the leaves, which are really fibrous in recipes that call for using them thinly sliced. The oil coming from their last batch of kaffir limes was incredible. I added some squeezed kaffir lime juice to my OJ one morning at work and my office smelled like limes for a couple days. I got a lot of compliments on my aftershave ;-)


            Central Market
            4477 S Lamar Blvd Ste 100, Austin, TX 78745

            1. re: ebloom

              We've had a kafir lime tree growing for several years now - in a pot so it's easy to protect when there's a freeze. It does well in a pot.

            2. Would suggest you try Thai Fresh at 909 W Mary. They carry lots of Thai groceries and many fresh ingredients as well. They certainly have Thai Basil (Siam Queen), and am fairly certain they have lime leaves.

              2 Replies
                1. re: ridgeback

                  i just wanted to report that i bought all my groceries at Central Market--it certainly was not cheap, but it was convenient for me. I didnt find thai basil or fresh kafir lime leaves. but i got beautiful lemongrass, galangal, and other produce. i will def check out the suggested asian stores when i'm not in time cruch!

              1. I second the MT market recommendation... it's a bit of a drive for us too, but a fun occasional excursion and reasonable prices.

                We stock up on the non-perishables like fish sauce, palm sugar, etc, and grow the Thai Basil in our herb garden. (The Siam Queen was a rockstar until the freeze hit.) On a good day you can get a decent selection of veggies (eggplant, daikon, etc.) at HEB.