Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Great Lakes >
Feb 1, 2012 01:23 PM

DTW Lanna Thai Cuisine - Shelby Township - Northern Thai?

This is a brand new place, and claims to offer "authentic Northern (Lanna)Thai Cuisine." Anyone tried it? If the food is more like the Thai Temple offerings (or like Sticky Rice or Spoon Thai in Chicago), I'll become a regular even if it is way out of my way.

There's even a Groupon for the place today, and I did buy one so will probably be trying it eventually.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Oooh, this sounds intriguing and promising! I'm definitely checking it out as soon as I get back into town!

    1. This would be nice. Eating Thai in Chicago( the places you mentioned plus TAC and Arroy) has completely ruined eating Thai food in Michigan for me.

      1. A very bright and clean new Thai in Shelby twsp. Lots of windows, very welcoming decor and people. Lunch is $8 and dinner $10 for the usual suspects (curry, fried riced, rice and noodle dishes).

        I had ginger and rice soup (outstanding) and :Pad Thai. The Pad Thai was a good portion and had a citrus under note that was very pleasant. Overall a nice experience.

        Check the map before you go as it is a bit difficult to see from the road (O'reilly auto parts bldg, N of 21 mile, east side) but definitely worth the trip.

        8 Replies
        1. re: goatgolfer

          Anything on the menu look like the dishes on TAC's "secret" menu? I'm willing to travel for Sai Krok(g) or those soupy noodle dishes, but not so much for Pad Thai.

          1. re: ak994

            I paid attention to your Northern references in the main post but maybe I got the big white guy menu. Only the standards on my menu. Well done but standards. Probably worth a call as the four women partners were very astute and attentive. As I was paying I told them I would be writing a review and they asked lots of questions. Just as in my review it its worth a go or even a suggestion for a "secret" menu.

            Not exactly the same but in the Trizest party we too discovered the secret menu and had a terrific CH member gathering of many "off menu" items. You have my support.

            1. re: goatgolfer

              the northern thai place i went to in LA had a pepper paste/accompaniment to eat along with sticky rice....anything like that?

              1. re: gan911

                Double pot of pepper sauces was offered with the meal but they seemed to be as I have had at other Thai places if the dish was not spicy enough. My dish was just right so I didn't try them but "paste" wouldn't be my first description.

              2. re: goatgolfer

                Thank you to Goatgolfer for taste testing Lanna Thai. I was on the east side today and was torn between giving RedTop a nod by eating at Hankuk, or following up on Goatgolfer’s experience at Lanna Thai (he seemed to be communicating things for those who read between the lines, but I’m slow). I was closer to Van Dyke. So, Lanna Thai it was.

                Okay, Metropolitan Café has a tough row to hoe in Shelby Township because it is “hip.” But, Lanna Thai may have an even tougher row, in that it is “ethnic.” Admittedly, the only highly complimentary thing I have to say about Shelby Twp is that one can get a heck of a lot of house for the money; so, shoot me.

                Hence, what hope is there for someone to make a go of it, with a foodie Thai restaurant? As expected Lanna Thai’s menu features all the usual Michigan “Thai” suspects. (There even are unappetizing photos of them on the wall.) No, the menu reads nothing like Chicago’s TAC, not even close, never will. BUT, Lanna Thai is adding a few dishes to their menu which may not have been on offer when Goatgolfer first checked them out. They now have the green papaya salad Som Tom. It was very respectable. Not as good as Nung’s Kitchen Catering, but delicious.

                Good looking fresh spring rolls have also been added, as well as fresh deep fried fish with sweet chili sauce. But, I’m saving those for my next visit. I had the Khow Soi Lanna noodles. This was a very unique and good dish (photo and description are on menu linked in posts above). It was a bit too thick and rich for me, given that I was tasked to eat the whole thing by myself. Regardless, it could hold its own at any reputable Thai restaurant outside Thailand—LA, Chicago, NY, London… Can be improved upon, but inarguably complex and interesting. Order it at medium+ or hot. I recommend against extra hot if you want to taste the dish.

                The owner is very accessible, and seems sharp and open to influence. I think that with some nudging, backed up by consistent customer support, this place could develop into a little treasure. Perhaps we could get a DTW wannabe-version going of TACesque off menu offerings? Check it out and tell me if I’m crazy.

                PS: Value rating = above average. And, please do ask for the owner to come out from the kitchen for a chat. You will enjoy chatting with her, and she will, likewise.

                1. re: VTB

                  Whoa, willing to put it up there with LA spots? I'm there!

                  1. re: gan911

                    Ooops, no. I meant just that one individual dish could hold its own. With encouragement, maybe other authentic dishes from her region could be added. PS--Closed on Sundays.

              3. re: ak994

                Some Northern Thai dishes -- like the noodles on TAC's "secret" menu -- are available at Lai Thai in Canton. However, I haven't found them to be made all that well.