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Feb 18, 2012 08:24 AM

Is There Any good Thai Restaurants in East Village or Lower East Side?

I recently moved from Northern Vermont to the East Village. I have been looking for a good Thai restaurant. I tried Klong on St. Marks Pl. which was mediocre in my opinion. I have had Thai Food in Thailand and loved it. Vermont is lacking in the Thai food department, and I crave some. Any recommendations for really good Thai food would be appreciated.

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  1. Zabb Elee is very good, or it least it was the last time I was there. Here's a lot of info about it:


    Zabb Elee
    75 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

    2 Replies
    1. re: small h

      thank you for the info. I'll try Zabb Elee, sounds good.

    2. Zaab Elee is good, however it is mostly Isaan food: i.e. somdam, grilled meats, laabs, sticky rice, etc...there is 200+ comment thread about it that is worth reading, as it lists the dishes enjoyed most by many chowhounds...i really like ZE because i love Isaan food and because they actually use bla-ra (strong/rotted fish sauce) in some of their somdams, which no other restaurant in Manhattan does...the last couple visits i thought it had slipped slightly, but still good compared to anything else in Manhattan.

      For non-Isaan Thai food there no good options in Manhattan, period...search the Outer Boroughs board and choose among several good-to-excellent options in Elmhurst and Woodside...

      Zabb Elee
      75 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

      4 Replies
      1. re: Simon

        Just tried ZE for the first time based on so many CH recommendations. Their Pad Ped Moo Korb was excellent, and I also really enjoyed their taro w/ coconut milk desert--very comforting. Service was also notably great. Granted, I didn't try ZE before the "slip" you're referring to, but I can't imagine what could have changed or been better.

        1. re: Simon

          Thanks. I went to Zabb Elee a couple of days ago. It was very good. I had the larb kai which was excellent, and seemed very authentic to me. I also had the Som Tum Thai ( papaya salad with dried shrimp and peanuts) also very good. I got moo yang to go, ( for breakfast) it was ok. Maybe because I re-cooked it that it was not so great. I had to wait over 30 minutes to get a table. It is a very popular place. I am really glad I asked you folks for the recommendation. I enjoyed this food very much.

          1. re: fondaddict

            Glad you enjoyed it :) i haven't been so much in the last couple months, as Isaan food feels like hot weather food to me, but i'm sure i'll be getting a lot of takeout from there as spring emerges (last summer i had a couple stellar picnics w/ ZE food to go -- somdam, grilled chicken, sticky rice, and a cold bottle of rose/white wine = Heaven-in-Tompkins-Sq-Park)...

            re: moo yang, i think you're right that's not the best dish to re-heat...when i lived in Thailand, people would always think i was crazy to take home any leftovers at all to re-heat (from a Thai perspective: "Why would that weird farang bother annoying us by making us put leftovers in cartons and annoy himself by eating leftover food instead of fresh the next day? He doesn't look poor! Is he really going to starve if he doesn't take these pork scraps home, or is he too clueless to know he can walk downstairs and get fresh food on the street in the morning?"...while i liked salvaged leftovers from my fridge, eventually went w/ the flow and stopped getting doggie bags...that said: i get an order to go like you did at least half of the time i eat at ZE and i'm always happy to have food in my fridge the next day :)

            1. re: Simon

              Funny post Simon, but you are right. I don't recall anyone taking home any food from restaurants in Thailand. You are crazy Farang. haha,, But in the Phillipines, everyone takes home the leftovers. I was never a big leftover takerhomer, but now i am. I love eating leftovers for breakfast especially. And thai food works well for breakfast for midnite snack.

        2. Kati on 14th btwn 1st and 2nd was really good. I order the same thing at every Thai restaurant I go to (chicken with thai basil and chili) and this was by far the spiciest and most flavorful I've had! Be warned that it's only worth it for the food, not the service - a dish that one person in our party ordered came out about 15 minutes after the rest of us got our food. We forced em to take it off the bill.

          And I can sympathize about the lack of good Thai options in Vermont -- I would drive a half hour into Massachusetts to get some!

          347 E 14th St, New York, NY 10003

          1. This seems like a decent place to ask this question - has anyone ever been to or seen reports from Ngam, on 3rd ave bw 12th and 13th? I walked by recently and was moderately intrigued. While i generally prefer my thai food non-modern, and low brow (nothing like a backless plastic chair with a view of a traffic filled soi) some of the menu items - beet "khao soy" ravioli, for example -seemed interesting and potentially delicious.

            Anyone have experiences to weigh in with?

            Edited to add: I did a seach for ngam after this post and there were two threads (relatively recent) that popped up - one with positive, if brief opinions (and a link to a serious eats post from their "Vegetarian Option" writers) and another with a longer, considerably less positive review. Given the prices (reasonable but definitely not cheap) and how much we love ZE, it would have to take some serious coaxing to get me in the door there.

            99 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10003

            2 Replies
              1. re: kathryn

                That sounds really interesting. Thank you