Any great Thai in Vancouver?
Traveling to the city next week and craving great Thai. Anything we should check out?
The ones that get the most play are prolly Longtail Kitchen and Maenam, which are related. Montri just (soft) opened again on Broadway. My go to is Benjarong but even there it can be a bit inconsistent. I would not say Thai is a strength here, as menus tend to look similar and there are a lot of sweet sauces and curries. Also quite difficult to get any heat unless you know the staff/owners.
I thought Bob Likes Thai Food on Main was good, though Maenam in a different league -- possibly world class Thai food.
Maenam may be underrated in some ways (lack of line-ups), but I feel if it is very overrated at the same time due to lack of competition. It has won Gold for Thai for the past three years in the Vancouver Magazine Awards. Long Tail, Maenam's sister restaurant, won silver this past year. Maenam also won the Golden Dumpling Challenge this year.
It is our favourite Thai restaurant in Vancouver but I feel that it is the only one that exists in its class. Most, if not all of the other Thai restaurants in Vancouver fall into the Greek/Indian/Persian/Chinese/Japanese restaurant trap of doing the same old thing. I never give an answer when people ask me what the best Greek restaurant is in Vancouver because they are all almost the exact same - some are 10% better, some are 10% worse.
The two other Thai restaurants we frequent are Bob Likes Thai and Thai Away Home; they both provide tasty food but are quite mediocre when compared to Maenam. The Tom Ka Gai at Bob Likes Thai is almost as good as the one at Maenam and they do have some other interesting dishes but their quality overall is much lower than Maenam. Thai Away Home is an easy quick lunch.
I would also like to add Taste of Thai off Broadway. Great place, but not very busy. Food is excellent but the decor and service is not as fancy as Maenam.
Thai Basil on Thurlow. Try their pad thai and pad grapow, you're not likely to find better in all of Metro Van (esp. at their prices).
See these write-ups from Tana (who is Thai):
And from FMF: