We opted for this restaurant for our Sunday lunch and I am thrilled to have found a diamond in the rough! Since moving here from the Bay Area years ago, we usually wait to eat Thai on our visits back to CA, but not any more. The dishes we chose were nothing short of amazing, including the tofu spring rolls, Gang Garee, and Tom Yum Gai. The crushed peanut sauce for the spring rolls was a delightful nuance to add to the appetizer's appeal. The Gang Garee was an experience that makes me want to get it again next time and yet I'm dying to try the other dishes to see if they have the same complexity of flavors and aromas. Very reasonably priced and served promptly, I only have two words of caution. First, don't be deterred by the appearance of the place itself (very clean and comfortable, just a little plain.) Second, pay attention to the pepper meter on the menu. The Gang Garee is a single pepper rating, but was about as spicy as I can comfortably go, and the Tom Yum Gai is a solid 3 for intensity of spiciness as well as flavor. I can't wait to take our next visitors from out of town!
The curry chicken is the best I have had in a long time! Superfriendly service and the price is fair as well!
This place is phenomenal. I love everything about it. For those naysayers.. Good, that means I will always be able to get a table there.
This is by far my favorite thai place in Tucson. Yes, the service is not the best, the restaurant is often closed on random days and it's a little run down but the food is well worth it. Also, the lunch buffet is great and inexpensive.
In response to CaliMan's post that "Los Angles and Portland blow Tucson out of the water food-wise," first I'd just like to say that it's called 'LA' and it's spelled out, L-O-S A-N-G-E-L-E-S. While I agree that Tucson is no Asian food mecca by any stretch of the imagination, and that it is neither as cosmopolitan or West-coast hip as Portland, I think CaliMan is missing the most important detail here: nobody in Tucson cares about LA or Portland. What we have here is ours, and ours alone. So in terms of regionalism and localism, Tucson's Sonoran-inspired cuisine kicks LA and Portland right in their huevos. And we are grateful to have at least one Asian restaurant like Bai Thong that tries hard to make their dishes traditional. Rustic, traditional, and local cuisine is what Tucson is made of, and so, CaliMan, judging by your comments, I'd say that you've missed this aspect of Tucson culture entirely. Maybe you should just move back to 'Los Angles' and tell them that your taste buds dried out in the heat.
Great fast lunch...lunch menu is inexpensive and delicious...the Thai ice coffee is a pick me up in the middle of the day. Lunch includes a lightly flavored chicken-based broth with some celery in it, then some rice, some crispy eggroll...the Basil Chicken is delicious and I always use their condiments, chilis in vinegar and spicy chili sauce to make my own, of course...recommended for a quick lunch..
I am confident they have the most authentic thai food in town. Unfortunately this place all ways seems empty whenever I visit. This place makes the food at Bangkok cafe seem watered down and tasteless (which it truly is). The only place I think that can compare is Char Thai, but I have begun to prefer Bai Thong's soups (I recommend the Tom Kha Gai), curries (Try the red curry with shrimp) and even their noodle dishes. I would declare Bai Thong the most authentic Thai restaurant in town although the ambiance is not quite there.
This is one of my favorite Tucson restaurants. The food is great and consistent. The curries are excellent. The service is always friendly even when it's really busy. The atmosphere is nice too. I would definitely recommend this restaurant and take guests here when they visit.
I love Bangkok Cafe!!! I moved to tucson from st.louis and really missed my fave. curry resturant ( Simply Thai ). My husband and I never thought another place would compare. We were happily wrong, Bangkok is great! The people are always nice.
The "rude" woman serves as hostess, waitron, and cashier. There's one chef- the owner. Yes, the place is old and icky. They still have the best Thai food in town. Get take-out. Call wa-a-a-a-a-ay ahead. They'll give you the order total over the phone. The food is totally worth it.
Some dishes are a bit oily and they certainly don't use the best cuts of chicken or pork. You'll come across a little gristle here and there. Even so, this place offers some real tasty dishes. The curry is very good as are a few other items. Pleasant servers. Prices are very competitive too. With its few minor faults, this place remains one of the better Thai restaurants in town.
I agree with Arthur and Reuven, above; this is a very good Thai restaurant with some excellent dishes. My introduction to Thai food was in Thailand in the 1970's. It was "instant affinity". After that, I frequently sought out Thai places when visiting or living in major cities in the US and Europe, which often provided fine culinary surprises. In Tucson, however, I've been disappointed (including at the other restaurants mentioned in reviews here), despite this city's many other good ethnic (and other) restaurants, so I'm especially happy to report on our superb dinner tonight (November 5th, 2010) at Bai Thong. We odered the gai satay and papaya salad appetizers, Pad Thai and a fish curry. Each was delicious. The peanut sauce was thick and rich and the chicken well-grilled and tender. The papaya salad blended spicy and tart flavors expertly. The fish curry was subtly spiced with kaffir lime leaves and enough anise to round out the peppery coconut sauce without dominating the mix. And the Pad Thai was well blended and just tart enough to bring up the taste of each ingredient. Thai food can be heavy; this wasn’t. The pricing was reasonable, and our service tonight was quick, efficient, attentive, dignified and pleasant, including a lovely smile. The decor (if you radically shrink the space) is actually not unlike many restaurants in Asia (which doesn't tend to the highly atmospheric except for tourists and theater). And the music was thankfully quiet. I personally enjoyed the touch of Buddhist homespun philosophy and scenic photos under the table glass. All in all, Bai Thong treated us to rich, complex and luscious flavors and textures and to an enjoyable evening of great Thai food.
It's almost real Thai food. My favorite is the pork panang. Their food is the best in town according to my buddy (married to a Thai woman) who lived in that country for over a year.
How can you trust the opinions of someone who says "there are very few good places to eat in Tucson"? I can name dozens off the top of my head, and I would include Bai Thong among them. As an immigrant from the Bay Area, my standards for Thai food are pretty high, and Bai Thong is the only Thai place here I can abide (although I've never tried Thai China Siam on Oracle). Bai Thong isn't spectacularly good but I'm always happy with what I get--e.g. the shrimp with pineapple (somewhere around #6 on the entrees), the smoked/dried beef appetizer (whatever it's called)--and the Thai tea ice cream is great.
So far the best Thai in Tucson (and I've had some of the best in LA). Nothing fancy, just good Thai food.
Eaten here once; will again. Rundown:
*Specialty drinks overpriced
*Slightly overpriced overall, but justifiable
Eaten here once; will eat again. Rundown:
*Great spice! (actually made HOT by Thai standards, not the prudish soccer-mom appeal [no disrespect, moms!])
*Not much thought put into the decor
Decent service but the food was not as good as we expected. We were disappointed with the rather low quality meats used in their dishes - Fatty dark chicken meat, and gristle-ladened beef. Our pre meal soups were just OK. To be honest, the curry was decent but the use of low grade meats are why we won't be back. We have been to Char and were not very impressed either.
Decent food, decent service EXCEPT IF the owner is waiting on you as most days she has a bit of an attitude. Prices are higher than most other Thai places AND "5 out of 5" on the hot scale here is really pretty mild (at least for my palate). Char's and Bangkok Cafe have this place beat on all counts.
Awful food. Seriously bad. The waitress I had had some big towel on her head, smelled like cabbage, and couldn't understand a thing I said. Padd Thai is a signature dish and any halfway decent Thai place should be able to pull it off. It was gross. We complained and someone who claimed to be the owner came over. Started telling us that it was a recipe from her grandmother. Who cares lady, it's BAD!!
Char's - Sorry I strayed. Never again!!!
Tucson Weekly |
7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 |
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