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As you may know, we spend part of the year in Chiang Mai Thailand. Thailand attracts tourists from all over the world, not only for its fabulous beaches, culture and friendly people, but also for its incredible food.
Fortunately, you don’t have to travel all the way to Thailand to enjoy the best Thai food. Thai restaurants have popped up all over the world and it’s easy to get your hit of that addictive sweet, salty, sour, spicy and bitter taste of Thai cuisine.
Thai food is world renowned and our love affair with Thai food continues even when we leave the Thailand. When our cravings for Thai food strike we head for the nearest Thai restaurant, here is our choice of the best Thai food outside Thailand.
- 1 Rumwong Thai Restaurant – Guildford Surrey, England
- 2 Best Thai food from around the world
- 3 Bua Luang – Albany, California
- 4 Ahaan Thai Restaurant – Arosa, Switzerland
- 5 Beyond Thai – Fremont, California
- 6 Le Thai – Las Vegas, Navada
- 7 Buddha’s Belly – Itaewon, Seoul
- 8 Thai Pothong – Newtown, Sydney
- 9 SriPraPhai – Woodside, New York City
- 10 Dao Krua Thai – Colombo, Sri Lanka
- 11 Final thoughts on the Best Thai Food outside Thailand
Rumwong Thai Restaurant – Guildford Surrey, England
Walking into the Rumwong Thai restaurant we were instantly transported back to Thailand. The soft glow of gold, warm vibrant colours and exquisite traditional carvings are a touch of Thai elegance in Guildford.
We were warmly greeted with a smile and traditional Thai greeting, taken to our table and given an extensive menu.
After being spoilt for choice we ordered two dishes, Ped Yang, a dish of roast duck served with soy sauce, picked ginger and Chinese cabbage and Kai Pud Bai Horapa, stir fried chicken with bamboo shoots, beans, onions, chilli and basil.
Both dishes were beautifully presented with delicately carved vegetables and were delicious. The duck was well cooked and the chicken had just the right zing of spice.
The Rumwong Thai Restaurant can be found at 16-20 London Road in Guildford Surrey.
Best Thai food from around the world
Thai cuisine is world famous and can be found across the globe, so we have also asked fellow travel bloggers for recommendations of their favourite choice for the best Thai food outside Thailand.
Bua Luang – Albany, California
Recommended by Carole, Travels with Carole
Bua Luang Thai Cuisine is located in Albany, California, U.S.A., just a few miles from my home in Berkeley, which is across the bay from San Francisco.
I have repeatedly visited this sweet spot through the years because it serves up reliably delicious Thai dishes in serene surroundings. I especially enjoy coming here on rainy days. My favourite dishes are a thick Penang chicken curry and an unusual, tasty pumpkin curry.
I adore the house dressing that comes on the complimentary lunch salad hold the raisins, please and also usually pay extra to upgrade to dark brown rice. In addition they have a large selection of seafood and vegetarian items. You get what you pay for here. The price is above average, but so is the food. Writing this, I am salivating for my next visit.
Ahaan Thai Restaurant – Arosa, Switzerland
Recommended by Natalie, Love and Road
Until last summer I didn’t know that Arosa, a town in the Swiss Alps has such a strong connection to Thailand and one of the best Thai restaurants in the world. The beloved late Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej grew up in Switzerland, and Arosa Kulm Hotel was the place him and his family used to spend the winter holidays. That’s why at the hotel you can find royal service and delicious Thai food.
Thailand is like our second home, so when we planned our summer in Arosa, we decided to stay at Arosa Kulm Hotel and also dine at Ahaan Thai Restaurant that is located in the property.
Seriously, it was the best papaya salad (Som Tam) I’ve eaten outside Thailand. My husband and I ordered a Papaya Salad and a Tom Kha Gai soup as our first course, followed by a well seasoned Massaman Curry and mouth-watering Red Curry with prawns. During the dinner, the chef surprised us with other Thai snacks that filled up our belly and soul.
The Ahaan Thai Restaurant serves only Thai recipes keeping the traditions and the quality of ingredients. All this dedication was awarded by 13 Gault & Millau Points, making this beautiful Thai restaurant a must try when visiting Switzerland.
Beyond Thai – Fremont, California
Recommended by Jackie and Justin, Life Of Doing
If you’re visiting the Bay Area California, check out our favourite Thai restaurant, Beyond Thai in Fremont. It’s located 45 minutes south from San Francisco. We’ve been to this place for the past 10 years. It’s a no frills, family owned restaurant with delicious food and friendly service. Each dish has bursting flavors, the right amount of spice, and reasonable portions. The menu includes curries, soups, salads, seafood, meat, vegetarian options, stir fry, noodles, rice, and dessert. Dishes are $9 – $14 USD.
We’ve tried almost everything on the menu. Our two favourite dishes are the Pad Thai and the pad eggplant. The Pad Thai comes with huge prawns and a mountain of noodles that is not soggy. The pad eggplant is crispy, has tofu, and comes in a savoury garlic and black bean sauce.
Whenever we eat at other Thai restaurants, we’re disappointed with spicy levels. At Beyond Thai, you have a choice of spiciness from 1 (no spice) to 6 (not recommended; extremely spicy). We like spice, so level 4 is good for us as we can still taste our food. We hope you consider trying this restaurant in the future!
Recommended by Craig, Vagabond Disposition
The best Thai food I have ever had outside of Thailand (thus far!) was in a small restaurant called Le Thai in none other than Las Vegas, USA. I had the Khao Pat Moo (fried rice with pork) with two fried eggs, and it was absolutely delectable!
Having been an expat in Thailand now for over 4 years, I can fully attest to the dish’s overall quality in representing true Thai style cuisine. The rice was warm and full-bodied, the pork was thick and chewy, and the typical, full range of Thai flavors – sweet, sour, salty, and tangy – was more than evident in every bite.
I have tried many Thai restaurants abroad and this place really takes the cake. Le Thai is located at 523 Fremont Street, downtown Las Vegas, and the dish I raved about above weighs in at $11 – slightly more than your traditional roadside stall in Thailand, but worth every penny!
If you are passing through Las Vegas any time soon, Le Thai is absolutely a must-visit for the best Thai food outside of Thailand!
Buddha’s Belly – Itaewon, Seoul
Recommended by Marie, Be Marie Korea
Buddha’s Belly is a trendy but affordable Thai restaurant located on Itaewon hill, looking out over Yongsan and Itaewon main street. This is one of the three Buddha’s Belly restaurants in Seoul.
The menu is huge and has almost every popular Thai dish, from soups to noodle dishes, curries, stir fries, and shrimp dishes. They also have a selection of vegan and vegetarian dishes.
Pad Thai is the most popular and recommended dish on the menu, which costs $13 for dinner and $8 during lunch hours.
The cocktail menu is also quite impressive, as it has all sorts of Thai inspired drinks both alcoholic and non-alcoholic.
Opening times: 11:00 – 23:00 make sure to make a reservation if you want to have a balcony seat.
Thai Pothong – Newtown, Sydney
Recommended by Crystal, Castaway with Crystal
Newtown’s main strip is famous for having the best Thai in Sydney, Australia. And in my opinion, the best Thai in Newtown is at Thai Pothong.
Though it is a little more expensive than most of the other Thai Restaurants in the area – you really get what you pay for. The Betle Leaf Prawn entrée ($14.90 AUD, 4 pcs) is filled with a isucculent prawn and crunchy nuts that’s so good you’ll wish you’d ordered more. The deliciously sour and spicy but sweet Thai Chicken Salad ($18 AUD) is perfectly balanced.
Then my personal favourite is the Barramundi Curry ($24.90 AUD).The fish is soft but with a nice crunchy skin and covered in a perfectly spiced creamy yellow curry. It’s my favourite dish ever, and I always head to Thai Pothong for any celebrations (or excuses)!
This restaurant is located a close to the train station. Come out of Newtown station and turn right and follow King Street Northeast for about 3 minutes (walking).
SriPraPhai – Woodside, New York City
Recommended by Allison, Eternal Arrival
New York City is one of the best cities in the world to get whatever kind of cuisine you want, and Thai food is no exception.
New York does Thai food splendidly and one of the best-loved Thai restaurants is SriPraPhai in Woodside, Queens. Located off the 7 train, where the most delicious ethnic food in NYC can be found, SriPraPhai has some of the most authentic Thai food I’ve ever eaten outside of Thailand.
A few of my favourite dishes they have are crispy pork with basil, Khao son (a Northern Thai-style chicken curry with noodles), spicy papaya salad, and my all-time Favorited, drunken noodles aka Pad Kee Mao with chicken. The cost is fair, around $10-15 per main dish and about $5-8 for an appetiser or salad – a great deal in a city as expensive as New York City.
I loved it because the flavors were spot on, the spice level was perfect — neither too mild or too painful — and it just generally really reminds me of authentic dishes I loved in Thailand (though admittedly with a much steeper price tag).
Dao Krua Thai – Colombo, Sri Lanka
Recommended by Yulia, The Foodie Miles
Dao Krua Thai, a little unassuming joint in Kollupitiya, a neighbourhood in the heart of Colombo, literally translates to “Dao’s Thai Kitchen”. Opened by Ms. Dao, fun and flamboyant woman who immigrated to the island from Thailand, this spot is arguably the best for authentic Thai food in the city.
Although it was opened as a street food joint, there are a few tables inside and outside of the shop. It’s a popular place for late night eats and that’s exactly what my friends and I did one Sunday night. Even after 10 pm the place was bustling.
We opted for red fish curry, chicken stir fry, bokchoy with mushrooms, and fried eggplant, accompanied by a bowl of steamed rice, as well as prawn dumplings as appetiser. The service was fast and the dishes appeared on the table as soon as they were prepared. Ms. Dao personally overlooked the process and came out to talk to us afterwards.
Dao Krua Thai also features Thai set menu that comes with a free bowl of soup, steamed rice, and a few meat and vegetable sides. There are also beloved by Sri Lankans fried rice and Pad Thai, as well as mango sticky rice for dessert. On some days Ms. Dao makes traditional Thai desserts and serves them for free. We got to try a porridge-like dessert made of sago, sweet potato, corn and coconut milk absolutely free of charge. A dinner for three with drinks cost us LKR 2600 ($16USD).
Final thoughts on the Best Thai Food outside Thailand
As you can see, we have a diverse range of Thai Food ideas not only from Asia but from the 4 corners of the Earth, they have inspired us and our travel wish list has just grown. I hope you have enjoyed this range of cuisines. We love sharing our food travel tips and would like to thank our fellow travel bloggers for sharing theirs.
What is your favourite Thai dish? What did you love most about it?
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