I love Thai food. I eat a lot of it. If you are seeking great Thai cuisine, that is not cheap, but could very well be the best Thai food in Manhattan, check out Lotus of Siam in Greenwich Village. I went a few weeks ago and had my mind blown. Again, the dishes are more expensive than I'm used to paying for Thai, but it's the best I've had.
Nam Kao Tod Crispy Rice ($9), crispy rice tossed with Thai sausage, fresh chili, ginger, peanuts & lime, was fantastic. Light and refreshing, yet flavorful, I loved this dish. A delicious crunch of a starter.
Crisp fried chicken wings ($8) tossed with chili garlic sauce & fried Thai basil are tasty as can be. I would actually prefer them to be a tad spicier, but these are still some delectable wings.
One of my favorite dishes in the world is Crispy Duck Panang Curry. My favorite Thai restaurant Pam Real Thai on 49th Street and 9th Avenue, makes an amazing one, at a cost of $13.95. Lotus of Siam serves pretty much the same dish, crispy duck with Penang curry sauce and cognac for twice that amount, at $26. Now the question is, is it better? I think this dish at Lotus of Siam is wonderful. There is no fat on the duck, it's very clean, perfectly cooked, and an amazingly executed duck dish. The curry is eloquent, not too powerful, but quite lovely. I loved the dish. Is it better? Sure. Is it twice as much better? Culinary bliss is priceless, I suppose.
And then there is the Pad Thai. Oh, Pad Thai, that most popular, most ordered Thai dish of them all. Of course we had to see if Lotus of Siam's Pad Thai ($17 with shrimp), stir fried rice noodles with egg, bean sprout,
garlic chive, crushed peanuts & lime, measured up. At $17, it is the most expensive Pad Thai noodles I've ever had. They were also the best I've ever had. These noodles were somehow cooked differently, the texture was pure perfection. The flavor, fabulous.
All the food at Lotus of Siam is clean, perfectly executed, and quite fantastic. It does come at a price. It's the most expensive Thai food I've ever had, but, it's also the best I've ever had. So the question remains: Is Lotus of Siam the best Thai restaurant in Manhattan? I think so.
Lotus Of Siam
24 5th Avenue (at 9th St.)
New York, NY 10011