I once had a roommate, a marvelous cook who introduced me to the pleasures of Thai food and for that I am eternally grateful. I was instantly smitten with the combination of textures and flavors - the sweet sour tang, the warmth of chili hitting the back of the throat, the velvety smoothness of coconut milk. When I enjoy a Thai meal I always feel like I have had something decadent but without any greasy after bloat. This is thanks to their use of healthy ingredients that maximize flavor.
Baan Thai has three locations and I have had the pleasure of visiting two of them (downtown and Oak Bay). The lunch combinations are a phenomenal bargain at $9.75. You get two spring rolls, soup and a generously sized entree. Curries come with a heaping mound of fragrant jasmine rice. The portions are so large you'll probably need a doggie bag!
Dinner time at Baan Thai offers numerous pleasures. Try the satay appetizer, smoky thinly sliced tender slices of chicken with peanut sauce, or Larb Gai, a warm, freshly ground chicken salad marinated in lime juice, seasoned with mint, cilantro, onion and roasted ground rice.
If you are craving a noodle dish I recommend trying the Phad Wu Sen, clear glass noodles flash fried with fresh chicken, egg, garlic, white onions, tomatoes, su choy, oyster sauce, Thai soya sauce and sriracha chili sauce. I love the slippery soft texture of glass noodles and combined with the oyster sauce and crunchy su choy this makes for a delectable combo I crave again and again.
For fans of curry dishes Baan Thai offers a variety of options. There is a green curry, which is slightly sweet and redolent with fragrant lemongrass. If you like a curry with lots of oomph and assertiveness try a red curry. A friend of mine, a curry addict often opts for the Gang Galee Nua - a mellow yellow curry with beef, potato and onion. It’s her version of comfort food. Diners may specify the level of heat they prefer from medium to extra hot.
The servers at Baan Thai are genuinely warm and helpful. On our last visit the dining room was full and we still had speedy attentive service. The dining room is utilitarian but cozy. Baan Thai is well worth a visit for delicious eats at affordable prices. If you haven't yet tried Thai Food I strongly recommend you give it a go!