The Thai government seems very intent on ensuring the quality of Thai food outside Thailand. There’s a website with a list of Thai restaurants in London run by some government agency, and they’ve given star ratings to the restaurants on that list. (Incidently, our favourite Thai restaurant in London, Addie’s Thai Café, got a 5 star rating by that website!) Thai Thani has also been given the same stamp of approval by the Thai government, (actually, we’re not sure if it’s awarded by the Thai government, but whoever it is, it’s definitely something very official sounding) and was something we were looking forward to going to when we were in Orlando.
We first went there for a very late lunch, so the restaurant was almost empty. Having eaten practically nothing the entire day, we ordered, surprise surprise, a lot of food. First up were the fried calamari, very tasty, but had too much batter for us to properly taste the calamari. The other starter we ordered was stuffed chicken wings. These were superb. The stuffing was juicy and meaty, and the Thai sweet chili dip was awesome. The Tom Yum soup was also one of the best we’ve had, and overflowing with mushrooms.
We loved the Pad Kee Mao at Addie’s Thai Café in London, so this was definitely one main we wanted to have in Thai Thani. The version here is very tasty, but a little underwhelming as compared to the whack-in-your-face strong, bold flavours of the Pad Kee Mao we’ve grown to love in Addie’s. There wasn’t a lot of heat as well, but perhaps we should have emphasized more strongly to the kitchen that we wanted our food ass-kickingly hot.
The final dish we ordered was the Weeping Tiger, another dish we order all the time at Addie’s. This version wasn’t served in a sizzling hot plate, but there was a staggeringly huge amount of beef on the plate it was quite a shock to our (by now quite full) system. The beef was very nicely cooked, but we really missed the sizzling plate that we’ve gotten used to having this dish served in.
Overall we were very happy with this meal. Food in Orlando isn’t very interesting, as the city is geared almost entirely for tourists. We’re not sure if any people actually live in Orlando, as it just seems like housing=hotels all around us. We were in Universal Studios a couple of days later, and we actually, believe it or not, walked nearly the entire length of International Drive down south, back to Thai Thani for dinner. It took us probably about 2 and a half hours, and was quite unnecessary, since there’s a direct bus that will cover that same distance in under half an hour, but we wanted some exercise before another feast, so we took the long and tiring way.
This time round, we made sure to ask if our server was Thai, and emphasized that we were familiar with Thai cuisine and flavours, and wanted her to tell the kitchen to prepare our food in the way the Thais have it. Our second meal there turned out to be as memorable, if not more memorable than our first. So make sure, if you find yourself at Thai Thani, to not hold back, and demand for the full, most authentic experience, and sit back and enjoy the meal.