100 Very Best Restaurants 2014: Ruan Thai
Fried whole flounder at Ruan Thai. Photograph by Scott Suchman.
Comments () | Published January 28, 2014
100 Best Restaurants 2014 100 Best Restaurants 2013 Cheap Eats 2012 100 Best Restaurants 2012 Cheap Eats 2010 Cheap Eats 2011

Ruan Thai
Address: 11407 Amherst Ave., Wheaton, MD
Phone: 301-942-0075
Neighborhood: Wheaton
Cuisines: Thai
Opening Hours: Monday through Saturday for lunch and dinner, Sunday for dinner.
Price Range: Inexpensive
Dress: Informal
Reservations: Not Needed
Best Dishes Scallion dumplings; yum watercress; pad Thai; deep-fried whole fish (often sea bass); duck in red curry; sticky rice with mango.

Not hot enough. Too sweet. These are oft-heard laments among Thai-food fans, who despair of the watered-down tendencies of many kitchens. They would have little to carp about at Krisana Suchotinunt’s strip-mall stalwart, which brings the heat and eschews the sweet. Even better is that it conveys the exciting breadth of flavors of the cuisine in dishes that pop and ping. The Yum Watercress Salad is the signature dish and presumably the envy of every Thai restaurant in town, a lacy fritto misto of greens, onions, shrimp, and cashews. (A vegetarian version with tofu is just as excellent.) More-familiar dishes are distinguished by the kitchen’s gift for stacking flavors and textures. Hunks of fried duck, perfumed with basil, crunch like cracklings. A whole fried fish, delicate inside, crispy outside, is the perfect foil for hot and creamy red curry.

Open: Monday through Saturday for lunch and dinner, Sunday for dinner.

Don’t Miss: Larb, a minced-chicken salad; moo ping, grilled pork skewers; grilled beef with lime, onion, and rice powder; mussels with black beans.

Subscribe to Washingtonian

Discuss this story

Feel free to leave a comment or ask a question. The Washingtonian reserves the right to remove or edit content once posted.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Posted at 06:32 PM/ET, 01/28/2014 RSS | Print | Permalink | Comments () | Washingtonian.com Restaurant Reviews