Cheap Eats 2011: Kao Thai
Reviewed By Rina Rapuano
Comments () | Published August 17, 2011
Cheap Eats 2011

Kao Thai
Address: 8650 Colesville Rd., Silver Spring/Takoma Park, MD 20910
Phone: 301-495-1234
Neighborhood: Silver Spring/Takoma Park
Cuisines: Thai
Opening Hours: Monday through Thursday 11 AM to 3:30 PM for lunch, 5 PM to 9:30 PM for dinner; Friday 11 AM to 3:30 for lunch, 5 PM to 10 PM for dinner; Saturday 11 AM to 10 PM; Sunday 4:30 PM to 9:30 PM
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes
Kid Friendly: Yes
Nearby Metro Stops: Silver Spring
Price Range: Inexpensive
Dress: Informal
Reservations: Not Needed
Best Dishes Bikini shrimp; wonton soup; curry puffs; larb gai (chicken hash with black pepper, onion, and lime); red curry with pork; kaprow with chicken; crispy salmon; mu ping (marinated grilled pork skewers); sticky rice with mango.
Price Details: Starters, $4.95 to $7.95; entrées, $8.95 to $14.95
Special Features:
Wheelchair Accessible, Kid Friendly, Delivery, Outdoor Seating
Food Specials, Outdoor Seating

Thai restaurants often employ vibrant color palettes, swathing themselves in purple, orange, and green. This slip of a place aims instead at the palate, sending out dishes of surprising depth and brightness. A red curry is so precisely rendered that the lushness of its coconut milk dulls neither the heat nor the tang. Pad kaprow is a perfectly balanced combination of thin-sliced chicken and fried basil leaves.

The menu might lack the range and flair that the best Thai places possess, but the kitchen executes dishes with rare precision--witness the wonton soup, made with house-made chicken stock; the delicate curry puffs; and the bikini shrimp fried in spring-roll wrappers.

Also good: Roti kanai, a buttery pancake with yellow-curry chicken; larb gai, a salad of ground chicken, lime, red onion, and fish sauce; fried Siam salmon with spicy Thai-basil sauce; spicy catfish; aromatic red Jungle Curry.

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

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Posted at 12:00 AM/ET, 08/17/2011 RSS | Print | Permalink | Restaurant Reviews