Thai Paradise Crowded, But Worth It

The word is out!

My wife and I have kind of a Friday ritual. We head to our favorite restaurants for lunch, depending on our mood. Lately Jack’s Urban Eats has been our restaurant of choice. However this eventful Friday, Jack’s had too long a line, and we decided to give another restaurant a try. We had seen the new Thai Paradise had been open for a while and we figured to give it a shot.

Wow, it was a great idea!

We came in at first and were a little confused as to what to do; you could tell it was a converted “deli style” fast-food type of place (I think it used to be Pick Up Stix), which basically meant – do we sit down or wait to be seated? Fortunately our server quickly spotted us and showed us our seats.

Let me tell you, this place was jumping! Is it always this popular? I couldn’t tell if it was just a lunch rush or what. Every table was packed and a line out the door. I overheard a server half-joking that they need to take over the place next door to accommodate the demand. Lots of people is always a strong indication of a successful restaurant.

We sat down and ordered; I had the pork thai basil, while Annie had the spicy asparagus shrimp. We were immediately given a thai salad (greens and some sort of peanut dressing), and waited for our food. The service seemed a little spotty (took some time to get drinks and food), but the place was packed, so I was willing to overlook the service. The poor waitress could only do so many tables at once! As soon as I saw my plate, the wait was immediately worth it.

The food looked amazing. I should have taken a picture with my camera phone; it looked that good. My pork thai basil was delicious and freshly prepared. It was spicy, too! Quite a kick – enough to make your sinuses run and drink most of your beverage after just a few bites. Annie was equally impressed with her dish. Hers was spicy as well, and happy she ordered it.

It totally brought me back to a few days in 2002 in Phuket, Thailand, where we had the place to yourself and felt like you were the only people on the island. Only this place was packed to the rafters. We can see why now. The food was awesome! We’ll be back.

Thai Paradise is located in the Broadstone area, in the Bel Air center.

Style: Thai
Food: 5
Service: 4
Ambiance: 4
2-person lunch: $16

Reviewed by John Gladding

Thai Paradise
2770 East Bidwell St