Thai food is one of the most complex cuisines on the planet. However it seems that only recently the cuisine has taken a more prominent role in US mainstream dining. Within its short time of operation, Sawasdee Thai Elevated has created a space that seamlessly blends chic dining and authentic Thai cuisine in Plainview, Long Island. From the moment you first walk in, purple tinged, art-deco leads the way to an authentic Thai meal that has continually reminded me of the food I found while in Thailand.
It’s been over a year since I was in Thailand, exploring the rich cuisine of the North. When I found Sawasdee, I knew I had finally found something authentic. Most importantly (given most of our familiarities with Thai food), their pad thai is a star. Void of unnatural flavors, the pad thai at Sawasdee is similar to what you’d find in the capital of Bangkok.
“Spice is something that’s really important to us.”
John Conrad, who owns Sawasdee with his wife Wali, has made this a firm principle ever since we first met. “Wali and I met and lived in Thailand, we wanted to keep it as authentic to the cuisine as possible, because that’s what we fell in love with.”
Yet ancient cuisine comes represented here in a swanky, stylish setting. The bar area is shrouded in artistic Elephant designed walls while the dining room is highlighted with brick and giant photographs of Wali’s native Northern region. The space speaks for itself and proves to be a great backdrop for all kinds of occasions, from simple lunches to celebratory dinners. That versatility has always put it at the top of my list when I’m craving Thai.
The ambiance is matched in menus that have something for everyone, from the adventurous to the safe diner. Yet one thing has always stuck out to me: They care about the integrity of the ingredient. From a cocktail that is infused with house-made lemongrass syrup to John’s trips to a market in Queens ’cause “that’s the only place you’ll find it”, I’ve always admired Sawasdee’s consistent delivery of truly great food. So much so that I’ve often deviated from my typical drunken noodle order to try food on the menu I’ve never quite heard of (just make sure to inquire on the spicy levels before ordering).
Check out Sawasdee for an ‘elevated’ Thai experience that will charm you from the moment you walk in to when you finish your dish. If you get a chance, grab a conversation with owners John and Wali who are always enthusiastic to talk you through dishes and cocktails in a way you’ll understand fully. I love this spot and I’m confident you will too!
Also, don’t miss this:
- Sawasdee also recently rolled out a new prix-fixe menu called “Thai Tasting for Two” which includes an appetizer, two entrees and a dessert for $60. The special runs Monday through Thursday and also has a $20 wine bottle or $30 for 4 cocktails option. It’s a great way to experience the menu in its entirety.
- The pork-shrimp dumplings are incredible.
Editor in Chief | @TheGrubfather
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