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BEST THAI RESTAURANT Minneapolis 2005 - Chiang Mai Thai

Chiang Mai Thai

Chiang Mai Thai

3001 Hennepin Ave. S.

Minneapolis, MN 55408

612-827-1606

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Readers' Choice: Sawatdee

Admittedly, there are several great Thai places in the Twin Cities. One may have the best pad Thai, while the other offers the best curries, and another makes the best spring rolls. But for the overall package time and again, we always wander back to Chiang Mai Thai. It has the looks, the great service, the drinks, and the dishes. Located in Calhoun Square in Uptown, the spacious interior is a tasteful marriage of traditional Asian meets Yakuza gangster-movie posh. Trendsters and suburban slummers can sip on pretty yet not frou-frou drinks (try the mango martini, the Thai-Garita, or check out the impressive wine list) while people-watching or discussing the latest flick at the Uptown. The menu is varied and reasonably priced, with notable appetizers including fresh spring rolls (served up vegan or with curried beef tenderloin) and salty fried cashews with oyster sauce, chili, and cilantro. Entrées worth repeat performances include the yellow curry (yams, potatoes, choice of meat or tofu, topped with a cloud of fried egg noodles), laab salad (garlicy chopped meat or tofu with lemon juice, chili powder, scallions, and cilantro), and, of course, the classic pad Thai. The final Chiang Mai Thai perk that seals the deal? It stays open late; doors don't close until 1:00 a.m.

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