The round-up: tuk-tuks and tom yum – where to find the Gold Coast’s best Thai food
From punchy tom yum soups and coconut-laden curries to spicy wok-fried delights and glorious noodles, Thai food will always have a place in our hearts. In a true reflection of the cuisine’s popularity, the Gold Coast certainly has no shortage of Thai eateries. Loosen those belt buckles, friends – we’ve put together a handy list of some of the coast’s best Thai restaurants to work your way though.
Sticky Rice, Tugun: It’s Thai, but not as you know it. Sticky Rice balances traditional flavours with innovative techniques to give us a reimagined take on Thai cuisine. Its eclectic tropical fit-out sets the scene for the punchy, flavour-packed dishes that lie ahed. Think rich curries, hand-cut noodles, barbecued delights and a killer cocktail list. Tom Yum Collins, anyone?
Som Tam Gai, Mermaid Beach: This much-loved Mermaid Beach venue is designed to bring people together with a range of plates that are intended for sharing. The skewers cooked on the charcoal grill will transport your tastebuds to a makeshift roadside market in Thailand whilst the pan-fried scallops with coriander dressing offer a tasty starter. The salads here prove once and for all that you do, in fact, make friends with salad with the spicy-yet-sweet green mango, lychee and herb salad with sinus-clearing green Nahm Jim a real hero. The curries are all made from scratch in-house and whilst they all sound mighty appetising, the Thai-red curry with roasted salmon is guaranteed to hit the spot.
Spice Kitchen & Bar, Broadbeach: Thai cuisine has been spun on its head at Spice Thai, putting a contemporary lean on the classics. The casual newcomer is located within The Oasis dining precinct and is pushing the boundaries of Thai cuisine in the best way possible, with tasty snacks like spice-fried chicken with housemade sriracha alongside baos and aromatic tom yum soup. Those keen on the classics can opt for stir-frys or a massaman, Penang or green curry, while those looking to experience left-of-centre Thai dishes can plunge a spoon into the venue’s speciality Lanna Thai curry.
Ari Thai Kitchen & Bar, Robina: Settle in for lunch or dinner at Ari Thai Kitchen & Bar (upstairs at The Kitchens at Robina Town Centre) and you’ll be transported to the backstreets of north-central Bangkok. Expect dishes like whole squid and barbecued pork neck coming hot (and spicy) off the grill, as well as whole crispy barramundi and a series of stir-fried creations fresh from the wok.
See Thai, Southport: Crack open your favourite drop (it’s BYO!), order a serve of roti with peanut sauce, fried chicken wings or crab spring rolls, then kick back and work your way through See Thai’s extensive menu. You’ll find everything from tasty curries and noodle dishes, to an abundance of fresh and colourful stir-fry combinations, soups (the tom yum is a delight) and vibrant salads. Don’t look past the fruity roasted-duck salad or the green curry served with a grilled fillet of salmon.
House of Siam, Hope Island: If you like your Thai served with a side of pristine water views, then House of Siam is where it’s at. Located at Hope Island Marina, House of Siam serves up a range of dishes based around traditional recipes, as well as classic favourites like Thai curries (which are all gluten and dairy free!). As for the sweets, you can’t go past the sticky rice with house-made Thai egg custard.
Lam Lam, Coolangatta: This hidden gem is perched on the northern end of Coolangatta esplanade and is a buzzing hot spot for locals. If you’re not a southern dweller, this casual seaside eatery is worth the trip down. You’ll find fresh and vibrant Thai food here – start with the potato-wrapped prawns with plum sauce and slurp on tom kha chicken soup, before tucking into hearty curries, tasty wok-fried creations and delicious noodles. There’s also a colourful vegan menu including plant-based curries.
Wok It, Elanora: Nestled beside the Tally Valley Golf Course, Wok It in Elanora offers an authentic Thai dining experience with lush views over the greens. You’ll find age-old family recipes cooked fresh on the wok, as well as delicious curries like the tender massaman beef and the roasted-duck red curry offset by cherry tomato, sweet lychee, pineapple and Thai basil. It’s a laid-back spot with a rustic fit-out (it used to be a shed!) and a family-friendly vibe.
Thai on Ferry, Southport: This Ferry Road dining spot dishes up authentic Thai dishes including go-to favourites like curries, stir-fried delights, noodles and punchy salads. There’s also specialty creations like the crispy pork belly with chilli and basil and the green-curry fried rice – and you’ll definitely want to add the house roti with massaman dipping sauce on the side.
Thai Puntip, Burleigh Heads: Something of a Burleigh institution, this fresh and delicious Thai eatery is packed most weekends for a reason. Serving up all the classics like a killer tom yum soup, chicken and cashew stir fry and an array of flavour-packed curries, bring a bottle of your favourite vino (yep it’s BYO!) and enjoy a delightfully laid-back dinner.
Lucky Buddha, Mermaid Beach: If you’ve often noticed the mesmerising aroma of Panang curry and the delicious scent of tom yum soup permeating through Mermaid Beach, it’s coming from here. Lucky Buddha has been delighting local diners since 2014 with dishes like its street-style pad Thai, the steamed salmon with tom yum sauce, and the soft-shell-crab pad phong karee. Leave room for the Thai tea ice-cream.
Boonchu Thai, Broadbeach: It’s one of the Gold Coast’s longest-running Thai eateries (it originally began in Surfers Paradise) and while decades may have passed, Boonchu continues to dish up authentic Thai goodness to the masses from its digs beneath The Phoenician. You’ll find everything from curries to noddles and grab-and-go eats, though it’s hard to pass up the Thai chicken noodle soup here.
Tuk Tuk Thai, Robina: Often bustling with Robina locals, Tuk Tuk at Easy T Centre is a popular spot for traditional Thai eats. You’ll find all of the crowd-pleasing favourites here, from Thai soups to curries, barbecued delights, vibrant salads and fried noodle dishes. It’s casual, there’s no shortage of choice and it’s BYO!
The Stumble Guide is our comprehensive Gold Coast dining guide with more than 870 places to eat, drink, shop and play.