Considering the relatively compact nature of the city of Bath, locals and visitors alike are spoiled for choice when it comes to southeast Asian foodie adventures.
Many of Bath’s best Thai restaurants were established many years ago, while many more are relative newcomers to the scene, swiftly earning themselves a glowing reputation.
From casual neighbourhood dining options to grand, elegant Thai food experiences with some making some of the best lunch spots in Bath, the city is all Thai’d up; it’s time to say Sawadee to the Best Thai Restaurants in Bath.
1. Thai Balcony
Bath’s long-established grand old dame of the city’s Thai restaurant scene (est. 1990) regularly tops Best Thai Restaurant in Bath charts for both food and surroundings.
Expect to experience the innately unique characteristics of authentic Thai cuisine served up in the refined, subtly glamorous surroundings of a first floor dining room overlooking the thrum of the Kingsmead Square/Saw Close merrymaking zone.
Lunch deals at the Thai Balcony go large at distinctly downhome prices, dinner time set menus offer beautifully-balanced combinations that solve those “I don’t know what I want to eat!” conundrums and pretty much everything on the a la carte from the familiar (hot and sour soups; red, green and Penang curries) to the specialities (Drunken Duck, anybody?) never fail to delight, entice and satiate.
Meanwhile, the Smile Oriental Mart (around the corner from the restaurant, on Monmouth Street) is a one-stop shop for far-eastern ingredients and related paraphernalia.
Address: 1 Seven Dials, Saw Close, Bath BA1 1EN
2. Yum Yum Thai
This friendly, fuss-free flavour emporium on lovely, lively Kingsmead Square fully lives up to its name, offering a life-affirming blast of uncomplicated but highly flavoursome food at wallet-friendly prices.
A fascinating array of Isan region-specific specialities and set price specials start the party at lunchtime, giving way to a selection that embraces noodles, curries, stir fries, tantalising specials (the Ped Ob Man Peung is highly recommended) and graze-friendly side dishes from 3pm.
If a green/red curry is the benchmark by which all Thai restaurants should be judged, Yum Yum Thai renditions of both can only be called exemplary, as can the restaurant’s policy for pushing organic and free range produce to the fore, banning MSG from the premises and effortlessly replacing the meat in most dishes with tofu to create a veggie version – yum yum indeed.
Address: 17 Kingsmead Square, Bath BA1 2AE
3. Thai Basil
A long-standing stalwart of the eclectic Walcot Street scene, Thai Basil is a warm, friendly, trad-Thai haven of delight: gold-leafed buddhas gaze beatifically from their podiums; elegantly-adorned elephants watch over your feast from over your shoulder.
But the food most definitely lives up to contemporary expectations courtesy of an array of exceptionally thoughtful, super-fresh dishes that cover all Thai bases, with authentic heart and soul writ large across the whole selection.
Of that selection, the classic Thai hot and sour soups must not be overlooked, the seafood and fish section makes a big splash and the duck dishes are divine (top tip: the Ped Nam Makan, aka crispy duck in tamarind sauce, is legendary).
But even if you’re simply in the mood for a straightforward green curry, just go for it – you’ve discovered one of the best in Bath.
Address: 90a Walcot Street, Bath BA1 5BG
This bright’n’breezy, family-run affair Salathai was established 20+ years ago adjacent to a pretty little cobbled street not far from Bath Abbey/Parade Gardens.
It’s popular with all-comers from shoppers in search of a speedy lunchtime refuel to celebratory gatherings by way of linger-long couples… and, of course, Thai food aficionados at any time of the day.
Set price menus (lunch; early dining; dinner) bring all the classics together in perfect, wholly authentic harmony while the dedicated Sea Bass and Roast Duck menu selections offer a fascinating diversion from the stir fry/Thai curry/noodle route.
Looking for sweet inspiration to finish your feast? The Thai Pandan Pancakes are a paradisical dessert-lovers’ dream.
Address: 14-15 Pierrepont Street, Bath BA1 1LA
5. Mai Thai
A cheerful, beautifully-decorated little corner of Thailand situated in a cosy neighbourhood location just over 1 mile/1.6km north west of the city centre, Mai Thai offers a traditionally warm Thai welcome even before the tantalising smells drifting from the little open kitchen beyond the sparkly little bar set your tastebuds on high alert.
Portions here are generous to say the least and attention to detail impeccable: the little pots of dipping sauces that accompany, say, the mixed starter platter (a go-to choice for dithering diners) or the garnish on the Choo-Chee Pla have clearly been given the same careful consideration as the perfect balance of all-important fresh ginger in the Pad Khing, or the correct amount of peanuts scattered across the top of the Pa Nang Lamb.
Prices, however, are distinctly down-to-earth for what can only be described as an upper-eschelon Thai dining experience, even if you choose the priciest dish on the very special Specials section of the menu.
Address: 10 Chelsea Road, Weston, Bath BA1 3DU
6. Giggling Squid
‘Staggeringly good Thai food’? That’s a bold proclamation indeed.
But Giggling Squid substantiates its manifesto courtesy of myriad fresh dishes created from myriad fresh ingredients served up in an environment that tastefully blends both old and new world design inspirations to uniquely bright’n’breezy effect within the elegant confines of a Grade ii listed former schoolhouse.
An imaginative children’s menu keeps the little people happy, lots of lively veggie/vegan/gluten-free options make sure everybody can join in the fun, there’s a flurry of really good cocktails on the extensive drinks menu and alfresco tables available when the sun joins the fun.
At lunchtime, a well-balanced range of well-priced Tapas Sets/Quick Lunch Classic set menus lift lunch woes in fine style, giving way to a similarly uplifting range of options later on; the Thai curries here are outstanding, and the Signature Dishes (each with their own cute backstory, shared on the menu) offer lesser-spotted, unforgettable culinary voyages of delight.
Address: Bluecoat House, Saw Close, Bath BA1 1EY
If you’re searching for a non-stop exotic cabaret in a festive environment,
you’ve reached journey’s end at Thaikhun: a fun’n’funky Thai-themed canteen at the heart of Bath’s SouthGate shopping centre, where super-adaptable menus, portions, cocktails and good times vibes go large.
Overwhelmed by that super-adaptable menu? Pinto Sharing Feasts cover all basis, sharing platters turn your Bath night out into a downtown Bangkok experience and classic Thai curries, Pad Thai’s etc. make the far-flung feel familiar.
Vegan options abound, the Spicy Seafood Noodles (on the ‘Specials’ section of the menu) will satisfy the cravings of even the hardest-to-please Thai foodie specialist in your party – and, if you fancy recreating the whole experience back home, Thaikhun host their very own cookery school classes on site.
Address: Block E/F Little Southgate, Bath BA1 1AQ
8. Charm Thai
If eclectic bling’s your thing, set the social SatNav for Charm Thai and prepare to be dazzled. But beyond the gold leaf, gold braid and gold just-about-everything that infuses this vibrant exotica hotspot on Bath’s buzzing George Street ‘strip’, an extensive range of
Kuey Teows, Khao Pads, Kangs, Pla and much, much more offer yet more Thai-related glitz to attract your attention alongside a lively selection of drinks and non-alcoholic Thai specials such as Fizzy Lychee and Iced Green Hale.
It’s all a bit overwhelming, for sure (if you’re really stuck, just head for anything on the Stir Fry section and say yes to the optional fried egg), but the restaurant’s Easy Guide By Number section categorises chicken, pork, vegetarian, beef, vegan, (etc) choices while heat levels of individual dishes are clearly flagged up and a Kid’s Menu ensures that little people can sparkle too.
Address: 2 George Street, Bath BA1 2EH
9. Thai Thai
So good they named it twice? It may be more of a takeaway with a few tables than a restaurant that offers a takeaway service, but Thai Thai deserves its foothold on the Best Thai Restaurants in Bath charts for its fabulous fresh food at rock bottom prices – and, despite what we’ve established regarding its modus operandi, lovely service.
Situated almost on the Bear Flat plateau at the top of the Wells Road hill just a few minutes south of the town centre, Thai Thai is loved by Bear Flat locals, Bear Inn regulars and the multiple visitors who pitstop at the multiple Bath Airbnb’s in the vicinity, all of whom rave about dishes such as Tamarind Duck, Penang Beef and Basil Pork, best enjoyed after starters of Chicken Satay or Prawn Sui Mai.
As for the wine list: bring your own! There’s a handy supermarket situated just across the zebra crossing up t’road.
Address: 136 Wells Road, Bath BA2 3AH
10. Rosa’s Thai
A relative newcomer to Bath’s Thai restaurant scene, the 33rd link in the Rosa’s Thai chain cheerfully fills a gap in the city centre’s casual dining landscape and brings fresh-faced, family friendly personality to the high street.
Menus – served up within vibrant, cafe-style surroundings that encourage speed over sauntering – are largely designed for sharing (mixed platters, small plates, etc), but classic curries, ‘Wok Stars’ and noodle blow-outs bring stand-alone substance to the array and dishes such as Crab Fried Rice and a fiery Jungle Curry offer respite from the distinctly teen-friendly options.
Vegetarian, vegan, gluten- and dairy-free options abound and heat levels can be varied according to taste, further upping the accessibility ante.
Address: 4 Cheap Street, Bath BA1 1NE
Melissa relocated from Liverpool to Bath in 1999 and has since made the city her official first home. She has 30+ years of published freelance writing commissions on her CV and is a regular contributor to several local and national publications, typically specialising in restaurant and theatre reviews, food-related features and interviews with interesting people.