Artwork for revisiting-sri-lankas-hotels - top banner 1
Artwork for day-outing-under-rs-3000 - top banner 2

4/5

Krua Thai by Dao

618, Galle Rd Kollupitiya, Colombo 3


Krua Thai is a brand new street food joint at Galle Road. Although they claim they're a street food type place, they've got a nice seating area and whatnot. We loved it!



Krua Thai by Dao was founded by Ms. Dao after she decided to move here from Thailand. Her idea was to maintain a warm environment offering a range of foods from Thailand's street food culture. We liked the sound of this as soon as we heard about it and our experience here exceeded all expectations.

The Food

To start off, I got a Thai Set Menu with Steamed Rice (Rs. 600) This is a real deal here because you're getting a free bowl of soup as well. You get to opt for either fried or steamed rice, but the fried rice costs extra and I'm poor so I had to settle for steamed instead.

This wasn't so bad because there's pretty much an explosion of flavour from all the other elements present. To get fried rice with it would have made it far too rich.

There was a portion of vegetables tossed and glazed with some distinctly tart yet sweet, saucy coating. A livelier version of the standard chop-suey that we've all come to love. 

A mildly spicy, milky gravy was present with two scarce bits of chicken. There were also a few wasabi coated peas so be prepared for an unexpected surprise. We wish there had been more chicken present on account of the abundance of rice piled high on that plate. 
The soup was a small helping of classic Tom Yum Goong soup and came with an assortment of prawns, cuttlefish and chopped veg. I'd suggest you simply skip out on the rice and go for the soups because this feels like someone fired a lemongrass-y bullet down my throat and cleansed my nasal cavities of the 'flu and all other evils.

***Note that nearly 90% of their dishes contain peanut in some form or the other, so BEWARE if you've got a peanut allergy
We got the Thai Veg Fried Rice (Rs. 600) and it was alright, honestly. Certainly very rich and a far more sophisicated rice in comparison with its local kadé cousin.
It's got flavour, it's got spice, and everything's on cue. I just don't know about the Rs. 600 price tag, although it's justifiable if you think about a normal packet of fried rice costing Rs. 400+ in any street shop.

The Chicken Pad Thai (Rs. 650) was a hasty, last-minute decision on my part because I realised I'd walk out of the place an utter fool if I only tried the rice dishes.

I'm glad we ordered this. I can't believe we almost didn't. The noodles were oozing with stock and peanut sauce. There were large pieces of boiled, but extremely well marinated chicken.
The whole dish was just one, massive tease because every time you think you've had your fill, you bite into a piece of chicken and whoops you're chomping away again. Not good if you're on a diet. 

Dessert & Drinks

The Sticky Mango Rice (Rs. 350) was what we waited with bated breath for. Every thought of each grain, coated with thick coconut milk was pushed far into the depths of my mind as I ploughed through the savoury dishes. Y'know, to keep myself from hyper-salivating.

But alas, when the dessert was delivered to our table it didn't exactly delight us. For one, the rice was a congealed gunk that you had to scrape at to get a decent spoonful. However, paired with the fresh mango and a short attention span it made us slightly happy. Could have been better, though. 
The Thai Iced Tea (Rs. 200) was a full glass seeping with pure saccharine. There was a strong hit of tea which I liked, but it was far too sweet for my taste. I'm being biased here because I normally take very little to no sugar with my drinks.

It was a questionable, peach colour so there's a possibility that food colouring may have made a quiet appearance. 
 

Service & Ambience

The minute you walk in you're hit with the familiar aroma of a very busy kitchen and little to no ventilation. The place is fairly small but with adequate seating. It's quite warm inside so the place wouldn't be a cool refuge on a hot day, unfortunately. Keep in mind that they're a street food joint, so it isn't fair to them to walk in expecting a 7 star ambience.

The fellow in charge of service is a bit unattentive although this is because he's very busy. This is excusable, but they certainly need more staff on hand because I can see this place blowing up and becoming a neighbourhood fave.

Conclusion

Nara Thai's finally got competition, but in a more affordable and tastier form. The lady manning the place is a real sweetheart so ask her for recommendations. They also have dumplings and they serve pork, so y'all have no excuse not to visit.


TIP

Try their Chicken Pad Thai.

Artwork for Frimi Shoutout banner 2- non merchants only

Address

618, Galle Rd Kollupitiya, Colombo 3

Directions

It's right next to the Torana music shops.

Contacts

Facebook

Report Inaccuracy

Closed right now

Cuisine

Thai Street Food

Price Range

Between Rs. 500 - Rs. 1000

Dish Types

Rice Noodles Seafood Pork Chicken Tea

Ratings Breakdown

Overall Rating
4
Quality Rating
5
Service Rating
4
Ambience Rating
3
Similar Places

User Reviews
Avatar for Imaad
7

2/5

-1

Imaad

Terribly disappointed. The crispy pork was tough and thready. The deep fried dumplings were lackluster too. Overall underwhelming. Don't understand the hype around this place. Seems inconsistent from how these dishes were described by others who had been here.

D
1

5/5

0

Dilini Paiva

Having lived in Thailand for several years I'm always on the look out for authentic Thai food. Dao has just that. Loved everything I have tried so far. Sad that the reviewer only tried the standard set menu dishes rather than being a bit more adventurous. Most of their dishes are truly Thai.

K
1

3/5

0

KumarK

Went for dinner with the wife & family a few days ago. There was very friendly lady who took our order. Sadly, we weren't very impressed with the taste or the quantity of the portions. Being regulars at Siam House & The Boulevard, we're used to both price spectrums and tastes. Was expecting a better experience, especially on taste, but sadly this was not to be. The portions are too small. If 2 adults are going, remember to order 2 of everything since 1 portion just won't do!

Avatar for Imaad
7

2/5

-1

Imaad

Terribly disappointed. The crispy pork was tough and thready. The deep fried dumplings were lackluster too. Overall underwhelming. Don't understand the hype around this place. Seems inconsistent from how these dishes were described by others who had been here.

D
1

5/5

0

Dilini Paiva

Having lived in Thailand for several years I'm always on the look out for authentic Thai food. Dao has just that. Loved everything I have tried so far. Sad that the reviewer only tried the standard set menu dishes rather than being a bit more adventurous. Most of their dishes are truly Thai.

K
1

3/5

0

KumarK

Went for dinner with the wife & family a few days ago. There was very friendly lady who took our order. Sadly, we weren't very impressed with the taste or the quantity of the portions. Being regulars at Siam House & The Boulevard, we're used to both price spectrums and tastes. Was expecting a better experience, especially on taste, but sadly this was not to be. The portions are too small. If 2 adults are going, remember to order 2 of everything since 1 portion just won't do!

N
2

5/5

0

Niluksha D. Bastiansz

Amazing Thai food. Quick service and can have a real street food experience. Don't forget to experience their chillie paste too.

R
1

5/5

1

romeshr

Prawn dumplings fabulous.

P
1

5/5

1

pereraruvini

When I entered the owner was preping some ingredients she was very polite and gave me a cheerful greeting. While we were waiting for our take away order a complimentary dessert was served which tasted fantastic. We had chiken phad thai. Probably the best after Royal Thai. Excellent atmosphere for any one who would like to have a street food small eatery experience. Loved everything about this place !

N
1

4/5

1

NishanL

Dao Krua Thai turned out to be a pleasant surprise, as it was exactly what it claimed to be – a small eatery selling “authentic Thai street-food” cooked by a homely middle-aged Thai lady named Dao. The ambience is minus all the frills and finery you would expect to find in any other foreign cuisine restaurant in Sri Lanka, but is brightly lit up in vibrant colours and white lights with Spartan (yet functional) furniture. It also does not have air-conditioning, which means it is one place you could enjoy unpretentious Thai food and leave without smelling delicious. It really does remind you of the small bustling eateries you would find at a marketplace in Bangkok.

This was a refreshing change from the various small cafes and stalls at almost every (so called) “food festival”, that CLAIMS to serve “street food”. The experience at Dao Krua Thai is the real deal, and you get what you came for.
When one hears the words ‘Thai food’, what usually pops into one’s head are tom yum soup, phad thai, rich coconut-milk infused curry, intense flavours, followed by levels of heat that clears one’s sinuses.

Therefore, we started off with a tom yum soup. The portion size of the soup looks deceptively small when it arrives (within 10 minutes or so); but if ordered as an appetiser this one portion is more than enough for two people. As per the review, we were prepared for ‘a lemongrass-y bullet down the throat that cleansed nasal cavities of the flu and all other evils’.

The reality, however, was that the soup was packed with flavours, and in my opinion, had the right balance of umami in the broth, sweetness from the basil and coriander, tartness from the kfir lime and lemongrass followed by just the right amount of residual heat of the chilli and galangal (ginger) at the back of one’s throat, that didn’t leave you gasping and crying by the time the spoon hits the bottom of the bowl. Each spoonful was loaded with so many bright flavours that even those that dislike soup, would certainly appreciate, if not swoon over it.

Moving on to the mains, the chicken fried rice, from my point of view, was nothing exceptional and the portion size was rather disappointing. Even if the paying customers are not large eaters, this portion is definitely not enough for 02 people to share. For a portion such as what we got, the price tag of LKR 600/- is questionable. The issue here, is that the dish (albeit tasty) was unmemorable, and when the bill comes at the end, it leaves you with the feeling of “was that worth it!”

We also ordered the pork red curry, which was definitely flavoursome – but once again unremarkable when compared to the Thai red curries you would find in any other Thai restaurant in the country. The portion size was adequate for 02 people and I would not grudge its price tag of LKR 600/-, since it had enough slices of lean pork and wild eggplants swimming in rich coconut milk infused spicy red-curry.

To enjoy the red curry, however, I would recommend a portion of the steamed rice (LKR 200/-). The flavours of the fried rice and the red curry just do NOT blend and is an assault of clashing flavours on one’s palate.

I have mixed feelings about the steamed dumplings that is available in pork and prawn. For LKR 580/- I expected slightly more than 4 small steamed dumplings. The dumpling dough alone has the correct texture of your average Chinese dumpling. On the first bite, the filling tastes quite bland and boring. However, couple it with the dipping sauce given on the side, and you end up with a mini-gastronomic orgasm on your taste buds. I would strongly recommend this, but wish they would add at least 2 more dumplings, since LKR 145/- per bite sized dumpling is pretty steep.
What did catch my attention was the 02 (complimentary) condiments that came with the meal. The first was the standard chilli paste (homemade). The other was a thin dipping sauce that was a mix of fish sauce, kochchi chilli, garlic and lime juice. When one hears of the ingredients, it is difficult to paint a picture of what it would taste like. However, one teaspoon of it has so much flavour that it is not easy to immediately comprehend what it is.
The saltiness of the fish sauce, the pungent smell and heat of the kochchi chilli and garlic, with the hint of acidity from the lime juice, just brings it all together beautifully. It tempts one to take leave of one’s senses temporarily, and douse innocent plain rice with it. The result literally brought tears to my eyes…and left me gasping for something to cool my tongue.

Sadly, we were too full to try the sticky rice pudding and put it off for another time. However, we were offered a complimentary Thai dessert of sweet potato boiled in sugar and ginger, which was quite refreshing and light; and overall a pleasant palate cleanser.
The service is friendly with 3 young local men waiting on the tables (which I think is overkill for an eatery of this capacity). However, they were attentive, the food came out fairly quickly and they cleared the tables equally fast. Hence, the turnaround time for tables seems to be quite fast based on what was observed.
All in all, it was a pleasant meal and experience; and one that didn’t break the bank. I would certainly go back for more, if at all to try out the rest of their small but practical menu, and would recommend it for anyone to try as well.

The cherry on the top was the chef and owner – Dao - who comes up to your table to ask how the food was and even discusses how the dish was made if asked. She says all her produce is obtained fresh and locally rather than imported all the way from Thailand.
Ambience – 8/10 (as promised, its nothing fancy; just good food)
Value for money – 6.5/10 (portion sizes need to be adjusted for the current prices)

PPP – LKR 1,000 - 1,500 net per person (excluding beerages)
Food – 7.5 - 8/10
Hygiene – 7/10
Service – 6.5/10
Recommended – Yes

D
3

4/5

0

Duminda

I visited this place and tried two items on the menu;pork Dumplings and the Seafood Pad Thai. The portion size of the pork dumplings was disappointing and the seasoning was a bit bland and was also relatively pricey (4 dumplings for Rs. 580).The Seafood Padthai however, was really good but could have used a bit more seasoning and was also somewhat expensive at Rs. 750 for a casual street-food style casual dining experience. I would go again and would recommend people try it.

Avatar for Malinthe
21

5/5

0

Malinthe YAMU STAFF

Instant favorite! Loved everything about this place. Definitely try the tom yum - It's probably my favorite. There was this chili paste that came with fried rice that was legit. The mango sticky rice was also excellent when I tried it.

See 13 Comments