Tear jerking, vibrant, and very, very delicious, Thai cuisine undoubtedly produces some of the most richly intricate dishes in the world. Here’s where to find the ten Thai curries you absolutely need to try in Melbourne.
Son In Law
Relaxed, modern and dangerously affordable, Son In Law delivers a vibrant green chicken curry with Thai basil and fresh vegetables. For a fusion you have to thai (*SO CLEVER), make a beeline for the crispy soft shell crab and tiger prawn green curry with kaffir lime leaves. Thick, rich curry sauce is topped with ultra-crunchy seafood for less than a twenty? Sold.
For the spice-phobic, Tenpin’s mild coconut chicken curry with kaffir lime, lemongrass, sweet potato and sugar snaps is a welcome, tear-free choice. Meanwhile, the Thai green curry of blue eye with apple eggplant, baby corn and snake beans will require a generous side of water and possibly a portion of your dignity. Tread carefully, Thai aficionados.
On the edge of Melbourne University, Middle Fish serves traditional Thai cuisine in an expansive, airy warehouse. Open beams, exposed concrete, and homely, mismatched furniture makes up this affordable (cough student-friendly) hotspot. Choose between four southern Thai curries including the Kang Kati coconut curry with seasonal produce. Every curry comes with a necessary cooling side salad and half boiled egg.
Around the corner from the pho-filled restaurants on Victoria Street, Jinda Thai is easily holding her ground. The bright interior houses traditional Thai lanterns and no-frills, hawker-style dining. Expect your favourites on the menu—from green curry chicken to jungle curry with your choice of pork bones, chicken, beef or prawn. It’s nothing short of Thai-tastic.
On the corner of Swan Street, Botherambo glows. No, really—literally. A hybrid of Vietnamese-Thai cuisine, curry options include the Chang Mai beef curry with Australian wagyu, green mango, snake bean, dill and chilli. The Jungle Chicken curry is quarantined to in its own corner of the menu and tagged for “spice enthusiasts only”. Don’t bring your friends that can’t handle even BBQ shapes (these people exist, I swear).
Skip the bells and whistles and head to Thaila Thai in Brunswick. Service is fast, friendly and efficient with a traditional Thai menu including yellow, red and green curry with chicken, beef or pork and vegetables. The curry-curious have options like Gang Laung Pla Meuk, aka a yellow curry with squid and vegetables. Served steaming hot, order a side of roti with peanut sauce for a little Thai heaven.
Located on the riverfront of the Yarra, BangPop is difficult to miss. Lined with red bikes outside (and inside), this lively venue boasts a multi-coloured bar front, red feature wall and a lofty exposed roof. Head in for options like lamb shoulder curry and yellow barramundi curry. Thursdays see a $20 curry special for diners—winner winner Thai curry diner!
The perfect 'classy' pre-party grub, don’t skip dinner next time you’re at Melbourne’s Cookie bar. The wonders of pork belly dry red curry, green beans and green peppercorns; penang lamb curry with eggplant and peas; and pork and peanut potato curry (it’s delicious trust us) await!
It’s all about sharing and caring at Longrain, so bring your most calorie-conscious buddies. The popular Kapitan Curry with Cape Grim beef, kipflers, peanuts and curry leaf is rich and refreshing with a good sneaky hit of spicy aftertaste. It’s distinctly un-curry like, but we also can’t go past ordering the super tender, caramelised pork hock with five spice and chilli vinegar.
Red Spice Road
A south east Asian institution in Melbourne, Red Spice Road remains one of Melbourne’s leading restaurants. Dine underneath glowing circular lanterns across from contemporary, modern artwork. The aromatic, silky smooth Shan Hills chicken curry with turmeric, tomato, chilli and lemongrass is to Thai for (we had to get at least one more in.)
For more Thai-licious dishes to Thai for (I'm done now), check out Melbourne's Best Thai Food!
Image credit: Botherambo, Michelle Jarni for The Urban List