We opened our current NYC location in late 2017 offering an all vegan menu with the same dishes that we offer at our Bangkok and Chiang Mai locations. By carefully sourcing fresh ingredients we are able to create our dishes with the same taste as in Thailand. Additionally, many of our NYC chefs have studied at our Thailand locations and/or with May the founder herself.
Though Thai restaurants are numerous in New York, none specialize in vegan cuisine. We feel that this unique position is not only an opportunity, but a responsibility. Serving the vegan community the best possible healthy Thai recipes is our first priority.
We welcome vegans and non-vegans alike.
Our recipe catalog was created by May the founder while running a street cart in an alley of old Bangkok in 1988, and the recipes have remained unchanged ever since. May's recipes though were inspired by thousands of years old recipes from various parts of Thailand. Most significantly is the influence from North-East Thailand (known as Isaan) where flavors are typically bold, agressive and unique even among South-East Asian cusines. To a foreign palate, Isaan cooking can at times be perceived as idiosyncratic while rewarding. Also influencial on May Kaidee recipes are Cental Thai dishes, beginning with our version of Green Curry (Gaeng Keaw Waan in Thai) full of distinctive Thai eggplants, naturally spherical with green and white tiger stripes that are the perfect size for resting in the palm of one's hand. The influence of southern Thai dishes as well, most notably our popular Massaman curry, a Thai-Indian dish made with yellow curry powder, red chili paste and an abundance of vegetables.
New York City was a natural choice for our first U.S. location. There is widespread interest in Thai cooking here as well as vegan cuisines, and New York is one of the few U.S. cities where it's possible to perpetually source a complete array of fresh Thai ingredients. Quality Thai eggplants, galangal, kaffir lime leaves, lemon grass and Thai basil are all available here year around in part due to the spread of knowledge in recent years about growing Thai ingredients in North America. Over time we hope to push the boundaries of possbility while making ever more authentic Thai food here in the Western Hemisphere.
Sourcing locally when possible is also important to us in our effort to continually try ways of reducing our carbon footprint. While taste is the most important factor when choosing fresh ingredients, we belive that sourcing ingredients and food production in general is about more than simply how a recipe tastes or is presented. Also important is the impact on the environment and whether ingredients were harvested using ethnical means. While we're not yet able to able to optimally source all of our ingredients, we make an effort each day to do so. Additionally, we source organic ingredients as much as possible, partciularly for ingredients such as tofu and oil, and the vast majority our menu items are gluten free. We use almost exlclusively gluten free ingredients including the soy sauce used in our recipes.
We don't offer a large range of beverages, but we spend lots of time and energy into perfecting each one. Our most popular beverage is our signature ginger pomegranate tea. Like all of our teas, we believe most recipes should be treated just as we do our food dishes, and that is to always use fresh ingredients. Most tea is traditionally made with the dried leaves from what is known as a "tea" plant or in the case of herbal teas, a variety of different leaves and flowers. There are practical reasons why dried ingredients are the most popular in the production of tea, however it is our belief that the best tea is made using primarily fresh ingredients. Often one who is only accustomed to dry ingredient tea is pleasantly surprised by the fresh invigorating taste of our ginger pomegrantate tea made with all fresh ingredients. The difference in taste compared to traditional tea making can be an awakening experience.
"Thai" tea though is the one tea we offer which remains in a category of its own. Made of primarily dry ingredients, it contains a blend of several different spices in addition to black tea leaves. The result is a diverse range of flavors bound in harmony that is a delight to the senses. Our house blend of Thai tea includes black tea leaves, cloves, cardamom seeds, cinnamon and star anise.
Often our customers have special requests concerning the preparation of our dishes, and we always try our best to accommodate those requests.
If you have dietary requirements please contact us by email at email@example.com or phone at 212 448 1200 and we can discuss whether our kitchen can acommodate your needs. We can make our dishes including or excluding any ingredient, and with enough advance notice we can even source particular brands of ingredients that you prefer.
We source organic ingredients when possible, and our ultimate goal is to become 100% organic. Currently many of the primary ingredients in our dishes are organic such as the tofu, oil and as much of the produce as possible.
99% of the dishes on the menu at our NYC location are gluten-free. Since most of our dishes are rice based and we use gluten-free soy sauce, we can make all but a few of our dishes gluten-free. Our Pad Thai, Pad See U, Pad Kee Mao, Green Curry, Massaman Curry, Red Curry and Panang Curry are all gluten-free.
If you would like to place a large delivery or takeout order for a time sensitive event, we recommend that you instead consider having one of our chefs cook the meal at your location if a kitchen is available. The price of sending one of chefs to your location is typically only slightly more than the price of ordering from our menu. Furthermore, some of our dishes are best eaten immediately after being cooked. This is particularly true for our noodle dishes such as Pad See U and Pad Kee Mao (drunken noodles).
Please let us know if you have any questions about our personal chef services by calling 212 448 1200 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our NYC restaurant is separated into two areas, a front dining area and a rear event space. If you are looking to host an event for up to 35 people, please call us at 212 448 1200 and find out if the space could be a good fit. Our rates are reasonable and we are generally quite flexible with scheduling.
Of sober mind we have knowingly taken on the immense challenge of bringing authentic Thai vegan cuisine to New York City despite the heavy odds against our long term success.
Our initiative began with a one year popup in Murray Hill beginning in 2016. We eventually found a space on East Broadway which met our needs for continuing to offer a growing number of our plant-based recipes.
We are a restaurant, but we also offer cooking classes nearly every day of the year along with the occasional sampling of authentic Thai culture through dance and music. If sincere culinary experience is what you seek, you have found the appropriate destination. We also have locations in Bangkok and Chiang Mai, Thailand, where our original recipe catalog was developed 30 years ago by the founder May. In total our locations are managed and operated by a network of family and friends who currently or have previously lived in Thailand.
We value our customers’ time though our food also requires a slow cooked process, which means striving to strike a balance between wait time and quality. We do however improve our efficiency by a fraction each day, continually looking at ways to decrease the time it takes to complete an order. We will never have the capability to serve meals as quickly as fast casual establishments, but we will over time reach an apex of efficiency without sacrificing quality and distinctiveness.
If you are in a rush, then this moment would not be suitable to experience a meal with us. But for those times when you do have 20 minutes prior to your meal, to meditate on the positive aspects of your day against a background of classical Thai music, enjoy a cup of ginger pomegranate tea, or utilize our 5G Wifi to keep up with current events through quiet focus, we assure you that the wait will be well rewarded – to indulge yourself in unique plant-based Thai cuisine.
We appreciate your curiosity and look forward to your visit. There is nothing we enjoy more than to serve you our food made with love, in the hope that it nourishes your body and soul like none you have experienced before.
The May Kaidee Team