Cheap Eats 2016: Thai

The Best Auckland Cheap Eats for Thai 

Where to find the best places to eat cheap Thai, from the Metro Top 100 Cheap Eats 2016 list.

@BANGKOK

438 New North Rd, Kingsland
It’s hard to get a decent Thai meal in Auckland. Here you’ll find all the usual suspects — the pad see ew being particularly good. Great curries, great value, something for everyone. A solid bet for your next BYO meal out.
Thai, vegetarian friendly, licensed, BYO

KISS KISS

1A Rocklands Ave, Balmoral
Breakfast, lunch or dinner, Kiss Kiss has got you covered. We love their spiced sticky ribs and whole deep-fried snapper. The pad thai, which nails the balance of hot, sour and sweet, is filled with huge chunks of prawn rather than shrimpy little shrimps. Bonus: you read the drinks lists through an actual View Master. It’s almost too old-school cool.
Thai, vegetarian friendly, licensed, new listing

O-CHA

251 Dominion Rd, Balmoral
While stir-fry classics such as pad thai don’t disappoint here, it’s off the beaten track where things really get interesting. Try the tangy and fragrant gai takai (chicken thigh with lemongrass and chilli paste) and you’ll know it.
Thai, vegetarian friendly

Northern thai sausage.

POKPOK

261 Karangahape Rd, K’Rd Precinct
On a sideways-rain kind of night, sit in the window, order the massaman curry with wild goat and smugly watch the tail lights blur outside. Head chef/owner Max Yangkongkaew makes his own curry pastes, hence the name – “pok pok” refers to the sound of a mortar and pestle in action. Good on a sunny day, too, of course –  leave room for black sticky rice pudding and coconut ice cream.
Thai, currently pending license

SUNFLOWER VEGETARIAN

6/50 High St, Central City
It’s just a little green room at the top of High St, but Sunflower Vegetarian is very good (though it really ought to be renamed, because everything here is actually vegan). The menu reads as a bit of a meat fest, though it’s predominantly soy-based, and incredibly close to the real deal. Curries are tasty, if slightly sweet, and soups are that lovely balance of hot, sour and fragrant.
Thai, vegetarian friendly

THAI STREET

3/12 Jellicoe St, Central City

Prices inch close to the $20 mark at this waterfront Thai restaurant, but when you consider the generous portion sizes and seaside setting, it offers great value for money. The best example of this is the moo yang: half a chicken juicily chargrilled, Isaan style, and served with sticky rice and vibrant som tam salad.
Thai, vegetarian friendly, licensed

TOP TEN THAI

235B Balmoral Rd, Balmoral

The fact this is a small place — it’s a bit like walking into someone’s home — means takeaways are the best option. Try pad kra prow (beef stir-fry with Thai basil), which comes with a side of fresh minced chilli, providing the perfect mix of heat, fragrance and flavour.
Thai, vegetarian friendly