It is a bold claim to say the best Thai in Seattle is on Vashon Island. Thai food is a competitive market in the Seattle area. It’s often assumed that if there was going to be a best place, it would have to be a two hundred dollar a plate business in the center of downtown. And yet, people are traveling to the close by island to visit May Kitchen and Bar only to return claiming they’ve officially found the best. Among those making these claims are customers on Yelp and professional reviewers in local and national papers.

On the island’s highway, also serving as its main street, there is May Kitchen and Bar. Don’t let the dull looking outside fool you. Inside, you’ll find the warmth of Thailand. The walls are teak and mahogany from a 150-year-old home in Thailand, and the personal touches that make this a distinct experience only continue from there. Right away you know you’re not just in any restaurant you could walk into anywhere; this place has a character that carries over into its food. It’s the details that make this place special. While many of the dishes on the menu are ones you aren’t likely to recognize, they have the staple Pad Thai–except this isn’t any Pad Thai. May’s Pad Thai comes to the table wrapped in a banana leaf. The server opens the steaming noodles at the table and adds the ingredients one by one.

This restaurant is more than just grabbing a quick bite. It’s an experience.

Reviewers Love It

The Stranger added the restaurant to their list of favorite thai restaurants in Seattle and joined in the claims that the best thai in Seattle is on the island. When you visit the the restaurant, you get a feeling of personal connection to the place that makes you feel you’ve had an experience no one else could have. And yet the more reviews you read, the more clear it becomes that the owner, May, is just that good at what she does. Perhaps that’s why OpenTable voted May Kitchen and Bar one of the top 100 restaurants in the America. Or perhaps it’s the Pad Thai. Or the phad prik khing. Or the fried bananas with Thai coconut ice cream.

Seattle Bloggers made the same claim about the restaurant having the best Thai in Seattle, and said that it’s worth making the short trip to the island even doing nothing else there. In fact, they claim that if you let the restaurant staff know you’ve traveled to the island just for their food, they will give you a ten dollar travel credit for the ferry to help cover the cost.

If you think you’ve had the best Thai in Seattle, come to nearby Vashon and try this place for yourself.