Maenam (Vancouver, BC)
Why Come Here? Real Thai flavors, innovative and local takes on Thai dishes, great and inexpensive chef’s menu
When you think of Vancouver, natural beauty generally comes to mind. Vancouver is made up of a picturesque series of islands opening up to the Pacific with mountains to the North and East. It’s an ideal city for those who enjoy nature, hiking and skiing. But after a long day outdoors, its nice to know you can also sit down to some world-class food as well. And with a population that’s nearly 50% of Asian descent, there’s no need to limit yourself to a traditional “Canadian” meal of maple syrup and poutine.
We chose Maenam because it boasted of real Thai flavors, a rare commodity I’m always on the lookout for since my time in Thailand. The restaustaurant is located in the Kitsilano neighborhood just south of downtown and serves its local and seasonally-inspired takes on Thai cuisine in a trendy but relaxed atmosphere. While this doesn’t make Maenam a traditional Thai restaurant, you definitely find the real spices and aromas of Thailand in their innovative dishes. Prices are on the higher end for Thai food, but very reasonable given the quality of the ingredients and cooking. While you can order food a la carte, the 5-course Chef’s Menu is a steal at $30 and I highly recommend it, particularly if this is your only visit.
The menu was solid from top to bottom, but my favorites are listed below. For photos and reviews of everything we tried, please visit my DishEnvy page.