Where To Eat Thai Food In Brighton



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The city of Brighton and the wide-eyed wonder of Thai food feel almost custom made for each other, with both boasting bright, vivacious flavours, the broadest spectrum of influences and inclusivity, and plenty of sass and spice.

No wonder there’s an active Thai community in the city, with an annual ‘Magic Of Thailand’ festival drawing the crowds both Brightonian and Bangkokian, and a dedicated Thai supermarket acting as a defacto community hub and purveyor of all the imported goods you need to make a proper curry paste. Hell, the current Thai king, H.M. King Maha Vajiralongkorn Phra Vajiraklaochaoyuhua, even went to school in East Sussex in his teenage years.

We wouldn’t blame you, then, for assuming that Brighton would be awash with superb Thai restaurants doing robust, regional food from The Kingdom using only the freshest ingredients and not dialling back even a seed on the spice levels. Reader; you’d be wrong. 

Though there are certainly a lot of places covering the Thai culinary canon in Brighton, it can be hard to find a truly great Thai meal here. All that said, here we detail our favourites, in this guide on where to eat Thai food in Brighton.

Namo Eat @ The Eagle Pub

Ideal for pub grub, Thai Style 

Nestled inside The Eagle Pub, Namo offers a unique dining experience that combines traditional Thai cuisine with a cosy British pub atmosphere.  

Interestingly, a handful of Brighton’s boozers, including local hangouts The Wick Inn and The Royal Sovereign (or The Sov as it’s known to Brightonians), also serve Thai food instead of your traditional pub grub, but for great vibes and quality of food, Namo Eat @ The Eagle Pub is comfortably our favourite.

The talented chef behind Namo Eat is Bookie Mitchell, who was born in the north of Thailand, in Lampang, and learned to cook at a young age in her grandmother’s kitchen. She has a passion for sharing her culinary skills and knowledge with others, which led her to establish Namo Eat in 2020 at The Eagle pub in Brighton & Hove.

Before starting Namo Eat, Bookie Mitchell had already made a name for herself in the Brighton food scene by setting up the restaurant “Street Thai” in the early 2010s and running Thai cookery classes and charity fundraisers at Brighton Community Kitchen for many years. Her dedication to quality and creativity has earned Namo Eat a spot in the top 30 best restaurants in Brighton, as well as a mention by BBC Good Food for being one of the best places to eat in the city.

Other highlights at Namo include the gaeng garee goong, a mild prawn curry that’s fragrant and sweet from coconut, the perfectly cooked prawns and the velvety curry sauce coming together to create a dish that is as comforting as it is indulgent. Alongside, order the spicy soft shell crab salad and finish with the all-conquering mango sticky rice for dessert, and you’re good to go. 

Or, for a single, gloriously aromatic one-plate-wonder meal, Namo’s take on the ultimate Thai comfort food pad grapao moo – essentially stir-fried minced pork with holy basil, nose tingling chillies and garlic – is superb and just what pub grub should be; comforting. Remember to order an extra fried egg for added lusciousness.

Pair your meal with a pint from the pub’s extensive selection of craft beers – we think the local Hopinator, redolent of pineapple and lime, goes particularly well with the spicy food on offer here – and ciders for the perfect fusion of East and West.

Address: The Eagle Pub, 125 Gloucester Rd, Brighton BN1 4AF, United Kingdom

Website: namoeat.co.uk

UniThai Oriental Market

Sitting on Church Road, where Brighton merges effortlessly into Hove, UniThai Oriental Market is a hidden gem that offers an incredible selection of Thai dishes at unbeatable prices. This small, unassuming grocery store doubles as a casual eatery, serving up delicious home-style cooking in a no-frills setting. 

If you’re looking to rustle up your own pad see ew or red curry with duck, then Unithai is one of the only places in town you’ll find the requisite fresh green peppercorns, galangal, grachai, makrut lime and other esoteric ingredients needed for both dishes.

Alternatively, you could simply stroll through the shop, dish out your finest sawadee (ka/krap), and settle into one of their cosy tables of four nestled out back. Occupy yourself by listening to the soundtrack of kitchen clatter and the roar of the wok burner, and within minutes, you’ll have a freshly prepared plate of Thai deliciousness, cooked with love. 

Read: 6 IDEAL places to eat noodles in Brighton 

Address: 10 Church Rd, Hove BN3 2FL, United Kingdom

Website: www.facebook.com/pages/Unithai

The Giggling Squid

The Giggling Squid is a popular chain of Thai restaurants known for their stylish interiors, attentive service, and expansive menu of well-cooked Thai dishes. 

The restaurant, a UK-based chain, was founded by husband and wife duo Andy and Pranee Laurillard in Brighton in 2002. The unique name has an interesting origin story; the ‘giggling squid’ was originally a nickname given to one of their three children, and how this particular metaphorical baby has grown under the couple’s stewardship, with a whopping 46 locations now in operation across the country.

The Brighton location (there’s a second in Hove, incidentally) is situated in the heart of the Lanes, making it an ideal spot for a leisurely lunch or dinner after exploring the city’s most famous backstreets. With an extensive menu that caters to vegetarians, vegans, and gluten-free diners, there’s something for everyone here.

The restaurant itself is housed in a charming old fisherman’s cottage, with some of the dining happening outfront and alfresco, surrounded by the quirky shops that define this particular corner of Brighton, and just minutes away from the town’s iconic attractions such as the Brighton Palace Pier, the BA Viewing Tower, and the Royal Pavilion.

When the weather is warm, that open-air seating and its prime people-watching vantage point make for a memorable dining experience indeed, even before you tuck into the famous salt and pepper squid, chilli-forward som tam salad, and the signature Giggling Pad Thai. For us, this is food best enjoyed as a few snacks, with an ice cold Singha in the sun. There’s nowhere we’d rather be (except Thailand, of course!).

Website: gigglingsquid.com

Address: 11 Market St, Brighton BN1 1HH, United Kingdom 

Kanok Thai

Kanok Thai is a family-run restaurant that prides itself on offering a colourful, convivial atmosphere in keeping with both the Land Of Smiles’ famous welcome and the similarly amiable reputation of the restaurant’s adopted home in Brighton, all exemplified by the statue in the window delivering Thailand’s familiar genial gesture, the wai

Located on Preston Street, known locally as ‘restaurant street’ for, erm, obvious reasons, it’s a wonderful place to spill in to after a day at the beach, either for a quick snack on the great satay sticks sold here, or for a longer, more leisurely meal – beers, bowls of rice, the works.

It’s also an eminently affordable place to dine, with soups and salads particularly good value, including the restaurant’s decent version of Thailand’s famous tom yum, which clocks in at just £6.95 (for the prawn version). When you’re done slurping, head opposite for a cocktail at Gung Ho, one of the best cocktail bars in Brighton.

Though the street is replete with places to eat, you won’t be able to mistake Kanook Thai for another with its two toned lime green frontage which wouldn’t look out of place on the colourful streets of Phuket Old Town.

Address: 65 Preston St, Brighton BN1 2HE, United Kingdom 

Website: kanokthai.co.uk 

Siam Siam Thai

Another agreeable place for Thai food in Brighton happens to be on the same road as Kanok, a little further down towards the beach. Siam Siam Thai feels very much suited to a romantic dinner, with its twinkling fairy lights and intimate corners perfect for an undisturbed evening of eating.

A family run affair, the owners and their adult children, who run the floor, hail from Thailand’s north-east, and it’s sensible to go with the food of the country’s Isaan region accordingly which is where the restaurant excels. So, that’s a host of spicy salads – laap, som tam, nam dtok – alongside, of course, a basket of steaming sticky rice.

Should you be keen to branch out and traverse the length and breadth of Thailand, then Siam Siam’s ‘The Travel’ set menu – featuring satay and dumplings from the south, spring rolls from Bangkok’s Chinatown, and jungle curry from Thailand’s north – is a great way to sample the vast array of tastes and textures that define the country’s cuisine. All yours for £55.95 (for two) – doggie bags are actively encouraged!

Address: 74 Preston St, Brighton BN1 2HG, United Kingdom

Website: siamsiambrighton.com

Bangkok Delivery Boy @ Heist Market, St. Leonards On Sea

For some properly brilliant Thai food in East Sussex, you might actually have to leave Brighton and head an hour east to St. Leonards On Sea, where exciting things are happening at Heist Market

Here, chef Neil Eakapong, who built a sterling reputation for his uncompromising Thai flavours at various private events and supper clubs in London, is currently doing his thing at St.Leonards’ buzzing indoor street food market, with hand pounded curry pastes, freshly squeezed coconut cream, and heaps and heaps of flavour. Chef Eakapong does a seriously good, traditional Thai dessert, too. What’s not to love?

At Heist for a limited time only, we implore you to go check it out!

Instagram: @bangkokdeliveryboy

We’ve also heard great things about Red Snapper, a family run joint headed up by chef Panwad Manateepho. We can’t wait to check it out soon.

Whether you're looking for the ideal restaurant to curb your kimchi cravings, need inspiration for tonight's dinner or are after advice on how to make the creamiest risotto ever, we've got you covered. Our talented team of food obsessed writers and chefs are here satisfy your foodie cravings one article at a time.

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