Hole-in-the-Wall has over time come to be known as a hideout a gang escapes to elude a pursuing posse. When one passes the Kingsway, Port Coquitlam, location of ‘All Thai’d Up’, it can easily be missed, day or night. The largely industrial and railway area surrounding ‘All Thai’d Up’ would easily hide anyone who enters it. ‘All Thai’d Up’ is an unpolished gem you will find in this hole-in-the-wall.
My wife was looking for restaurants in the Tri-Cities area and happened upon ‘All Thai’d Up’ when looking at top ratings at ’dinehere.ca’. It seemed inconceivable that a worthy restaurant could be found in this area. Well the adage ‘beauty is only skin deep’, or in this case a lack of beauty, is appropriate.
I have enjoyed Thai cuisine for more than 15 years, both in Toronto and Vancouver. Yes, as some reviewers have noted, this is not your typical restaurant Thai cuisine. The same goes for the owners, their approach to Thai cuisine, and their surroundings.
The owners, husband host/manager/waiter/bus boy, wife cook and sometimes waitress, is a team started from a trek through Thailand 20 years ago. Mrs. ‘All Thai’d Up’ cooks from a tradition of fresh herbs, freshly made curries, and a method more commonly found in the home, most especially found in her Tom Yum’s and Tom Kha. I will be back for her Tom Yum Gai.
Any worthy Thai restaurant has a good Tom Yum, but it is its curries that determine its authenticity. Her Gaeng Dang (red curry with chicken) has made me a number one fan.
I came to love Thai cuisine while living in Toronto at a small whole in the wall on Dundas Street. It is still a hole in the wall, and doing very well. Often it is the small, hungry, and principled restaurateurs and chefs that deliver quality food and a comfortable atmosphere at great prices that in the end will create an enduring success. Location is irrelevant.
There are some interesting extras about ‘All Thai’d Up’ that make it unique. They host a salsa dancing group. They teach Thai cooking, free. They teach how to make herbal remedies, teas, juices, and healthy cosmetics. They have poetry sessions, Thai meditation, and more. ‘All Thai’d Up’ has soul to serve up with their curries.
Now, ‘All Thai’d Up’ has been operating for 6 months, and their freshman short-comings are evident, no where more evident than in their service delivery. That is not to say their service is bad, or that they are not seeking to ensure satisfied customers. Mrs. ‘All Thai’d Up’ took our order, but forgot to write down and make my wife’s order. When we asked where the dish was, our host owned up to their error, and rushed the dish through. It was great. They also did not charge us for the dish, and we did not have to ask for redress because of their error.
I would suggest that ‘All Thai’d Up’ needs a bit more resources to ensure they can deliver they tasty meals in a timely fashion. This was evident with our appetizer, Satay. The chicken is charcoal broiled which matches well with their freshly made peanut sauce. However, the skewers cooked too long and the chicken crossed into dry. I can tell that if could for the right amount of time, Satay would be standard on everyone’s orders.
We will be returning to ‘All Thai’d Up’, and I dare say we will order takeout as well. I would suggest that eating at ‘All Thai’d Up’ is better as you get your meal hot as it was intended. I would also suggest that you be patient and encouraging. This gem is worth our support, and an effort by ‘All Thai’d Up’ to improve service delivery.