There are several reasons why the best of the Thai restaurants in Madrid, the Thai Gardens, manages to fill the majority of its 350 tables most nights of the week. Firstly, there’s its pretty Thai garden setting with lush palms, trickling water features and bamboo. Then, there’s the excellent service.
Dressed in traditional Thai outfits, the staff (mostly Thai, but also from China, the Philippines and other parts of Asia) are courteous, efficient and greet you with a genuinely warm smile. Finally, there’s the Thai Gardens delicious food, wonderfully presented and served in ample portions. Go easy on the melt-in-your-mouth prawn crackers and don’t order too much.
The menu has all the usual Thai staples, or plump for the set menu if you’re particularly hungry. It’s unlikely you’ll be able to squeeze in the dessert, however. Ask for a table downstairs where it’s cosier and the air-conditioning isn’t as harsh, and if you really want the full Asian experience, there’s a low table where you can lie back on cushions while you eat.
This is as authentic a Thai as you’ll get in Madrid, even though the owner is Chilean. He also owns Thai Gardens in Barcelona, Mexico, Casablanca and Paris.