Located in heart of Kitsilano (West 4th & Cypress), casual-chic Maenam serves authentic Thai cuisine with innovative twists on centuries-old recipes. From family-style dining to rifts on Thai street food, Chef Angus An’s menu balances intense flavours with seasonal local products and sustainably harvested ingredients. With an impressive resume, like working with David Thompson at London’s Michelin-starred Thai restaurant Nahm, Chef Angus An really knows Thai food.
On this visit to Maenam, we ordered some dishes to take home with us. We started with an appetizer of Roti ($3.00) – Even though I prefer Malaysian-style roti which is more puffed and slightly chewier in texture, this flatter roti was nice and crispy on the outside and was a generous portion for the price.
Prawn Cakes ($10) – These tort man gung were fried sustainable Ocean Wise prawn balls, served with a sweet chilli and cucumber dipping sauce. The dish only included five spheres, so we would have appreciated a couple more. Tasty little balls nonetheless with moist yet crunchy prawn pieces surrounded by batter and deep-fried to a golden brown.
Mussaman Beef Curry ($18.00) – A popular curry from southern Thailand, mussaman neua included braised beef chuck pieces, ripe pineapple chunks, chopped peanuts, and sweet yams. This curry was so rich and hearty with an intense spiciness that included multiple levels of flavour. The beef was exceptionally tender, as if it had been slow-cooked – with love – for hours. An excellent balance of sweet, salty, spicy and savory.
Pad Thai ($15.00) – Sustainable Ocean Wise prawns, perfect consistency fresh rice noodles, tamarind, peanuts, tofu, green onions and egg. This authentic dish (the most authentic we’ve had outside of Thailand) was well-executed and was stocked-full of sweet tamarind flavour, ample shrimp, and in case you wanted to kick up the heat level even higher, a sprinkle of chilli flakes were provided on the side.
Since Maenam is an upmarket Thai restaurant, some dishes on the menu are on the more expensive side of the South East Asian restaurant spectrum, but well-worth the price if you’re looking for high intensity flavours. We’ll certainly return to Maenam!