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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Casual restaurant

Mon–Thu 11:00am–2:30pm
Mon–Thu 5:00pm–9:30pm
Fri 11:00am–2:30pm
Fri 5:00pm–10:30pm
Sat 11:00am–10:30pm

Features Date-friendly, veg-friendly
Bar Beer, wine
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx
Reservations Not accepted


6324 Richmond Ave.
Houston, TX
(713) 780-7955
Thai Gourmet
Good Thai that’s even better when it’s kicking your butt

The owners of Thai Gourmet also run a very popular kickboxing studio next door. Kru Pong (Kru means “teacher” in Thai) and his wife Toon lord over this set of strip-mall digs made somewhat nicer with tropical plants. There are unique touches inside as well: a beautiful chalk landscape, wood carvings, and random artifacts that are classy and not overdone. You’re not underdressed in shorts and a T-shirt, but this could also make for a nice evening out.

Fried okra is a favorite around here, deep fried with no batter and seasoned with sugar, lemongrass, garlic, and spices. Also try flash-fried and silken “Triple Spicy Tofu,” with crispy casing and chilies. The contrasting textures and flavors will jump and dance in your mouth—but eat the dish quickly or it gets soggy. Seafood is a strong suit, like briny and plump aromatic basil shrimp, or chu chee tilapia, slowly simmered with a delicious red curry.

Dishes ordered “Hot” and “Thai-Hot” cannot be returned for a refund. Does that clue you in? But at medium-spicy or less, you might wind up with icky, candied renditions of Thai classics (and a few not-so-Thai classics): pad kee mao may seem bland, Massaman curry much too peanut-buttery, and crab fried rice almost desserty. For a fun Thai ass-kicking experience, go “Hot”…or go next door.

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