Thursday, January 8, 2009

Thai Aroma in Ellicott City

I don't think I could ever eat too much Thai food.  Mrs. HowChow and I flew to Thailand for our honeymoon, and it was the first long trip that I reached the end without wishing once for a some meal from home.

Thai Aroma delivers this salty-sour-spicy cuisine on Rte 40 in Ellicott City.  The menu serves all the classics: tom yum soups, larb, pork and chicken stirfries and the beautifully colorful curries -- red, green, yellow, panang . . .  The kitchen delivers as well.  I came out of a frigid afternoon and warmed up with tom yum shrimp soup and panang pork.  The soup was delicious with the undertone of sour that takes a steady hand to do right and with fresh-tasting tomato diced into the broth.  

The curry was good.  Its hard to judge because I have a soft spot for Bangkok Delight so I don't want to dismiss Thai Aroma.  I enjoyed lunch, and, although its a little dark inside, it felt like a friendly place.  (It felt extra friendly when the waitress chased me down in the parking lot with the credit card I left behind.  Should have tipped a dollar more)  The food was good, and it deserves its accolades from fans on Live in Howard County.  Definitely a worthy place, although maybe a step below Bangkok Delight -- a place that, some days, I think is the best restaurant around.  The Columbia restaurant just puts some extra crisp to the vegetables, some extra bite to the curry.

I'd love to hear from other people who can compare.  People swear by Bangkok Delight and by Bangkok Garden, also in Columbia.  But then, I could never have too much Thai food! 

If you are near Thai Aroma, definitely check out Shin Chon Garden Korean restaurant and La Boulangerie bakery, which are in the same shopping center with the Lotte grocery store.  There is also a Korean-style Chinese restaurant, but I haven't tried that yet.

Thai Aroma
8815 Baltimore National Pike (Rte 40)
Ellicott City, MD  21043

NEAR:  Thai Aroma is across from the Lotte grocery store in the shopping center just east of Rte 29 on Rte 40.  It is next to La Boulangerie bakery.

Thai Aroma on Urbanspoon


Mike said...

My wife and I LOVE this restaurant. IMO the Thai Basil dish from Thai Aroma hands down beats the similar dish from Bangkok Delight. It is a staple for us when we go there. We have introduced many friends to this restaurant and everyone has loved it. At times, the dishes can be a bit spicy for those with a heat-sensitive palette, but the heat is one of the things that keeps me coming back.

You also mentioned La Boulangerie in the same strip. If anyone goes here, I highly recommend the chocolate croissants. They are flaky and delicious!

Anonymous said...

Hubby and I have been here only once on the suggestion of his work friends and we really liked it. After touring the local Thai places, I concur with Bangkok Delight being the best, but this is definitely a close second.

DAS said...

This is an excellent Thai restaurant, but I have to say that I liked it better when it first opened and was called Viet-Thai. It had a menu that was half Vietnamese and half Thai, with two chefs in the kitchen. I was told that the Vietnamese chef left after awhile, and that's why the Vietnamese food was dropped.

Unknown said...

I wonder if any of you have tried Little Spice in Hanover. I know it is in AA county rather than Howard, but it is not far for most folks (being right above Arundel Mills). My wife (big fan of the drunken noodles) and I like it much better than Bangkok Delight. What do y'all think?