Best Thai Restaurant St. Louis 2010 - Pearl Café
Brothers Tommy and Scott Truong already owned one of the area's better Thai restaurants, Simply Thai, when they opened Pearl Café just down the road. The difference between the two is reflected in the names. Simply Thai is a no-frills conversion of an old Taco Bell. Pearl Café is much warmer, with more modern décor, and these little touches make the food shine even more brightly. The menu ranges over most of the Thai dishes popular in America — curries, stir fries, noodles — each prepared with fresh ingredients and close attention to detail. Look beyond the usual suspects and you will find many excellent seafood dishes, including the fantastic (and very spicy) Thai chile squid. No dish is a better example of why the Truongs' restaurants are so beloved among aficionados of Thai cuisine than the classic tom yum soup, an enticing and perfectly balanced melange of lemongrass, chile, galangal, mushroom and lime. Though the kitchen could have gotten by with merely a decent tom yum, the Truongs make sure that, in spite of their now owning two restaurants, even a tried-and-true dish tastes like it's being served for the very first time.