Say Thailand and much of the western world thinks scruffy backpackers, full-moon parties and styrofoam take-out containers (blame Instagram). Thankfully, these American makers dive deeper to help bring some far east flavors to your next game day feast.
Thai Chili Sauce // Apinya // Herndon, VA
Finding authentic Thai in Virginia sounds about as easy as trying to find authentic Southern Food in Bangkok, but since Adam Ross began bottling his wife Apinya’s homemade sauces (she learned them from working at her mother’s restaurant in Khon Kaen) the duo has made Herndon, VA an unlikely home for the bright, tangy flavours of the Kingdom. Apinya celebrates the workhorse of SE Asian eats, the fiery, fragrant, thick-fleshed bird’s eye chili, adding just enough ginger and garlic to have you hitting this bottle early and often. Revamp your game-day wing recipe with a basket of sticky, sweet Thai Chili Wings (Mantry.com/recipes).
Sriracha Lime Jerky // Dried & True // Venice, CA
It’s no secret that Sriracha rules the sauce stratosphere of late but few people know the Rooster is named after the coastal city of Si Racha in Eastern Thailand. Matt Lauster proves he has one of the best jerky recipes in the bag using 100% USDA-certified American Beef and cutting the chili hit with fresh lime. Call the audible and send Jack Links to the bench for this perfect teammate to a Pok Pok Som Cocktail.
Toasted Coconut Chips // Dang // Berkeley, CA
A family business, “Dang” was named after mom and inspired by Bangkok street hawkers. The recipe is adapted from the toasted coconut chips founder Vincent’s mother would put in her homemade thai lettuce wraps. Ditch the doritos dusted fingers for this perfect companion to frosty beers, screaming at the tv and living room touchdown celebrations.
Thai Curry & Lemongrass Peanuts // Lord Nut Levington // Dallas, TX
If there’s one flavour Thai food doesn’t do well, it’s bland. The reigning champ of bland may be the bar peanut. The stale, lifeless decoration found at your local sports dive gets the royal treatment as Lord Nut Levington creates something to look forward to between swigs of Miller Singha. Stay at home, grab a handful and be grateful the suds are ice cold, the couch beats a bar stool and you are the master of your snacking domain.
Thai Basil Som // Pok Pok // Portland, OR
Andy Ricker has done for American Thai Food what mall food courts haven’t. His Portland joint Pok Pok, which recently set up outposts in NYC is helping properly introducing America to Northern Thai Cuisine. People flock for his fiery, fragrant dishes armed with authentic flavors foreign to the ubiquitous take-out variety, washing it all down with refreshing gulps of Pok Pok Som which is served in all of Ricker’s restaurants. Ricker suggests 4:1 soda to Som or nab our unauthentic Thai Basil Margarita recipe at Mantry.com.
Thai Basil Jalapenos // Gordy’s Pickle Jar // Washington, D.C.
Your Jalapeno experience is most likely minimal, maybe a half eaten can once occupied the back of your fridge or they were an after thought atop a taco. We were in the same boat until Gordy’s rock it. Packed fresh, these jalapenos are infused with the herbal, citrus notes of Thai basil. Listen, Thai-Mexican fusion is dicey territory but throw these on a plate of Nachos doused in some Apinya chili sauce and we promise you won’t regret it.