Albany: Bua Thai Kitchen

Took over the old Potala (Indian Vegan) space. 1045 San Pablo Ave., Albany, CA 94706 (Marin Ave & Buchanan St).

Extensive menu with some wonderful surprises on it. We were feeling carnivorous so skipped the curries and went for “the meat”, LOL. We’ll definitely be back to try more dishes later.

  • Mango Salad. If you love ripe mangoes, GET THIS. Extremely generous serving of sweet mangoes, perked up with a tangy dressing, raw onions, and chopped mint.

  • Corn & Cheese puffs. A sweet/savory pastry, shaped like empanadas. 3 to a serving. We’re not much into sweet things so next time we’ll try the mushroom alternative.

  • Sai Aou. We love this spicy pork sausage and this was excellent. Fat juicy link, similar to Vientian Cafe’s version but served sliced. We wrapped it in lettuce and mint - yummy! Monkey Thai/Alameda is still the hottest, but this was decently spicy (we seriously love hot chiles and as little sugar as possible).

  • Coconut Lemongrass soup, chose shrimp option. Broth a little light, but flavor was good and well-balanced.

Grilled category:

  • Rib Eye, served with garlic/lime dip - came medium-rare as requested. Loved it; dip wasn’t sweetened or watered down, as some places do. Spouse was ecstatic, and we really appreciated neither grilled dish was salted.

  • Lamb. Three fat, beautifully trimmed chops off the rack, also med-rare. Served over sweet/sour veggies with the sweetened fish sauce; we left both and just ate chops. These were dynamite lamb chops, as good as any steakhouse would give you. Juicy and trimmed tomahawk-style.

Got a side of steamed rice noodles to share. Finished with Thai Iced Tea w/Coconut Milk - a bit sweet so I diluted it with some addt’l tea - made it perfect for an ending. Coconut flavor was strong and complemented the spiced tea.

Our server - Pazzy - was very sweet and told us Bua Thai tries to make their dishes more authentic with less sugar. We told them to keep up the good work, and we will definitely be back to explore more of the menu!

FYI: they still have the small parking lot next to the restaurant, altho street parking is easy (and free, being Albany).


I have eaten the pad see ew, pad kee mao, and whole fried fish here, and they were all excellent, as good or better than my recent meal at Jitlada in LA (to be fair, jitlada’s curries were out of this world, unlike the rest of my meal). Highly recommended!