As you all probably know, Thai Elvis moved out of his old stomping grounds along with the Palms Thai restaurant several months ago. The space is now occupied by a restaurant named Thai Patio which turned out to be a very pleasant surprise. It was surprising because their other branch is in the odd patio area between Whole Foods and K-Mart on Third St., which has harbored some pretty scary restaurants in its time. So I had no idea that Thai Patio was a serious Thai restaurant -- and in fact I still have no idea if the Third St. outlet is of equal quality. steamed whole troutThai Patio hasn't changed the decor much from the Palms days, although the tables seem to be more spaced out. They've added a patio, natch, along Hollywood Blvd., with comfy chairs screened from the street by plants -- I imagine this caters to the late night smoking-and-sate crowd. We were invited to try the restaurant, but I would have gladly paid myself, since you don't have to exactly twist my arm to get me to try a Thai restaurant.
The menu is pretty similar to the Palms, with all manner of exotic meats on the back page and some unusual dishes like raw beef salad along with all the Thai standards. We just weren't in a frog or boar kind of mood, so manager Scott sent out some yummy little crab purses to start, packed with crab meat and fried into cute little packages. We also tried a perfectly steamed trout in a fragrant tom yam goong type broth and shrimp curry in a complex red sauce dominated strongly by kaffir lime leaves. A solidly flavorful, meaty bowl of boat noodles finished the meal. If you want your food spicy, though, be very clear, since the servers are a little nervous about burning the non-Thai clientele. (Pet pet!)
The stage formerly occupied by Elvis will be put to good use, with costumed Thai dancers performing on weekends. Thai Patio is going for slightly more upscale feel and some of the dishes are a bit more expensive than in your neighborhood Thai greasy spoon. But don't let that dissuade you from ordering the whole fish or the shrimp curry, because they're well worth it.
Beer and wine are available.
5273 Hollywood Blvd.