Qi Bangkok Eatery’s Pad See Ew Is A Winner

If the new Pad Thai Cart on 50th and 6th has taught us anything this week it’s that the heart of Midtown has a serious craving for thai food.  The cart was packed yesterday (reports had the line at 20+ people) and they ran out of food shortly after 1pm.  But I’m more of a pad see ew kind of girl.  Located on 8th Ave. btw. 42+43rd, Qi Thai isn’t quite as far as the places on 9th and Chris had nice things to say about their reasonable lunch specials back in the spring.

But how is their Pad See Ew?  I needed to find out…

The lunch specials are priced perfectly, and with so many options, it’s certainly a difficult choice. I went with the chive corn dumplings appetizer. When they arrived, I was a little concerned that the dumplings were sitting in the soy dipping sauce, but — I assume because of the prompt service — they were nice and hot upon arrival and did not get soggy. If you like to actually see the veggies in your vegetable dumplings, as well as taste them, these are for you. No generic cabbage slaw in these babies!

As for the pad see ew, Qi served a very good version, which I ordered with veggies. Sweet and chewy, the noodles were cooked perfectly. Besides the usual noodles, egg and Chinese broccoli combo, other veggies like carrots, zucchini, celery really added color. The best part is, the noodles plus the dumplings were $7.95 plus tax, which makes it an excellent deal for a lunch that is absolutely enough food to sustain you til dinner.

If you’re looking for interesting Thai food in Midtown West, you’d be happier at Pure Thai Shophouse, but they fall short on ambiance compared to Qi.  And while I think the food and price were definitely worthy of another trip, the decor is really why you should swing by here over the other Thai places on Ninth. (In other words I can confirm that six months later, Chris’ review is just as true now as it was then.) With chandelier-like fixtures in cases separating the tables from one another, clear acrylic seats and white everything else, this place transports you out of the monotony of the workday, even if for a short lunch hour.  And for some, that is going to beat waiting in line at a cart.

Qi Bangkok Eatery, 675 8th Ave (between 42nd and 43rd St); 212-247-8991


  • Mm! looks delicious! Pad See Ew, veggie dumplings, and only $8? Rachel, you’re a girl after my own heart!

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    That looks tasty! My boyfriend and I stopped by for a late dinner one night (around 10pm) and got the pad see ew too. Unfortunately, the rice noodles were cracked and dried out – probably because they weren’t fresh and had been sitting out for a while. But we will happily give their well-priced lunches another try! Thanks for the info! :)

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    I really dont understand why ML sweats Pure thai shophouse so much. We ordered about 5 things and everything was pretty terrible. Our whole group was Thai and none of us could finish our dishes so we just paid and walked out. There are plenty of other options around there way better than that place.

    • That’s interesting. My Thai DH and all his friends love Pure. No, it isn’t as good as Thailand, but it is the best you can get in this neck of the woods. I am a white girl, so I can’t tell the difference, but I like it too. haha.

      Maybe it is a regional preference? I am curious….are you and and your friends from Bangkok or another region from Thailand?

      Big question…are you FOB or are you ABT?

      BTW, I like Qi as well as Pure, because Qi has Northern stuff you can’t find other places..even though it definitely is not overly authentic…the food is still good. DH was drooling over some yum makua they made him, because NO PLACE serves that.

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        I am ABT but have lived in Thailand for many years and have opened businesses there. the people I was with were FOB. I usually allow things to slide knowing that most of the thai places will americanize their food. with that said, we couldnt even eat our dishes. my daughter took a bite and even spit it out even though she eats all types of noodles.

    • The reason I ask “spicythainoodle” is because the only comments on this entire website I can find by you are about slamming Pure. Do you work for a nearby Thai restaurant or something? Everyone I know and everyone on this website and other food forums…everyone loves it….everyone but you. Just saying.

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    I LOVE LOVE LOVE their lunch special. I almost always get the same thing though: Steamed Chicken and Shrimp Dumplings and Spicy Basil Noodles. For me, it’s the perfect combination for a substantial portion all under $10.

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    The serving size of the pad see ew in the picture looks tiny.

  • Qi might be the best value in lunch specials in all of midtown. Quality-to-price ratio is almost off the charts.

    ..and the Thai iced tea is only $1.50 at lunch.

  • BTW,
    looking at the picture of the pad see ew (my favorite Thai dish)…I noticed carrots and zucchini.
    Just so everyone knows…if you see carrots, zucchini, and some would even go so far as to say bell peppers…the food is not authentic Thai. Sorry to say.

    Thought I would point that out. This is DH’s pet peeve about Americanized Thai places. I disagree with him because I think food doesn’t have to be authentic to be enjoyable. If you like it, you like it.

    I laughed my ass off once when I witnessed a colleague of mine (who is Thai), rail on the chef of a restaurant for putting carrots in the food. It was hilarious. I mean, the brother went OFF on this guy. Called him a “disgrace to the Thai culture” and other choice put downs. The chef rolled his eyes, and said “well it is a cheap filler and noone here knows any better, so go somewhere else if it annoys you so much”. I couldn’t help but remember the tongue lashing this guy got –when I noticed the carrots in the photo above. :-)

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