Halifax, NS —

Thai restaurant owner Anurak recently celebrated an amazing fourteen years of being voted Best Thai Restaurant In Halifax in 2005. The ecstatic restaurateur shed a tear as he looked at the official award sticker in the front window that made his restaurant the talk of the town over a decade ago. “Here we are now in 2019,” Anurak said with a humble smile, “Ever since that fateful day fourteen years ago, and every year since, we’re still the best Thai restaurant in Halifax of 2005. That means a lot to me.”

“There were some years I was worried about losing our ranking: 2007, 2011, 2013…. but year after year, we repeatedly held on to our top spot in 2005. However,” Anurak said with a serious tone, “the competition definitely hasn’t made this an easy win.” The competition he refers to is Sawasdee, the only other Thai restaurant in Halifax that was open at that time. “It’s hard for any Thai restaurant to be authentic in a place as ethnically homogeneous as Halifax,” he explained. “We had to include Halifax donairs and a sushi bar to cater to big groups that might have individuals who are afraid to try ‘spicy Oriental food’, but at least we don’t add ketchup to our Pad Thai like at Sawasdee. Fuck those guys.”

Sawasdee’s owner, Narong, was asked to comment, and he retorted, “Jesus, is Anurak still on about that award? Did you know he still has The Black Eyed Peas’ Monkey Business on rotation? It’s constantly 2005 over there. We call him Uncle Rico. You know, that guy from Napoleon Dynamite? We keep asking Anurak ‘How much you wanna make a bet I can throw a spring roll over them mountains?’, but he doesn’t get it.”

In the past decade, newer Thai restaurants have been popping up and winning the competition, which doesn’t phase Anurak in the slightest. “Sure, these new places are diversifying into more regional Thai dishes, but they’ll never have the privilege of being numero uno in one of the most exciting years in the mid-2000s,” Anurak says while glancing at the near-empty restaurant on a Saturday night, adding, “Plus, where else can you get a tom kha soup with a side order of deep-fried California roll?”

By Andrew Froese, Image Edit: Andrew Froese