A week doesn’t pass before I find myself craving pad Thai. I can’t describe what truly makes the dish so dear to my heart, but there’s just something about the combo of sweet and spicy noodles that makes me come back to it again and again. I will openly admit Boston University’s abundance of Thai restaurants played a part in why I chose to go to college in such a great city.
The sheer amount of pad Thai available on campus made it difficult to find the perfect dish. Some restaurants amped the sweetness, while others preferred to stay bland. In the end, I narrowed it down to three key places located close by BU based on taste and price.
Smile Thai in Super 88 Market
Near west campus is Super 88, the Asian food court and supermarket that may seem intimidating at first. The overwhelming assortment of choices includes bubble tea, banh mi sandwiches and other various Asian cuisines. Tucked around the corner of the food court is a small stand called Smile Thai.
The pad Thai is cheap and perfect for bringing back to the roommate who’s had a bad day. The portion size is huge, so there will definitely be leftovers if not for the next day, then for a few days afterwards. The flavors are reliably good but nothing extraordinary, making it a solid staple pad Thai.
Tucked just around the corner from Babcock Street, and wedged into the Allston border is Brown Sugar Cafe. This amazing thai restaurant was one of the first places I checked out when I came to BU due to its rave reviews. For $11.50, the pad Thai is always reliable and the flexible hours make it perfect for the 8 p.m study break. Not to mention the atmosphere is great and there’s always a puffer fish waiting to greet customers in the giant fish tank!
Located right next to Pavement Coffeehouse on Comm Ave. right in the middle of campus, this pad Thai goes home with the winning prize. Not only is it incredibly affordable ($9.50), but it hits all the right notes of flavor that pad Thai should – slightly spicy, peanuts already mixed in, with a hint of sweetness. The staff here is fast and effective, and the food is never a let down.