Chao Baan is Thai for “of the people.” Thai cuisine from the northeast (Esaan) and south (Pak Tai) of the country is represented in the restaurant’s menu. Chao Baan aims to share its dishes with you, which have roots in the provinces of Yala and Loei.
People are mainly familiar with foods like pad thai and curries because many Thai restaurants in America specialize in central Thai cuisine. Chao Baan wishes to broaden people’s perceptions of Thai cuisine by introducing them to regional Thai dishes. Owner Shayn Prapaisilp’s mom comes from the northeast of Thailand, nearer Laos, and his dad is from southern Thailand, closer to Malaysia. Chao Baan’s mission is to unite these two regional cuisines under a single, unified notion.
The Prapaisilp family is practically Thai royalty in St. Louis. After immigrating to the United States in 1974, Suchin Prapaisilp established Jay Asian Foods (now Jay International Foods). In 1981 he created the acclaimed King & I, the city’s first Thai restaurant. Since then, Suchin, his wife Sue, and their son Shayn have worked tirelessly to promote Thai food in the region. And their dominion keeps expanding. In addition to the aforementioned businesses, their portfolio today also consists of Global Foods Market and United Provisions, which provide products to support other chefs in giving the neighborhood a taste of their native countries.
Aside from delectable Thai cuisines, Chao Baan serves cocktails and mocktails. The non-alcoholic options include the “These Pretzels Are Making Me Thirsty,” made with housemade galangal syrup, fresh lime juice, and ginge beer.
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