Boyd Sivatitikul is working to make sure Capitol Hill’s Thudsuan doesn’t get lost in Seattle’s wealth of Thai restaurants.
“For us, it’s not just another Thai place,” he said.
Opening Thudsuan at 19th and Madison, Sivatitikul said he wanted to create a more adventurous experience. While he used his wife’s family name to make sure people would be aware of the restaurant’s Asian roots, he didn’t put the word Thai in the name.
“We try our best to make it traditional and modern,” Sivatitikul said.
While there are the staples like pad thai, tom yom soup and a host of curry dishes, there is also a menu section called modern twists. There, diners will find things like a papaya salad, but added to it will be soft shelled crabs. Or a pad kee mao made with fettuccine instead of the typical noodles (traditional pad kee mao is also available).
The craft cocktail menu includes libations with ingredients like tamarind and lychee. Sivatitikul also infuses his own vodkas, with things like Tom Yom or ginger and peppercorn. “You’re not going to find these in a regular Thai restaurant,” he said.
He’s hoping that differences like these will make his place stand out in a city that has an unusually high number of Thai restaurants.
The new restaurant opened late last year on the corner of 19th and Madison in a space built out and occupied only briefly by its first-generation tenant. Sivatitikul said the space and timing came together just right for him to open his new enterprise.
The Lynwood resident is an industry veteran, having been in the business for about 15 years working all over the front of the house in places like Racha in Queen Anne and Root Table in Ballard. He’s also worked as a consultant setting up Pestle Rock in Ballard and bang bar in west Seattle.
For about five years, he dreamed of his own place, but either the financing didn’t come together or the space wasn’t quite right. Now he’s found both here on the Hill.
“I already liked the area because you get a mix of everything,” he said. “It’s pretty much wide open for everybody.”
Sivatitikul plans to try and keep things fresh by occasionally changing up the menu, which he said is rare in Thai places, many of which might have the same choices for years.
“For me, food or restaurant service is pretty much a fashion industry,” he said. “You need to keep up with current trends.”
Thudsuan is located at 1818 E Madison. Visit thudsuankitchenandbar.com for more information.