Kao Thai Cuisine

4.7
146 Reviews
$30 and under
Thai
Located in the old Columbia Firehouse Headquarters (closed down in 1995), this unique restaurant revitalizes the historic building by combining the old and the new - complete with original rafters, floors, and garage door exit.

Our menu offers modern Thai eats that are commonly found on the streets of Bangkok as well as a mix of creative pan-Asian and Asian-American fusion dishes that are fresh and exciting. With a rotating menu of specials, we hope to continuously bring new flavors and dishes to the Vista!

Support Kao Thai Cuisine during COVID-19

What 146 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.6
service
4.6
ambience
4.6
value
Noise · Moderate
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OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and service! Nice patio seating!

AF
AshleyF
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The service, food and cocktails are fantastic! Great Happy Hour specials as well! This is definitely a regular spot for me now!

E
vipExcellent
Atlanta
35 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was fabulous. Service first class. Good really tasty.

B
Bailey
1 review
Dined on October 16, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience3

The people were very nice, and the food was great! Thai tea is a must when visiting Kao! We will definitely be coming again!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on October 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Awesome food and ambiance

JM
JMoore2037
1 review
Dined on October 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great service, inventive drinks, and delicious fare!

A
Anonymous
1 review
Dined on October 1, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of our favorite places to eat in Columbia! Everything tastes excellent.

EH
ElizabethH
Charleston
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food! Fabulous waitress. Loved sitting inside with big doors open so we could hear the love music across the street.

Good happy hour deals too!

ZP
ZealP
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Brought a friend that has never eaten here, and absolutely loved it. Great atmosphere and attentive waiter. Provided great service and flavorful food. Can’t wait to come back again!

AL
ALca
Charleston
1 review
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall3food4service3ambience4

The food was just ok - the spring rolls were cold and we had three orders of pad Thai - one had so much sauce, one had a medium amount of sauce and one had very little…very inconsistent. Service was not great. I wanted to love it but there are better Thai places in Columbia.

KB
vipKathleenB
Raleigh
22 reviews
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and service on a very busy weekend. Would definitely go again when we’re back in town.

PR
PatrickR
1 review
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was absolutely delicious! Flavor blends, tender chicken, crisp vegetables, everything was to perfection! I have already recommended this restaurant to several people. Plan to go back very soon.

N
Norey
1 review
Dined on September 23, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was wonderful and the staff was very friendly and accommodating! Definitely one of my favorite places to eat in Cola.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Charlotte
8 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

The food is always consistently good. I enjoyed the Panang Curry with shrimp. The service was attentive.

MA
MaryAnneM
1 review
Dined on September 13, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great experience! Outdoor seating was wonderful, service was fast and courteous and the food was delicious!

KM
KeMc
Western NC
1 review
Dined on September 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Never disappoints! Highly recommend trying if you haven't. Amazing food and the service is always outstanding. They have the best happy hour specials downtown, too!

BY
BrendaY
Savannah
1 review
Dined on September 1, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

I really enjoyed the place. Ate outside and the food was good. Our waitress was very sweet and helpful. Definitely will come back.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Charleston
1 review
Dined on August 31, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great happy hour deals on appetizers and drinks. Outdoor seating options available (it was raining so couldn’t take advantage). We’ll be back.

TS
vipThomasS
Charleston
14 reviews
Dined on August 28, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Good service. Fun fusion food.

K
Kristen
1 review
Dined on August 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We met for a girls night out and late bday celebration. Decided to sit outside, and there was plenty of shade under the trees even for the summer in Cola. We tried several drinks, small plates and curries from the menu and weren’t disappointed by any of them. Definitely recommend the roti 🫓. Our waitress was very friendly and checked on us many times through the meal even with us sitting outside. We will definitely be back!

D
Dave77
Richmond
2 reviews
Dined on August 27, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Server seemed in the weeds and one dish was so-so. The other 2 (pineapple fried rice and the pork dish) were delightful as usual. Great value and quality

RJ
RayJ
Charleston
7 reviews
Dined on August 26, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Food was delicious, but their draft beer selection was poor. they need to incorporate more craft beers especially those made here in Columbia. With that said we will make this a place to go for at least two to three times a month.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Columbus
2 reviews
Dined on August 21, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our first visit and we will definitely be back. Excellent!

D
vipDeebee
Atlanta
15 reviews
Dined on August 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Food and service fantastic, and our server was very helpful in selecting items that were vegan. Lovely atmosphere, great bar, and lots of sharing options.

p
pamr
Charleston
5 reviews
Dined on August 7, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Reservations were on time , wait staff quick and knowledgeable and friendly. Party of 6 shared appetizers and meals so we could try a lot. Everything was delicious.

j
vipjimbored
Atlanta
31 reviews
Dined on July 23, 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience4

Great food! Service was a little slow, but super nice and friendly. Music was a little loud, but that’s great if you have kids.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Charlotte
1 review
Dined on July 21, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience3

Front end :
The front end staff ignored the reservation request for Outdoor Seating. When we arrived, we were told that they had already filled the outdoor tables, some with walk-ups. We were told that it was a common restaurant practice. They offered a table inside but I reiterated that if I’d wanted to sit inside, I wouldn’t have specifically requested Outdoor Seating. The hostess said that it might be an hour wait for Outdoor Seating. We rolled the dice that someone would leave and were seated ~20 minutes after our initial reservation. P.S. When we asked for the manager we were told that there was no management on site at the time.

Food :
We went to Kao Thai in 2020 after returning from Thailand and were pleased with the food. They seem to have changed the recipes as everything that we ordered was less spicy and much sweeter. The management will probably say that the spice level can be adjusted but how were we to know that they’ve changed.
It happened that we went on Wine Wednesday - 50% off bottles. We ordered a Sangiovese. The bottle arrived already uncorked (red flag) and the foil was raggedy. The wine looked and tasted like an inexpensive Pinot Noir had been poured into a Sangiovese bottle. After the reservation snafu, my wife just wanted to move on and not complain.

Note to management:
Always present and uncork bottles at the table.

Service :
The server (McKenzie S.) was polite and attentive. +++++

B
Bobby
1 review
Dined on July 17, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

The Pad Kapow Slaps. It is packed with flavor. My girlfriend enjoyed the duck curry also, it tastes like the beach. We will definitely return.

JG
JasonG
1 review
Dined on July 17, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

We went for our first time last night. We had no idea this place existed despite being to Tin Roof and the Senate before.

The food quality is excellent. We ordered several dishes and all of them were delightful. Highlights for apps: fried shrimp shumai and char siu pork. We both agreed that the pad thai and pineapple fried rice (with chicken and shrimp) were winners. I liked the Pad see ew more than she did. The "KFC" was also good, but too much of a kick for both of our liking.

Bottom line...go, great food and atmosphere. We will be back!

BG
BillG
Charleston
5 reviews
Dined on July 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delicious, tradition Thai yet inventive. Open, pleasant ambience.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Charleston
11 reviews
Dined on July 1, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Service was outstanding and the food held up to our expectations. We will return to dine again

OT
OpenTable Diner
Charleston
1 review
Dined on June 26, 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Yummy food and nice outdoor seating.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on June 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food, service and atmosphere were excellent!

ML
vipMichelleLyn29
Washington DC
21 reviews
Dined on June 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Really enjoyed the food and the atmosphere! The spring rolls, Pad Thai and Pad See Ew were delicious! The server was excellent also! Definitely recommend!

SM
StacyM
Charleston
1 review
Dined on June 14, 2021
Overall3food4service1ambience3

As a vegetarian, This is one of my favorite restaurants in Columbia. It took over an hour to get our food last night, which on a Monday night, is a long wait. They seemed to have a lot of take out orders though and I realize many restaurants are short staffed right now.

DB
DBlan
Chicago
1 review
Dined on June 11, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Super food, service and drinks. Roti curry appetizer and Duck curry are amazing!

CD
ColaDinner
Charleston
9 reviews
Dined on June 11, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Have enjoyed eating here every time. Great Pad Thai

DC
DonC
Charleston
1 review
Dined on June 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was outstanding,beginning w/ drinks, appetizer, and main course!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Charlotte
8 reviews
Dined on June 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The dining experience was great as usual. I am a frequent customer and enjoy the quality of the food and attentive service. The music and noise level were unusually loud last night, but the restaurant was busy.

W
Walden
Atlanta
5 reviews
Dined on June 3, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lived up to our expectations! Location is engaging. Parking very convenient (back of the restaurant). Food, service, and ambiance - perfect. We plan on going back.

FAQs

You can order delivery directly from Kao Thai Cuisine using the Order Online button. Kao Thai Cuisine also offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (803) 569-6881.

Kao Thai Cuisine is rated 4.7 stars by 146 OpenTable diners.

Kao Thai Cuisine does offer gift cards which you can purchase here https://www.kaothaicola.com/giftcards.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.