My wife and I tried Payathai once a few years ago, and we weren't that impressed so we didn't go back (until now). We decided to try it again in response to a Living Social offer, and we're glad we did. This time we liked it much better.
When we went the first time, it wasn't bad, but there was another Thai restaurant in the area that we liked better, so we didn't feel compelled to try Payathai again. The service was also a bit slow on that visit, because the restaurant was pretty full and apparently understaffed on that day.
This time, the restaurant wasn't busy (around 6:30 on a Saturday), and the service was great. We liked the food better this time too (I don't remember what we had the first time). We started with the Thai dumplings (fried), then shared red curry and drunken noodles, both with chicken. The waitress asked how spicy we wanted the dishes (1 to 5), and we chose 4. The dishes were fairly spicy, but not excessively so (the red curry was a little spicier than the noodles). We had hot sake with our meals (which we always do when we go out for Thai food). The prices were comparable to other Thai restaurants.
I'm glad we gave Payathai another try, and we'll be back. We had a similar experience with another Thai restaurant in the area (Thaikyo in Manalapan), where we didn't like it that much the first time, but gave it another try and have been regulars since.
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