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#219 of 318 Asian in San Diego
#1,212 of 2,756 Restaurants in San Diego


$5 - $15
Asian, Thai
Dinner, Lunch
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Reviews (33)
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Reviewed July 20, 2019

I eat here during the work week at least once a week. I often take my teams here for lunch. The food is consistently great, hot, quickly served. If you need to have a good working lunch and get in and out in an hour...and not break the bank - this is a good place. The owners (I assume) are always leading from the front and engaging - nice to see.More

Date of visit: July 2019
Reviewed August 27, 2018 via mobile

Wr visited Pailin Thai on the recommendation of our granddaughter, Alexis. It was after tasting her food she brought home one evening that we went for lunch. The Yelliw curry is very tasty with lots of flavor. The restaurant is cozy with a nice ambiance....The servers and management are very friendly and professional. Definitely will return again.More

Date of visit: August 2018
Reviewed June 2, 2018

Business lunch for Thai food. Service was quick and the servers knowledgeable. The food was decent, but lacked punch. Even asking for medium spicy the food was quite plain. Something as standard as Panang was very, very plain. Acceptable, but there's better to be had.

Date of visit: May 2018
Reviewed February 23, 2018

Food here was very good as was the service. I appreciated being asked how spicy I wanted my green curry dish. Earlier in my trip to the US, at another Thai restaurant, I felt the level of spice had been reduced which for me meant...a rather bland meal. The only thing I could criticise would be the level of the lighting - too bright for me. This however is a minor moan.More

Date of visit: February 2018
Reviewed February 23, 2018

Pailin Thai presents a good front with nice location and décor. The inaccurate on-line ordering system will estimate 50% below actual delivery times to keep you from thinking twice and going elsewhere. Our to-go orders were dumped from wok to styrofoam with no lining layer,...resulting in melted polystyrene boxes. The food looks hurriedly prepared and served, showing poor presentation. Optional hot sauces appear to be Chinese-style and not authentic Thai chile / nuoc mam at all. Portion size is good, prices are only about 20% over value, but it's the taste where we were disappointed. There are off-notes present in the flavors, particularly the Pad Thai noodle-style dish, with a resinious backround rancidity. The BBQ pork looks more like steamed chinese-style dyed meat from a different entre. The See-eew dish has the beef done right, but finishes overall in a bland entre. Spices and flavors are wafer-thin and barely detectable throughout both dishes. Vegetable parts (carrots and broccoli for example) look and taste like off-the-semi food ingredients. Noodles, when taken alone, are tasty and properly textured. With a light crowd coming and going, the Hostess appears rushed and frustrated, offering apologetic responses but no eye contact or sincerity. This could be a fine restaurant with new chefs, elbow-grease, and some staff fine-tuning. A disappointing train wreck.More

Date of visit: January 2018
Reviewed December 6, 2017

This small restaurant is a hidden gem. Food was very good, although service was a bit slow so it was not a 5 star experience. Would still recommend as the food is hot and delicious. Clean, decorative and comfortable dining room. Prices are fair for...portion size.More

Date of visit: December 2017
Reviewed November 3, 2016 via mobile

Restaurant was in an odd little center, but is right off the freeway. The food was excellent and portions were generous. Service was exceptional. The restaurant was full of "regulars " who came in knowing exactly what they wanted to order, attesting to the popularity...of their food and service.More

Date of visit: November 2016
Reviewed November 1, 2016

My wife eats here almost every week, and sometimes she lets me tag along. Bottom line, it may be the best Thai food I've had, and I have eaten a lot! The staff is very friendly, and the atmosphere is perfect. I brought my kids...here one time, and now they constantly ask to come back, even though it is 30 minutes from our house. The only downside is that around lunchtime this place is busy! So get there early or eat a little later, but that kind of popularity just goes to show that the food is really good. Take out is available too, though you might want to call ahead around lunch. The fried rice with chicken, shrimp and pineapple is my favorite!More

Date of visit: October 2016
Reviewed June 28, 2016

The lunch specials cannot be beat for the price and taste. So simple to order, pick a meat, pick a dish you would like it added too, and select a spiciness from 1-10. I normally order between a 3 and a 4.

Date of visit: May 2016
Reviewed June 15, 2016

Pailin changed name and ownership but its essentially the same restaurant. I had a good pad thai for lunch and it came as a set with soup, egg rolls and some salad. I had the Thai coffee which was good. Spicy level 7 was about...right.More

Date of visit: May 2016
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