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“Love Thai Food!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Baan-Sawan

Baan-Sawan
Ranked #119 of 962 Restaurants in Columbia
Cuisines: Asian, Thai
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Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Columbia, SC
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Love Thai Food!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 6, 2009

We LOVE Baan Sawan! We probably eat there once a month. The Panang Curry is amazing-even if you're not a curry fan, try it! Sure, it's probably over-priced for the basics like Pad Thai, but if you venture outside the familiar Thai entrees, it is incredibly worth the price. It's our favorite restaurant in Columbia by far. Excellent wine and beer selections too, great bartender, Sam if you sit at the bar.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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49 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
A TripAdvisor reviewer on Facebook
“The best Thai in town, along with a great wine list. These guys rock!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 1, 2009

The best Thai in town, along with a great wine list. These guys rock!

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This review is the subjective opinion of an individual contributor and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sc
2 reviews
“Good, but not worth it for the price”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 15, 2008

I ate at Baan Sawan years ago, and I remembered it being decent at best. A few weeks ago, my husband and I decided we wanted Thai, but we weren't sufficiently inspired to drive to one of our two favorite Thai restaurants (Bangkok and Thai Lotus). I suggested Baan Sawan, as it's closer to where we live. We called in our order, and went to pick it up. I'll first say the location and decor are beautiful. I looked at the wine list while we waited, and the list seemed interesting and well-put-together. The staff was nice. Our food was pleasant. But there's no way it was even close to being worth what we paid for it. If you want Thai, and you don't want to spend $70 for 2 dishes and a wee teeny cup of Tom Yum Goong (the food was good, but the soup was terrible; it tasted like hot licorice water), go to Bangkok or Thai Lotus. I'm not cheap--I'll spend some money on a fine dinner. The money wasn't the issue . . . it was the lack of quality. For $70 for two dinners and a cup of soup, it should be great. This was far from great.

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Thank spiderpig19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
baansawan, managing partner at Baan-Sawan, responded to this review, September 16, 2008
$70 is a lot to spend on two dinners and a cup of soup, and I'm assuming that included tip because it's not possible to reach that amount. If one ordered the most expensive item on the menu twice (the Seafood Curry - shrimp, scallops, and calamari at $21.95) plus the soup, the total, with tax, is $53.57. Still not Formica table-top cheap, but not as misleading. In fact, the bulk of our dishes cost $16.95 for chicken or tofu and $18.95 for shrimp or beef. I suppose they could have gotten a special that night and it would have had to have been two orders of Sea Bass at $25.95 each. That would've cost them $62.29, with a $7.71 tip, which would've been nice.
But Spiderpig19 is quick to comment that the price was not the issue. It was the quality. So, that kind of hurts.
I suppose because I've always felt our strongest pillar is our food. We've had complaints about speed of service on a busy night. I've heard that we're expensive (a woman getting a pad thai To Go once told me as she whirled away, "At $13.95, this better be the best damn pad thai in the world.") But the quality of our food has never really been called into question.
But Spiderpig19 didn't like our Tom Yum Shrimp. Admittedly, it's small, but it is consistently a cup (8 oz.) At $5.25, we think it's reasonable. Perhaps it's not a bargain, and it's true that it's not a tureen, but there it is. But "hot licorice water"? I won't say it's impossible since, like with a painting, a piece of music, or literature, once the soup is out of our hands it belongs to the consumer. How they perceive it is wholly personal and unique. I am in no place to say that, to them, it did not taste like "hot licorice water." I'm just glad that it doesn't seem to taste like that to anyone else. That would be upsetting. That would also negate the effort and the multiple ingredients - including some for which we must drive monthly to Atlanta to buy- that go into it in our desire to achieve a simple, but layered, soup experience.

So, yes. Spiderpig19 is absolutely right in saying that if you don't want to spend $70 on Thai food for two people, please do investigate Bangkok or Thai Lotus. I have nothing but respect for their place in Columbia. We need inexpensive ethnic cuisines. And I think it's a shame that she didn't enjoy her food, especially at that price.
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A TripAdvisor reviewer on Facebook
“They are excellent at wine selection to taste, an exciting menu, and a romantic intimate setting. Not to mention...”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 23, 2008

They are excellent at wine selection to taste, an exciting menu, and a romantic intimate setting. Not to mention fantastic original artwork and photography by the owner himself!

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This review is the subjective opinion of an individual contributor and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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