Just a short walk from Elon University’s campus, patrons at Simply Thai are able to experience traditional, ethnic 

cuisine without having to go very far.

Located at 2041 Timberline Station Drive near The Fat Frogg, the restaurant is accessible to those without a car for only a 15 minute walk.

Approaching the restaurant, customers are welcomed by an outdoor seating option. The patio is filled with vibrant red umbrellas, with white fairy lights hanging on the railings. When the weather is nice, it’s an alternative to the darker interior.

Manager Vonne Keobouala said they had another restaurant in Fayetteville, North Carolina but it was more of an express, fast service type and they wanted a more sit-down restaurant.

She said since there weren’t really any Thai restaurants around when they decided to open one up in Elon seven years ago, making the eatery a good investment.

Walking inside the restaurant, patrons are greeted by a cozy, warm atmosphere. The dimmed lighting and long, red drapes hanging from the windows make for an inviting environment. Golden Buddha plaques hang from the walls and bring in the Thai culture eloquently.

Customers are able to see the Simply Thai staff at work. The head sushi chef is seen standing behind the long counter, chopping fish and rolling sushi.

The menu features a wide variety of dishes ranging from Thai noodle dishes to curries as well as traditional and signature sushi rolls.

Though prices are higher than other local Asian restaurants, like Red Bowl, with most signature sushi roll costing around $14, each roll is delicious. The name of one of their signature rolls, the Phoenix Roll, filled with tempura shrimp, avocado spicy mayo and topped with tuna, hot sauce, tempura crunch, eel sauce is fitting for the Elon community.

But the classic house rolls, such as avocado or sweet potato tempura, are only $5.

According to Keobouala, pad Thai is one of their most popular traditional dishes. For sushi, the “Oh Baby Shot,” which is served on spoons, is also a favorite.

Simply Thai is very popular among Elon students, because of the location and style of food. On a Thursday or weekend night the restaurant is bustling with students and community members.

With a crowd, it is recommended to make a reservation. The wait to sit down can vary depending on the day and time.

The restaurant also tries to get involved with Elon students. Each year, Simply Thai holds Homecoming meals for Fraternity and Soroity Life and host events for master’s programs.

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“We do a lot and have support for Elon and the faculty,” Keobouala said. “We would like to be more involved. We also have students who work here and they come back to visit. It’s a good relationship we have with the students.”


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