Critically acclaimed Queens restaurant Ayada opens in Chelsea Market today, bringing traditional Thai dishes like duck panang curry to the well-established food hall.
The new spot marks Ayada’s first expansion since opening in Elmhurst 11 years ago. Ayada has snagged a 45-seat, 1,300-square-foot space within the food hall, which generally provides little to no seating for most of its stalls. Dishes are supposed to be larger and served family-style, with cocktails, beer, and wine to accompany them.
Ayada’s menu will include favorites like that duck curry, as well as fried fish with green mango salad, ground catfish salad, chive dumplings, and drunken noodles. Dishes will run from $9 to $40 each.
The Thai restaurant was founded in 2008 by Duangjai “Kitty” Thammasat, and it’s remained a family operation since. In 2010, it received a positive one-star review from Times critic Ligaya Mishan, who praised its heat-packing dishes like the green papaya salad.
Thammasat and her nephew and business partner Polpat Klongkhayam are behind the new location. They chose a buzzy locale to break into Manhattan’s dining scene. Chelsea Market, home to a ton of international cuisines, attracts both tourists and locals alike with standout vendors like Xian noodle stand Very Fresh Noodles, Mexican stall Los Tacos No. 1, and Israeli pita purveyor Miznon.
Ayada is now open next to the Lobster Place and across from Chalait within the market, located at 75 Ninth Ave., between 15th and 16th streets. It’ll be open daily from 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.