Buddha Thai Café and Restaurant
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I knew I had to try this place out when I drove by during a Launceston visit. It had lovely monochrome Buddha heads emblazoned upon its awnings and was situated inside an appealing 19th century building. I made a mental note to visit the next time I was in town.
So the next time I visited the fair northern Tasmanian town of Launceston, I wasted no time in rocking up with an empty stomach and an open mind. I was quickly seated and took note that the restaurant was busy and bustling. There were Buddha heads everywhere – on the chalkboards outside, in little boxes on the walls, sitting on the picture rail, hanging prominently above the diners and even on the menus.
Launceston locals seem to enjoy Asian culture – City Park exhibits Japanese macaque monkeys
and there are a plethora of Asian restaurants in town including Suwan Thai and the Me Wah. In fact, Launceston's food scene is flourishing like never before. Find a list of the city's restaurants and eateries here
During my visit to Buddha Thai, I ordered steamed rice, red curry prawns and satay tofu. The food was utterly scrumptious. However, this place is BYO and I hadn't brought any wine with me – so I settled to enjoy a lemonade over dinner rather than a sauvignon blanc.
It's not fine dining here – the meals are cheap and the service cheerful – but eating dinner here is lovely and comforting and delicious, and the importance of that can't be overrated. And for $17 or $18 for your average curry, they're not trying to be anything else.
One of the best things about this place is the atmosphere. There is only room for about 30 diners, meaning it's cosy and warm. It's nicely decorated and the staff are friendly and unpresumptuous.
For a small city, Launceston has plenty of options for fine dining and upper-level bistro-style and brasserie food. So it's nice to be somewhere a little more funky and low-key. It's a marvellous place for city dining, perhaps before heading out for an evening on the town to somewhere like Saint John Craft Beer
in St John Street.
So what should you say when ordering a curry at Buddha Thai? Try this - "Make me one with everything". TV morning show presenter Karl Stefanovic tried this on with the Dalai Lama in 2011
and unfortunately the gag fell flat. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't give it a try. Your Buddha believe it will work eventually.
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