Craving for Thai food? Head to a Thai SELECT restaurant

Filed on August 22, 2021 | Last updated on August 22, 2021 at 09.54 am

Post photos of your meals with Thai SELECT logo on Instagram to win an iPhone 12 Max Pro

Thai cuisine ranks high on most foodies' favorites list. But to truly savor its contrasting flavors, whether it's the beef massaman curry, tom yum gung (hot and sour prawn soup) or som tam (spicy green papaya salad), it needs to be prepared with authentic ingredients by chefs who know the cuisine inside out.

To this end Thailand's Department of International Trade Promotion (DITP), Ministry of Commerce had introduced the Thai SELECT certification back in 2006 as restaurants popped up around the world to cater to the increasing demand.

"Thai SELECT is a mark of certification awarded by the Ministry of Commerce to guarantee the authenticity of Thai restaurants," says Panot Punyahotra, Director, Thai Trade Centre - Dubai. It's an assurance that the food being served at a restaurant with the Thai SELECT certification is made in traditional Thai style using proper ingredients.

"The objective is to increase the recognition of quality Thai restaurants as well as encourage Thai restaurant owners to raise the quality of their foods and services while maintaining the authenticity of Thai cuisine," he adds.

In order to receive the Thai SELECT certification, restaurants need to adhere to stringent guidelines. In addition to the use of authentic ingredients, chefs need to be trained in the preparation of bona fide Thai meals and should have at least two years of experience.

"Thai SELECT certifies not only the food but also the hospitality and the atmosphere of the restaurant," explains Mr. Punyahotra. Based on the level of excellence, the certification is divided into three tiers - Thai SELECT Signature, Thai SELECT Classic, and Thai SELECT Casual.

In the UAE, Thai Trade Centre - Dubai conducts unannounced inspections to decide whether a restaurant is eligible for the Thai SELECT certification, which is valid for two years.

Mr. Punyahotra says that receiving this prestigious mark of recognition isn't easy: "The bar is set high, and the guidelines are strict."

That explains why for the time being there are only 14 restaurants in the UAE that have received the stamp of approval from the Ministry of Commerce.

So, next time you feel like trying Thai food, make sure you head to one of these restaurants scattered across the Emirates for an authentic experience.

Thai SELECT restaurants in the UAE

Bambooda Thai Fusion, Garhoud

Bangkok Town Restaurant, Sharjah

Benjarong Restaurant - Dusit Thani Abu Dhabi

Benjarong Restaurant - Dusit Thani Dubai

Charm Thai Dubai, Dubai Marina

Desert Lotus-Thai Bistro & Sushi

Khao Siam 45 Restaurant, Al Barsha

Khun Chai Thai Restaurant, B2 Mall Jumeira St. Dubai

Little Bangkok - JLT

Little Bangkok - Media City

Little Bangkok - UP Tower, Next to Emirates Tower Metro

Siam Restaurant FZE, Dubai-Mina Rashid

The Thai Kitchen, Park Hyatt Dubai

Wise Kwai - Dusit D2 Kenz Hotel Dubai

Will you be one of the four lucky winners?

As you savour the treats with all your senses at these restaurants, don't forget to capture them in a beautiful photograph and post it on your Instagram account. Tag three of your friends, along with @ThaiTradeCentre_Mena and the restaurant to get a chance to win an iPhone 12 Max Pro. But do ensure that the Thai SELECT logo on the tent card is featured in your photograph. Four lucky winners would be announced at the end of the competition, which runs until September 22.

So what are you waiting for?

For more information on Thai SELECT certification, visit

This content comes from KT Engage, the brand marketing unit of Khaleej Times.