By Eve Marx/Seaside Signal

When Mr. Sax and I were getting to know each other in New York City back in the ’80s, a favorite place for lunch was a Thai restaurant on Ninth Avenue. The neighborhood was gritty, truth to tell. The restaurant was a storefront, family operation on the street level of a somewhat dilapidated apartment building. Our friend Bill, also a writer, lived in a small apartment upstairs. Bill, who appeared to live on cigarettes and beer, didn’t care for Thai food, which I thought a pity since this great restaurant was so near. Mr. Sax and I lunched without him at the Thai restaurant often since it was inexpensive and had lots of small plates and pad Thai. It was also conveniently located only a block or so from my office.

This area is not bereft of good Thai food. We felt pretty lucky when we moved here to find out about Nisa’s Thai Kitchen in Warrenton, and shortly after Yellow Curry Cozy Thai in downtown Seaside opened up. Now there is a third Thai restaurant nearby, the beguilingly named Thai Me Up in south Seaside.

In addition to terrific food and modest prices, Thai Me Up shares an important element in common with our old fave in New York. Thai Me Up’s owner is a Thai lady who hails from New York. She said she started her business with a food truck in Portland; asked how she found her way to the ocean, she smiled and said, “It was meant to be.”

Sunday afternoons at Thai Me Up is becoming our winter jam. We’re working our way through the menu. Every time, Mr. Sax tries a different style of wings. There are eight to choose from. I’m partial myself to the appetizers, in particular salad roll with peanut sauce; coconut shrimp; and chicken curry puffs. A friend in Gearhart recommended papaya salad she described as “spicy, garlicky heaven.” She also recommends chili mango wings. The next time, I’m trying crab fried rice or fried calamari. There are plenty of vegetarian choices and lunch specials are available Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Thai Me Up has a chill, relaxed ambience, and, at least for now, no wine or beer license. You can order Thai iced tea, Thai iced coffee, Thai lime tea, juice, hot tea, or soda. To be honest I’m perfectly happy with water. It’s healthy and keeps the bill down.

Thai Me Up is located at 1575 S. Roosevelt Drive in Seaside. Hours are 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Closed Wednesdays in winter. Prefer take out? Call 503-717-5586. Connect with them on Facebook or check the menu and prices at www.thaimeuppdx.com.

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