Recognized throughout the Washington, D.C. region for their modern take on Thai cuisine, Chef Aulie Bunyarataphan and Restaurateur Mel Oursinsiri are proud open Tom Yum District. Tom Yum District elevates fresh casual dining in the Nation’s Capital with a menu featuring customizable, made-to-order rice and noodle bowls rooted in authentic and traditional Thai flavors that are served in a modern way.
Authenticity, customization and modern influences are the cornerstones of the Tom Yum District experience with an emphasis on quickness, convenience and simplicity. Influenced by her years of innovation in the kitchen and a highly tuned attention to detail, Chef Aulie has carefully curated the customizable and accessible menu to emphasize traditional Thai flavors, techniques and spices while also opening diners minds to new possibilities.
“Tom Yum District is the continuation of our dream to bring Thai cuisine to the Washington area in innovative yet approachable ways,” says Aulie. “I am thrilled to bring fresh and authentic Thai flavors to a more casual dining experience that allows guests an easy and quick way to enjoy Thai food.”
Guests can choose from 4 bases, 4 grilled proteins, 5 sauces, and 10 toppings designed to be mixed and matched to create countless menu combinations. Highlights of the menu include our signature Tom Yum chili paste as well as other house made marinades and sauces including our exclusive green Sriracha sauce. The open design of our kitchen allows guests to see their meal being cooked in a traditional stir-fry wok or on a plancha (flat top grill), which cooks proteins faster and more evenly then an open flame grill creating a perfectly moist meal. A specially curated beverage menu includes roasted coconut juice typically found exclusively in Asian markets, toasted rice flavored green tea, as well as Thai tea in bottles, Thai beers as well as fountain drinks.
The restaurant is designed to immerse diners in the culture of Thailand in a fresh and high energy, modern setting while going beyond the typical casual dining experience. Modern influences of dark and light colored woods, exposed drop lighting, cast concrete and raw metal are playfully set off by accents of magenta and yellow, two colors prominent in Thai culture. A geometric mural of black and white original photos depicting iconic Thai imagery and textured architectural elements inspired by a popular Thai carving are just a sampling of the East meets West influences evident throughout the restaurant. The restaurant seats 49 people via individual tables and high-top communal seating. Environmentally-friendly materials include renowned designer Philippe Starck’s Emeco chairs made of recycled Coke bottles and WaterSense certified water faucets designed to reduce water usage.
Aulie and Mel are the husband and wife duo behind two of the region’s most successful Thai restaurants, Bangkok Joe’s in Georgetown and T.H.A.I in Shirlington in Arlington. They have elevated the reputation of Thai food that rivals fine-dining restaurants in taste and presentation. Chef Aulie is a member of Les Dames d’Escoffier, the organization for women leaders in the culinary world, and has served as a Culinary Advisor to the Royal Thai Embassy.