Family meals consist of a meat or fish dish, a vegetable dish, a curry or some stir-fried dishes and a soup. They aren’t exactly elaborate, but meals usually consist of multiple options. The Thai believe in eating well, and including plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits into their diets.
Signature Cooking Style and Presentation: The Thai are famous for shredding meat into long bits and mixing it with similarly-shredded fruit and vegetables. The idea is to achieve symmetry and beauty. The Thai also use a lot of herbs like lemon grass and coriander leaves in their food. These are used for their flavor and for their color. The Thai also use flavoring agents such as Kapi (shrimp paste), Nam Pla (fish sauce), Java root, and chilies.
Tipping at Restaurants and Hotels: You don’t have to tip at a Thai restaurant. However, if you round up the bill and leave a few baht on top of your check, it is still acceptable. A very generous tip will shock the waiters, so refrain from doing that. Bangkok and Pattaya are both very westernized and the tipping custom is understood. Do not tip when you’re outside of these two cities.
Eating Habits: The Thais tend to linger at their food, trying out morsels and appreciating each bit. Dining, therefore, can be a long and boisterous affair. Do not rush or hurry them with prior appointments.
Drinking Habits: The Thai love to drink. Pattaya is literally called ‘The City of Thousand’ bars. One of the prime tourist cities, Pattaya’s bars are known for their beer. Local beer and rice whiskey usually accompany family meals as well, but they’re not strictly alcoholic. The Thais are fond of drinking iced melon juice, citrus banana punch, iced coffee with rice balls, iced condensed milk, lemon soda, mango syrup, coconut juice, yoghurt soda, tamarind drink and citrus banana punch.