Finding good Thai food in Austin isn't an easy task. There are a few authentic spots in different pockets of town and then there's Sway, which opened in 2012 in South Austin under the same owner and chef of Interior Mexican favorite La Condesa. Based on a distinctive Australian style of Thai cuisine made popular by chefs like David Thompson, Sway offers a modern spin on classic favorites in a chic, sexy environment. A concise menu offers a handful of appetizers—including
shu mai and vegetable spring rolls—is followed by options from each of the stir fry, curry, wok noodle and grilled preparations. Artful sides, salads and soups are worth a taste with items such as spicy Chinese broccoli and a rich lemongrass-perfumed tom kha gai (Thai chicken soup). The high table between the bar and the main dining room is for Moo Sway, a twice-a-night, large format, family style meal offering things like a whole roasted pork shoulder with sides. All regular menu items are under $20 (except an occasional market price item), and all orders are served family style. You can also opt for the $35 or $45 smaller portioned tasting menus, which give a healthy sampling of just about every flavor of the menu. (Wine pairings are optional.) To drink there's wine, sake and beer as well as a selection of house-made sodas, Vietnamese coffees and teas and private-label Sway kombucha from Austin's own Kosmic Kombucha.