BY ANDREW WENGROVITZ
A combination of the colossal Shands Hospital buildings, manic drivers on 13th Street, and a narrow entrance to a parking lot shared by the neighboring motel help to conceal the finest Thai establishment in all of Gainesville. Wah Ha Ha Thai Food not only has the coolest name in the existence of restaurant names. It also has some of the most delicious Thai cuisine that are perfect for Gators on a $10 budget. Wah Ha Ha truly embodies the phrase “looks can be deceiving.” The decor and exterior aesthetic can be deemed a bit outdated. However, do not get deterred by the superficial qualities of the restaurant. The real meat and potatoes of this joint – or should I say the real meat and noodles – can be found within the authentic Thai dishes that are served.
Even with an extensive variety of Thai food on the menu that caters to vegetarians and vegans, the go-to dish for me has always been the Crispy Noodle with Chicken. The Crispy Noodle Chicken dish will be the best-tasting meal you’ve ever had. I know. Bold statement, but seriously- it’s really delicious. The heavenly sensations experienced while consuming this bowl of sustenance are brought upon by a combination of crunchy and soft noodle, mixed in with freshly cooked Asian vegetables and a broth that will make your taste buds tingle. In addition, you can dictate the amount of spice and/or pain you want your mouth to experience by requesting mild, medium, hot, or my personal favorite- Thai Hot. For all those thrill-seeking Honors Gators out there, I suggest allowing your buds to go on the rollercoaster of a lifetime with the Thai Hot spice. Worst case scenario, you can walk up the street to the Shands ER to get treatment for the burns.
Wah Ha Ha is located on 13th Street, less than mile past Shands and is open every day of the week- except Tuesday- from 11 am- 10 pm. This unassuming, family-run institution provides an authentic Thai experience for UF students seeking economical prices for generous portions of excellent food.