All Thai Food Waikato's chefs are from Thailand, and have completed culinary qualifications there. Internationally experienced, they have cooked in large hotel and restaurant kitchens for a number of years before coming to New Zealand.

Our chefs are passionate about the cuisine they create and enjoy the creativity of developing vibrant and tasty menus for our three venues. They are versatile, and specialise in developing meals using authentic Thai flavours, with adaptations to suit the different styles and cultural tastes of New Zealand.

Thai Food Waikato's chefs do not add MSG to their cooking.


Thai Food Waikato is owned by Thai couple, Tanud(aka Topp) and Tanyapa. Tanud managed one of Auckland's largest Thai restaurants for two years, and Tanyapa worked part-time at this same restaurant.

In September 1999, the couple moved to Hamilton, and when the original Lemongrass premises came up for sale they saw an opportunity to utilise their culinary and management backgrounds by opening Te Awamutu's first Thai restaurant, Lemongrass Thai Cuisine. In 2007, having enjoyed a great deal of local support from the Te Awamutu public, they expanded to larger premises and became fully licensed.

Ginger, a Thai takeaway outlet in Cambridge Road, was opened in 2006 when Tanud and Tanyapa recognised a gap in the market for good, healthy takeaways at reasonable prices for university students and families in the area.

In June 2008, The Noodle Shop was opened, and the chefs there tasked with the enviable job of creating an "Asian Fusion" menu, where customers can choose from Thai, Japanese, Malaysian and Chinese dishes. Two of The Noodle Shop's chefs are in partnership with Tanud and Tanyapa, allowing them even greater opportunities for creativity with their menus.

Thai Food Waikato's focus has always been, and will continue to be, quality Thai and Asian cuisine, using fresh ingredients and authentic tastes,