Pairao and Chanida Tauthong, owners of Thai Red Chili, brought the look, feel and taste of Thailand to McAllen when they used Pairao’s extensive restaurant knowledge to open Thai Red Chili at 3507 North Ware Road, south of Nolana.

Over 30 years ago, Tauthong cooked at his brother’s successful Thai/Northern Italian food restaurants in Stamford, Connecticut. He then worked at various hotels around the New York City area and found an affinity for the restaurant business.

Pairao met his future bride through a mutual New York friend in 2001. He had listened when the friend spoke of Chanida, a nurse – now nurse practitioner – who lived in McAllen. He had taken a risk and had flown to McAllen to meet her.

“It was summer and  hot,” Pairao chuckled. “I looked up and was surprised. In New York it was a concrete jungle and you had to squint to see the sky. Here it was so open!”

The risk visiting Chanida was worth it, and they began  a long distance relationship.

After they married in 2003, Pairao moved to McAllen, and by May 2005, Thai Red Chili had become a reality.

The only Thai restaurant in the Valley, Pairao produces fresh, authentic Thai dishes. For those not quite ready to discover the diverse flavors of Asian cuisine, he also serves Northern Italian food. The restaurant offers high quality selections with spice factors from zero to four.

Chanida compared watching her husband work his food line to watching an accomplished pianist play with precision.

The restaurant has built its reputation by word of mouth through doctors, nurses, lawyers, bankers, office workers, and all the loyal customers who spread the word of this family-style restaurant offering the real Thai experience from the décor to the scrumptious spring rolls.