by Lettie Stratton
Before Kae Alexander arrived in Shelburne, you’d be hard pressed to find authentic Thai food in the area. There’s plenty of Thai food that caters to the American palate, but as far as the “real thing” goes, many would agree that Vermont is lacking. Kae explained that some restaurants go without using the more expensive traditional ingredients in their cooking, but she makes no such sacrifices. “My customers are my family,” she said, adding that she cooks for them in the same way that she cooks for herself and her husband, Bill.
A Thailand native, Kae owned three restaurants in Bangkok before moving to Shelburne with Bill. She’s been operating her business, Thai Catering of Vermont, out of her home since July. The demand has been so high that Kae has expanded her offerings to also provide take-out Thai lunch or dinner to hungry customers.
Kae does all the cooking by herself, making everything entirely from scratch and she plans to keep it that way. As for Bill’s contribution? “I cook websites,” he said with a chuckle. Kae made the decision to cook solo for a good reason. “I don’t want to change,” she said. “If someone cooks with me, my food would taste different.” Bill agreed, adding, “You’d lose the integrity of the food.”
No one wants the taste of Kae’s food to change. The popularity of Thai Catering of Vermont has grown and spread simply by word of mouth and the small makeshift sign out front of Kae and Bill’s home. Soon, though, it will be replaced by a more official-looking sign. Of the current sign, Bill said, “We’re outgrowing it.”
Don’t be concerned about the For Sale sign in front of the Alexander home; Thai Catering of Vermont is here to stay. The couple is simply in search of a more suitable location for the business. They desire a place just a bit bigger, with space for customers to sit and use Wifi while they wait for their food to be ready. “I like to have a small restaurant,” Kae said.
In the few months she’s been in Shelburne, tales of Kae’s delicious cooking have been making their way throughout the area quickly. She said she has been offered cooking jobs at some of the area’s largest hotels and restaurants but she likes where she is. Kae is satisfied with her Route 7 location and wants to stay in the Shelburne/Charlotte area since many customers are locals and others come from nearby areas like Ferrisburgh and Middlebury.
Place your order online at www.thaicateringvt.com and see why everyone seems to be saying, “Hey, have you seen that sign for Thai food on Shelburne Road?” After tasting the Pad Thai, I can say that I certainly know why.