This fair city is packed with Thai BYO restaurants and of them, Mai Thai is an Auckland BYO institution.
The restaurant is large (their website claiming seating for 160 people) and takes up a number of levels of the inner city building. If you've never been to Mai Thai before, take it from one who regularly frequents the joint, the private room lined with umbrellas on the ceiling is the ticket. If you can rustle up your entourage and nab the two big tables, you're onto a good thing.
I've always loved the quaint Thai styled plates, bowls and cutlery along with the wonderful carved carrot mini food sculptures that adorn the meals. I'm sure no one really knows how they manage to create such intricacy in a carrot, but hats off to them. Mai Thai ticks the food boxes, all the classics you'd expect are done exceptionally well. The menu is large and covers all the culinary bases - grab a mixed entree to start and then some tiger prawns or spicy sauteed squid. If you're feeling more ballsy, Mai Thai offer the option of heating up your meal with extra chilli coming up with the outlandish rating of "Volcanic". A chilled Pinot Gris is a must have here and it'd be rude not to indulge in the restaurant's name sake - a cheeky Mai Tai cocktail.
The casino and bars of Federal Street are right across the road and the usual hijinks of Britomart are but a short jaunt down Queen Street. Let the games begin.