Thai Esane offers family recipes, diverse options in Brentwood

Chef and owner Nina Singto opened Thai Esane in Brentwood in February. (Wendy Sturges/Community Impact Newspaper)
Chef and owner Nina Singto opened Thai Esane in Brentwood in February. (Wendy Sturges/Community Impact Newspaper)

Chef and owner Nina Singto opened Thai Esane in Brentwood in February. (Wendy Sturges/Community Impact Newspaper)

Image description
Bangkok wings ($13) are deep fried and tossed with a chile sauce. (Courtesy Thai Esane)
Image description
The larb chicken wrap ($16) includes minced chicken with red and green onions, lime juice and rice powder, and is served with lettuce wraps and rice. (Courtesy Thai Esane)
Image description
2 Drunken noodles ($14) feature either egg or flat rice noodles sautéed with onion, peppers, broccoli, basil and a choice of protein. (Courtesy Thai Esane)
Since Thai Esane opened in Brentwood in February, owners Nina and Tim Singto have been able to introduce diners in the area to a variety of new flavors and to accomplish their long-held goal of having a restaurant in the area.

“It was a dream,” Tim said. “Me and my wife—we tried different careers in our lives, but cooking was it. She started out in King Market as a server, but she’s always been cooking at home, and we’d have guests come over and say, ‘Wow, this is exceptional.’ After that, we knew we wanted a restaurant.”

In 2014, with years of cooking and recipes under their belts—and with the help of their family, who also launched King Market, a grocery store and restaurant in Antioch—the Singtos opened Thai Esane. The eatery serves a combination of Thai and Lao cuisines. The eatery’s first location is on Music Row, and another location recently opened at 5th & Broadway, a new food hall in downtown Nashville.

However, the Singtos said they have always wanted to open a location in Brentwood, as many of their regulars work downtown but live in Brentwood. So when a location in Hill Center Brentwood became available, they jumped at the chance, Nina said.

“We wanted to come to Brentwood. I didn’t want to go anywhere else,” Nina said. “This is the ‘it’ spot here. The first week was chaotic, but I knew my food was great, and Brentwood welcomed us so well. They said the food was great and they’ll be back—I’ll take that all day.”


Nina said many of her customers gravitate toward more commonly known dishes, such as pad thai or Malaysian noodles. However, she said she hopes as customers return, they will be excited to try more adventurous dishes, such as pad phet, a curry dish with bell peppers, bamboo shoots and onion that can be customized with different protein options.

“Our curry is so hearty, and people ask, ‘How do you do it?’” Tim said. “It’s a lot of labor that goes into it. We don’t do anything canned, as far as sauces. Everything is handmade.”

For diners who want to push their palates, dishes can also be customized with sauces and chili oil to make them “Nina hot,” a term Nina uses for flavors that meet her preferred level of spiciness.

“‘Nina hot’ is a spice level that is beyond. It’s crazy,” she said. “I brought it to Nashville, and that’s what I’m known for. Our ‘medium’ is everywhere else’s ‘hot.’”

Thai Esane also includes a full bar with wine, cocktails and a number of local craft beers from the Nashville area. As the weather begins to warm, Nina said, she hopes the eatery’s large patio will become another popular outdoor dining option in the area.

Nina said she has enjoyed introducing diners to Thai food and providing a new option for foodies and transplants from other parts of the country.

“When we opened, I didn’t realize that there are so many people from out of town coming to Nashville to work,” she said. “They love our food and say they can’t find Thai food or anything like that in Nashville. With our food, we keep the authenticity. I don’t Americanize it.”

Thai Esane

203 Franklin Road, Brentwood

615-915-4736

www.thaiesane.com

Hours: Mon.-Sat. 11 a.m.-9 p.m., closed Sun.
By Wendy Sturges
A Houston native and graduate of St. Edward's University in Austin, Wendy Sturges has worked as a community journalist covering local government, health care, business and development since 2011. She has worked with Community Impact since 2015 as a reporter and editor and moved to Tennessee in 2019.


MOST RECENT

Residents will have until May 2023 to obtain a Real ID. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Real ID deadline extended to 2023; Brentwood debuts new police HQ and more top area news

Read the top business and community news from the past week from the Franklin and Brentwood areas.

Williamson County Schools will not require face masks for summer programs. (Screenshot via wcs.org)
Williamson County Schools to make masks optional for summer programs; officials optimistic masks will not be needed this fall

WCS Superintendent Jason Golden said the district does not anticipate masks will be required this fall if trends continue and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to lessen restrictions. 

masks
CDC ends all mask requirements for fully vaccinated people

The guidance states fully vaccinated people do not need to wear masks indoors or outdoors.

The city of Brentwood will host a vaccine pop-up event May 22. (Courtesy Texas Children’s Hospital)
Brentwood to host vaccine pop-up event for residents age 12 and older

The Tennessee Department of Health will be administering the Pfizer vaccine, which has been approved for those age 12 and older.

Masks will be optional during summer programming at Franklin Special School District. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Franklin Special School District to make masks optional for summer programming; discuss options for next school year

As of June 1, face masks will no longer be mandatory for students and staff attending summer programs.

Officials are urging residents not to hoard gas during a regional shortage. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Officials caution against gas hoarding amid outages in Middle Tennessee, plus resources on where to find fuel

According to the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, drivers should only take what they need, so as not to cause more outages. 

The company is expected to move 160 employees to the area over the next 2-3 years. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Radio network nonprofit Educational Media Foundation to relocate headquarters to Cool Springs

The organization operates KLOVE, a Christian radio station, as well as podcasts and Air1.

The city of Franklin approved a resolution May 11 to rename two street portions after Black leaders. (Wendy Sturges/Community Impact Newspaper)
Franklin renames two street portions after Black leaders

The streets will be named for Martin Luther King Jr. and ANC Williams, the first Black business owner in Franklin.

Residents will have until May 2023 to obtain a Real ID. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
US Department of Homeland Security extends Real ID deadline until 2023

Drivers will have until May 2023 to get the Real ID, which will be required for adults boarding a U.S. commercial flight.

Mayor Rhea Little was appointed for another two years as mayor during the May 10 meeting. (Screenshot via brentwoodtn.gov)
Brentwood swears in 3 commissioners, reappoints Mayor Rhea Little

Rhea Little will serve another two years as mayor.

The city of Brentwood's Summer Concert Series will kick off June 6. (Courtesy city of Bretnwood)
Brentwood announces return of Summer Concert Series in Crockett Park

The series, which was canceled in 2020, will kick off June 6.

Susan Bailey was elected president of the American Medical Association in June 2020. (Courtesy American Medical Association)
'I am convinced we will beat COVID': American Medical Association President Susan Bailey discusses vaccine successes, myths, challenges

Bailey was elected president of the American Medical Association in June 2020. Much of the organization's focus during that time has been on vaccine transparency and distribution.