Thai Café Celebrates First Year


Ayothaya Thai Café marked its one-year anniversary with a special buffet Tuesday.

Ayothaya Thai Café marked its one-year anniversary with a special buffet Tuesday. Photo by Alexis Bechman. |

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Payson Mayor Kenny Evans (above left) kicked off the party with a cutting of the ribbon.

To celebrate a successful first year of business, owners of Payson’s only Thai restaurant laid out a feast Tuesday for community members who helped make the family’s dream a reality.

Mam and Mac Katepratoom had imagined opening their own restaurant for years, but never dreamed Ayothaya Thai Café, 404 E. Highway 260, would be such a success when they opened last year.

That success is due both to the quality of and authenticity of dishes, diners said Tuesday.

Gary Richardson, district sales manager with Sysco, said he has visited many restaurants in his career, and Mam and Mac are some of the easiest customers to work with and put out a great product.

Tuesday’s spread included some of the restaurant’s most popular dishes, from chicken paradise, sushi, garden rolls to rich coconut and curry dishes.

Head chef and owner Mac brought most of the recipes with him from Bangkok, Thailand where he worked as a chef. The Katepratooms came to the U.S. years ago and Mac worked in several restaurants around the country.

Ultimately, the family settled on a restaurant in Payson after visiting dozens of other cities. Nan Pun, restaurant manager, said the family liked that the town offered little competition in the way of Asian restaurants. In addition, they enjoyed the peaceful, slower lifestyle the area offered and the beauty of the surrounding forests.

Friendly residents have been a bonus.

Pun thanked Payson Mayor Kenny Evans, town councilors and other town leaders for their support on behalf of the family and staff.

For more information on Ayothaya, call (928) 474-1112.

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