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Suriya Thai No More? Whither Valencia 1400 Block.

March 9, 2009

I love Suriya Thai.  Pumpkin curry, ginger rice, coconut ice cream, faded elephant…

suriya thai

But this is not good:


Dr. Memory reports that it is worse:

I happened to walk past Suriya Thai on sunday afternoon, and some of the owners were in the process of emptying it out and setting up most of their furniture for people to haul away. They were somewhat reticent to talk about the specifics of what happened (and fair enough, I was just a random dude wandering by): really all they would say was that they lost their lease. In any case, I’m really sorry to see them go: I loved having a really good thai place within a block of my apartment.

This sucks. Suriyans, please re-open somewhere nearby.

Valencia between 25th and 26th, sea of change. Suriya goes.  The Valencia wood window shop (in which for years I have seen neither movement nor life other than fluorescent lights) gets cleaned out of its vast collection of wood shims:

Valencia Window Shop

And the Groger’s Western Store remains a testament to sunbeaten, blued out cowboy posters frozen in time.

(Yes, I am officially obsessed with this place.  I want to know its story.)

But Valencia btw 25th and 26th, WTF?

30 Comments leave one →
  1. March 9, 2009 10:23 pm

    Hey, thanks for the link.

    For what it’s worth, I did ask the man who seemed to be in charge whether they were likely to re-open in a new location, and he said “maybe, I hope so.” But given that they were putting most of their furniture and dishware out on the sidewalk under a “Free!” sign, I wouldn’t be too optimistic.

    I’m incredibly sad about this: the people who worked there were to a one incredibly nice, and I’m going to miss the pumpkin curry and the Evil Jungle Prince something fierce.

  2. March 9, 2009 10:59 pm

    Yeah, I really liked them — never mind that I could walk there, but the service was fantastic, and the owner and all the staff were all extremely cool.

    They once ran out of the coconut ice cream on my to go order. The apologized, gave me strawberry, and told me I’d get a free one the next time I ordered. A few weeks later, I came in and they remembered — they had put my name on a board in the back.

    Crossing my fingers for Suriya 2.0.

  3. March 9, 2009 11:13 pm

    Not sure what happened, but there was a big sign saying from the city saying their liquor license had been suspended a few weeks back — which doesn’t seem like a coincidence…


  4. March 10, 2009 12:23 am

    The storefront next to Receiver Gallery is going to be a cookie bakery. That should be a welcome stop on the way home to La Lengua from BART! I will miss Suriya.

  5. Colin Barrett permalink
    March 10, 2009 12:57 am

    This really sucks. I really hope they re-open. I will forever associate lime water with that location though.

  6. March 10, 2009 10:32 am

    So sad that Suriya is heading out too, but Receiver gallery is holding strong!
    We still have Kyle Ranson’s show “Joyous Marriage” up (you can see a panorama of the installation here – – and we’re really getting going on our Orange alley mural project right behind us on the alley running parallel to Valencia, closer to Mission. You can see our progress on our Flickr page – !


  7. March 10, 2009 11:32 am

    Hey, Steven. Did you know that there is a grant fund called the Community Challenge Grant Program( that gives away up to $100,000 for neighborhood beautification projects? Maybe you and your neighbors could turn Orange into a shared street/street park? San Francisco Beautiful gives away small grants of up to $5,000 quarterly, too.

  8. March 10, 2009 12:08 pm

    Gillian, looks like that sfccgp is dead.

    Hey, let’s turn Valencia between CC and Mission into a park!!

    And I want a mural on the back of the Burger King on Tiffany.

  9. March 10, 2009 1:44 pm

    Anthony’s Cookies is opening next door to Receiver… hopefully that will help this little corner of the woods… The music store down the street is amazing as well.

    Clooney’s, not so much. That would be a great bar to see change up, but the roughneck angry contractor locals kick the hipsters out super fast…

  10. March 10, 2009 2:36 pm

    The only time I went into Clooney’s was to hit the ATM for cash for Suriya.

    At least there’s The Dovre Club. I haven’t been in Toad’s yet. How is the food there?

    I hereby extend the northern border of La Lengua up to 25th St. This region shall have a sub-neighborhood designation: The Epiglottis.

  11. March 10, 2009 3:18 pm

    Epiglottis? How about The Overbite?

  12. March 10, 2009 3:23 pm

    25th, like an epiglottis, is just past base of the tongue. Overbite’s just past the tip, up by Highland.

  13. March 10, 2009 3:56 pm

    Jafon: every city needs a few bars where you can get your drunk on at 9am, and Clooney’s serves that need pretty well from what I can tell. No need for it to change: it’s not like the Mission lacks for more upscale bars if that’s what you want.

  14. March 10, 2009 3:57 pm

    Unless the Mission is sticking its tongue out…say at Bernal. :-)

  15. March 10, 2009 3:57 pm

    Groger’s Western Store was a genuine Western apparel store when I first moved to SF in ’89. I would trek across the Mission hitting up the thrift stores and pass it on my way to the big Salvation Army on Valencia. They stocked things like cowboy hats and Levi’s Sta-Prest long after any of the major chains (and I am talking Sears here people) did. By the time I moved to the Mission in ’02 it was shuttered & closed.

  16. Bobby permalink
    March 10, 2009 9:05 pm

    Oh, whoops. Maybe they can open a more sustainable and financially solvent business in the space, like, you know, a Burger King. Perhaps a local run business will step in and save them. Or one of the asshats who told those other California based businesses that they couldn’t set up shop in the Valencia corridor because it’s like theirs.

    I hope you all have to take the 49 to Van Ness to eat at the McDonalds next to the homeless degenerates you think are so colorful because you ran everything else out of YOUR neighborhood.

    Enjoy those paper covered windows, you twits.

    I’ll wait until you are all broke and open a Taco Bell in the middle of Valencia Street and shut it completely down between 22nd and 23rd.

    Gavin already told me it’s a go.


  17. Dan permalink
    March 10, 2009 9:49 pm

    Hey Bobby–
    Why so angry? Your plan to open a Taco Bell on Valencia St won’t work. The Taco Bell on Valencia (at Mission St) closed a few years ago. And KFC closed (on Valencia at Hill St), too. Apparently, the demand isn’t there for generic fast food, when so much cheap ethnic food is nearby. Anyway, I think many would welcome American Apparel on Valencia between 25th and 26th, as that stretch is rather forlorn. The problem is that since much of the last few blocks of Valencia is owned by the Salvation Army and CPMC/ St. Lukes, there is not a lot of foot traffic, as there is on Valencia between 16th and 24th Streets.

  18. March 11, 2009 12:00 am

    Man, and CLG closed not that long ago. AND Staceys downtown.

  19. fledermaus permalink
    March 11, 2009 1:13 am

    How about an American Apparel store in the old Groger’s Western Store? That would be a lovely outcome after 11 years or so of vacancy.

  20. Mark permalink
    March 11, 2009 6:05 pm

    Sounds like S. Thai served underage kids — were fined — and couldn’t pay the rent. So, the Sherrif Department kicked them out.

  21. Mark permalink
    March 11, 2009 6:06 pm

    fledermaus – -If you want an American Apparel store at old Groger’s — why don’t you open one (or something similar)?

  22. Mark permalink
    March 11, 2009 6:10 pm

    Dan — Who cares if you want an American Apparel between 25th and 26th?

    Do you think AA cares? Why don’t you call them and ask them to open over there — and you will handle the paperwork. :)

    I think they are done with the Mission.

  23. March 12, 2009 3:03 pm

    Bobby: I agree with you 100% about what happened to AA, but it’s not really germane here. Suriya lost their liquor license and their lease for entirely unrelated (and prosaic) reasons. They’d still be gone if not a single hipster had bestirred themselves against AA.

  24. Valencia Wanderer permalink
    April 17, 2009 4:59 pm

    Lark in the Morning opened-up across the street from where Suriya… was. It’s a incredible world music store that has tons of weird instruments to while away the afternoon with. There’s hope for the block with them and Anthony’s Cookies, Receiver, and, of course, The Dovre Club.

  25. September 11, 2013 5:42 pm

    ラッシュガード ビラボン


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