Tropical Thai is as close to an institution as you will find in Sarasota, food- or any other kind of- wise. Twenty years they’ve been open. That speaks to a combination of loyal customers and business skill. Three years ago they moved to the current, smaller location, which might ensure many more years of operation.
Doubt about any restaurant’s longevity is a product of the streaky and fickle Sarasotan customer. From the halcyon days of Season to the awful days of August the average restaurant proprietor sees heaven and hell. Demanding part-timers provide the yearly nut to survive, but the local base which sticks through the summer must be served as well, even if there are only three of them a night. Truly a feast or famine.
However, TT appears to have navigated these man-eating carp-filled waters. Curries, soups, noodles and salads are reliably good to excellent. The pad thai gets some Yelp!ers unglued, so I’ll try that at some future point. But with so much other choice, I plan not to get stuck on the one allegedly weak dish in the lineup.