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Arroy, Thai & Filipino Restaurant

“We are the only Thai and Filipino restaurant in Central MN, and we’re honored to be able to share hand-crafted, made-to-order, family recipes. Thai and Filipino dishes can be made in various ways and we’re lucky to have kitchen staff trained overseas or through their family’s heritage.” 

Arroy, located on St. Germain Street in downtown St. Cloud opened in July 2022. Co-owners (and partners) Annie & Adrienne both had experiences working at Sawatdee, the restaurant previously occupying the space in the 800 building, where Arroy is now. “Annie was a current employee of Sawatdee and I previously worked there before managing the Red Carpet Nightclub. When we saw the building was for sale, we instantly knew we wanted to purchase the building in order to keep not only a delicious cultural restaurant alive but to also showcase a wider variety of Asian cuisine.”

Many of the Filipino dishes specifically come from Adrienne’s family. “To not only learn from exceptional chefs that I work and cook next to but also teach them a different style of Asian cooking has kept all of us on our toes which is very refreshing. Asian cooking isn’t just about putting ingredients in a wok and giving it a stir, it’s measured by taste, smell, and color. There’s so much love and effort that goes into every plate. We also have put a different twist into cocktail and mocktail craft making, using tropical ingredients such as papaya, dragon fruit, guava, passionfruit, and lychee along with featuring house-made syrups.”

Annie is originally from the area, while Adrienne came here for college. So why’d they stay? “I’m here because of my family and the community. I’ve made such deep friendships and connections, staying here after I graduated high school from Sauk Rapids just made sense,” Annie shared. As for Adrienne, “ I moved to this area to attend SCSU and stayed because I truly love the community here. The performing arts, the music, the creativity, the lively downtown atmosphere, it was and has been everything I’ve been looking for with a small-town feel, big-city ideas, and the community to back your dreams.”

Their affinity for the community is both personal and professional, being part of the hospitality industry and downtown scene. “There have been so many fantastic owners that have helped us whether it’s a serious question or just us needing to vent. Being part of a business community that supports each other and wants their neighbor to be just as successful as they are is what’s going to revitalize and keep positive energy in the downtown area.”

“Both being in the service industry for 10+ years, our greatest accomplishment isn’t just having something that we can call our own, but being able to share it with a staff that works so hard right by our sides. We know what it’s like to have to live paycheck to paycheck and to be able to give the opportunity to others, pay a livable wage, and treat them with just as much respect as anyone should be treated in the industry is honestly the most we wanted out of opening Arroy.”

“What’s most exciting is being able to serve our culture on a plate. In Filipino culture you show love through food, so being able to witness a little Filipina being able to try her first Halo-Halo or seeing a newly immigrated family from the Philippines or Thailand and watching them feel comfortable knowing they’re in a safe space of no judgment … it’s memories and feelings you can’t create anywhere else.”

And creating a safe space extends far beyond those who want the comforting tastes of home. “Being LGBTQ+, POC, and women-owned, we strive to create a safe space free of discrimination whether it be your race, sexuality, or gender. Here at Arroy, everyone is welcome.”

“The community and Greater St. Cloud especially has shown us so much support through social media. Whether it’s a post, story feature, or TikTok, there has been an overwhelming amount of positive feedback and support. We really can’t say thank you enough to everyone who has shared a post, left a raving review, or even liked, commented, or interacted with any of our many social media platforms.”