The restaurant was Surin Techarukpong's first venture in Birmingham after successful restaurants opened in the Atlanta area. It opened in February 1996 in the Shropshire & Daniel Building at 1920–1922 11th Avenue South, and served Thai cuisine slightly modified for an American palate.
In 1997 co-owner Lori Livingston opened Sweet Martini' in the adjoining Five Points Grocery building at 2024 11th Avenue South. After a few months she changed the name to Surin Sweets to avoid confusion. That space was later absorbed into the main restaurant, through desserts and martinis remained on the menu.
In 1999 Surin West added sushi to the restaurant's menu. The business continued to expand westward into the former Taco Mac space in the Five Points Theatre building at 2014 11th Avenue South, and then stopped leasing the former martini bar area on the east.
Surin West underwent a major remodeling in 2016, which included refurbishing the former Five Points Theatre facade.
- Taylor, Rebecca (February 28, 1996) "Surin West already is causing a buzz." Birmingham Post-Herald, p. C-1
- Taylor, Rebecca (July 23, 1997) "If you've got sweet tooth, try Surin." Birmingham Post-Herald, p. B-1
- Crider, Deeana (October 10, 1997) "Diners don't find service, menu offerings backward at Nirus." The Birmingham News
- Williams, Roy L. (September 24, 1998) "20th too close to Surin West." The Birmingham News
- Mahoney, Ryan (February 13, 2004) "Another kind of Surin eatery set for Concord downtown." Birmingham Business Journal
- Velasco, Eric (November 25, 2011) "Birmingham's Surin West not without flaws, but still a welcome mainstay." The Birmingham News