So I jetted off to Bangkok over my birthday weekend earlier this month and my immediate thought was: oh wow Bangkok you’ve changed so much?! I was pleasantly surprised, no less. Cafés seem to be hiding in every other corner downtown, and this hipster vibe was all over the place. Damn, I need to go back again!
Meanwhile, despite being my 3rd trip in 3 years, I am ashamed to say I actually haven’t tried any of those famous eating spots in Bangkok. Thankfully, a friend threw at me all this information and yes, I then decided to hunt all of them down. Here you go, in no particular order, the 6 famous food places to eat at in Bangkok:
1. AFTER YOU DESSERT CAFE
This place didn’t catch my attention 2 years ago (or maybe social media didn’t make it well known yet), but now that I’ve checked it out – this place is awesome. Famous for their Shibuya thick toast (the picture says it all), but their chocolate lava seems to be pretty popular as well. There’s a line even on a Friday afternoon immediately after it opened. It’s quite crazy, but given that they even produce their own merchandise, you know they’ve become more than successful. Loved the vibe, loved the light. You definitely gotta go have some desserts here.
Find them at: various branches here.
Like who am I kidding – I haven’t heard of this store selling Thai milk tea until recently, just a few weeks before I was bound for Bangkok. It’s apparently the original Cha Yen store since 1945. There’s a Singapore franchise that I’ve tried, and the queue was so long! Try this while in Bangkok, even if you’re rushing for time, because there’s 1 outlet at the airport. I bought it 1.5h before departure before passing immigration so you can too!
Find them at: various branches here.
3. NOODLE SOUP WITH CHICKEN, CHATUCHAK
This came unexpected when my friend introduced this to me WHILE I was busy shopping away at Chatuchak. If you’ve been to Chatuchak, you’d know Chatuchak is huge and simply looks like a maze. Case in point: I was quite interested in this cardigan at this random shop that sells it for 200THB, and I was wondering if I could get it cheaper in another shop. I walked away… and when I tried to find the shop again, I failed, terribly.
So here’s a quick direction to find the stall:
you walk to the main road in the middle of Chatuchak,
look out for Section 21, Soi 29 facing Soi 47
find the store with a red sign board
there’s also a drink stall selling Thai milk tea and other drinks in front of the store
4. SOM TAM
Famous for its papaya salad (som tom means papaya salad in Thai), Som Tam is also great for the usual Thai food you’re familiar with: tom yum, rice noodles, crispy chicken etc. The rice noodles is really good (pictured above) except it’s as spicy as the som tam. I love the crispy chicken (pictured beside the som tam) the most because it’s not spicy (I just can’t) and it’s super tasty! It was my saviour to kill the fire since the Thai milk tea wasn’t enough.
Find them at:
392/14 Siam Square Soi 5
If you’d like a good pad thai, head to Thip Samai. During my previous trips, I’d always eat pad thai at Platinum Mall’s food court, which is so yummy and cheap. This time I decided to skip Platinum Mall (since that would mean a whole day spent shopping and haggling) and check out other places, so I didn’t get some pad thai in my tummy. But what’s Thailand without pad thai? So despite a filling dinner on my last night in Bangkok, we headed down to Thipsamai at about 8.30pm to check out this famous joint. And even at that time, the queue for eating in was so long that we decided to do takeaway.
This pad thai is expensive for Thailand’s standard, at about 70-90THB, but given its popularity we didn’t want to miss it. Also, you’d want to try both the one with egg and without!
Back in our hotel when we were unpacking the food, we were so surprised by the thoughtfulness of this famous food place. I mean, we’d usually expect a popular food place to care less about packaging and presentation since they’re already so popular and people will automatically flock to their store to eat. However, they’ve thoughtfully separated the condiments for pad thai so that the dish can still stay fresh at the time you’d like to have it. Even the vegetables (spring onion) was placed separately. #japanesestandard no less!
Find them at:
313 313 Thanon Mahachai, Phra Nakorn
5pm – 3am daily
A hidden gem in the Ratchathewi area, P’Aor is famous for their tom yum goong kway teow. This dish isn’t creamy and not as spicy as those you’d get in Thailand. Given, the ones in Thailand are also usually clear soup, so this is quite nice for a change! In addition, we also ordered the kale noodles with chicken (thus the green colour) and lime juice. I’d return for the tom yum kway teow definitely!
p/s Thailand’s kway teow looks and tastes more like the usual noodles the Chinese would eat; it’s not the broad noodles you’d think of.
68/51 Soi Phetchaburi 5, Between Soi 5 – 7,
Phaya Thai, Ratchathewi, Bangkok
I certainly hope this short list keep your tummy full and happy when you head to Bangkok! 😉