There is no shortage of great places to eat food in Bangkok. From traditional thai, to Indian, to American fast food, Bangkok has it all. And plenty of desserts for those with a sweet tooth! During the day the streets and department stores are filled with shoppers looking for a bargain, but at night the sidewalks and lane ways come alive with pop up food vendors. Plastic stools and metal fold out tables litter the streets, lights over head add a warm glow and stall holders attempt to lure you into their restaurants with a appetising photos of their food.
As huge as Bangkok is, where to eat is a bit of luck of the draw unless you know your way around. We mainly stayed in the Silom area, which is the financial district of Bangkok. On the weekends it is rather quite, but during the week it is bustling with locals in corporate get up working in one of the many high rise office blocks. There are luxury hotels, fine dining restaurants, markets and of course street food vendors. So here are a few places in and around the Silom area we tested out.
Silom Soi 20, Suriya Wong
Just off Silom Road is the little side street Soi 20 which is packed with authentic street stalls catering more to foreign tourists. The menus are in both Thai and English accompanied by pretty pictures of most dishes. A lot of the meals have an option of small, medium and large. The prices are still cheap, but not as cheap as you might find in other more local areas of the city with meals between 100 – 380THB ($AU3.33 – 12.63). We shared the Penang Chicken Curry, the Massaman Curry and some Prawn Cakes. Word or warning, medium to me meant hot and the dishes come out one at a time, not all together. So if you have a hungry boy on your hands, make sure they make his meal first!
Opposite Madam Suzy is a similar vendor with also yummy food. The red duck curry is worth a try!
Vista Cafe Co.
United Center, Silom Road
Right in the heart of all the office buildings is the United Center which has a few boutique cafes and a food court. If you find yourself there looking for an Australian bank like we did, then stop in here for a healthy bite to eat and drink. So far on our travels we have been to and seen plenty of fresh juice stalls, but not so many with a green juice selection. Here are Vista Cafe Co. they have a Fresh Morning Booster Juice consisting of lettuce, celery, onion, apple, lime, honey, flaxseed, fructooligosaccharide and soy protein. Sounds healthy right? The cafe boosts of being an Organic Spelt and Trans fat free bakery with a variety of refined sugar free ice cream, sugar free bread options and some refined sugar free treats. Try the carrot or the prune cake – delicious!
286/7 Silom Road
When you are in Thailand one of the dishes to try would have to be Pad Thai and it’s hard to go wrong. We had it at this little cafe where the meals are between 40 – 120THB ($AU1.33 – 3.99) and like many Thai restaurants there is a long list of options to choose from (way too many in our opinion!). Chris aiming for a carb free option ordered the vegetable omelette, which to his surprise came served on top of a big pile of rice! Guess it’s hard to be carb free in South East Asia.
The Victory Monument
As you get off at the Victory Monument Station on the BTS line, there is a small outdoor shopping market down to the right. Hungry, we stumbled across a little food area with thai two vendors. We must have looked a little lost as we were greeted with a man offering either noodle soup or pork and rice. Pork and rice it was and we were ushered to the right hand vendor. Two options – nothing better than simplicity! Try also the fresh orange juice served on the street, it’s so refreshing and sweet.
14 Soi Sri-vieng, Surasak Road, Silom
Ban Chiang is a quite popular restaurant for Westerners, but don’t let that discourage you from going and having a nice meal there. This quaint little homestead serves up some delicious food options in a quite setting. The menu is quite overwhelming with an extensive list of appetisers, mains and desserts. The minced chicken in kale leaves, chicken satay skewers and the shrimp pancake were a few of the appetisers we started with and they were impressive. For main, the red and yellow curry with New Zealand lamb was beautiful and the stir fried cat fish and vegetables was lovely and fresh. Steer clear of the garlic and white pepper pork. The garlic was intense and overpowering. For dessert we couldn’t pass up the very popular sticky rice with mango and whilst it was delicious, you probably can find better on the street. The prices range from 50 – 350THB ($AUD1.66 – 11.63) which we felt was very reasonable for a nice atmosphere, pleasant wait staff and authentic cuisine.
If planning your dining experience is not your thing then you will stumble across many amazing food vendors in Bangkok. Keep your eye out for little lane way markets in between buildings like this one along the JTC (Jewellery Trade Centre) next to the Holiday Inn in Silom. Stalls with yummy cakes and sweets are often squished between clothing and iphone products.