by TRT Thongnuan

25 November 2016

#7 Food

Bangkok is a charming capital that attracts food lovers. As Thai food has become recognized all over the world for its spicy and unique taste, Bangkok is undeniably a national hub of Thai cuisine. If you are amazed by a number of 7-Eleven shops located in almost every part of Bangkok, you will be even more impressed to discover sea of food stalls everywhere. A visit to this capital will never give you a starving experience as food is available upon request and 24/7.

Bangkok street food is famous worldwide. Tourists find it impressive to see several stalls selling a variety of mouthwatering food on the pavements. Bangkokians stop to buy grilled pork and sticky rice before they start their work life in the morning, while in the evening after hours of hard work, it is time for a little celebration — some spicy seafood salad and grilled sausages for a cosy dinner at home. At noon, business areas are bustling with office workers wearing a name tag roaming the food streets with bags of yummy food or packing in local restaurants for a quick lunch of steamed chicken rice, barbecued pork over rice, roast duck over rice, fish ball noodles and crispy fried mussel pancakes.

Schools and universities are surprisingly the best places to find good food. School students look forward to the food stalls in front of the school selling ‘Khanom Tokyo’ and deep-fried chicken at the end of the day. University students enjoy their quality lunch at a cheap price at one of many canteens on campus. You will never believe that the food at the canteens are value for money, compared to that of the same amount, but with a much higher price, at downtown food courts.

It is said that some food lovers consider it one of their hobbies hunting for delicious food. They come up with nice plans to tour Bangkok simply to experience what it is like to go on a food trip. They do not opt for good meals at expensive restaurants, but instead, manage to navigate every food quarter, mostly in the old town, to experience the authentic taste that has become the talk of the town — a Chinese-style American breakfast served with hot ovaltine at On Lok Yun or one of many food stalls serving pork congee which goes perfectly with Chinese doughnuts to welcome the lively morning, a bowl of beef noodles or Muslim-style chicken biryani at Ar E Sah Banglumpoo or a meal of spicy green papaya salad and grilled chicken at one of many stalls serving this Northeastern delicacy to fulfill your lunchtime, and stir-fried noodles, clear soup with pork blood, and braised fish maw in red gravy along the food street of Chinatown, a bowl of rice soup with spicy stir-fried morning glory with crispy pork and spicy salty egg salad at Khao Tom Bowon or the signature Thai-style omelet with crab meat and stir-fried yellow chili crab at Krua Upsorn to end your day with impressive dinner.

To enjoy delectable food in Bangkok, most of the time, you need luck and patience. Some restaurants are always packed with customers and you have no idea what is the best time to be there. Knowing the place or even arriving at it does not guarantee that you will get to enjoy the food there. You sometimes have to spend an hour waiting for seats and ask yourself why you are here. The now-trendy Jeh O Restaurant at Bantat Thong opens at 6 p.m., but it was fully reserved hours before that. Those wishing to savor such signature dishes as spicy salmon salad and crispy pork but not making an advanced reservation have to wait and wait and wait to be seated. Even its popular spicy noodle hot pot with seafood starts to be served at 11 p.m., so late that it is unbelievable that the dish is still high in demand and not many people have had a chance to enjoy it. To food lovers, they do not mind waiting. What matters to them more is the dishes that are worth waiting for.

There are a considerable number of markets in Bangkok where foodies love to hang out. Aor Tor Kor Market is the first venue that comes to mind. Apart from agricultural produce, Thai food from different parts of the country are available to serve the never-ending appetite of food lovers. During the weekend, you may be ordering Trang-style roast pork without knowing that a celeb wearing sunglasses is doing exactly the same thing right beside you. Bon Marché is a famous suburban spot where quality food items are sold. It also houses one of the most lively outdoor food courts in Bangkok.

Floating markets are one of the reasons why Bangkok is regarded as a food capital. Modernized and developed as it is, with an array of skyscrapers, the capital is home to some of the fantastic floating markets such as Ta Ling Chan and Khlong Lad Mayom Floating Markets, where tourists can enjoy a variety of grilled seafood or pork satay on a raft while having a magnificent view of the canal and the water community. The pleasant picture of vendors on their boat with ingredients to be prepared, passing the fish cakes to the customers while receiving the money in return is always one to cherish.

Flea markets surprise tourists with food stalls and trucks serving food that comes with an amazing recipe or creative ideas. Fusion food that is a result of a blissful marriage between international and Thai cuisine is wonderfully presented, offering to food lovers a golden opportunity to enjoy good food at an affordable price. Hua Mum Night Market, which opens daily except Mondays from 6 p.m. to midnight, has become a food destination for young people who are bored with the same old dishes and thus are in search of new and more interesting ones.

Expensive restaurants and premium hotel buffets always challenge foodies to try their special dishes with an unbelievably high price. You can enjoy some of the best dim sum and peking duck sets at several Chinese Restaurants, some mouthwatering pasta and pizza at many Italian restaurants scattered in downtown Bangkok, particularly in Sukhumvit areas, or even some finely-decorated and meticulously-prepared Thai cuisine at some Bangkok best restaurants. Hotel buffet is also the spice of a city life and there are many hotels with the best buffet in town. Take Lord Jim at Mandarin Oriental Hotel, famous for foie gras and mango with sticky rice or the one at J.W. Marriott which impresses almost everyone who goes there. Or if you are done with the hotel buffet, why not try one of Bangkok’s best Hainanese chicken rice at Ruan Ton Restaurant, Montien Hotel?

From street food to sumptuous meals at a five-star hotel, Bangkok has all to offer when it comes to what and where to eat. Tourists find it hard to believe that everywhere they go in this capital, they are always surrounded by delicious food that is hard to resist. Bangkok is a great example of a place proving that delicious food needs not be served at an expensive restaurant or sold at a shockingly high price. Simply go out and you will find a new food experience that will totally change your traditional perception of what delicious food is like.