If you’re the type of person who loves to exclaim, “I love the food in Bangkok,” you’re not alone, obviously. We flock by the thousands every weekend to gorge on Bangkok’s deliciousness, and things can get a bit samey after a while. But if you want to know where the local insiders are eating these days, look not further. We got our sister magazine BK to give us the dish–literally. Make your way through this list.
1. The local young chefs doing amazing things with their cuisine
There’s a whole new dynamic of excellent chefs out there venturing down the middle ground between fancy restaurant and laid-back drinking spot, taking the best quality Thai food out of old-school settings and making it fun, creative and accessible. Chef Thitid Tassanakajohn of Le Du (399/3 Silom Soi 7, +66 (0) 92-919-9969) and Baa Ga Din (26 Sukhumvit Soi 31, +66 (0) 2-662-3813) and Napol Jantraget of 80/20 (1052-1054 Charoenkrung Rd., +66 (0) 95-843-2056) are two of the names we love right now.
2. The unbeatable street food culture
Bemoan the crappy produce, the taking up of the sidewalks, the less-than-optimal sanitary conditions all you want—it doesn’t change the fact Bangkok’s streets are lined with some of the tastiest dishes in the world. Like at Nai Mong (545 Plubpla Chai Rd., +66 (0) 89-773-3133), where the hoy tod (oyster omelet) is a favorite of Thai-food master chef David Thompson. Or Som Tam Krok Yai (Silom Soi 20), where you’ll find some of the most delicious Isaan grilled meat in town. See more chef picks here.
Rain Tree Cafe
3. The all-you-can-eat hotel brunches
Long before the hipster breakfast, fancy sausages and gourmet eggs Benedict descended on Bangkok, there were the lavish buffets. You’d go to a hotel, put up THB2,000, plant yourself at a buffet till your pancreas said stop, then go lie by the hotel pool and spend the rest of the day wishing you hadn’t. Well, you still can. And here are the best places to do it: goo.gl/0tfJBZ.
4. The Chinese shop-house institutions
We don’t reckon any amount of money can buy you tastier dishes than the roast duck at Prachak (1415 Charoenkrung Rd., +66 (0) 2-234-3755), the five-spice boiled-goose at Tang Hong Pochana (2/2 Soi Convent, Silom Rd., +66 (0) 2-235-6362) or the crispy Chinese pork at Chuan Savoy (Silom Rd., left of Samai Suek Pochana, +66 (0) 2-235-1860). Rivaled only by 7-Eleven toasties (see no. 31) in their I-could-eat-this-every-day awesomeness.
5. The growing wave of health cafes
Clean-eating freaks can have their fill—or at least their carefully controlled portion size—at any number of new places across the city. Our top spots for a bit of culinary self-punishment include the new venue of Dressed in Asoke (2/F, Exchange Tower, Sukhumvit Soi 21, +66 (0) 2-258-2280), Phuket-born Dressed lookey-likey Farmfactory (2/F, Silom Complex, Silom Rd., +66 (0) 63-215-1015), and Absolute Fit Food Cafe (The Commons, +66 (0) 91-872-0885), which just opened its first cafe after years of delivery service. You can also head over to new player Brekkie (6/9 Sukhumvit Soi 39, +66 (0) 83-656-6141) for your dose of flaxseed, acai berry, chia seed and other such wonderful offerings.
6. The cool new Korean dessert cafes
Since the end of 2015, Bangkok has been going bonkers over bingsu (Korean shaved ice). Yes, just like in Singapore. From the melon bingsu at Seobinggo (432 Siam Square Soi 7, +66 (0) 86-394-4245) to the mango bingsu at Elmar Offwhite (50/5 Sukhumvit Soi 63 (Ekkamai), +66 (0) 99-194-6169), there’s barely a neighborhood in town not selling it.
7. The Japanese alternatives
Just when we learnt what bingsu meant, along came the Japanese with their own interpretation of red bean-paste-topped shaved ice mountains, kakigori. Whatever. In this weather we can happily find an excuse to eat both. Here are the best: ow.ly/4n8EYL.
8. The extraordinary omakase experiences
Literally meaning “I’ll leave it up to you” in Japanese, omakase sees diners entrust their dinner to the chef. Big names from abroad include Sushi Masato (3/22 Sukhumvit 31 Soi 1, +66 (0) 2-040-0015), Ginza Sushi Ichi (LG/F, Erawan Bangkok, 494 Phloen Chit Rd., +66 (0) 2-250-0014) and Sushi Hinata (5/F, Central Embassy, Phloen Chit Rd., +66 (0) 2-160-5935). Thais making their name in omakase include Wacharun Iamarramsak, chef-owner of In the Mood for Love (69 Ekkamai Soi 1, + 66 (0) 2-392-8477); his previous team member Charoensri Somsook, chef of Mizu by Sankyodai (2/F, Charn Issara Tower, 942/43 Rama 4 Rd., +66 (0) 2-632-6660.); Banphot Boonklom, chef of Umi (Piman 49, +66 (0) 2-662-6661); and Chaichat “Randy” Noprapa, chef of Fillets (Portico, 31 Lang Suan Rd., +66 (0) 2-041-6056).
9. The communal eating spaces that are reinventing community malls
Good food takes center stage at The Commons (335 Thonglor Soi 17), a new loft-like, open-plan community mall from Varat and Vicharee Vichit-Vadakan, the siblings behind Roast cafe. The ambitious project works kind of like a food court, only a really, really good one. Diners can order their favorite dishes from the various food kiosks to dine at the central communal area before heading upstairs for dessert and shopping. Round the corner you’ll also find 72 Courtyard (72 Sukhumvit Soi 55 [Thonglor]), a sleek concrete temple to the Sapparot restaurant group and all its delicious foodie hits like Lady Brett and Rocket.
10.The amazing sushi deals
Line exists for more than just talking to your friends. Know which Japanese restaurants to follow and your mobile will buzz at all times of day with the latest slash-price sushi deals. Grab your phone and check what’s got a 60-percent off at Sushi Hiro and Nippon Kai Market today.
11. The no. 1 restaurant in Asia
In Feb, the #1 spot at Asia’s 50 Best went to Gaggan (68/1 Lang Suan Rd., +66 (0) 2-652-1700) for the second year in a row. The molecular restaurant headed by chef Gaggan Anand consistently pushes boundaries by replicating bursts of familiar flavors in completely new formats. And he was joined in the list by three others: Nahm (no. 8), Issaya (no. 19) and Eat Me (no. 23).
12. The down-to-earth Italian food
Paolo Vitaletti became one of the city’s favorite chefs in record timing when he broke the fussily plated norm of Bangkok’s hotel-dominated Italian food scene and drove it down the simple, rustic, home-style path of Appia (20/4 Sukhumvit Soi 31, +66 (0) 2-261-2056). In the years since, he’s perhaps become better associated with the pizzeria sensation that is Peppina (see no. 14), but still claims head chef rights to the menu of fuss-free pastas, rotisserie meats and unctuous stews at Appia.
13. The Middle Eastern and East African food at Sukhumvit Soi 3
It’s not just about the Arabic food at places like Alif Laila (2/9 Sukhumvit Soi 3, +66 (0) 8-6835-9537, +66 (0) 8-7413-2933) and Shahrazad (6/8 Sukhumvit Soi 3/1, +66 (0) 2-251-3666). You can also find the delicious, criminally underrated Ethiopian mainstays of injera (flat sour bread), wat (meat stew) and tibs (sauteed meat and vegetables) at the not-to-be-missed Ethiopian Restaurant (Sukhumvit Soi 3, +66 (0) 84-930-3250, +66 (0) 85-440-5428).
14. The new breed of high-end Indian
Maya (Holiday Inn Sukhumvit, Sukhumvit Soi 22, +66 (0) 2-683-4888) on the rooftop of Holiday Inn Sukhumvit was closely followed by the faultless tandoori grill-work and Indian-infused cocktails of Charcoal (5/F, Fraser Suites, Sukhumvit Soi 11, +66 (0) 83-542-1111, 089-307-1111), while most recently there is the Bangkok offshoot of Punjab Grill (Radisson Suites, 23/2-3 Sukhumvit Soi 13, +66 (0) 2-645-4952), an Indian-born fine-dining chain which packs incredible flavor into every dish.
15. The old breed of super-cheap vegetarian Indian
Head over to the Charoenkrung end of Silom and Surawong to have your fill of dosa and idli at restaurants like Akshaya (293/11 Surawong Soi Kamchai Iamsuri, +66 (0) 2-236-3733), Tamil Nadu (5/1 Silom Soi 11, +66 (0)2-235-6336) and Shri Ganesha (392/23-24 Sukhumvit Soi 20/1, 02-651-1335), while the city also recently welcomed the controversial, India-wide vegetarian chain Saravanaa Bhavan (2/F, Baan Silom, Silom Soi 19, 02-635-4556, 02-635-4557)—more on that story here: ow.ly/4n6m25.
The Smokin’ Pug
16. The barbecue joints
Our money lies with the smoke-infused babybacks at The Smokin’ Pug (88 Surawong Rd., +66 (0) 83-029-7598), but we also love Lady Brett’s (149 Sathorn Soi 12, +66 (0) 2-635-0405 and 72 Courtyard, 72 Sukhumvit Soi 55, +66 (0) 2-392-7626) more refined, Euro-style take on barbecue that hints at smoky flavors rather than hitting you over the head with them. Over at The Commons you also have Meat & Bones (M/F, The Commons, Thonglor Soi 17, +66 (0) 81-933-7143), while Bud’s BBQ (www.fb.com/buds.bbq.bkk.page) and Lady Brett-spinoff Smoked (+66 (0) 98-252-4505) have taken their grills on the road.
17. The classic Thai restaurants in beautiful old houses
For wonderful flavors and a sense of occasion, who can deny the exquisite colonial charm of Blue Elephant (233 Sathorn Rd. +66 (0) 2-673-9353) or the Thai antiques which brim from Ruen Urai (Rose Hotel, 118 Surawong Rd. +66 (0) 2-266-8268-72). The Siam’s Chon (3/2 Khao Rd. +66 (0) 2-206-6999), meanwhile, is always worth a trip up river.
Kodang Talay Seafood
18. The local seafood
Whether thrown in the deep fryer with a ladle of garlic, rubbed with salt and toasted on a charcoal barbecue, or simmered in a potent dressing of lime juice and chili, fish done Thai-style is always awesome. And then there’s the seafood fritters. And the fish cakes. And the fermented sauces. And the dips. And the somtams. We could go on. See some of our faves here: ow.ly/GjDT3004sP3.
19. The Isaan street food
Listing them all would take a whole other story, so for now we’ll just name-drop Laab Ubon (251 Sathorn Rd., +66 (0) 85-981- 5041) for its offal-packed duck laab and juicy grilled beef. Argue over your favorites in the Facebook comments. Do also check out these chic somtam restaurants who can match it with the street stalls.
20. The super-fine-dining French restaurants
Sure, we are spoiled by the likes of Odette, but eating at Le Normandie (The Mandarin Oriental Bangkok, 48 Oriental Avenue, Charoenkrung Rd. +66 (0) 2-659-9000) still packs a sense of occasion that’s hard to beat: the dessert trolley polished to flawless shine; the maitre’d who regales you with the minutiae of every dish; the service staff who are the same today as they were 20 years ago. And then you’ve got the new boys: Savelberg (G/F, Oriental Residence, 110 Wireless Rd., +66 (0) 2-252-8001), J’aime (U Sathorn Bangkok, 105, 105/1 Soi Ngam Duphli, Sathorn Rd., +66 (0) 2-119-4899) and, of course, the two-time Top Tables-winning L’atelier de Joel Robuchon (5/F, Mahanakorn Cube, 96 Narathiwat Ratchanakarin Rd., +66 (0) 2-001-0698).
21. The egg-centric brunch cafes
So many ways to start the day right! Do you want Scandinavian wholewheat chic at Rocket (149 Sathorn Soi 12. +66 (0) 2-635-0404; 1/F, Grease building, Piman 49, Sukhumvit Soi 49, +66 (0) 2-662-6637; G/F, 72 Courtyard, Sukhumvit Soi 55 [Thonglor], +66 (0) 2-635-0404)? Or perhaps you’d prefer a full-fat hangover cure from Tribeca (Nihonmura Mall, Thonglor Soi 13, +66 (0) 2-712-9209). Get the full list of Bangkok brekkie spots at ow.ly/4n6wN3.
22. The all-you-can-eat dim sum buffets
For a sheer spectacle, nothing beats the red and black Chinoiserie chic of China House’s (Mandarin Oriental, 48 Oriental Ave., +66 (0) 2-659-9000) THB1,080 weekend brunch. But we’ll happily take the THB429 all-you-can-eat dim sum buffet (11am-2pm daily) at Kowloon (G/F, Holiday Inn, 912 Silom Rd. +66 (0) 2-238-0370), too.
23. The rooftop restaurants
Rooftop restaurants used to define Bangkok high-end dining, and there still aren’t many cities out there with dinner views to rival those found at Park Society (29/F, Sofitel So Bangkok, 2 Sathorn Rd., +66 (0) 2-624-0000), Above Eleven (33/F, Fraser Suites Sukhumvit, 38/8 Sukhumvit Soi 11, +66 (0) 83-542-1111) or Red Sky (55/F, Centara Grand at CentralWorld, 999/99 Rama 1 Rd., +66 (0) 2-100-6255). It helps that we can totally vouch for the food at these spots, too. See the best of the best here.
24. The places taking steak really, really seriously
This was perhaps the standout trend from the end of last year: restaurants whose menus offer little beyond huge slabs of meat, ordered from the butcher’s window and cooked to perfection. On the “am I actually dining in a butcher’s?” end of the scale you have Arno’s (2080/2 Narathiwas Soi 20, +66 (0) 2-678-8340) and El Toro (519 Sukhumvit Soi 29, +66 (0) 2-662-2880). Il Fumo (1098/2 Rama 4 Rd., +66 (0) 2-286-8833), meanwhile, brought a touch of glamour to the concept—as well as a chunk of dry-aged Galician cow that tastes like the meat equivalent of Glenn Gould tapping out the Goldberg Variations. Perfection.
25. The uncompromising high-end Thai restaurants
Nahm (Metropolitan by COMO, 27 Sathorn Rd., +66 (0)2-625-3388) and Bo.lan (24 Sukhumvit Soi 53, +66 (0) 2-260-2961-2) still stand apart in their devotion to authentic Thai flavors, knowing the provenance of their ingredients—always used in-season—and making sure that the chefs dictate the meal.
26. The oozing, explosive lava creations
What’s not to like about cutting into two butter-and-sugar-drenched slabs of French toast to see a gooey, toxic orange filling of salted egg yolk? Nothing, that’s what. Find this particular delicacy at Chairman (2/F, EmQuartier, Sukhumvit Rd., +66 (0) 2-261-0426)—one of many places specializing in ooey, gooey, oozing treats. You’ll find the best of them here: ow.ly/Sd223004t9F.
27. The desserts which are almost too crazy to eat
Fact: we have never been to a city with more insane desserts than Bangkok. From Lukkai Thong’s (6/F, EmQuartier, Sukhumvit Rd., +66 (0) 2-003-6301) mountain of honeycomb and tapioca droppings to Shakariki’s (36/1 Sukhumvit Soi 21, +66 (0) 2-664-0927) parfait in the shape of a penis, our dessert-makers have the sharpest, most creative minds in the business.
Banh Mi Bo
28. The amazing banh mi sandwiches
Thank you, Vietnam, for blessing the world with crispy, spicy, fragrant baguettes of deep-fried pork goodness. And thank you, Banh Mi Bo (Ellsie Boutique Mall, Sukhumvit Soi 33/1, +66 (0) 96-886-0052), Vietnamese & More (Rompo Mansion, 99/9-11 Thang Rotfai Khao-Saipaknam Rd., +66 (0) 2-671-9955), Banh Mi Ngo (Sukhumvit Soi 1101/1, +66 (0) 99-421 -6059), Banh Mi Crispy (W District, Sukhumvit Rd., +66 (0) 81-172-4918) and Eastbound (The Commons, Thonglor Soi 17, +66 (0) 98-253-9356) for bringing them to Bangkok.
29. The booming food truck culture
We still remember the first time we heard about a little red burger truck on RCA dishing out amazing burgers on the side of the road. Well, that little red truck was Daniel Thaiger (Sukhumvit Soi 30/1, +66 (0) 84-549-0995), the brand responsible for probably the biggest shift in Bangkok food culture we’ve ever witnessed—and it was still barely even three years ago.
Soul Food 555
30. The mega-burgers
We aren’t the only ones with the fetish. Bangkok finally got the hang of the whole nice-tasting burger thing about five years ago (thanks, Iron Fairies) and hasn’t looked back since. Now you’ve got khao soy burgers (Soul Food 555, G/F, The Commons, 335/1 Thonglor Soi 17, +66 (0)2-101-4526), burgers that double as birthday cakes (Game Over Lounge, Liberty Plaza, Sukhumvit Soi 55, +66 (0) 2-170-7684), and good-old, honest-to-god stacks of meat and cheese (Brew Beers & Ciders, G/F, Seenspace, Thonglor Soi 13, +66 (0) 2-185-2366).
31. The 7-Eleven food
If anything tastes better at 3am than a toasted ham-cheese croissant, we’ve yet to find it. If it weren’t for a genuine fear of scurvy, we would quite happily live on barbecue pork bao, wasabi peas, spicy footlongs and ice coffee so sweet it hurts your teeth. See how it fares agains Family Mart here.
32. The things the city does with international fast food
Thailand actually did the impossible: it improved upon the colonel’s secret recipe. KFC TH’s Wing Zab are an intoxicating blend of vaguely Isaan spices and MSG that knocks other fast-food fried chicken into the dirt. And that’s not the only time Thailand went rogue with an imported fast-food chain’s menu. Other notable highlights include McDonald’s “McPatongko” and every ramen chain’s tomyum-flavor ramen. ow.ly/EI1f3004tK8
33. The totally WTF uses of cheese
Anyone who gives Americans a hard rap over the things they’ll do with cheese need look away now. The gyoza cheese blob at Teraoka Gyoza (G/F, Siam Paragon, Rama 1 Rd., +66 (0)2-610-7676) and tuna cheese waffle at Hashme (9:53 Community Mall, 124 Thonglor Soi 9, +66 (0) 2-662-4238) may not be pretty, but they sure are tasty. Go here to see all the weird, wonderful and debatably edible things this city has achieved with stringy molten chemicals: ow.ly/4n8YMz.
Jan 18, 2016 at 5:30am PST
34. The crazy toast scene
The art of toasting bread has been turned into exactly that—an art form—thanks to the dessert pioneers who man Bangkok’s boondocks coffee shops. Want your toast died blue and topped with a freakish snowman-slash-scarecrow figurine made from ice cream? Min Cafe (Soi Kantana, Kanchanapisek Rd., +66 (0) 83-543-2631) has you covered. Prefer toast that’s hollowed out and stuffed with gooey-green sticky rice? Simply head to Sweet December (+66 (0) 98-584-2558). And that’s just the start. Visit here and prepare to be mesmerized (slash slightly repulsed): ow.ly/4n9m2U.
La Monita Urban Cantina
35. The amount of Mexican restaurants they now have
There was a time we got excited about Sunrise Taco opening. Well, just look how far we’ve come! It’s now the hottest foreign cuisine in town, from upscale offerings like La Monita Urban Cantina (6/F, The Helix Quartier, Emquartier, Sukhumvit Rd., +66 (0) 2-003-6238) to the return of Bangkok’s original margarita-jug-maestros, Coyote (The Prime 11 Building, Sukhumvit Soi 11, +66 (0) 2-651-3313). Then there’s Ari’s Casa Azul (2/23 Phahon Yothin Soi 7 [Ari], +66 (0) 2-619-5107), Koh Chang-hailing Barrio Bonito (The Commons, Thonglor Soi 17, +66 (0) 92-331-5203), Nana’s The Mexican (Rajah Complex, Sukhumvit Soi 2, +66 (0) 94-330-0390) and the new Tacos & Salsa (21/3 Sukhumvit Soi 18, +66 (0) 2-663-6366) before we even get to the food trucks and stalls. Take a deep breath: Tacos Factory (Sanannapa, Ari Soi 1, +66 (0) 86-884-3720), Express Mexican Food (W-District, Sukhumvit Soi 69-71, +66 (0) 93-736-6727), Cactus (Suan Phlu Soi 8, +66 (0) 94 872 8501), Taco Taxi (In front of Ambassador Hotel Sukhumvit Soi 11, +66 (0) 86-787-8064), Ta’Cone (Tha Maharaj, 11/1 Maharaj Rd., +66 (0) 85-116-1222), Two Angels (www.fb.com/TwoAngelsTacos) and, the latest contender, Luca Thaiger (www.fb.com/lucathaiger) from the team behind burger truck Daniel Thaiger. (We’re talking under 12 months of openings here.)
Meat & Bones
36. The people taking their produce super-seriously
Bangkok no longer just eats pizza. It eats 72-hour-rested, wood-fired pizza certified by some officious chaps in Naples (Peppina). When Bangkok eats waffles, it doesn’t just eat waffles. It eats overnight yeast-raised waffles for a crispier crust and light interior (Jona Waffle and Chu). And it’s not just the bakers who are at it. Sloane’s sausages come from pigs whose lives rank higher on the happiness index than yours does; Meat & Bones’ beef ribs get labored with more love and affection than a new-born baby; and Holy Moly’s pies—make that, “gourmet pastry parcels”— are so damn special they belong in a gallery.
37. The delicious vegetarian scene
The meat-free scene has never been so vibrant. Thanks to the butter-averse peeps at Veganerie (4/F, Mercury Ville, 540 Phloen Chit Rd., +66 (0)87-443-3728), we learned that desserts made without any dairy can actually taste good. Their efforts were recently followed up by plant-based vegetarian dessert cafe Patisserie Potager (111/1 Thonglor Soi 5, +66 (0)95-962-0324)—and however horrible you think “plant-based vegetarian desserts” sound, think again. Meanwhile at Broccoli Revolution (899 Sukhumvit Soi 49, +66 (0)2-662-5002) they’ve been doing their best to make vegetables as delicious as all our favorite full-fat comfort food.
38. The intense bowls of well-simmered ramen
If there’s better ramen out there than Bankara (Sukhumvit Soi 39) then we’ve yet to find it. But that’s just the tip of a wobbly, melt-in-your-mouth, 24-hour-braised iceberg. There are big chains headed by TV Champions (Chabuton, Siam Paragon; Ippudo, Central Embassy). There are dark holes in the wall where Japanese chefs shout aggressive greetings at you (Sendai Ramen, 43/1 Surawong Rd.). There are even explosive volcano-shaped bowls of ramen so delicious you don’t mind burning your tongue to eat them (Tonkotsu Kazan, 1 Patpong Soi 2, Surawong Rd., +66 (0)2-238-5655).
Baa Ga Din
39. The way casual rules
The restaurants most causing a stir over the past 12 months have been down-to-earth spots like Err (courtesy of the Bo.lan people; 349/35 Maharaj Rd., +66 (0) 2-622-2291), Baan (courtesy of the Le Du people; 139/5 Wireless Rd., +66 (0) 2-655-8995) and Baa Ga Din (courtesy of the Le Du people, again; see no.1). All of these places go in for classic, rootsy Thai flavors in some form or another—and serve up some excellent drinks, too. Even fine-dining megastar Gaggan has taken things down a notch with his latest, Meatlicious (Ekkamai Soi 6, +66 (0) 91-698-6688), while Water Library tapped into its inner Opposite Mess Hall to give us Seed (Sukhumvit Soi 39, +66 (0) 99-283-6363).
40. The awesome pizza
Peppina (27/1 Sukhumvit Soi 33, +66 (0) 2-119-7677) recently proved true to all its claims about serving genuine Neapolitan-style pizza when the boys from the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana headed to town and gave it the thumbs up. If none of its ever-expanding branches are near you, then also check out Il Bolognese (Sathorn Rd., +66 (0) 2-286-8805), Hot Wheels (www.fb.com/hotwheelspizzabkk), Sfizio (Sukhumvit Soi 21, +66 (0) 2-262-0405), Pizza Massilia (15/1 Soi Ruam Ruedi, +66 (0) 2-651-5091) and Pala (BTS Asok, +66 (0) 2-259-1228).
41. The sublime bread and croissants
In a blind taste test, the croissants of local baker Paris Mikki (Sukhumvit Soi 19) knocked the socks off competition from both big imported brands (Paul, Central Embassy) and artisanal expats (Amantee, 2240/12-13 Chan Kao Rd.; Maison Chatenet, 557 Sathu Pradit Soi 41). But truth be told they all tasted great—and same goes for the bread guys (Conkey’s, Pain Maison, Ciao Pane, Maison Jean Philippe).
42. The after-work izakaya scene
Izakayas are Japanese pubs where pork cutlets, chicken wings and dodgy balls of battered mystery meat get devoured as quickly as the beer and highballs. Bangkok has loads of them. For some of the best deep-fried pork slabs in town, head to Katsu Shin (9/1 Silom Soi 6, +66 (0) 2-237-3073), or for somewhere with a touch more class, check out the tatami-floor vibe over at Teppen (14/2 Sukhumvit Soi 61, +66 (0) 2-714-1412).
43. The open-all-night Chinese restaurants
You best arrive before midnight if you want to beat the overworked businessmen to a seat in Niyom (Silom Plaza, Silom Rd., +66 (0) 2-234-0149)—a restaurant serving moo krob (crispy pork) so delicious it sucks in all life from the half-dozen other restaurants in Silom Plaza. For an alternative dose of late-night indigestion worth the suffering, check out Liaoning (152/4-7, Silom Rd., +66 (0) 2-635-6536)—one of our writer’s favorite restaurant in town (ow.ly/f9zN3009HKU).
44. The Michelin-starred experiences
OK, so Bangkok may not be getting a Michelin guide like we are, but that doesn’t mean chefs from some of their favorite foodie haunts in other countries aren’t forever dropping by. Just this week alone we’ve got Emmanuel Renaut from three-Michelin-starred Flocons de Sel whipping up dinners of THB8,500 (May 23-28) at La Scala (The Sukhothai Bangkok, 13/3 Sathorn Rd., +66 (0) 2-344-8888), while over at La Vie (Phaya Thai Rd., +66 (0) 2-309-3939) you can have seven courses by Stephane Buron of the two-Michelin-starred Le Chabichou for THB6,000 (May 25-28).
45. The new Spanish restaurants barbecuing suckling pig
At the recently launched open-air tapas bar and restaurant on Centara Grand’s 55th floor, Uno Mas (54/F, Centara Grand at CentralWorld, +66 (0) 2-100-6255), they roast up Cochinillo suckling pig on a Josper charcoal oven. The beast comes served traditional Spanish style: halved down the middle, perfectly salted and permeated with the flavor of fresh rosemary. It’s rich, fatty, crispy and a perfect match for 2-4 people—making its THB1,490 price tag something of a steal. And they’re not the only ones. Islero (Athenee Tower, 63 Wireless Rd., +66 (0) 2-1688100) is a more premium affair, with a price tag of THB3,900 for half a piglet (also cooked in a charcoal oven), while Nanglinchee’s latest hot-spot, Thyme (411/2 Nang Linchi Rd., +66 (0) 2-678-1333), has suckling pig on the menu for just THB520.
46. The very many awesome different types of noodle dish
Bangkok has noodles made of rice to dip in crab curry, egg noodles floating with wontons in porky broths, flat noodles in electric pink bean curd soups, fat noodles, fried noodles, boat noodles, beef noodles, duck noodles and cup noodles.
47. The coming of churros
It’s kind of a done trend in Singapore, but there’s always space for more heavenly fried dough in our hearts (and bellies). This year’s seen a torrent of places specializing in freshly-piped, Spanish-style dough snacks. Thonglor’s Dolly Churro Cafe (The Taste, Thonglor Soi 11), Siam Square’s Cielo Churros (Siam Square One, Rama 1 Rd.) and Lad Phrao’s soon-to-open Hello Churros (www.fb.com/hellochurros) all let their churros do the talking on their own.
48. The new restaurants you have to try that just keep on opening
We called Suhring (Yen Akart Soi 3, +66 (0) 2-287-1799) the hottest food opening of the year when it unlocked the doors to its charming Yenakart home. That lasted for all of about—what?—three weeks?—before Bunker (118/2 Sathorn Soi 12, +66 (0) 92-563-9991) was here and we were once again crowing about “The year’s most important restaurant. Period.” And we stand by those claims! Fact is, a new restaurant which we genuinely believe is a must-visit opens practically as frequently as we put out issues. That’s once a week, for those who forget we still do print.
49. The chocolate meal you’ve always dreamed of
For the closest thing you’ll get to jumping into a chocolate fountain in all your clothes, head to The Sukhothai’s Lobby Salon (13/3 Sathorn Rd., +66 (0) 2-344-8888) on Fri-Sun, from 2-5pm; Sofitel So’s Chocolab (2 Sathorn Rd., +66 (0) 2-624-0000) between 4-5:30pm on weekdays and 3-5:30pm on weekends; or Renaissance’s R Bar (Phloen Chit Rd., +66 (0) 2-125-5000) any hour of the weekend.
50. The people putting love into everything they cook
Thanks kitchen-dwelling folks, you make all our lives a whole lot more worthwhile.