Writer: Nivan Narula
Featured Photo: Divesh Tanwani
In Article Photographer: Prabneet Doowa
Editor & Publisher: Jaspreet Narang
Whether you are into tacky street food stalls or high-end restaurants, I can guarantee that you will never go hungry in Bangkok. It can also be known as the unofficial outdoor dining capital of Asia, with street food experience unlike any other in the region. You will experience sitting on shaky metal chairs with wobbly tables due to the rough-cut sidewalks with potholes. Cars will be constantly driving by, trying to avoid hitting you and the food carts that are all lined up along the sidewalk and main roads. The food options are endless, and with every dish, comes a new flavour, a new spice, a new texture. Your taste buds will dance to the explosion of flavours, and you will be hooked to Thai street food.
Walk anywhere in central Bangkok and you’ll find a street food vendor every 5 meters. Be curious, and try the dishes whether it is fruits, desserts, snacks, or full out meals. You will see food vendors serving up dishes that are peculiar, but there is no need to worry. I have a pretty weak stomach, and I can survive Thai street food, which means so can you! However, be careful of the “weird food” around Bangkok. It’s not something that everyone fancies, but it is nonetheless a delicacy in Bangkok. Maybe you can stomach it?
One of the best places to experience the Thai street food culture is Sukhumvit Soi 38, which is literally few steps from the Thonglor train station. The food stalls usually open from 6 p.m. to around 4:00am, so if you’re hungry after a night out, this will be the perfect spot! What I love about this street is the variety of food they have to offer. Over 500 dishes, I kid you not. In addition to the variety, the food is also tasty, fresh and cheap. Right from the start of the street, you will find ‘Pad Thai’, which is a well-known dish in Bangkok and then along the road you will also find a smoothie and juice man who makes fresh fruit juices. You will also find noodle carts that make amazing noodle soup served with crabmeat, wontons, and barbecued pork. My all-time favourite food in Soi 38 is the ‘Khao Man Kai’, which is a type of rice served with steamed chicken or fried chicken, the best part about this dish is the different sauces that come with it. After your meal, don’t forget to try the different Thai desserts they have to offer as well, I promise you won’t regret it. If you come to Bangkok and don’t try the street food, you are missing out!
If you want a change of taste from Thai food (Sidenote: “I’m really sick of Thai food” said no one ever), then aim for the street food trucks to simmer down your western cravings. The food truck scene is creating a new buzz in Bangkok right now. The last big thing was “brunch”, the new craze is with the food trucks. There are 2 burger trucks in Sukhumvit soi 23; right in the beginning of the soi you will find ‘look at me burger’ food truck serving juicy pork or beef burger and you can also choose to add extra topping of bacon or cheese. Towards the end of the soi, you will find ‘Daniel Thaiger’ food truck, which also serves greasy and juicy beef or pork burger, which is dressed up with lettuce, onions and cheese and it is topped with their famous homemade Thousand Island sauce.
Bangkok is food paradise for me. I’ve been living here all my life and yet I find myself trying new dishes constantly. There is so much to still discover, so if I were you, I’d make sure not to miss out on the amazing street eats!