One thing I really miss about Taiwan is how easy it is to find great, cheap food in their night food markets. And there are TONS of food markets in each Taiwanese city.
Contrariwise, Bangkok’s night markets’ attractiveness lie in their awesome shopping scene, although they do serve good food albeit not as varied or as many as their Taiwanese counterpart.
If that’s the case for you too, then I’m very happy to say that this isn’t a problem anymore. Bangkok does have a food night market, and it has everything from Thai desserts to light snacks to seafood.
Wondering where this is? It’s Chinatown!
Important Info: The night food market at Chinatown opens every day from 6pm to 1am.
And with the opening of Wat Mangkon MRT Station in July 2019, getting here has become so much easier (less than 5 minutes walk to the main area)! So there isn’t an excuse not to come here anymore!
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1. Who loves grilled food? – Skewers
Honestly, nothing is easier to eat while walking than eating skewers. And you’ll definitely want to walk around here and see what food or drink you should buy next. The skewers here taste so good too! So chewy and fresh. You even get a choice of grilled entrails, giant squids and sausages (on a stick)! What’s your pick? (Entrailsss!!!)
2. Want something Chinese? – Fish Maw & Shark Fin Soup
Then you might want to get a bowl of fish maw or shark fin soup. It’s sour, sweet and chewy/soft (chewy for shark fin, soft for fish maw) yet feels very soothing to the body and nutritious. But between the two, I recommend the Fish Maw Soup (I mean… Poor sharks! T.T).
3. Porky meals for pork lovers – Khao Kha Moo
One of the best Thai pork meals of all time (IMO), this sweet pork leg dish is highly recommended for those who love pork. The preserved vegetables and boiled vegetables are really nice too, especially when you eat it together with the pork. And when you pour some the sour yellow sauce on top of the rice and meat? Amazing.
4. Tried this special rice dish before? – Clay Pot Rice
It’s warm, super filling and so flavourful. What’s best about this place is it offers tons of topping choices to cater all taste buds, including abalone, chicken, razor clams and pork spare ribs. The place is quite small though, so you better come early to get a seat.
5. Pork or shrimp? – Gyoza
Who doesn’t know these Japanese fried dumplings? At Chinatown, you can find a lot of deep-fried Gyozas in various fillings. Whether it’s a whole shrimp with minced pork or just pork, you’re sure to get delicious Gyoza here.
6. So comforting – Noodles
I loveee noodles. They’re so light, warm and comforting – just what I need after a long day of travelling. Here, you can get a wide selection of noodles. There’s Kuay Jab or Yentafo for something Thai and Sichuan Noodles with Wonton for something Chinese. But my favourite has to be Noodles with Crab and Red Pork. So delicious.
7. Everybody loves – Pad Thai
Every time my aunt comes to Thailand, she always asks for this. And who can blame her since it’s so savoury and crunchy, with all the peanuts, tofu, egg and bean sprouts in the dish? And if you add shrimps to it? Yummmm…
8. It’s an Asian favourite! – Satay
Grilled chicken with brown peanut sauce on top? Who can resist it? My dad definitely can’t, and he eats sticks after sticks every time we order Satay, especially when eaten with the cucumber pickles on the side. The perfect combo of savoury and sourness.
9. It’s my kind of fried dough – Patongo
I alwaysss eat Patongo every morning with a glass of warm soy milk, because that’s when they’re usually sold. However, now you don’t have to wake up super early for this since they sell it here. There are 2 kinds of Patongo available here – fried and grilled.
10. More nuts! – Roasted Chestnuts
Maybe it’s a Chinese thing, but one thing you’ll always see in Chinese towns are these roasted chestnuts. And they’re nice and hot (and yummy)! So remember to get a bag (or two) and eat them while they’re warm (it’s most delicious then).
11. The king of roasted duck – Peking Duck
Ever since my encounter with them in Beijing, I’ve fallen in love with these crispy, sweet and savoury birds. The great news is you can get them here too, either served as is (whole, half or per pack) or as spring rolls.
12. Thai porridge all the way! – Jok
Who says you can only have these when you’re feeling under the weather? These warm bowl of porridge are perfect when you want something yummy and easy to digest. They can be bought as is, or you can add crispy pork skin and/or egg for more deliciousness.
13. Who’s up for some Siu Mai? – Dim Sum
Memememe! I especially love Shrimp Siu Mai (Steamed Dumplings) cuz the texture is so soft and chewy, although my sister says the pork version is better. There’s also Bao Zi (Steamed Buns), available in various flavours such as barbeque pork and custard, as well as Jui Guay (Chinese Steamed Rice with Radish) topped with minced pork.
14. Grilled giant prawns or squids for the take – Seafood
I must say… There are soooo many seafood restaurants here. And they’re all super delicious. Look at the giant prawns and squids. Can you resist them? You’ll also find other dishes like these seafood eateries also sell other dishes like Salt Grilled Fish (highly recommended!!) and Crab in Thai Black Pepper.
15. It’s everyone’s favourite dish! – Chicken Rice
If there’s one Thai dish I must recommend, it would be Chicken Rice. The fragrant and savoury rice just makes you want to eat plate after plate of them, while the fried or boiled chicken is nice and soft. And when you add the sweet chilli sauce or the brown spicy sauce? That’s perfection right there.
16. It’s “healthy” – Chives Dumpling
These dumplings are made of chives AND not loaded with seasonings; only wrapped with this gelatinous translucent skin. Yet it’s soooo good, especially if you eat it with the brown dipping sauce. A definite must-try for all dim sum lovers.
17. Get your favourite side dish – Khao Rad Gaeng
Here’s a tip: If ever you don’t know what to eat in Thailand, head over to a Khao Rad Gaeng store. They have tens of side dishes that you’ll always be able to find something to your liking. All you need to do is point at the dish you want to eat and let them serve ‘em with rice.
PS: You can also tell them to forgo the rice if you don’t want it
18. Time for some Isaan food – Som Tum & Grilled Chicken
If the West has Caesar Salad, Thailand has Som Tum. It’s a super popular “salad” dish among Thais – which tastes sweet, spicy, salty and sour all together – that you’ll often see people eating this everywhere. This is usually eaten with some grilled chicken and sticky rice on the side (tastes so good this way!!).
19. My favourite pancakes!! – Hoy Tod
I absolutely love Thailand’s mussel pancakes. They’re so crispy yet so soft at the same time. The batter is really savoury too, especially when eaten with the chilli sauce. And the crunch at the end from the bean sprouts? Gahhh… I want it! T.T
20. It’s a savoury “cake” – Turnip Cake
It’s white, soft and super savoury – nothing like your regular chocolate or vanilla cakes. When eaten warm and dipped in soy sauce? Super addictive.
21. Best omelette ever! – Egg Omelette with Rice
I gotta say… Out of all the omelettes I’ve eaten around the world, Thailand has got the best omelettes ever! It’s salty and so soft. Add fillings like carrots and crab stick in the omelette and serve it on top of steamed rice and you got an award-winning comfort food right there.
22. Our favourite fried fritter is here – Spring Rolls
Spring rolls are such a god-sent snack. It can be eaten as an appetizer, a side dish or even as a snack (when you’re on the road and feel like nibbling something savoury). Eat it with Thais’ favourite sweet chilli sauce and it’s a done deal.
23. The Chinese version of Onigiri – Ba Chang
Everyone knows onigiri, but unless you’re Chinese or grew up surrounded by them, you probably won’t know Ba Chang. This steamed rice dumpling tastes savoury and is quite sticky since it uses glutinous rice. But due to the fillings (of egg yolk, pork, gingko nut, mushroom and peanut), it easily fills you up – great when you want something filling and quick to eat.
24. Want soup? – Kao Lao
What about getting a bowl of Chinese pork soup with pork blood (aka Kao Lao)? The soup is brown-coloured from the soy sauce yet quite sweet and savoury, super yummy to eat with a warm plate of rice or noodles. On top of pork meat, they’ll usually add a block of pork blood in. But if you don’t eat it, feel free to tell them so they can not put it in.
25. It’s time for – Dessert
Don’t leave Chinatown yet before closing your meal with some Thai or Chinese sweets. Everyone loves coming here to try Yaowarat’s famous toasted buns, but if you’re too full for bread, you can always opt for something lighter like bird’s nest, fruit juice and Thai crispy pancake. After all, you can always get the same toasted buns at their other branches some other time (e.g. at CentralWorld’s foodwOrld).
26. Special mention: Got time to spare? – Outdoor Cinema
If you’re not rushing, then you’ll definitely want to see this hidden gem. Located at the end of Yaowarat’s old market street lies this small open area which shows old Thai movies. It’s free, so feel free to drop by and join the locals watching the movie.
However, note that the movies are in Thai (thus no translations) and there are no chairs here so be prepared to stand for a couple of hours (unless you don’t mind sitting on the road).
Chinatown Night Food Street
Price: from 11 Baht / approx. USD $0.36
Address: 436 Yaowarat Rd, Samphanthawong, Bangkok 10100 (Coordinates here)
Opening hours: Daily from 6pm to 1am
Sound like fun? There’s definitely more than enough for you to eat your fill. But if you’d like to try many dishes in 1 day, we highly recommend coming over with a group of people and share the food. After all, eating is always more fun when you’re together with your loved ones, right?
Happy eating! 😀
PLEASE NOTE: All the above information is correct at the date of publication. If you come across any changes or updates, please let us know and we will update the information accordingly. Thank you!
|PLEASE NOTE: All the above information is correct at the date of publication. If you come across any changes or updates, please let us know and we will update the information accordingly. Thank you! |