It is always a mystery to me as to why there are so many people who insists on eating the things they are used to eating at home while traveling to another country. The phenomenon must be very prevalent, so much so that at most touristy places, there are more Western restaurants than there are local Thai places.
Khao Lak is more of the same, the small resort town (approximately 100 km north of Phuket) where we spent the day after liveaboard to Similan islands for degassing purposes. For us, that was of course a perfect opportunity to eat everything Thai.
Fire in the hole!
motorbike is the best way to get around
While Khao Lak is relatively small and there are cabs available pretty much everywhere, the best mode of transportation is a scooter. You probably don’t even need a license to rent one, but do make sure you know what you’re doing.
Our scooter cost 200 baht per day, and you can refuel from plenty of places by buying bottled gasoline for 40 baht per liter. If you value your life, ask for helmets, they provide them without extra charge.
som tam by the roadside, I had it last year too
If you love sour & spicy stuff, som tam is a must try. Made of unripe papaya or green mango, bean sprout, peanut, chili, dried shrimps and more. Comes with a kick, we paid 40 bath, would be cheaper if this stall wasn’t parked right outside hot tourist spots.
breakfast was this rice/noodle with extremely spicy broths
On the day of departure, we decided to forgo hotel breakfast and try something a Thai would have. After riding around a bit we arrived at this kopitiam with a couple Thai ladies operating a stall that offers rice or noodle with a selection of dishes with broth.
Thai: spicy haa!
Me: we kon Malay, spicy no problem!
I was mistaken. These shit was tasty, and really, really hot. Lucky for us there were fresh cucumbers & a variety of vegetables on the table to cool things down. It was a good meal, what do you call them anyway?
noodle soup is the yums, choices of beef, chicken, or pork
A day prior to departure, just before dinner, we stopped by one of the road side stalls right on the main street at Khao Lak for some “snacks” that turned out to be really delicious noodle soup.
Here you get to choose any combination of 3 ingredients: pork, chicken, and beef. I had mine with chicken & beef while Haze opted for pork and beef. This reminded me of Vietnamese pho, and had the same basil/bean sprout on the side too, but as with anything Thai, the flavors were stronger. Yums.
50 baht for each, water was free. 100 baht well spent.
pad thai wasn’t bad, the fried oyster tho, disappointing
Our last meal there was at this little restaurant a couple kilometers away from Khao Lak (scooter brings you places!). We had pad thai with prawns & squid, and another plate of fried oyster to share.
The pad thai was rather average, and the fried oyster.. well, after the experience at Penang’s version, this was a complete disappointment. Each plate was 50 baht, with 15 baht each for coca-cola t hat comes in those classic glass bottle.
Yes, my stomach is still recovering from all those chili overload, but of course it was worth it.
One of the things I love most about Thailand is their hawker foods. It is true that they serve excellent tomyam, pad thai, and ladna at just about any corner, but one of my favorite breakfast dishes in the land of smile has gotta be the noodle soup.
noodle soup stall by the road side
On the last day of the trip while off-gassing from diving at Phuket, we went over to a pretty inconspicuous stall right across the street of the budget hotel we’ve been staying at (Baan Suan Place, cheapest room rate at 700 baht/night, next to Phuket International Hospital).
Though there were quite a few eateries of similar set up at the area, but I knew we got the right place soon as I saw those coagulated blood in the jar displayed at the front of the stall. *slurps*
noodle soup with all sorts of ingredients, take your pick!
A few finger pointing gestures and some 10 minutes later, here’s the bowl of goodness that arrived on my table. Big flat rice noodle in subtle yet flavorful clear broth topped with cuttle fish, coagulated blood, liver, pork, a bit of mushroom, vegetable, and even a bit of white fungus.
There’s also a plate of bean sprouts and some basil ala Vietnamese noodle style on the side, and of course plenty of potent chili powder as condiment for those who love it spicy.
when in Thailand, eat like a Thai
The noodle soup costs around 30-40 baht and this place also serves coffee and other drinks at around 10 baht. While this stall is situated at Thanon Bangyai road behind Phuket International Hospital, you can basically find similar stalls at just about anywhere in Southern Thailand (perhaps Central/Northern part too).
Now I wish someone would bring this to our local hawker stalls, Thai food here in Malaysia seems to be limited to tomyam, pineapple fried rice, and the occasional pad Thai only… pity.
Wichit, Mueang Phuket,
Phuket 83000, Thailand
Sotong suggested that we go to this fishball place at Seapark that she found out from her colleague. Since I am always in an adventure mode when it comes to food, and this place is rather close to where I stay, we gave The 60s Teow Chew Fishball a try last weekend.
pretty cozy atmosphere, clean and air-conditioned (somewhat)
This restaurant is not very different from the Fishball Noodle soup place in Damansara Jaya (next to Atria). Both serves fishball noodle soup, fish cake, a few different yong tau foo, and so on. However, one noted difference is that they also offer curry soup instead of just plain soup and dried version for the noodle (see picture below.)
pretty healthy food, tastes good too
We ordered the fishball noodle soup with curry and clear soup, some fish dumplings, and yong tau foo. We had wanted to order the deep fried fish paste in order to compare with the other shop, but unfortunately they ran out of stock. Another item that is worth mentioning is the fish skin wanton, gotta try that next time.
nice on-the-wall menu
The homemade fishball tastes pretty good, has a firm and springy texture that chews pretty well. The clear soup is nothing to shout about but pretty much what you’ll expect. As far as the yong tau foo goes, I’ll still stick with the Ampang store. However, the deep fried fish dumpling was very good, I recommend it.
The entire menu is mounted on the wall, with Chinese and English language, together with the price. A pretty nice touch.
best seapark map you’ve seen, i bet.
GPS: 3.109074, 101.622344