Thursday, February 4, 2010

Cheap Eats Chiang Mai - Inside the Moat

{The information below was gathered from October 2010 onwards and is being gathered on the 'Chiang Mai Cheap Eats' Page. I'll be updating the posts regularly, but am keeping them predated (4 Feb 2010) so I don't clutter up the home page and bore everyone to tears. My apologies to those who are subscribed to new posts.}

Cheat eats inside the moat See map for numbered locations

1. Spicy Bollywood 155-157 Moon Muang Road See map for numbered locations
We had a fantastic night here, with a group of around 20 people. However, the buffet of six curries, although delicious, was priced at 350 B per head. Chang or Coke 50 B for a small bottle. The curries were full of flavour, but consisted mainly of gravy... the chunky bits were hard to find. Accompanying the curries was a very basic salad, naan bread and small pieces of chicken. Tiny communal dishes of sweets were delivered to our tables after our meal, as was one shot of tequila each. I have mixed feelings about this place. It has a nice atmosphere (we had great company), but the food is over priced in my opinion. I can't comment on the taste of the menu items, but Mains start at 110 - 190 B, Rice 30 B, or package deals, for example: curry/vegetables/naan and rice for around 200 B. You can eat just as well for less, elsewhere.
2. Tien Sieng Taiwanese Vegetarian - Phra Pok Rd See map for numbered locations
I'll have to go back and confirm the actual  name of this place, but I'm 99.9% sure it's Tien Sieng Taiwanese Vegetarian. You can't miss it. A large restaurant with big yellow awning signs. A rice and two serves of their lovely vegetarian dishes will only cost 20 Baht. Complimentary water. A small stock of vegetarian ingredients can also be found in the shop section inside.
*If you're looking for a 'sit down and have a cuppa' place, the cafe directly across the road is a good spot. Thai coffee, with tea to wash it down 10 Baht. They also provide a western breakfast and Thai food, which I haven't tried.

3. Peppermint Restaurant Soi 5 Ratchadamnoen See map for numbered locations
Tucked away, not far from Ratchadamnoen Rd, you'll find the Peppermint Restaurant. The narrow Soi makes for a shady retreat from the hustle and bustle.
Western food is on the pricey side, which is to be expected. I've only sampled their hot potato chips (large serve 60 Baht) and pure fresh juices, nothing added, 50 Baht.
Here's part of their Western fare menu for your viewing pleasure.
Blackboard specials in the lane way. (Each has a main and at least a drink and or side dish).
I'm told the toilet is clean and scenic ;)
4. Fai Bakery and Restaurant See map for numbered locations Intra Warorot Rd.
I didn't get any photos of my meals or the location...but I will. It's a combination of a Fai Bakery and Restaurant, with both air conditioned and outdoor, covered eating areas. A huge choice of very affordable meals in comfortable clean surrounds, with the added bonus of dozens of cakes, biscuits and pastries close by.

*5. Pho Vieng Chane C See map for numbered locations
Vietnamese would have to be my most overall favourite of cuisines. VN dishes seem to rely more on the food's own simple flavours, rather than adding them (like ginger, lemon grass, galangal ect. is, in some Thai cuisine)...if you know what I mean. I liken it to Northern Thai dishes.

Pho Vieng Chane offers a refreshing change at incredibly low prices. It's just unfortunate that we didn't order anything especially colourful on this particular day.
Deep fried egg dipped spring rolls and MUST try, fresh spring rolls packed with salad. 
Steamed pork mince dumplings topped with fried shallot...sloppy, but tasty.
I must remember to take the photos, before nearly devouring the whole plate.
Light and flaky crumbed fish.
Meals range from around 30 - 70 Baht and at each sitting you'll receive a basket of fresh lettuce, Vietnamese and saw tooth coriander, plus other herbs. Chaa Yen (lightly flavoured iced tea) is free.
The lovely Laotian owner at the entrance.
I can recommend the tofu and shrimp salad, as well as the meat wrapped in betel leaf, skewers. Like most Asian dining, order one dish per person, throw in one or two more and put it all in the middle to share. Regrettably the Pho Vieng Chane only makes Beef Pho at their other location...because, apparently the bloke next door makes something similar. Don't want to upset any apple cart I guess.
Snap's other blog Chiang Mai Thai