After our disappointing encounter with pad Thai on Koh San road, we were on a mission for the best pad Thai we could get our hands on in Bangkok before our night bus to Chiang Mai. Even if this meant spending a bit more than the $0.80 on the street! After some research and guidance from our friends Kate and Palis, we were led to Thip Samai Noodles. We grabbed an uber and arrived around 4:55pm. Palis had called in advance and confirmed that they open at 5pm. We thought, *perfect! we will be the first ones there and be in and out in time to make the train!*.
Well…we were almost completely wrong! The line was super long when we got there. They opened the restaurant up around 5:05pm and tables started filling up. As we got closer to the entrance, it began to look very crowded inside the restaurant. When there was one couple in front of us, they stopped seating people. All of the tables were filled and that was it. We stood in line unsure if we should just wait a bit and hope someone eats fast or if we should order take away. We decided to give it about 20 minutes, at which point we would make up our minds. As time passed I began getting nervous about missing the train or not being able to eat dinner.
After about ten minutes, the hostess held up a sign and said, “do you want to wait or go inside?” The sign read 10 baht per person for air conditioned indoor seating. To our surprise, there was an entire second half of the restaurant that we didn’t even know existed, let alone have air conditioning. We sat immediately and decided what to order.
It didn’t seem like much of a decision, as there’s really only one thing to get here…THE ORANGE JUICE!! Yes, obviously you should get the pad Thai too, I’ll get to that in a second. But really, the orange juice is unlike anything in this world. They pick it up daily from a local farm and it must be consumed the day it is purchased. For those of you who are not fans of the grove stand and lots of pulp orange juices, you’re out of luck (and I say suck it up and drink this). If I could I would go everyday from New York to pick this stuff up and have it with my breakfast every morning, but that’s a pretty far commute for OJ. They don’t only have the pulp in the orange juice, but they also have whole chunks of fresh oranges as well. There are no chemicals and it is pure sweet, fresh OJ.
Ok, so for the pad Thai: if you order the right one, it comes as a little package of heaven. For 200 baht, order the special. It is their pad Thai with shrimp (you get 2) wrapped in a thin layer of egg. When you break into it and get your first bite, it’s sweet and savory all in one. The moisture level is perfect and the flavor is amazing. It has all the fixings inside: bean curd, bean sprouts, chives, noodles and shrimp. They give you some fresh bean sprouts, chives and lime to add in on the side. On the table you will also find various items to spice your dish up as well as crushed peanuts. You can make it your own with all the toppings!
Once we finished, we decided we each could probably stuff another one into our tummies, but we didn’t really need to. We were definitely content from one order. However, we knew we were about to get on an overnight train and may need a little snack later on, since this was only our second meal of the day. So, we ordered the vegetarian pad Thai to go and enjoyed it on the train. This definitely beat out the food served on the train by light years. There are definitely many places to go for pad Thai in Bangkok, but your first should, without question, be Thip Samai. I’m not sure if I’ll ever find a place in New York to live up to this one!
Follow your tummy…
-Jess and Steven
May 5, 2016