Water masses are still ravaging many parts of Bangkok, but down south they are busy preparing for another tourist season. Patong on Phuket is one of the biggest tourist magnets, which clearly shows on the restaurants’ menus, where pizza and hamburgers appear side by side with Som Tam and Tom Yum Goong. In addition to the western customization of the menus, most restaurants also offers air conditioning, appealing interior and elegant lighting in order to attract the lucrative tourist segment. Personally, I think such restaurants have a tendency to appear rather soulless and too groomed, and they are often rather pricey.
Therefore, it was almost like winning the lottery, when Poul and I discovered Chiang Rai Seafood Restaurant, which is tucked away down a side street near bustling Bangla Rd.
In Chiang Rai Seafood Restaurant, not much has been done to to suck up to the tourists, and the TV showing Thai boxing, the fluorescent tubes and the plastic furniture means that the place is probably as far as you get from the Danish definition of coziness. However, the food is outstanding and so cheap that you cannot help wondering whether they have forgot to add a couple of zeroes, when the bill comes.
Even though we visited the restaurant many times, we did not come across one single dish, which we did not like. Furthermore, we rarely spend more than 600baht (about $20) on a dinner for 2 persons. From their menu, I can particularly recommend their oysters, which are in a special league and extremely fresh and delicious. Their soups are veritable taste explosions, and their traditional Thai dishes are also very good, but remember to say if you want your food non-spicy.