Navigate the busy sois and narrow walkways by Siriraj Hospital for some of the best street food our city has to offer. By Aimmarin Siritantitam and Sasinipa Wasantapruek
Across the Chao Phraya River next to Siriraj Hospital, Wang Lang is well-known for its many little sois cramped with shops and stalls. It’s also famous for its sheer density of food stalls, extremely popular among locals and students from Thammasat’s Tha Prachan campus. Here we round up our favorites.
1. Namtok Sida
112/5-6 Soi Wang Lang, Arun Amarin Rd., 02-412-7180. Open 9am-7pm
In operation for some 40 years now, this little Isaan restaurant is a team effort between an older uncle, who waits tables, and an auntie who makes somtam at a station near the front. The specialties here are the tender and flavorful grilled chicken (B90 for half, B180 for whole) and the sueah rong hai (strips of grilled beef brisket, B50). Other Isaan classics are also very good here, such as the grilled pork neck and the somtam (both B50). Be warned that Namtok Sida packs in the customers, particularly around lunchtime and on the weekend.
2. Tee Yai
Behind Wiwatpesad Pharmacy, Soi Wang Lang, 02-411-0275, 081-344-5842. Open 8am-7pm
Walk past the Family Mart on your right and keep walking down this narrow alley until you see a couple of red signs signalling you’re at Tee Yai. This pad Thai and hoi thod place has been around since 1967. The hoi thod (fried oysters with egg, B45) has just the right texture—crispy-edged and not too gooey, not too oily. Tee Yai is also known for its pad Thai. The fresh shrimp pad Thai (B45) has a great flavor of tamarind and a nice, not-too-soft texture of noodles, even though it’s only topped with two fresh shrimps.
3. POh Pia Sod Jao Kao Siriraj
Soi Wang Lang, Prannok Rd. 087-084-5510. Open Mon-Sat 6am-4pm
Literally 10 steps from Tee Yai, further into the alleyway, to the left of KFC, is a stall with a green sign selling poh pia sod. The stall, comprised of three tables, is over 30 years old—hence the name “Poh Pia Sod Jao Kao Siriraj” which translates into “Old Fresh Spring Rolls of Siriraj.” The rolls (B30) are stuffed with Chinese sausage, tofu, bean sprouts, and cucumber. It is served with a sweet and sour brown sauce made of Japanese apricot and topped with crabmeat and egg. It tastes even better with the prik nam som (chili and vinegar) provided.
4. Moo Tod Chao Wang
Opposite Siriraj Hospital, in front of TMB bank. 085-351-4777, 087-594-2466. Open Mon-Sat 9am-6pm
What is most noticeable about the Moo-tod Chao Wang stall is not the big sign posted in front, it is the large, jovial owner’s voice persuading passersby to try out the moo tod. In a nice twist from the usual crispy skewered options, this comes with a savory, full-flavored sauce slathered onto the soft pieces of pork. The owner says the secret to the good taste is the fact that he changes the cooking oil daily. B35 per 100g.
5. Wang Lang Bakery
113 Soi Wang Lang Plaza, Arun Amarin Rd., 02-866-1649. Open 8am-7pm
Known for its many flavors of bread, Wang Lang Bakery has a loyal following of customers who buy in bulk to take home. Out front, below the huge sign bearing the shop’s name, there are rows of bread with different toppings and fillings stacked on top of each other. Beyond that is a mini factory where staff are busy baking away. The bestsellers are the moo yong (dried shredded pork) bread and the raisin bread. The bread itself is sweet and super soft. Each loaf is B40.
6. Kanom Tung-taek Patim
Opposite Siriraj Hospital, in front of Kasikorn Bank, 085-937-1193, 085-110-0467. Open Mon-Sun 9am-8pm
The queue of buyers gathered around the stall makes it hard to miss. They are not only buying because of the reasonable price (B7-10 per piece), but also for the fantastic taste of the old-school tung taek (crepe pancake with filling). The fillings available are coconut, corn, foi thong (sweet egg yolk threads), steamed custard, and raisin, with foi thong being the most popular.