Thursday, April 26, 2007

More fruit

The fruit orgy season is upon us. Here's a beautiful sight. Two of the world's finest fruits: mangos and mangosteens. Mangosteens are the queen of fruits you know. Durian, is of course the king.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Khao Dam

I really like thai breakfast. This morning I realized that breakfast often consists partially or entirely of kanom, or snacks. Although there are larger more savory meals available like curries, chicken and rice, or rice porridge, I prefer getting a spread of different snacks.

Started with a couple banana wrapped servings of black sticky rice.

Black rice, custard

Next was fry bread and soy milk. I blogged fry bread during the month of January for the "Snack a Day" project. Here's a sample from a different day.

Thai breakfast 2

Last but not least, a few mangos.
Grand Asia

Breakfast for two: black rice with custard, soy milk and fry break, four mangos (some for tomorrow). 45 Baht.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Koi Restaurant

Nice restaurants are a lot like wine and jazz. They're often trumpeted by people who have no idea about what they are talking about. These people should not be your friends. Having expensive tastes does not make you an interesting person much like eating at hip restaurants does not make you a hip or interesting person. Stay home, save your money, watch reruns of law and order on Friday nights. With this sentiment I approached Friday night's meal with a little bit of concern.

Koi serves expensive Japanese fusion. Koi has been called one of the best restaurants in Bangkok. Not only that, they've got the same place in both Los Angeles and New York. Same menu. If you want to eat the same sushi as Leonardo DiCaprio or George Clooney (I actually read this) eat there. If you want to spot models and the upper crust of Thailand or other international wannabes, by all means, spend you money at Koi.

I would like nothing more than to harp on another overpriced and overrated Bangkok restaurant, but this time around I will not. Koi restaurant was perhaps the best expensive restaurant I have ever eaten at.

We started with some chilled Draft Sake. I know almost nothing about Sake so i won't bore you with rehashed praise. All I can say is that it was the best Sake I've ever had...

We started with Tuna Tartar and avacado with crispy wontons. Wow.

We ordered a couple of mains. First was the Grilled Duck Breast on Top of Wasabi Scented Sweet potato Cake and Ginger Plum Sauce.

Next was deep fried sesame soft shell crab on top of mixed stir fried vegetables and rice. Whew.

A friend ordered the deep fried tofu steak, much the same as the above!

For dessert I opted for Molten Chocolate cake.

A friend ordered the trio of Creme brulee. Ginger, coffee, vanilla.

This meal really impressed me. I've eaten in restaurants I cannot believe in Bangkok. Unfortunately I have eaten in many overpriced and overrated restaurants that are both mediocre and are guilty of having contempt for their clientele. Koi is expensive. Incredibly expensive. In a country where I can easily eat for 25 Baht, I feel a bit uncomfortable spending around 2500 Baht for a dinner for two. It gets much more expesive in this town, but I doubt I'll ever venture to those places.
Sure I enjoyed this meal, but I could have had it in New York or LA. Maybe that's what I love about street food and the general street culture. It's unique to this place and it is authentic.

On the way out the door we crossed paths with a group of lanky teenage girls and their well toned and bushy haired counter parts. In person models always look odd and out of place. With one last glance I was reminded how Bangkok is a ridiculous place full of ridiculous people. There are no shortages of places for them.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


185 Baht is what tonight's meal cost. For those of you who don't know what 185 Baht is in your currency, look it up, you obviously have the intrnet. Be savvy.

Actually, I should have called the post 165 as you are looking only at 165 Baht woth of food. Ice cream was enjoyed whilst we waited for our meal to be made. We ate: Tom yum pla; sweet, sour, spicy thai soup with fish. Yam wuun se pla meuk. Glass noodle salad with squid. They put shrimp in it too.

Yam Tua pu. Wing bean salad. They made it with pork and seafood.

There's also cabbage and basil for condiments. There's a big bowl of rice. On the way home I bought a kilo of rambutan and a bunch of bananas.
This is how I live. If you know me and want me to take you out to dinner, consider this an invite.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Stir fry Pt.1

Don't have a good grasp on ordering stir fry. Have a lot to learn. Here's an old stand-by. Pak Kanaa sai mu grawp. Chinese broccoli with crisp pork.

Pak Kana

Thursday, April 12, 2007


After twenty plus hours of travel, a few hours of restless sleep, it was time for breakfast.
First up it was jok moo sai kai- rice porridge with pork balls and egg. 20 Baht.

To my great surprise, mangosteens are now in season. I very quickly bought a kilo for thirty baht, ate most of them, and then regretted only buying one kilo.

I didn't find a coffee or tea stand on my street today. Maybe it's because of Sonkran (sp?); thai new year. But I did manage to find this lovely little snack of rice cakes filled with mung bean, and topped with coconut. You need to sweaten these yourself, hence the bag of sugar.

Can't wait for lunch.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Wine Tasting

So I went wine tasting at King Estates. One of the larger and better wineries in Oregon. Of course, I don't really know what I'm talking about.

Pinot Gris

I do know a few other things though: I do not like wine people. Any number of times I could have slapped the guy pouring our wine and the yuppie scum schmoozing next to our party. But I also know this: I kind of like the fact that because wineries try so hard to impress these kind of people, they happily give many a glass of wine to people like myself.

Wine Pinot Noir Flight

There's also food. Good food. I was most impressed by the seared scallops.
Seared Scallops
The tortilla espanola was mighty tasty as well.
Tortilla Espanola

The food in the Northwest is almost impossible to beat. Hell, the drink is also hard to match as well. Why the hell do I not live here. Oh yes, the snacks are inferior. The street culture doesn't exist and the ritual of eating is lacking. I can't wait to eat on the sweaty, sometimes smelly, and dirty streets. I look forward to being presented with new cullinary expreiences right out of my front door.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Consuming America

Many days, many meals, and many pounds later. Here's a very small sample:

IMG_4332 IMG_4334
Portland Oregon is a good place to live your life and a lovely place to end it. It rains constantly, unemployment is high, and coffee is cheap. The depressed and unemployed (and myself) can happily spend their day in one of the hundreds of excellent coffee shops drinking superb locally roasted coffee and surfing the free wi-fi. I often contemplate the business model of these places. You can literally hang out all day and surf the free wi-fi. Compare that to Starbucks where they will do everything in their power to whore you out to T-Mobile, or sell you some turgid pop music.

A lovely happy hour... No snooty service, no rubbing elbows with the upper crust, just good, quality drinks at the Brazen Bean in Northwest Portland.

Leave the Country
Me: I've been coming here since I was a kid.
Him: What do we need to do to make you stop?
Good greasy pizza at Escape from New York Pizza also in Northwest Portland.

Good coffee and good reading. Coffee shop in Berkeley California.
In America the clothes have gotten shorter, tigher, and the people keep getting fatter. We delight in this kind of advertising but throw a total fit at public breast feeding.

One of my all time favorites. Late at night on 16th Street in San Francisco. So simple, but so impossible to acquire in Bangkok.