Travel: Why Som Tam Nua is one of Bangkok’s best eats

It’s CNNGo certified as one of the best eats in Bangkok. This writer from W&T went with a skeptic heart, half grudgingly joined in the queue and an hour later, went to food haven.

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With “Som Tam” referring to “Papaya Salad”, it’s hardly difficult to guess what’s the forte of this little restaurant tucked away in the complicated shopping district called Siam Square, a favorite among local Thai students. Serving more than a dozen variety of the dish, my companion and I picked one of the top favorites off the menu.

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This salad which comes with preserved egg, is a fulfilling appetizer with a myriad of flavors. The papaya, cut into thin sticks provides for the sour taste while the sauce balances it with the right sweetness. This dish also has a surprising spicy after taste, definitely something different from the Som Tam one gets from other street stalls.

While the Som Tam certainly lived up to its name, we found another dish that had us savouring every single bite in delight and screaming for more – the Fried Chicken.

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While it looks like any fried chicken served alongside Bangkok streets or even in Singapore, we promise you one bite is all it takes to get you addicted. Served in a basket with chopped garlic and spring onion, the chicken is fried to a crispy perfection on the outside and juicy on the inside. My companion and I ended up ordering a second serving, burp!

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We also had the Spicy Soup with Pork Bone, which is essentially Tom Yam soup but with a tinge of sweetness due to the Pork Bones.

Final verdict? Worries about being disappointed prior to the visit were all dispelled when the Som Tam and Fried Chicken were served. Som Tam Nua certainly lived up to its reputation and we are definitely coming back for more.

Som Tam Nua
392/14 Soi Siam Square, 5 Rama 1 Road
Opens daily from 10.45am to 9.30pm