Does Bangkok Still Have Thai Food?
I recently had a week layover in Bangkok which, being one of my favorite places, I was really looking forward to going there. I had just been in Taiwan for three months and couldn’t wait to have some great Thai food. I usually stay in the Sukhumvit area and there are plenty of restaurants that could grant my wish, so I thought. To my surprise, there seemed to be more Indian and Middle Eastern restaurants than Thai restaurants.
I hadn’t been to Bangkok for a few years and once I really started to look around and focus, it became clear that Thai food was sliding into second place on the food options list. Being from Florida, I usually don’t have a lot of choices for Indian or Middle Eastern food so that doesn’t really bother me, but I was wondering why this was happening.
After I finished my kebab, which was great by the way, I settled into a beer bar and hit up a conversation with a local expat. After the usual “What brings you to Thailand” banter I brought up the the question of “What happened to all the Thai restaurants?” Greg (from Australia), pointed out that tourism from the Middle East has grown incredibly over the past few years and just like anywhere else, people want to eat foods their used to. I guess that’s why there are so many Mc Donald’s in every tourist town in America. Greg went on to explain that the area around Nana Plaza had developed into “Little Arabia” and if I looked closely I would notice that Farsi (the Persian language) has appeared on most signs in the area. Over the next few days of my stay, Greg proved to be right and Farsi could be seen at any stopping point on the street. It just goes to show that any culture will change to accommodate new trends and follow the money.