TRAVEL BLOG

Bangkok Food Diary | Thai Food & Cafe-hopping

Just got back from our second trip to Bangkok this year. This time round we planned it around food, food, and more food for our short 72 hours there. Trust me, it's hard to narrow down the list of drool-worthy local dishes and the instagrammable cafes available there. But I'm glad we made all the right decisions and not waste our calories intake!

Here's the list of food we ate and like.


ONE OUNCE FOR ONION (EKKAMAI BRANCH) 

DSCF3559.jpg
DSCF3577.jpg
DSCF3600.jpg
DSCF3537.jpg
DSCF3561.jpg
DSCF3541.jpg
APC_0149.jpg
DSCF3589.jpg
IMG_9376.jpg
DSCF3594.jpg
APC_0179.jpg

The cafe is tucked away in a small lane so it wasn't the easiest to locate it, but we found it with the help of google maps. They have expanded the indoor (air-conditioned) area so it looks slightly different from what I have seen online. Adjacent to the cafe, there's a hip multi-label clothing store named "Onion". This tranquil cafe area is really cosy with the sunlight shining in through the large window. 

We were there early for brunch. Don't be fooled by its name, the menu is not onion-centric. Instead it offers a great selection of western food and drinks which we really enjoyed! He ordered a cup of mocha and the Grilled Croissant which comes with a tomato egg dip. I ordered a cup of tea and the Thai Garlic Bacon Pasta which was what drawn me to this cafe. We give both the dishes two thumbs up! I fell in love with this cafe and will go back in a heartbeat if I could. 

Nearest BTS: Ekkamai
Address: 19/12 Ekkamai 12, Sukhumvit 63 Rd., Klongton Nua, Wattana 10110 Bangkok
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/oneounceforonion/


AUDREY CAFE (THONGLOR BRANCH)

DSCF3670.jpg
DSCF3624.jpg
DSCF3614.jpg
DSCF3634.jpg
DSCF3639.jpg
DSCF3658.jpg

Desserts from Audrey Cafe kept showing up on my Instagram feed for years so we decided to give it a try. Among all of their branches, Thonglor branch have the best exterior in my opinion and it happens to be in a cafe-clustered district which makes cafe-hopping a breeze. Service staff were very welcoming and sat us at the loveliest table by the window where we can lust at its beautiful surrounding. Had a tough time deciding what to order as the menu has more choices than what I knew. 

Eventually we settled with the Thai Tea Crepe Cake and Milo Sizzling Roti that did not disappoint! Crepe cake drenched with Thai tea sauce is of the right texture and sweetness. Soon, the second dessert was served. Our eyes went big when the waiter began to pour the Milo sauce over dessert and the pan started to sizzle. We left the place fully satisfied! 

Nearest BTS: Thonglor
Address: 1136/3 Soi Thonglo11, Vaddhana,Sukhumvit 55, 10110 Bangkok
Website: http://www.audreygroup.com/AudreyCafeBistro/


BAN KHUN MAE RESTAURANT

DSCF3784.jpg
DSCF3780.jpg
DSCF3761.jpg
DSCF3765.jpg
IMG_0732.jpg

Found a highly-rated Thai food restaurant along our shopping route at Siam. We've always thought that an authentic Thai food experience can only be found by the streets, but Ban Khun Mae proved us wrong. 

Arrived at noon and the restaurant is already filled with locals and tourists with minimal chatter as everyone were concentrating on eating. It is of an affordable price range despite its nicely decorated restaurant setting with good service. The menu included many photos of the recommended dishes, which made us so tempted to order everything. And we did over-ordered for two to share. Reccomend you to try the pandan chicken and green curry. 

Nearest BTS: Siam
Address: 458/6-9 Siam Square Soi 8, Rama 1 Road, Patumwan District, 10330
Website: http://www.bankhunmae.com/


NEON NIGHT MARKET (TALAD NEON)

DSCF3446.jpg
DSCF3469.jpg
DSCF3484.jpg
APC_0127.jpg
DSCF3479.jpg
DSCF3481.jpg
IMG_9367.jpg
DSCF3504.jpg
DSCF3507.jpg

Neon night market (Talad Neon) is a relatively new night market in Bangkok and is situated 10 minutes away from Platinum Mall by foot. Popped over to this market for dinner after shopping. It's our first time having a proper meal at a night market. 

We were spoilt for choice with the various street food, seafood, barbeque and bar options. Along the seafood stalls area, we were constantly pursued by the friendly staff to dine at their area. In the end, we settled down at a crowded seafood stall and ordered Steamed Sea-bass, Grilled Squid and Pineapple Rice. The steamed fish tasted very fresh and the pineapple rice was very moist! Here's a tip, we think it's better to dine at a crowded stall as they will replenish their seafood supply more frequently than those quieter stalls.

Before leaving the night market, we got a plate of mango sticky rice from a cute store named "Mango Fu". As expected from Thailand, the mango is super sweet! 

Nearest BTS: Chit Lom
Opening Hours: Wednesday to Sunday, 4pm to 12midnight
Address: 1087 Khwaeng Makkasan, Khet Ratchathewi, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10400
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/taladneon/


MBK CENTER LEVEL 6 FOOD COURT (FOOD ISLAND)

DSCF3402.jpg
IMG_9345.jpg
DSCF3406.jpg
DSCF3404.jpg
IMG_9342.jpg

Feeling famished after touchdown, we hurriedly checked-in to our hotel and head next door to the MBK Center level 6 foodcourt for a quick and fuss-free Thai meal. Don't confuse this with the more expensive level 5 foodcourt! It is good to note though, that the level 5 foodcourt provides halal food.

A variety of Thai cuisine are offered here at a low-price. To purchase the food, you will need top-up money into a refundable cash card at a counter first. The Pad Thai and Oyster Omelette are definitely our favourite from here!

Nearest BTS: National Stadium
Address: 444 MBK Center Phayathai Rd., Pathumwan, 10330
Website: http://www.mbk-center.co.th/en/


MISTER DONUT

IMG_9443.jpg
IMG_0751.jpg

Mister Donut is everywhere in Thailand but not in Singapore, why?!! This trip had us on a "Pon De Ring" craze, eating a minimum of three donuts a day. Our absolute love and obsession, the Glazed Pon De Ring, is very soft and chewy like mochi. It is not as sweet as other American donuts and priced at only 25baht each! We even packed a box of half-dozen donuts to bring back to Singapore for breakfast, and they tasted exactly the same the next day! 

Address: Everywhere except Savarnabhumi Airport
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/misterdonut_thailand/?hl=en


Want more food options in Bangkok? Find them (Roast, Noi Seafood, After You Dessert Cafe and more) in our January Bangkok trip blog post Day 1 here and Day 2 here.

Share with us in the comment if there are any other amazing food in Bangkok that we should try in the future? 

Thanks for reading and sharing! (:
Anders + Cindy


Pin it for future reference?

Bangkok Food Diary: A list of places for Thai Food and Cafe-hopping in Bangkok_1 | anderspluscindy.com
Bangkok Food Diary: A list of places for Thai Food and Cafe-hopping in Bangkok_2 | anderspluscindy.com.PNG

Day 6 in Cairngorms, Ballater and Aberdeen, Scotland

Through the glass doors in the dining area, we can see the lovely view of hares hopping around the field and horses grazing. The weather looks slightly gloomy today but that did not deter us from wanting to trek up a hill to see reindeers!!! So excited!!!

IMG_4753.jpg

15th May 2017

IMG_4751.jpg
IMG_4754.jpg
IMG_4761.jpg
IMG_4763.jpg
IMG_4764.jpg

08:00 | Breakfast at Glentorets Bed & Breakfast
The village is really quiet in the morning with almost no one on the street outside our bedroom window. Freshen up and headed downstairs for our breakfast prepared by the host, Mark. Just beside the display cabinets, there are two world maps full of flags pinned onto the countries where the guests came from and gratitude cards. What a sweet reminder!

DSCF5201.jpg
DSCF5081.jpg
DSCF5103.jpg
DSCF5108.jpg
DSCF5172.jpg
DSCF5137.jpg
IMG_4802.jpg
DSCF5117.jpg
DSCF5156.jpg
IMG_4813.jpg
IMG_4843.jpg
IMG_4846.jpg

10:00 | Saw the reindeers at Cairngorm Reindeer Centre
Our first order of the day is to see the reindeers! Reached the Cairngorm Reindeer Centre early to ensure that we each get a place for the hill trip to see herds of reindeers roaming around freely. Unfortunately, due to bad weather, the 11am trip was cancelled. But on a good note, the staff informed us that we can buy the ticket for the paddock visit first and should the weather condition improve later, we can top-up an additional fee for the 2.30pm hill trip. 

Hence we went ahead to visit the paddock. An adorable sight greeted us when we pushed open the paddock door... it's a mother reindeer (Sambar) with its calf!!! There were three more reindeers (Scrabble, Stenoa and Olympic). However, I had a hard time attracting the reindeers toward me! 

Inside the paddock, there is an exhibition area filled with interesting facts of reindeers to read up on. So glad that we were the only ones in the paddock that morning which allowed us to slowly enjoy our time at the paddock. 

IMG_4878.jpg
IMG_4861.jpg
DSCF5214.jpg
DSCF5218.jpg
IMG_4874.jpg
IMG_4872.jpg
IMG_4879.jpg
IMG_4881.jpg
IMG_4886.jpg
IMG_4883.jpg
IMG_7351.jpg

12:00 | Lunch at Cobbs Cafe in Glenmore Forest Visitor Centre
After the long visit at the paddock, we went to the nearby cafe to have our lunch. As the weather was still pretty chilly and we were not equipped with the suitable clothing, a sensible decision was made to not go ahead with the afternoon hill trip. Really wish that we will have a chance to see herds of reindeers in their natural environment next time!

DSCF5234.jpg
DSCF5249.jpg
DSCF5254.jpg
DSCF5261.jpg
DSCF5269.jpg

14:30 | Adventurous drive along A939 road and spotted hairy Coos
Our drive along the long A939 road was filled with fantastic views of Scotland landscape! Stopped our car halfway and had some fun taking photos with the curved endless road behind us. From there, we passed by more majestic views which our photos cannot do justice to. You must be there to see it for yourself! 

DSCF5305.jpg
DSCF5302.jpg
IMG_4924.jpg

Soon, google maps directed us onto a narrow road which led us to spotting some... coos!!! We've been wanting to see the Coos up-close since the beginning of our trip. They look like furry soft toys!!! 

IMG_4947.jpg
DSCF5335.jpg
IMG_4962.jpg
IMG_4963.jpg

16:00 | Discovered the glorious Ballater village
Decided to stopover at Ballater village for a quick break. The beautiful Glenmuick Parish Church stood in the middle of the park and surrounded by cute little shops such as A. B. Yule Bookshop. During our stroll around the village, we saw a fat Scottish Terrier that walks funnily due to its excessive weight.

DSCF5366.jpg
DSCF5380.jpg
DSCF5395.jpg
DSCF5393.jpg
IMG_4978.jpg

From a distance, we saw a beautiful row of trees with pink flowers along some houses. Upon closer look, these pink flowers are actually cherry blossoms!!! It's our first time seeing cherry blossom in person!! And we were so surprised to see it here in UK! Felt so happy and lucky to chance upon these cherry blossoms in this small town!

DSCF5421.jpg
IMG_4994.jpg
IMG_4991.jpg
DSCF5415.jpg
IMG_4987.jpg
IMG_4997.jpg

18:00 | Checked into our Airbnb at Aberdeen
The host welcomed us to our cosy Airbnb and gave us a short introduction about the place. I was really looking forward to preparing breakfast in this spacious kitchen the next morning! 

DSCF5426.jpg
DSCF5435.jpg
DSCF5436.jpg
DSCF5468.jpg
IMG_5019.jpg
DSCF5443.jpg
DSCF5453.jpg

19:00 | Dinner at Brewdog Castlegate
Ate burgers and drank craft beer at Brewdog. Made a silly mistake by ordering something too spicy twice. Nonetheless, we enjoyed our time there and took a long walk back to our Airbnb while watching the sunset in Aberdeen.

DSCF5469.jpg
DSCF5476.jpg

Although we did not get to see the free roaming herd of reindeers on the hill, but we saw coos and cherry blossoms which were a first for both of us. This proves that the best moments are the unplanned ones, and these moments are the often the ones that make perfect memories. Don't you agree? 

You can read up on the rest of our 17 days' adventure in Scotland and England here

Day 5 in Glenfinnan, Loch Ness and Tomintoul, Scotland + The Engagement Story

Spoiler alert! Today is going to be an extremely special day for both of us as Anders have something up his sleeves (or pocket)! Read on to find out more!

14th May 2017

07:30 | Breakfast at Huntingtower Lodge beside Loch Linnhe
Enjoyed our long breakfast by the breathtaking view of Loch Linnhe and watched the little birds flying around the garden. I even tried to identify the birds by browsing through the bird-related books on the windowsill. Chatted with the host about our route for the day before setting off on a new journey!

More about our stay at Huntingtower Lodge - The Waterfall Suite
This is our favourite place to stay in Scotland! The suite we stayed in has everything you will need and want, such as the lounge overlooking the loch, a large bathroom and a very comfortable bed. There is also a separate dressing room which is such luxury, with the soft sunlight shining in, making it perfect for make-up! Wish I have a corner like this at home in the future! 
*Update* Just received the news on Facebook that Huntingtower Lodge property has been put on sale because the hosts are planning to move towards Edinburgh to be closer to their family. We are glad that we had the chance to visit the host's daughter, Laura's gift shop -  Curiouser and Curiouser at Edinburgh which I will share more details in our Day 9 blog post.

10:30 | Hiked up to witness the Jacobite Steam Train crossing the Glenfinnan Viaduct
We took a short hike up from the path behind the Visitor Centre. Upon reaching the Glenfinnan Viewpoint, there is the distant view of Glenfinnan railway viaduct infront of us. With hope of getting a better view of the Jacobite steam train crossing the curved Glenfinnan viaduct, we took a risk to trek out of the viewpoint area and head toward the viaduct despite not having a clear footpath to follow.

Trekked for about 20 minutes and we were closer to the viaduct. But it was still not the curved viaduct view that we had hoped for (wished we did better research like this walking trail). Despite that, we stayed put and waited for the steam train that will pass by any moment then.

Soon enough, a train passed by! But it was just a regular train, not the steam train like Hogwarts Express. Continued to wait till around 11.30am, but something felt amiss since we read up that the train should pass by around 11am. So we gave our host a call to help us check the train timing as there was no internet reception on the mountain. No......!!! We received the bad news that it does not operate on the weekend we were there!
After experiencing the Scottish weather of intermittent rain and shine, with my shoes all soaked with mud, I was ready to trek back down. But something more unpredictable than the Scottish weather happened...

IMG_7004.jpeg

A special moment at Glenfinnan: The Engagement Story
He said "Stay there, let's take one more photo together!", so I did. He walked towards me but did not look into the camera. Instead, he stared at me and took out my earpiece from his denim jacket. Only at that moment then I realised something was going to happen. Through the earpiece, I listened to the song he wrote for me. I was so overwhelmed with emotions and started tearing (it suddenly rained) that I couldn't concentrate on the lyrics after the first few lines of the song. 
He went down on one knee after the song finished playing (the sun came out), took out a ring from his chest pocket and popped the question! I answered "Yes!" of course, and he put the ring on my finger. To be honest, I cannot remember what he said at that moment because it felt like the whole world went silent and many thoughts raced through my mind.
This is the story of how we got engaged. I am truly grateful that he remembered that I wanted a private proposal with no audience and chose such a scenic place as the background. Before all this happened, he already asked my parents' permission for my hand in advance and designed the engagement ring since last year. 
Remember the photo he lied about at the beginning of this story? He was actually recording a video to capture down the moment! The last photo is a screenshot from the video.

12:30 | Walked around the Glenfinnan Monument and Visitor Centre
After the magical moment, we needed to get back down to the ground. Being adventurous, we headed further towards the downwards slope of the mountain which turned out to be a bad choice made! Without proper hiking gear, we had to trek through the muddy grounds and uneven path that eventually forced us to climb over the fence (pictured above) to get back onto the real ground.
We took a break from the chilly wind and harsh conditions by having hot drinks and food at the visitor centre's cafe. Then we move on to the modern exhibition inside the visitor centre which was pretty interesting followed by a walk towards the Glenfinnan Monument.

14:00 | Admired the Neptune's Staircase at Banavie village
Only from a postcard at the Glenfinnan visitor centre that we learnt about the existence of Neptune's Staircase. By the canal, we saw an interesting architecture and some picnic benches on one side. On the other side, we can see Ben Nevis and read up about the canal. We were lucky to witness a boat travelling up the lock flight! We are utterly impressed by the wisdom of how someone in the past can come up with the idea of such mechanism and put it into practice.

14:30 | Stopped by the Commando Memorial
Before getting to Urquhart Castle, we did a quick stopover at the Commando Memorial. The three bronze commandos standing on top of the hill commands a strong presence! It's always a good idea to learn more about the country's history through the memorial created. Aside from that, this was a great scenery spot as the iconic landscape of Scotland surrounds the memorial.

15:30 | Marvelled at the Ruins of Urquhart Castle on the bank of Loch Ness
The Loch Ness Monster is probably one of the most famous myths around the world, but a quick search for Loch Ness will make you realise that it's just a huge Loch, with not too much to marvel about. However, a beautiful castle ruin sits by the side of this Loch. Urquhart Castle is a perfect location to visit if you want to make more out of your obligatory trip to Loch Ness!
Many of the spots in the ruins had signs that tell you which room it used to be. One of the towers still stand with much of its grandeur, and the top of it provides a nice view over the Loch. From another spot in the ruins, you could see the ruins in its entirety, and the outline of the ruins helps you imagine how the castle life could have been back in the day. It was a great visit!

19:00 | Checked  into Glentorets Bed & Breakfast
After nearly two hours drive up and down the mountains, we arrived at our B&B for the day. It was a cosy home by the side of a large field. We quickly settled into the comfortable room. Had a quick chat with the host and found out that there's a town square nearby where we could get some food at that hour.

20:00 | Night out at Tomintoul
Tomintoul is a small village, the kind where you would think everyone knows each other. It was a little late by the time we arrived, but the village is still filled with charm. We can't help it but stopped to take quite a bit of photos on the way to the town square!
Eventually we chose to have our dinner at Glen Avon Hotel Lounge Bar. It was exactly like how we have seen it on TV, where the bartender knows everybody and everyone's having a good chat as they wind up their day. After a while, our B&B hosts came in for a drink too! 
Took a nice stroll back to the B&B, towards the setting sun. As we approached the B&B, we stopped to take photos of the two horses that were in the fields. Our host showed up after a while and showed us how we can feed the horses! What a beautiful way to end the day!

On this fateful day I became his and he became mine. I couldn't stop admiring the ring the entire day and kept worrying that I might lose it. This day is filled with lengthy stories and details which we are happy to come back to, and it will always put a smile on our face.

You can read up on the rest of our 17 days' adventure in Scotland and England here

Day 4 in Glencoe, Scotland

With much anticipation, we are going to explore Glencoe today! This is the place that represents Scotland and its way of living. The beauty of Scotland is always being featured in movies such as Skyfall, Harry Potter and Braveheart, and now, it's finally our turn to see it in person! 

13th May 2017

08:00 | Breakfast at Huntingtower Lodge with the view of Loch Linnhe
Such a pleasure to have our breakfast in the dining area beside the huge windows that overlook Loch Linnhe. The friendly host, Chris, shared with us some information such as the weather and gave us suggestions on what route we can take for the day! 

10:00 | Scenic drive along A82 road
During the drive, we were completely blown away by the epic landscape with the mountains and rivers along the never-ending road. Everywhere looks so picture-perfect that we had to stop by the roadside numerous times with the hope of capturing down the amazing view.

11:00 | Search for the Blackrock Cottage near Glencoe Mountain
Before the trip, we saw many Glencoe photos featuring the Blackrock cottage. It is located on the access road towards the Glencoe mountain ski area. Little did we know, there are actually people living in the cottage. So we only took a few photos from a distance so as not to disturb the residents' privacy.
The white cottage sitting against the majestic Buachaille Etive Mòr mountain is indeed very photogenic. However, we also spotted many other isolated cottages along the drive that looks equally nice. So our advice for you is to look for photo spots elsewhere if this place is not along your planned route.

12:00 | An adventure into Glen Etive 
Sky was clear when we began our drive on the narrow single track road that meanders down Glen Etive towards the head of Loch Etive. We were greeted by the pristine scenery of Glen Etive with river flowing and mountain top hiding amid the clouds. It's as if we had been teleported into a surreal world!
The drive was really lovely until one point where we felt like we were driving to nowhere in the rain. There was no phone signal for us to check our location and how far are we from the end of the road. Despite the uncertainty, we still drove on and finally reached the end of the road. So happy to finally reach the head of Loch Etive after feeling lost! 
The superb view there totally screamed "Scotland!". We saw two paddlers back from their canoeing trip and they were picked up by their family whom we had a chat with. There were also people camping near the loch. Lucky us, we spotted a few wild deers by the roadside during our drive back!

This was a much longer drive than we expected, with us clocking in 28 miles for a round trip. Do note that this is a single lane road with passing places at almost every 100 yards, hence we had pull over our car several times to allow cars of opposite direction to pass through. This drive was definitely not easy and we suffered slightly from carsick due to the frequent stopping at passing place. But I am thankful that Anders overcame it. He's the best (and only) driver of our trip!

16:00 | Late lunch at The Glencoe Gathering
Passed by The Three Sisters of Glencoe - Beinn Fhada, Gearr Aonach and Aonach Dubh mountains along our way to the nearby restaurant. We were feeling very cold and hungry after drive in Glen Etive, so we did quick search online to find this cosy place full of Scottish charm coming from the staff and decor. 

18:00 | View the Castle Stalker from The Old Inn 
Last stop of the day is to go view Castle Stalker from afar. We parked our car near The Old Inn and walked down a short footpath to the viewpoint. The wind was very chilling that evening, so we could only stay for awhile to take some pictures. Castle Stalker is truly stunning! The weather, casting a grey sky, added a nice background to the isolated castle.

19:00 | Dinner at Lochleven Seafood Cafe 
Lochleven Seafood Cafe was recommended by Chris and we made a reservation before heading down as it's quite a small restaurant with limited seatings. The seafood here is very fresh and affordable. We ordered fresh oysters, small pot of Mussels cooked in wine and fish of the day. Two thumbs up and we strongly recommend you to eat here!

It has been a very adventurous day for us! Went back to admire the sights and sounds of Loch Linnhe just outside our B&B followed by a very restful night.

Scotland is really beautiful.

You can read up on the rest of our 17 days' adventure in Scotland and England here