Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Chiang Mai- A Foodie's Vacation Part 2

Welcome! For this final installation to my Chiang Mai Vacation recount, I promise to deliver a lot more photos, photos which will show you where we’ve been, and what we ate, essentially, but you won’t see any elephant rides or monkey shows because, this is, after all, a foodie’s vacation. This is an EATING HOLIDAY in other words, and I make no apologies for this. This trip has proven to me what I had earlier suspected, that food served in grandeur is not necessarily the best tasting, and the humble food hawkers on a dusty Chiang Mai ‘Soi’ (side street) may be your true answer to food nirvana. I say ‘may be’ because I will never know for sure. Why? You ask. The answer is because I did not ATTEMPT to eat at a humble food hawker stall on a dusty Chiang Mai Soi. Why? You ask again. Because I cannot enjoy eating while stewing in my own sweat! There you have it. I don’t like hot humid weather, but for a lot of you out there who enjoy it, you should give these eating stalls a go, but have some ‘Poh Chai’ pills (diarrhoea ammo) with you just in case.

Four Seasons Resort Hotel

These photos are of some of the decor pieces used in the Four Seasons

Deemed one of the 20 most beautiful Boutique Resort Hotels in the world, the Four Seasons should be a priority on your ‘places to go’ list if you’re ever in Chiang Mai. We spent a breathtaking half-day there taking in all the beauty and wonder of this spectacular setting..

Me and the family (in the background) in the sculptured gardens of the Four Seasons

'The Three Posers' - Sheryl (my niece), Chloe and Paige. Look at that gorgeous backdrop of terraced rice paddy fields and the mountains in the beautiful Mae Rim Valley!

Chloe, standing outside one of the spacious Lanna-style pavilion resident suites. The family suites come with a live-in housekeeper and an exclusive plunge pool and will set you back from just under US$3,000 a night for a minimum of three nights.

Who says men don't like flowers?

Doesn't this arrangement make you feel happy?

The common pool where you can savour the sweeping vistas. Not too shabby, wouldn't you say?

More photos of blossoms and Paraphernalia at the Four Seasons

Care for a simmer in the Jaccuzzi, anyone?

It's time for dinner, don't you think? Let's go..

Inside the Sala Mae Rim Restaurant - A high teak wook ceiling compliments Northern Thai artifacts and sweeping views of the Mae Rim Valley

Ming, seated comfortably, waiting for his dinner

Sala Mae Rim - renowned for the unique flavors of it's sumptuous northern and vegetarian Thai specialities

The condiments..

Sen Lek Tom Yum Talay - Rice Noodles with Seafood and Lemongrass

Goong Mae Narm Pad Takrai - Wok Fried Prawns with Green Peppercorn

Kaow Pad Poo Prig Goong - Wok Fried Rice with crab meat, prawns and chilli

Ming, introducing his dinner. Let's have a closer look at it..

Ming's main course - Hors D'oeuvre Ruam - Pork Satay, Marinated chicken wrapped in Pandanus Leaf, Crab cakes and Vegetable spring rolls

Cake Bai Toey - Pandanus Coconut Cake with Chocolate-Lemongrass Bon-Bon

Kaow Niew Mamuang - Black and white sticky rice with mango

My happy little camper, Paige - as we take our last picture at Four Seasons.

The Foothills of the Doi Suthep Temple

A natural Waterfall near the Palaad Tawanron Restaurant at the foothills of the famous Doi Suthep Temple. Unfortunately, we accidently erased the photos taken at the restaurant. But wait, we have a peace offering to offer you for this blunder..

Urrhh.. Fried Bugs, anyone??

Food Court at the Airport Plaza

A delicious array of Thai hawker fare at the Airport Plaza

Condiments and Garnishes..

Yummy Desserts!

Paige, spoilt for choice, finally decides to have a mung bean jelly dessert

Ming decides that he will not pass on the opportunity to eat some fried maggots! After all, you can't get this anywhere in Perth! The Thais treat this delicacy the way we do Beer nuts. Ming says that the maggots taste similar to fried anchovies!

Suan Paak Restaurant

Paige, at the entrance of the Suan Paak Restaurant. This restaurant was recommended by Tim from the Kaohom Cooking School- it was the BEST meal we had in Chiang mai, not counting the food we cooked at Kaohom. Unfortunately, it was our last night at Chiang Mai.. oh, it's situated just outside the Airport Plaza which happens to be the Best Shopping Centre in Chiang Mai

This is the Best Tom Yum Goong I've ever tasted - It has a little coconut cream in it. YUM! Sorry, this is the only photo we have to show for our dinner at Suan Paak. The food was soooooooo good we inhaled it all before realizing we forgot to take anymore photos!


We completely enjoyed our Chiang Mai trip but our time spent with Tim at the Kaohom Cooking School was definitely the highlight of our holiday, surpassing even the breathtaking half day spent at the Four Seasons! We're definitely coming back !