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Eung Phung Chan Phaa Pub and Restaurant

Thai cuisine courses for foreigners planned by Chiang Mai University

Eung Phung Chan Phaa Pub and Restaurant

As Western as Clint Eastwood!

This week’s review could take you a little while to find, since the English name is not displayed, so either take a Thai person with you (not a bad idea) or look for the Thai script on an illuminated Carlsberg sign outside.

The restaurant opens at 5 p.m. and is housed in a huge open-sided “barn” style building, with extensions at the rear into the large secure car park and onto a wooden deck at the front. Seating is at long refectory style tables with individual chairs. Most tables will accommodate 8-10 people, and I would recommend getting a large party together for your first foray to this restaurant. The staff are very attentive, and there are 70 of them!

The ambience is decidedly American/Western with old style “Coke” lampshades, American car number plates, and advertising items for Budweiser, Pabst, Michelob and Coors beers. There are also four rotating C&W bands playing relaxed live music for entertainment.

The menu is extensive and is in Thai and English and commences with drinks, with large bottles of local beers generally around 85 baht. The first page of the food items has noodles as soup or fried, plus fried rice in different styles as well. Prices between 35-45 baht will not break the bank for starters.

The second page has fried items, ranging from chicken, beef, pork and various seafoods, all between 55-75 baht. This is followed by grilled BBQ items (B. 65-120) again including meat and seafood varieties. Next up is a page of “yum” items (salads) ranging in price for B. 65 to B. 95 covering shrimps at the top end to Chinese sausage at the lower end.

There is a page of soups and “som tum” (B. 65-120) again covering most forms of basic items, from beef, chicken and seafood items. The final page covers different curries (B. 65-120) and as well as giving you multiple choices, it will keep you amused with some of the more imaginative spellings. Fried Pord’s appendix with gralic peper will keep you guessing for a little while.

We were fortunate in that we were the guests of the owner, Ongkan Auttasasan, and by the time we had arrived, he had selected some representative dishes for us to try. The first thing we noted was the incredible presentation of the food. Every dish was adorned with orchids or amazing decorations, such as a “swan” made from tomato and endives. Some items were in small “mor din” pottery containers with charcoal to keep them warm, while others were in large deep “fry pans” as well as the usual serving platters.

We began with an amazing fish sausage, made from Serpent’s head fish and pork and herbs, rolled into a long fish shape and then sliced. It comes with a bowl of sauce, which, though spicy, was not over the top for the farang palate.

From there we tried many items, some hot like the “som tum” or the “tom yum gai” Northern style chicken soup, and others not at all spicy, like the grilled Tubtim fish or the “gaeng naw mai rai” a delicacy made with young (4 month old) bamboo shoot, pork and green vegetable, or the “tofu song kruang” a Chinese mushroom soup. Accompanying the food was both steamed rice or sticky rice in the woven containers. I can honestly say that we were not disappointed, and the Tubtim was our dish of the night.

The Dining Out Team enjoyed the evening at Eung Phung Chan Paa. It is not a restaurant for formal dining, but is the restaurant for a relaxed “fun” evening, especially if you are a fan of the Country and Western music. The food was good, the presentation was superb, it is exceptionally cheap and we can highly recommend this pub and restaurant, not just for the food and ambience, but also as a place where you can get to know and mix with the local Thai residents. Do try it, you will not be disappointed. And say hello to Clint when you see him!

Eung Phung Chan Phaa, 69 Kankronchonprathan Road, Chiang Mai, telephone 053 400 505.

Thai cuisine courses for foreigners planned by Chiang Mai University

Nuttanee Thaveephol

The Thai Culinary course project for foreigners will be launched before the end of the year at Chiang Mai University. The university’s Humanities Academic Center has planned the Thai Culinary Center with the aim of imparting knowledge of Thai food, especially for foreign tourists. Students will also receive Thai culinary certification after finishing the course.

The manager of this project guarantees that all the Thai dishes are authentic Thai food with the original taste. “Thai food is one of the favorites in the world because of its varied tastes and healthy ingredients but Thai food can be misunderstood by cooks who do not know about its origin. This project is a way to inform foreigners who want to know about the real Thai tastes and recipes,” he said.

The Thai culinary curriculum is divided into 4 courses. In each course, there will be 5 main dishes and a dessert. The participants will be expected to study and will receive a Thai cookbook. The recipes include red curry with roasted duck (gaeng ped pet yang), hot and sour prawn soup (tom yam kung), holy basil with chicken (kaprao kai), dumpling in coconut cream (bua-loi) and sweet sticky rice and mango (khao neo mamuang).

The target groups are ex-pats living in Chiang Mai, foreign students in Chiang Mai University, tourists and those who come to Thailand specifically to learn about Thai food.

Students can get free transportation from their hotels or residences to the Thai Culinary Center at Chiang Mai University.

For further information, please contact the project manager of the Thai Culinary Center: 01 595 6245 or the Humanities Academic Center, Chiang Mai University: 053 942 308 or 053 942 303.