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Khanom Jeen
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Khanom Jeen



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Wednesday, 24-Mar-2004 00:00
Location, location.. location?
Some commonly accepted 'rules of business' seem to work not quite in the same way in Thailand as they do elsewhere. A common example is law of supply & demand, which you will often find applied in reverse: when business is slower, prices must rise to make ensure that revenue remains the same. :-O Makes sense doesn't it? Or? Here we have another example: the importance of "location" for a restaurant. Is this really as important in Thailand as it is perceived elsewhere? You would doubt it looking at this long running and very popular lunch-time buffet restaurant. It's WAY down a small soi off the Superhighway, and then WAY inside a small housing compound. If you haven't been told where it is then you will NOT run into this one by accident. When it comes to restaurants, 'word of mouth' takes great precedence over location. Perhaps Thais even find enjoyment in finding and telling people about a great little place they found somewhere, or that someone else told them about? I definitely get enjoyment out of it, or I wouldn't be posting all these reviews here on this page.. 8-)

Back to the food at hand today: Khanom Jeen. Often translated as Chinese Noodle or even Thai Spaghetti! Khanom Jeen you find in every region of the country, it's as popular in the North, North East or South. What differs though are the sauces/curries that are served with it, these vary quite a bit. Some are definitely VERY spicy, others fairly mild, like the common green curry. It's also a very inexpensive dish. Perhaps less so in this distinctly middle-class buffet restaurant, but you also find khanom jeen at little stalls around markets at any time of the day and night. In Chiang Mai, if you ever find yourself in town between midnight and 3am or so, check out the low tables near Kad Luang, the Big Market. Probably the cheapest place for khanom jeen.

At Ban Khanom Jeen (House of Thai Spaghetti) they serve khanom jeen 'buffet style', you can choose from any of the curries/sauces and there's a big supply of fresh herbs and vegetables add as well. Plus they serve a nice little side dish of crispy fried vegetables, leafs and herbs, more or less tempura style. You pay per bunch of noodles you use. So going for lots of curry & veggies with minimal noodles helps to reduce cost. :) I think they charge 10 baht per bunch of noodles. I had 4, so the bill came to 50 baht including a bottle of drinking water and the crispy vegetables side dish. With two people sharing you will likely pay a bit less per person, figure about 40 baht.

Now then.. how to get there. :D The place is in a sub-soi of a soi of the Superhighway. When driving on the Superhighway, coming from the Rincome intersection you will pass Wat Jed Yod Temple (worth a visit, seems they're excavating ruins of older structures there at the moment). Turn left into the first proper soi after the temple, this is Soi Putharam, though this is not indicated anywhere. Then Ban Khanom Jeen is in Putharam Soi 4, which is on the right hand side, about 1 kilometer or so from the Superhighway. The sign Putharam Soi 4 is in Thai only, even the number 4 uses the Thai numeral "รด". If all this sounds too complicated then you have a great excuse to be out in town at 3am, sampling the khanom jeen at the big Kad Luang market! 0)

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