Tag Archives: bangkok

#1867: Yum Yum Premier Bowl Instant Noodles Stewed Pork Flavour

The next to last variety I found while in Thailand – there was a Seven-Eleven next to our hotel which we visited countless times; so different from the ones we have here! Slurpee machines in the back as always, but you make a 180 degree turn and boom – a huge assortment of instant noodles. It was amazing and burned into my mind! Some companies do special partnerships with Seven-Eleven all over Southeast Asia and have special varieties only available there – this is one of them. Let’s check it out!

Detail of the lid (click to enlarge). Contains pork. To prepare,  add in the smaller sachet and boiling water to fill line inside. Cover and let steep for 3 minutes, leaving the large retort pouch on top. Add in retort pouch contents, stir and enjoy!

An included fork!

The noodle block.

A soup base powder sachet.

A coarse mixture with bits of vegetable matter.

A retort pouch.

Nice pieces of real pork with a nice scent.

Finished (click to enlarge). Added Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts and coriander. The noodles hydrated very well in the three minutes allotted. They are thin and of decent quality. The broth has a nice pork taste – like stewed pork! A bit of spiciness too. The retort pouch’s content was very good – nice pieces of stewed pork (not fake but real) and nice pieces of mushroom. A nice bowl of noodles! 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 8850250004301.

Thai Food Yumyum Instant Dried Noodles Jumbo Minced Pork Flaour (Pack of 6)

A Yum Yum video!

#1703: 7 Select Super Tom Yum Shrimp

Here’s one of the ones I picked up on my recent trip to Thailand at 7-11. It’s made by Nissin, and has Nissin logos on it, but it’s like a private label for 7-11; kind of different. Anyways, tom yum sounds good – let’s see what dwells within!

Details of the side panels (click image to enlarge). Contains shrimp. To prepare, open lid and take out fork and sachet. Empty sachet into cup and add boiling water to fill line. Cover and let steep for 3 minutes. Stir and enjoy!

Detail of the lid (clink image to enlarge).

An included fork!

The seasoned noodle block.

A liquid sachet.

Has a strong tom yum scent.

Some of the seasoning from the noodles and little shrimp abound.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added red and orange bell pepper, white onion, shrimp and coriander. The noodles are round and thin. They have a little mushiness to them. The broth on the other hand has a very strong heat and lemongrass hit with a good shrimp flavor. The amount of shrimp that were included was pretty good, but I did expect them to be a little bigger. They hydrated perfectly. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 8852528003092.

The Treasures and Pleasures of Thailand: Best of the Best (Impact Guides)

When I get to go to foreign countries, I’m usually more interested in trying the local cuisine. American BBQ flavor chips are about as far from my mind as can be, but this guy take you on a pretty good tour of a 7-11 in Thailand.

The Ramen Rater’s Trip To Thailand: Day 6 – The Long Road Home

Day 1 * Day 2 * Day 3 * Day 4 * Day 5 * Day 6

Came down to have a last try at the breakfast buffet. I’d been putting off the noodles but I figured I’d kick myself if I didn’t give them a try before I left. Good stuff!

A little of everything before I go.

I took this photo right when we were leaving our corner suite for the last time. The view of Bangkok was addicting; wish I could’ve taken it with me as more than a photo. I think we’ll be back someday though.

Last night at the farewell dinner, I met the guy who accompanied us to the airport. Mr. Yatra had spent some time working in the Seattle area which is very near to where I live. He told me his favorite place to eat was a restaurant called Tai Tung – a place I’d been years back as a kid. Upon dropping us off at the airport he bid us a kind farewell, reminding me ‘hey don’t forget – go to Tai Tung!’ Mr. Banks also gave me a call before we left to bid farewell which was really nice of him. Really going to miss all the people we met. We went and checked our bags and then went through security.

We had a good amount of time to kill before our flight, so it was a perfect time to do some shopping. Found a lot of really neat stuff and stuffed my carry on. I even got one of those little cats that wave – maneki neko – at a ramen shop!

This is the most wonderful thing ever. It’s a superpower air conditioner! They’re all over the place at the airport in Bangkok and some had little wifi antennas and had speakers with flight info and announcements.

A hot dog? Yes, a hot dog. Some fast food sounded good and we hit Dairy Queen. Yes, they have Dairy Queen in Thailand. Dairy Queen, Pizza Hut, KFC, Domino’s and Burger King. I’m sure McDonald’s was lurking somewhere as well – but no Taco Bell! I think what was interesting was the presence of sesame seeds on the bun.

A pic of the overhead menu.

So when it was time, we went to our gate and waited. And waited. And waited. It was very close to boarding time and nobody showed up to open the gate. Everyone was looking at eachother a little confused. My sister went and tried to find info. Well, EVA Air didn’t feel like letting us all know that the gate was moved! So we ended up waiting here.

There was another air conditioner, but it wasn’t running… So eventually, they had everyone go to the left down a corridor – and onto the tarmac. We all got on a bus (hey wait – can we take a bus to Taipei?) and it took us down the airfield to a plane we boarded by stairs. Eventually, we took off. Now, the delay was pretty long. We were supposed to have about a 3 hour layover I believe in Taipei. Well, with the delay in Bangkok and then when we got to Taipei the pilot came on telling us we’d be circling since the airport was too busy – for 20 minutes! What was scary was that that announcement came up right when we were supposed to boarding our connecting flight! We eventually landed and just booked it as fast as we could through the checkpoint and to our gate. I figured worst case scenario, I do know a lot of instant noodle people in Taiwan, so all might not be so horrible if we end up having to wait for another flight. Well, we ran ran ran through Taoyuan airport and got to our gate. There we waited about an hour and got to board our plane. Phew!

The flight from Taipei to Seattle is a real brain-smasher. Our flight left Taipei around 11pm on the 20th. Then about 10 hour later, it arrived in Seattle at 7pm – on the 20th. But we finally arrived – got our bags, went rhgouh security (which was mind blowingly fast for US Customs) and we were off in our own direction – my sister to her car and I went and waited for my wife to pick me up. It was weird to be back; It’s a strange feeling; like Frodo Baggins after the long journey he took and then coming home, never looking at things the same way again.

I must say I recommend everyone visit Thailand; the people, the sights, the everything. It’s so different from here. I loved it! I love being back though as my wife and I are starting our next big adventure with a new baby on the way this summer. I want to thank my sister for accompanying me – if she hadn’t, I wouldn’t have been able to go. I want to thank everyone at Thai President Foods and President Rice products – everyone was so nice and kind to us. Also want to say thanks to all the great MAMA noodle distributor from Europe we had the fortune to meet – a great group of people! In conclusion, I would say that I found one thing in Thailand; harmony. Looking out the balcony way up high, I didn’t hear the sounds you might expect in a big US city – sirens and possibly gunshots or people yelling and honking. The traffic was crazy but it worked and people accepted that it was crazy. The way of the Thai is to give when you can, forgive transgressions and then to forget they even occurred. I think Western society could gain a great deal of insight from Thailand. Well, until my next adventure!

The Ramen Rater’s Trip To Thailand: Day 5 – River Kwai & Goodbye

Day 1 * Day 2 * Day 3 * Day 4 * Day 5 * Day 6

Woke up at this amazing place – Heard a strange sound coming from outside and figured out it was the sound of the Buddhist monks chanting – it echoes everywhere and was quite ethereal. Decided to head down for some breakfast.

Here’s the lobby.

Strolled around and checked it out outside.

It kind of weird to realize you’re in the jungle, but it’s probably the same when people from here come to where I’m from and think ‘wow, I’m in the forest.’

After checking out the place we came back and met up with everyone. Then we took a cruise!

We rode on a big flat barge that was pulled by a little boat. This is the Kwai River.

The famous Bridge On The River Kwai.

I think I’m wrong on this one – it’s not Burma but Cambodia. By the way – notice the music in the background?

We stopped to visit the memorial to those who died building the bridge in WW2.

It was a pretty sad place to be honest. What was amazing though is that I ended up having a conversation about politics, global food sourcing and war with a guy from the UK and a guy from Scandinavia. Was really cool.

Staying out of the hot sun, playing with the parents’ iPad.

A boat full of partiers on the Mekong Delta.

They gave everyone these little tightly wrapped cold towels – was nice to put on your neck after walking to the war memorial – very hot day.

Talking noodles on the return trip.

A large golden Buddha on the shore of the Kwai river. There were quite a few amazing sights by the water – temples and statues everywhere.

We ended up where we began, at the Dheva Mantra resort to have some lunch.

Quite an array of fruit!

Had some slow cooked eggs, Chinese sausage, cucumber and rice. Then it was a long bus ride back to Bangkok.

For our last night in Bangkok, we ended up getting to stay in a corner suite on the 29th floor.

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The view was just amazing here – really something to behold.

We had a bit of time before the big farewell dinner, so we went and checked out one of the places I’ve been dying to go to in Asia – a 7-11. You might say ‘but why?’ Well…

Well, need I say more? Instant noodles of all kinds and brands – and mostly ones I’ve never seen before or have access to here. I decided to get a couple bags of them and hope they’d make it through US customs, but figured they wouldn’t. But, a worthy gamble since I don’t know when I’ll have the chance to try this again!

Was nice to finally meet Ms. Ratha (far left) – she also was very pivotal in setting up the trip. Gonna miss everyone!

The dinner was international style and they had the largest ham and beef roast I’ve ever seen. I went straight for the seafood – huge river prawn, squid, mussels and some asparagus. What was also amazing is that once you finish a beer, another one kept magically appearing. At one point I looked at my sister and said ‘watch this.’ I finished my beer, set it down and then started counting backward from 5. Right before I had a chance to say one, a hand appeared removing my empty glass and a full one appeared right there.

Everyone was presented a special commemorative framed piece of golden artwork – was really nice of them!

Right before going to sleep there was a knock at the door. Three of the ladies from Thai President Foods brought me this – mee crob! I had mentioned that I would love to try it while in Thailand. They actually went out and found me some! Was really nice! Imagine a Thai rice krispy treat, sticky and full of spices, peppers, and more. I’m really going to miss this – it’s been such an amazing trip.

The Ramen Rater’s Trip To Thailand: Day 2 – Factory Tour & More

Day 1 * Day 2 * Day 3 * Day 4 * Day 5 * Day 6

After some sleep, we headed down to breakfast. The Chatrium had a big breakfast buffet which was really nice – I would say my favorite part was all the fruit . One thing I’ve found is that when you’re in Asia, you’ve got to eat a lot of two things: seafood and fruit. Because it’s good there. Damn good. I ended up trying some dim sum and some other interesting things.

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After breakfast, we met up with Mr. Banks. We headed off to the factory first thing. One thing we noticed around were lots of big purple billboards. As it turns out, April 2nd was the Princess’ birthday – click here to find out more.

On the way to the factory

So where is the noodle factory? Why Sriracha of course! What might surprise many is that the red rooster sauce everyone knows as Sriracha sauce isn’t super popular here.

The gate at Thai President Foods.

Entering the factory – everything smells like fried noodles! Was really nice.

Not sure but I’m guessing this is palm oil used to fry the noodles.

The first thing we did was watch a movie on this huge screen. It was all about Thai Foods and their products and company achievements.

Then we got to take a walk down the line and see the noodles being made! I can say first hand that this place was about as clean as it gets – standards are critically important in the noodles and food manufacturing business.

Walking down the line.

After the noodles come off the line, these two make sure they are in their little trays. If not, they tap them in.

Busy at the factory.

Packaging noodles.

Ms. Sumonrut, the RD & QA Manager and Mr. Songphop, the Regulatory Affairs Researcher took us around the R&D lab!

The R&D team!

They had homemade dishes and their instant version for me to try.

Talking food and trying it – really good stuff! It was an amazing tour I’ll never forget!

After the tour, we drove along the coast to Pattaya. This place was amazing; the smell of incense everywhere and this amazing temple by the sea.

We stopped at a seaside restaurant.

The food here was amazing – sea bass, morning glory in sauce, cashew chicken. We let Mr. Banks order figuring he’d know what was good – and he did!

Okay take a look at this. Take a long look. This sambal was like nothing I’ve tasted before – spicy from chillies, citrus hits from lemongrass, and a myriad of garlic and other herbs and spices. You grab some of the steamed sea bass and put a little of this on top. It was probably one of the best flavors I experienced in Thailand.

Some of the best squid I’ve ever had.

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Some neat street art.

On the way back to the hotel for a rest before the welcome dinner.

Amazing sunset out our hotel room’s window.

So Thai President Foods invites distributors every year for a special ‘agent’s meeting.’ It alternates by region every year and this year was the European Agents’ Meeting. People who distribute MAMA noodles all over Europe were there!

Everyone got to introduce themselves – here’s what I had to say (public speaking’s not my strong suit haha).

Got to meet some very nice people and have some tasty food! Jellyfish, crab, river prawn, prawn ball and my favorite…

This is duck – sliced very thin. You would take a pancake (the kind you would find with moo-shu pork) and put a slice of the duck on and one of these little bundles with spring onion and add some sauce, wrap it up and devour. Tasty fun stuff!

36th

The dinner was on the 36th floor of The Chatrium Hotel – and the view was spectacular. What a day!

The Ramen Rater’s Trip To Thailand: Day 1 – Departure & Arrival

THAITRIP-HEAD

Day 1 * Day 2 * Day 3 * Day 4 * Day 5 * Day 6

A few months ago, I received an email from Ms. Pojjanee over the Thai President Foods. They make MAMA instant noodles and I had recently done a Meet The Manufacturer series with them. It was just after New Year’s and she asked if my wife and I would like to visit their factories in Thailand! There was one hitch though – my wife would be in her third trimester of her pregnancy at the time of the trip and we both agreed that it might be a little too much for her unfortunately. My sister was happy to take her place if it was alright, and it was. With that, here we go on our trip!

So the first leg of our flight left from Seattle, Washington at 1:50am May 14th. A well-packed plane took off on time.

We were greeted to water bottles in our seats. I had no clue how many water bottles I’d bsee on our trip – good thing really; Asia’s a hot place this time of year!

On the little screen embedded in the seatback in front of us, you can watch movies as well as this little GPS animation – really amazing that most of the time we were at 35,000ft, going over 500mph and the temperature outside was usually 40 degrees below zero – that’s cold!

After about 12 hours, we arrived in Taipei at Taoyuan Airport. We had a couple hours to mill around so we checked things out.

Back in October on my trip through here on my way to Penang, the theme was large sculptures of insects and beetles on fruit. This time, little people with large eyeball heads was the theme.

A Hello Kitty airplane! I found out they have Hello Kitty neck pillows, Hello Kitty food and even Hello Kitty printed toilet paper on these.

The Hello Kitty airplanes have their own Hello Kitty gate, and nearby, a Hello Kitty breastfeeding room.

We opted to skip this one – sounded a little rough.

Next was our flight to Bangkok – we were glad that it was much shorter than the 12 hours it took to get to Taipei!

Here’s my sister on a travelator at Suvarnabhumi airport in Bangkok. Getting through security was really easy and the man who checked my passport even smiled at me at the end! We got our luggage and met the guys who took us to our hotel room to relax a bit before going out to have something to eat.

Bangkok’s street were bustling with motorbikes and cars. Hot, humid and vibrant.

We stayed at the Chatrium Hotel, which is next to the Chaophraya river, a main waterway through Bangkok.

The room was very spacious and comfortable – but the real perk was outisde on the balcony.

We both almost fell over when we saw this amazing view. We were on the 23rd floor and could see everything! We tried to relax a bit but basically ended up just staring out the window just saying ‘wow’ a lot.

A view from the balcony.

The guys picked us up again and took us to a restaurant on the river called Lotus. Here we have some creamy shrimp tom yum soup.

Crab curry.

I had mentioned that I was very interested in trying Durian. Durian in known as the King of Fruit!

It’s a tough one to describe – definitely has to be experienced firsthand. It’s texture is kind of like a banana mixed with the stringiness of what you’d find inside a pumpkin. It has a very creamy kind of texture, reminiscent of papaya and ice cream. The one thing is that it has a smell – very strong smell!

A video my sister took of me trying fresh Durian for the first time. Mr. Banks (across from me) seemed fascinated to see how I’d react to the flavor.

They gave us a little sealed tray of it to have after dinner in the room. Now, during my time in Langkawi I remember seeing a sign in the hotel there that said no pets or Durian was allowed. Back at the Chatrium Hotel, we were going up the elevator and I noticed it started to smell. When we got to the room, it became quite evident that the smell was quickly filling the room! We tried putting it into a couple plastic bags, but no dice – the King of Fruit couldn’t be stopped! We knew then it had to go away!

We went back down to the lobby where I asked how it should be disposed up – the concierge had a very disapproving look and said it wasn’t allowed in the hotel and that I should find a receptacle outside the hotel to put it. Here’s the little trash can we found a little ways down. It’s funny – I really liked Durian a lot in my mouth, but not so much in my nose! It was really nice to now have a Durian story with me now.

Finally it was time to go to sleep – a long journey to Bangkok was over and a week of seeing new places, people and sights await!

Travels: Back From Thailand

So our trip to Thailand was absolutely amazing – met some really great people, checked out two noodle factories, tried some great food, saw wonderful sights! All this said, it’s good to be back home. I’m recovering from jet lag and will be posting a day-by-day travelogue in a week or so as a new Meet The Manufacturer will be starting very shortly. Until then, let me just say that Thailand was so different from expectations; I thought since it was so close to Penang and Langkawi (about a 2 hour flight) that it would be much the same, but boy was I wrong! It’s completely different! Can’t wait to share it with everyone!

#1032: MAMA Authentic Thai Cuisine Pad Thai

I reviewed the instant in a smaller pack quite a while ago. It’s got a few seasoning packets and this one only has one big packet. Definitely not instant as the instructions ask for an interesting preparation method. Let’s dig in!

The export sticker. Notice it says there’s shrimp.

Here’w the back of the packet (click image to enlarge). Check out the instructions – much different than most.

The rice noodle block.

This is a really big packet!

Here’s a little bit of the seasoning.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added rib eye beef, red bell pepper, sweet onion, green onion and instead of crushed peanuts (which I didn’t have) I used some Peanut Butter & Co. ‘The Heat Is On’ spicy peanut butter!  The noodles are interesting; not very chewy but have a nice consistency. The flavor is quite good – sweet and has a nice depth of spices. I like it – 4.0 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 052026000258 – get it here!

MAMA TV ad.

#664: Thai Kitchen Bangkok Curry Instant Rice Noodle Soup

Curry. Always sounds good to me! Thai curry usually is a very tasty thing to behold – let’s see if this pack does it justice.

Here’s everything on the back (click image to enlarge).

Rice noodle block. Hoping these aren’t bad.

Seasoning powder and oil.

I decided to try steeping these.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added one fried egg with a little Tony Chachere’s Creole seasoning, some Kizami Shoga (pickled ginger), a little bok choy and finally some Ajishima Kimchi Furikake.  Well, the noodles weren’t all that great – kinda funky. The broth was excellent though – very nice flavor. Middle of the road here; 2.75 out of 5.0 stars. UPC barcdoe 737628047000 – get it here.

A guy goes to Newcastle and checks out Rupali restaurant, home of the hottest curry

This sounds good – Thai Curry Salmon