The Sao Ching Cha area is filled with good eateries, to much for a quick visit. One of them is Phraeng Phuthon Egg Noodles, which has been around for more than 60 years. The char siew (a popular way to flavor and prepare barbecued pork in Cantonese cuisine) is mixed with honey that gives the meat its sweetness. The noodles are good, slightly chewy as they should be. The shop is absolutely worth a visit to fill your eager for egg noodles, but you need to know a thing or two. But first a few words on the area.
Phraeng Phuthon Egg Noodles serves of course excellent egg noodles. And they’re made the old authentic way, like at Jakkee at Victory Monument. Slightly chewy as they should be. Their honey glazed roasted red pork is good, still roasted with the traditional method with charcoal in a wooden barrel. The vegetables are spot on good and the crab meat is good. An Asian surf and turf. The broth is absolutely delicious, so if you go haeng style (dry), make sure you get the soup on the side.
So what is not good? It’s how the crab meat has been cleaned from their claws. It’s not properly done so you sit there picking small pieces out of your mouth every now and then. The good think is that you can skip the crab meat. It’s really a detail, but a detail due to laziness. So unnecessary. That said, I wouldn’t hesitate to eat at Phraeng Phuthon again as the food is very good and the egg noodles among the best.There is plenty of other good eateries in the area. Check out my area guide for the Sao Ching Cha neighborhood for nearby options. You can also check out my Bangkok Food Map to see good eateries all over Bangkok.
Name: Phraeng Phuthon Egg Noodles
Food: Old school egg noodles with pork/crab etc
Open: Daily 10am – 4pm
Address: Phraeng Phuthon Road (also written Phraeng Puthon)
How to get there: MRT or BTS isn’t and option as Phraeng Phuthon is set in a central old city location. Also Taxi drivers hardly know it by name unless you have a good pronunciation, so be prepared to show a map to the driver. Using boat taxi is your express opportunity to get to Phraeng Phuton, especially in the rush hours. Check out Khlong Saen Saep Express Boat and my article about it. It involves a 10 minute walk. You take the boat taxi to the end station, same place as if you want to visit the Golden Mountain or eat at Jay Fai, Thip Samai or Leung Pha Pad Thai. Wat Ratchabophit is a short walk south and the Grand Palace is no more than a kilometer to the west. It takes around 15 minutes to walk here from either Khao San Road or Tha Chang express boat pier.
See map below.
Phraeng Phuthon architecture
The Phraeng Phuthon (and the area) is a quite interesting one, being a result of the 20th century architectural campaign set up by King Rama V. A royal palace belonging to Prince Phutaret, a son of King Rama 4, once stood here. After the Prince passed away, the land was purchased by King Rama 5, leading to the construction of the European style row-houses standing there today. Many of them decorated with beautiful fretted wooden works, inspired by neo-classical European design. The houses are painted in cream-coloured punctuated by teal (light-medium blue-green color, similar to cyan) and deep blue-green on original wooden shutters.
But it was the great efforts by the local community with some governmental support and donated paint that saved it as it once really started to fade away. Today, it is one of the best preserved heritage neighborhood in Bangkok. Aside from the regular shop-houses, two other buildings of interest are found in the Phraeng Phuthon area. One of them a 19th century prince’s palace, now serving as Sukhuman Health Centre (Red Cross). The other one, close by on the neighboring street Phraeng Nara, is the Talaphat Suksa Schoolhouse. Once a school, but today abandoned and with real needs of restoration. That said, it’s wood carvings and faded olive green paint and French veranda is a photogenic postcard. In December 2017 Phraeng Nara was unfortunately hit by a fire and 13 houses were severely damaged.
Also, at a corner of Phraeng Phuthon you find one of the locals that has been running a classic car workshop for decades. His projects are to be found on the street — including a few Austin cars and a 1930s gangster-style Ford. The area is easy approachable and you don’t find the regular Khao San Road cliental in big masses here, even if it’s only a 10 minutes walk away.
Today, Local businesses including plenty of restaurants is found on open-fronted ground floors, and has in some cases, been operated for generations. The locals take pride in their neighbourhood, keeping it clean while filling it with potted plants, Thai flags and artistic touches that come together in charming dishevelment. Phraeng Phuthon also have an annual arts and crafts festival in mid December were the neighborhood is filled with street performers, handmade lanterns, animated puppets and tables with local crafts. Also a secondhand market is running just across Khlong Lort, offering a chance to score one-of-a-kind works of art.
The Grand Palace and Wat Pho are of course main sights when in Bangkok, but nearby you find this hidden-away small and modest neighborhood that your camera will like. And so will your imaginations. It’s located in the heart of the Rattanakosin historic district.
The locals here do take pride in presenting their neighborhood, contrary to many other areas of Bangkok. They keep it clean and use potted plants, Thai flags and artistic touches to create a charming atmosphere. The authorities certainly made a wise decision when they officially declared the houses protected heritage buildings.