We’ve all heard the saying that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and it’s never been more true for me until I came to Bangkok. I consider myself a pretty adventurous eater. I’ll try anything at least once. In our time here I’ve decided that most Thai food isn’t my favorite thing to eat in the world so I’m very thankful for the vast breakfast spread we have every morning. We never know what food lunch and dinner might bring so breakfast has been a safe place to fuel up for the day. There’s a variety of food from the local Thai cuisine to all our western favorites. I think most people in our Cohort will miss the French Toast, it’s the best French toast I’ve ever had.
Here’s a little video of all our breakfast offerings. Enjoy!
Being my first time out of the US, I’ve seen a lot that has been interesting. When seeing everything new it was comforting to find a little piece of America in the middle of Bangkok. Yesterday on our business visit to Pace, the development company that recently purchased Dean & Deluca , we fell back into the US! Dean & Deluca is located in the MahaNakon Cube and is a new market style concept for the brand. They not only have coffee like the stores that are familiar in the US, this store also has packaged foods, confectionary, deli and prepared foods. According to Roger, the director of strategy for Dean & Deluca, since the packaged foods don’t sell as well in Thailand, they have expanded to a fuller menu. This is what brought a group of us back for dinner.
Dinner was delicious! It was just what I needed after the various Thai food we have been eating since we arrived. From Pizza to pasta to sandwiches, this brightly lighted store is a taste of New York in the middle of a bustling Thai city. It was busy the two hours we were there filled with a mix of expats and Thai alike. In the land of smiles, this American was truly smiling.
Our third full day in Thailand and I feel that we have experience a lifetime of memories already. Today, we met with Jackie, the Managing Director of Ping’s Restaurants, it was refreshing to see the passion and dedication they have for their brand. Ping’s Restaurants is a family business that started in Singapore, but they felt the business could grow better in Thailand. Their commitment to authentic real Thai-Chinese food really shows not only in the flavors and menu but also in the relationship the brand has with the employees.
At the end of the visit we had the opportunity to taste some of the most popular menu items. One word that really describes Thai food is spicy! Even though I was not able to enjoy any of the sea food items the team was very accommodating and made items especially for me. I was very pleased with the dishes that were prepared especially for me and I was very thankful on how much they wanted me to have the same experience as the rest of the cohort.
I am going to close with something that Jackie mentioned during our conversation “business is business but family is always the most important thing”. Even though I am not part of the family, they made me feel like it when they went out the way to make me feel welcomed and included. I will always remember the chicken fried rice but I will never forget their kind gesture and authentic smile.
Monday June 22nd, was our first night exploring the city of Bangkok. Myself, Jessica, Joe, Karla and Sarah decide to see an IMAX movie at Siam Paragon, a breath taking mall only a couple blocks from our hotel. To heighten our adventure we decided to travel on the BTS Sky Train. As we exited our hotel, we took a left heading down the street to a near by station, this was our first mistake as later we realized taking a right out of the hotel would have lead us to a closer station. We arrived at the station after a couple minutes of walking, even taking a picture at a nearby McDonalds, to see a sea of people in several different lines. At first, it was very intimidating especially since we did not know what stop we need to exit at. Luckily, Sarah and Joe asked a local who pointed us in the first line to get change for the tickets. As they were doing this Jess Karla and I pulled out the map that Tong had provided us on our first day, to find Siam Paragon on a map, however at the time we forget the name of the mall and thought Armarin Plaza sounded right.
About to ride the famous BTS Sky Train!
After receiving our change we then stood in a second line for a machine to get tickets. Once we all had tickets, we then proceeded to a third line to show our tickets. We definitely stood in the fast pace rush. Once tickets were collected we headed to the gate. An interesting thing we learned was that there is a certain area you stand in when waiting for the train so that those getting off have an area to exit. We had to be little aggressive when the train came as the first time it was very full but we finally made it on the second time.
Once off we headed to what we thought was the mall however we soon learned it was the wrong place, we proceed to walk underneath the BTS until we found Central World Mall, once again not the right place but finally in the distance we saw Siam Paragon and we all realized that was the mall we had been looking for!
After the movie, it was easy to find the BTS as we followed a group of locals! We proceed with all the steps with such ease that we felt like naturals even getting some fun pictures before getting on the train. We thought our stop was Asok until we passed our hotel immediately after the Nana station that is when we realized we should have taken a right out of the hotel and not left. We had a wonderful first night exploring and now we feel almost (not quite) like locals using the BTS.
With complete different and unrecognized names, which I can’t even pronounce, we found brazilian food while taking a night stroll here in Bangkok. Brazilian foods such as Mandioca and Pão de queijo (cheese bread) and a lot of great appetizers, entrées and different and colored drinks made our night, and some of us took the famous ‘Tuk Tuk’ (taxi cab) back to our hotel.
The restaurant that we visited was amazing and featured amazing and stunning views of Bangkok. The neighborhood where the restaurant was located was called ‘Vadhana – Khlong Tan Nuea’ where we could enjoy a view of the city from a high rooftop restaurant lounge.
This is really a great cohort adventure and meeting Bangkok natives has been quite an adventure. The cohort is bonding and truly becoming a family!
Out and about in Bangkok! by Valerie Drebsky and Heitor Bover
After our days visits with tangent foods and American chamber of commerce – Thailand we headed out on the town! A group of us went to get tailor made suits – many of our first ones! They have hundreds of fabrics and tones of styles and you can buy it for decent prices. The best thing is that they are designed especially for you and delivered in two days. And besides the great deal you’ll also have a lot of fun.
Then that same group headed over to a restaurant Jon recommended that was so high up you could see the whole city which seemed like it never ended! What an incredible experience- what a great culture!
Part of the group exploring the streets of Bangkok!
It’s been over five years since I lived in Bangkok. My first day back in the city made me feel as if it was yesterday that I spent two years living and teaching in this amazing city. The Thai people are as friendly as I remembered and the traffic is still as crazy. I feel so lucky to be able to come back to Thailand and share this experience with Cohort 12.
The Cultural Day was the best way to ease into the trip. Our cohort really experienced Thai culture by visiting The Grand Palace and Wat Pho. We saw how important the Buddhist culture is to Thai people and the amazing temples they have built to worship. We took a Bangkok Canal Tour on the Chao Phraya River to see the city from the water. We saw where the nickname “Bangkok, The Venice of Asia” came from because of its many canals. We ended the day at an amazing Thai dinner (Baan Khanitha) right on the river. It was the first time many members of the cohort had tried Thai food and everyone seemed very open to trying new things! The Mango Sticky rice was absolutely delicious. The first day was a great personal experience as well as a bonding experience for Cohort 12. I can’t wait to see what other adventures this trip brings!
Blog Credit: Liliana Molina, Kim Tuttle, Melanie Johnston and Valerie Drebsky.
Cohort 12 visited for the first time our client Jareer Abu-Ali who is the CEO & founder of Tangent foods/New directions. It was a blast! He did a great job presenting to us in preparation for our upcoming presentations (Thursday). His passion for the product was contagious! We cant wait to meet with them again!
Cohort 12 in action during the first meeting of the consulting project with Jareer Abu-Ali, the CEO of Tangent Foods!