If someone were to ask me what was my favorite part about Thailand, I could easily point to any of the following reasons.
1) the great beaches
2) the ridiculous food
3) pretty thai girls
4) EVERYTHING is cheap
5) clubbing in RCA
But one of the absolutely, understated areas of Thailand is how awesome their 7-Eleven is. Yes, you read that right, 7-Elevens. If you are scratching your head and wondering why, don’t. Unlike the traditional 7-Elevens that we in the US, 7-Elevens in many parts of Asia are classified as “high end convenience stores.” Not only do they offer hot food/snacks/meals, but they also serve as important pillars within the community that offer services such as the pre-paid sim cards and stamps.
When you first walk into a 7-Eleven, you are inundated with food and snack choices that are completely over whelming. Entire shelves stocked with food items that you may or may not recognize, coolers full of exotic Asian beverages and hot lunch items that borderline on awesomely ridiculous. For me, I can spend upwards of 15 – 20 minutes just browsing! It also serves as a great jumping off pre-party avenue since their selection of canned beers are plentiful and most importantly, cheap. There’s also a large selection of meals(eg. dim sum, sausages, breakfast foods) that one can pick up, heat up and go. Check out the commercial below to get a sense.
Ah, the standard chips aisles, typically dominated by Lay’s.
There are definitely some exotic flavors that probably wouldn’t fly here in the western world. Pink salmon flavored chips were available at all the locations I went to in Bangkok and in the island of Phuket. Whereas the bbq meat(assumingly) flavor on the left was found everywhere. As to how they taste… I can’t say they distinctly tasted like their pictures, but I find asian snack foods tend to be overly ambitious with their flavors. Not to say it wasn’t salty and delicious. I did end up probably eating close to 20 bags worth while I was in Thailand for the week.
The Thai’s love their canned coffee and one of the most popular brand is Nescafe mixed with carnation milk that is more sweet than bitter. Here are a few canned versions that are all pretty bomb. Also, they are incredibly cheap. If I remember correctly, each can is 15 baht which equates to about 50 cents USD.
One of my favorite thing to do is buy a package of Asian ramen, take out the flavor packet and pour the packet content back into the bag of noodles. I would then crush up the noodles(in the bag), shake it up, and eat it as is. You have an instant salty snack that’s chocked full of MSG goodness. There’s also a wide assort of sandwiches and ready made food that the cashier can pop into a microwave for you and nuke the crap out of it. For some inexplicable reason, I became really addicted to this chicken sandwich. I don’t know if it’s just the alcohol talking, but for 30 baht($1 USD) you can get a taste of heaven at 2am in the morning. Whatever the reason, these sandwiches were damn good and I highly recommend you enjoy one as soon a possible.
You can find 7-Elevens just around any street corners. In fact, it’s not uncommon to find more than one on the same block or within larger buildings. If you still don’t believe me on how awesome the Thai 7-Elevens are, then visit their Facebook page.