[Bangkok] Jay Fai - 1 Michelin Star Street Food Hawker

Rating: ❤❤❤❤1/4 (4.25/5)

By now, Jay Fai needs little introduction as the only street food restaurant to receive 1 Michelin Star in the inaugural Bangkok Guide and was recently featured in the popular "Street Food" documentary series by Netflix! Perhaps best known for wearing ski goggles while she works, the 75-year-old chef is diligent and hardworking; she cooks in front of open flames from 2 pm until midnight 5 days a week (the shop is closed Sundays and Mondays). The restaurant mainly serves seafood dishes cooked over charcoal and the most famous dish is the crab meat omelette. While there have been criticisms over the high prices for "street food", Jay Fai sources high quality ingredients especially seafood which is reflected in the prices.

Due to the soaring popularity of the restaurant, Jay Fai had to implement a reservation system (yes you can reserve ahead of time)! The way to reserve is to send an email to jayfaibangkok@gmail.com so you don't waste any time waiting. Otherwise, you can try your luck by walking in before opening time - I've heard that some people arrive as early as 10:30 am to put their name down and then come back at opening time to wait.

The shop is simple and no frills; the cleanliness is acceptable and it's open-aired so expect it to be hot while you eat. The menu (which is available in English) has about 40 dishes that you can order and are separated into main, noodle and rice categories. Our dishes arrived around 20 minutes after we placed our orders, but I've heard that the wait can be longer during peak times.

The most famous dish at Jay Fai is the Crab Meat Omelette (1000 Baht)! It's definitely worth the hype as it was deep-fried to perfection - the omelette was not oily at all and stuffed full of deliciously sweet crab meat. There's also a hot sauce provided on the side.

The other must-try dish is the Drunken Noodles (600 Baht)! You can choose it with a selection of seafood or prawns (we chose the former), and the stir-fried rice noodles were intensely flavored with a hot and spicy sauce, basil leaves and fresh chili. The wok hei was definitely there and everything including the noodles and seafood was cooked just right.

One of my favorite Thai dishes is the Tom Yum Goong (800 Baht) so I had to try it here. The soup was packed with flavors and filled to the brim with seafood; the only thing was it was pretty hot in the restaurant and drinking hot soup became kind of unbearable after a while. The good thing is there is a dry version so you can still taste the hot and sour flavors without the broth!

The last dish we tried was the Stir-fried Crab Meat in Yellow Curry (1500 Baht) which was not as impressive as the other dishes. The chunky crab meat was very nice of course but the flavors were on the mild side and not really what we expected. If you had to choose just one crab dish, definitely go for the crab meat omelette.

Check out the video I took of Jay Fai in action!

Jay Fai
327 Maha Chai Rd, Bangkok 10200, Thailand
Tel: +66 2 223 9384
Reservation Email: jayfaibangkok@gmail.com

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