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Food, glorious food at Mae Hia, a diversity of Northern delicacies in one suburb.


KaptainRob
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Whilst many visitors come to this beautiful province for culture, temples, mountains and rainforest, it's the abundance of fresh produce and quality foods one might enjoy here that is often overlooked.

Local markets always fascinate and you'll find some good ones here.  Muang Mai city market being a huge wholesale precinct it's not great for tourists as much of it is open air and quite congested, but it's a great place for local to shop.

My favourite market is Mae Hia, on the canal road as you head south toward Night Safari.  Undercover and clean, you'll find ready-cooked food vendors at the main road end with fresh produce thru the centre all the way back toward a fresh meat section at the rear.

Visitors should treat themselves to one of Chiang Mai's best sai ua, spiced pork sausage, as this man (on right of pic below) sells a top quality product that ensures not only a queue but also phone orders from restaurants and hotels.  His spice mix is well balanced, the meat is good quality and not greasy.  Ask for a sample.

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Mae-Hia-Market-Best-Sai-Oua-Chiang-Mai-S

Mae Hia market is surrounded by other shops and businesses plus a Rimping Supermarket for imported foodstuffs, wine and beer.  There's also a foodcourt and other cafes to choose from.

The Mae Hia market faces Canal Road almost on the junction with the #3029 ring road which is fast becoming Chiang Mai's premier restaurant precinct.  Many fine establishments may be enjoyed within a very short distance but my favourite is CHOM.  Opened as a small bistro/cafe outlet about 3 years ago, within a few weeks it was inundated daily by local visitors as word spread via Facebook and LINE about their awesome rainforest gardens and excellent food.

 

CHOM expanded with a massive new building, and extra car parking, and also extended the rainforest ... it still pulls a crowd so arrive early or better still, pre-book a table.

Their menu is extensive and includes exquisite and tasty Northern Thai dishes such as Hanglay curry.  They also have imported beer on tap and various rooms dependent on your need for aircon, al fresco or private dining.  Food and service is always excellent, and prices are reasonable.  We are regulars there!

 

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@KaptainRobGood morning, KR and what a tasty post you've entered.

I absolutely love a good, spicy sausage and those that this guy's made certainly look the business. If they taste as good as they look, no wonder he's busy.

You don't have shares in the Mae Hia market by any chance? . . . Only joking!

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45 minutes ago, King Cotton said:

@KaptainRobGood morning, KR and what a tasty post you've entered.

I absolutely love a good, spicy sausage and those that this guy's made certainly look the business. If they taste as good as they look, no wonder he's busy.

You don't have shares in the Mae Hia market by any chance? . . . Only joking!

haha KC, wish I did own a bit of Mae Hia market as it's a goldmine.  Should have bought one of the shophouses 9 years ago @ 2.xx mB, they're all full of pharmacies, gold shops and the like... 6 to 8 of each so business must be good.

I was never a big fan of sausages of any description unless cremated on a bbq but these sai ua are exceptional.  I'll send you some in the post or come visit in person and indulge yourself.

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  • 1 month later...

I sure do miss the carefree evening vibe and walkability Chiang Mai used to have in the night markets.  Sai ua is one of my favorites and I used to try as many variations/recipes of it as possible from all the different vendors.  

I bet the old city is looking like a shadow of its former self at the moment, what areas are the most active these days, I'm guessing Chiang Mai University (CMU) area?  I keep hearing Hang Dong is up and coming outside of town, interesting how the focus has shifted outside the moat now that tourism is on pause.

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3 minutes ago, TiT said:

I sure do miss the carefree evening vibe and walkability Chiang Mai used to have in the night markets.  Sai ua is one of my favorites and I used to try as many variations/recipes of it as possible from all the different vendors.  

I bet the old city is looking like a shadow of its former self at the moment, what areas are the most active these days, I'm guessing Chiang Mai University (CMU) area?  I keep hearing Hang Dong is up and coming outside of town, interesting how the focus has shifted outside the moat now that tourism is on pause.

Nimman area  and old city very quiet and many outlets closed, some permanently.  Went for lunch at Rimping mae Hia last week and their Bistro gone, replaced with more wine and beer.  Booked a special ocaision at Chom only to find the big new room closed and we dined in the original smaller room ... service and food quality poor.  Sign of the times so we'll  eat at home for the foreseeable future.

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Just now, KaptainRob said:

Nimman area  and old city very quiet and many outlets closed, some permanently.  Went for lunch at Rimping mae Hia last week and their Bistro gone, replaced with more wine and beer.  Booked a special ocaision at Chom only to find the big new room closed and we dined in the original smaller room ... service and food quality poor.  Sign of the times so we'll  eat at home for the foreseeable future.

A shame, this whole situation is really hurting Chiang Mai.  It seems the islands always seem to get the press and media time as that's what most tourists see, but to see a long-time favorite of mine struggle with no clear plan to recover is incredibly disappointing. 

I imagine the night bazaar and loi kroh are gone for good, they were struggling even before covid.  Nimman and Maya, maybe the Chinese will revive them later, hard to say - but I think the era of the western digital nomad will move/relocate to other countries offering more suitable visa options, like Bali seems to be doing.

Chiang Mai is going to look a lot different after all of this is over, that's for sure.  I really wonder how many western food options are going to survive...

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8 minutes ago, TiT said:

Chiang Mai is going to look a lot different after all of this is over, that's for sure.  I really wonder how many western food options are going to survive...

Actually CM may come thru this better than some of the southern locations due to the steady migration of Thai's and Chinese, the latter on pause for now.  Construction of new houses  continues unabated.

Western food outlets?  The Dukes is hanging in there and fast food joints continue to do ok.  Quality Japanese [eg Fuji] always half full even on the worst days whilst many others are empty or closed anyway.

The strong will survive and others will replace the dead, eventually.

Frankly, if not for TV News, mask wearing and lack of custom in retail outlets, you'd not know Covid was a problem.  Hopefully it remains so.

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555 YES! If you see hansum man there its ME...Im there all the time as I live nearby..love the Dragon sushi guy up the road a bit a he was a hiso bkk sushi chef and sells great sushi and japanese dirt cheap

Also the BBQ steak guy next door--always empty but they are nice--speak english and great western food

My thai friend has a little shop in the food court and like the organic salad lady too...great place mae hia

Also behind the market are a few 20 baht shops and super cheap thai massage...legit massage..no happy!

And behind them is a huge second hand clothes shop--massive--I get good western brands sizes cheap too

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We've had the Dragon Sushi a few times but now it's so quiet I worry about hygiene.

Foodcourt ok, used to buy from one lovely lady with hair dyed weird colours but she spoke English and her food was very tasty ... gone now, sad ?

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