Food

Netflix's Midnight Asia Episode on Bangkok


At night, Bangkok becomes a place bursting with creativity.

Thai cuisine is one of the most iconic and recognisable cuisines in the world. In fact, the Massaman curry takes the number one spot on CNN’s list of “The World’s 50 Best Foods”. When you’re in Bangkok, a plethora of edible creations can be found at every corner, literally. And no matter how late it is, there will always be a place to accommodate those cravings.

This is what Netflix’s Midnight Asia: Eat · Dance · Dream highlights for one whole episode. Emphasising on drinks and foods one can find after the sun goes down, the docuseries brings out the playful side of the urban areas of Asia.

Of course, a few of our Future Listers can be found in the episode, doing what they do best.

Niks Anuman-Rajadhon founded two bars — Teens of Thailand, and Asia Today — both placed in Soi Nana, a part of the Yaowarat area. Yaowarat is known to both locals and tourists alike as one of the to-go places after dark. The streets are bustling with people queuing up for delicacies and hopping from one great bar to another.

 

Working as a regular behind the counters at both Teens of Thailand and Asia Today, is Tamaryn “Makham” Cooper. Having booked a one-way flight to Thailand at a young age, she fought for her place as a mixologist, while still being thankful for the people that were willing to give her the opportunities she much needed.

However, Tamaryn is not the only one coming to Thailand looking for opportunities. Historically, many arrived in the city as street peddlers, offering their own delicacies and approaches to their cuisine. This, consequently, makes street peddlers and food stalls become one of Bangkok’s identity and is one of the reasons why the city’s cultures can be so cosmopolitan.

“You can find food from almost everywhere around Thailand in the city”, says journalist Choltanutkun Tunatiruj, “And that’s what makes it so colourful and lively”.

She definitely has a point, as it is completely normal to find something to eat even if you’re hungry at four in the morning. Food is so ingrained in our culture that certain popular mooping stalls expect to sell over five thousand units and no one would bat an eye. There are countless places and countless varieties of recipes that going to a new street and buying the same food would be a different experience.

The docuseries tell us that behind every restaurant, every stall, every little hidden gem, are people with their own stories. Many people featured in the episode told their own life stories of debt, family issues, and alike, and food has become part of their way out of those problems. Others use food as a means to display their pleasures of life, wanting those who seek the same pleasures a place to eat, or foods to bring home.

You can watch Midnight Asia: Eat · Dance · Dream on Netflix right now. Bangkok is on the third episode, but each episode shines a spotlight on different Asian cultures, in which all of them are worth checking out and drooling over.