Jun 18, 2012
Near the traffic lights in Mae Nam, Koh Samui
Thailand is such a clean country I would be happy to try the food at most places; the street vendors are great as are a number of small local Thai cafés. We have had the opportunity to test drive a few local places now we have been on Koh Samui for two months. One of our favourite cheap eats is at Grandma Noodles; we could eat here every day.
Firstly I must explain that is not her name but as the café has no name and we don’t speak Thai and she doesn’t speak English we named it Grandma Noodle after the kind old gappy toothed lady serving the noodles.
I have always thought a true testament to quality of any chef or restaurant is the size of the menu. Many restaurants in Koh Samui has ridiculously large menus serving all manner of Thai dishes, pizzas, burgers Italian and so on, but not Grandma Noodle she does one dish only and it is superb every time!
Grandma Noodle has been serving noodles a long time and her dish is unique to her. She gives you a bowl of rice noodles and then pours two delicious sauces on, the first is a creamy real Thai peanut sauce and the other is a mild chilli and spice sauce. You add you own accompaniments; there are trays of fresh beansprouts, Thai aubergine, baby cucumbers and a selection of herbs. There are always two side dishes of a cucumber and carrot salad and a beansprout and gherkin salad and the crowning glory to this dish is a boiled egg (or two if you’re hungry).
I love thus style of eating, it’s what I call ‘interactive dining’ where you are throwing in your own herbs and peeling your boiled egg and customising your dish. It is so much fun, we take all our friends their and everyone loves it as much as we do. I mustn’t forget the most important part which is the noodles are only 30 Thai baht and eggs are an extra 8 Thai baht each. This is less than 65p a meal.
The atmosphere is truly Thai and it’s often only Thai people eating lunch with their family, it is a lovely informal and happy place. I only have one criticism of Grandma Noodle and that is she is only open at lunchtime and not in the evening (she is in her 70’s at least to be fair).
Even when I leave Thailand I will always remember the great Thai noodles of Grandma Noodle, these are already some of the fondest memories I have of Koh Samui life.
There is only one set of traffic lights in Mae Nam, if you are coming from Bo Phut/ Chaweng, turn immediately left at the traffic lights. If coming from Na Thon turn immediately right at the traffic lights. It is the last shop on the left of that row around 3 shops down from the Barracuda restaurant.