I have delayed all the other food writing I should be doing right now to tell you about today’s launch of the Old Car Sidewalk Market’s second location at Baan Silom (ตลาดนัดรถโบราณ 2 at บ้านสีลม ถนนสีลมซอย 19). The event will happen weekly on Wednesdays and Fridays at the mouth of Silom Road’s Soi 19. Calling it the old car market seems more accurate than the vintage car market which makes me think there’s gonna be a lawn full of restored cars from the the 60’s and 70’s— but I made that up since there sign only appears in Thai. Actually, to be most accurate it should be called the jalopy or hooptie market— but whatever, you need to know it’s a cool market, not terribly difficult to reach (unlike the original Kaset Nawamin location) and the atmosphere in the driveway of Baan Silom, along with the diversity of the surrounding restaurants, will make this one of the best events of it’s type in Bangkok.
Right off the bat let’s get a few things straight. This ain’t the food court of some overhyped mall suddenly transported outdoors, nor a garage sale full of overpriced “vintage” shit from rich kids. It’s definitely not created for urbanistas — whoever the hell they are, it’s not stuff for sale piled bonfire style in the middle of a random alley, and it’s not run by the Bangkok Farmer’s Market or any other psycho foreigners with plans to take over the earth. The Siam and Sukhumvit areas of Bangkok suffer from a string of unscrupulously organized markets I’m less than enthusiastic about. I’ll spare you a longer rant if you agree to deal with me being unusually excited about the arrival of this vintage jalopy market. Deal?
The market happens at Baan Silom, a faux neo-colonial collection of matching buildings which house an eclectic set of restaurants, galleries, and the Heritage Baan Silom Hotel. The buildings create a beautiful backdrop for the market and their L-shaped driveway provides ample space for an activity. In the middle there’s a courtyard with grass where in the past there have been art markets and other events, but nothing which has really taken off until now. I’ve been visiting the area’s diverse set of restaunts for a long time and have always thought it was a prime location for hosting a dynamic food event. Well that’s finally happening and here’s a bunch of photos of both permanent restaurants and pop up shops who have brought their food to the event.
The majority of the food on offer at the vintage market is Thai. It happens to be food Tha food I really enjoy too. Thai sausages like sai oua, kanom gin noodles in curry, freshly cooked woon sen noodles with prawn, and even bua loy — the traditional Thai rice balls in coconut milk.
To drink there’s half a tuk tuk serving up traditional Thai teas, an entire van dedicated to vintage Thai style sodas called Retro Soda, and one VW van serving beer and basic cocktails.
There are a few western style offerings, also run by Thais, most prominently baby pizzas, Thai style steaks, and a new food truck called Hip Hot Dog offering hot dogs and hamburgers.
The market is pretty orderly. There’s only a certain amount of spaces given to food, handicrafts, junk, and clothes. Besides a few wires helping make sure the stalls were well lit, there are clear pathways for walking and because it’s one of the first events, it wasn’t crowded. Since it goes until midnight, I’m hopeful it will remain that way for a while. I’m including photos of a few non-food items for all you silly ass people who like to spend money on things that aren’t edible.
Finally here’s a sample of the restaurants in the area. Everything from Thaitalian to a high end steak house to sushi –is right there in the same little plaza, one which is probably better known for it’s Starbucks than those food outlets. Well, now you know. Having these places in the same plaza or in the Silom Soi 19 next door up the ante on all this food talk entirely!
This week’s specials at Pasta House including bbq duck confit and spinach stuffed cannelloni pasta. If you remember, this is also the place with the grapow pizza.
Ottoman Turkish Restaurant
Sekerpare a syrupy Turkish dessert at the Ottoman Turkish Restaurant tastes like the Turkish version of gulab jamun. They gave me this after I got startled that they got startled, that I wanted to take pictures. This restaurant has been opened for around three months and has plenty of interesting looking dishes on the menu, but not enough people snooping around with cameras apparently. This new Turkish spot also has the most attractive patio for people watching (unless you prefer sitting in a shisha cloud at Nadimos).
I’ve yet to try 661, but you can see it’s a big jump up from the other food in the area and in the building which used to house Nui’s, a failed jazz bar. Their bar is also very well stocked and if you really want to ignore your surroundings they have a Dom Pérignon Champagne Lounge where you can sit and feel fancy before ordering a steak and real wine.
Jazz Sushi by Sax Society
Now that Nui’s is defunct and 661 has moved in, the best live music in walking distance is definitely this mini-sushi bar. When you see this place you’ll wonder how a full band can even fit in this restaurant. Needless to say, it gets pretty cozy. Check their lineup to see who’s playing each week and the sushi is decent too!
That’s just a sample!
There’s still Laotian, Lebanese, and Taling Pling and a few smaller Thai restaurants in the strip.
The vintage market at Baan Silom would be well served by some live music and more information about just what the hell is going on. I could also see a lot more happening in the way of alcoholic drink offering. Here’s a summary of what I was able to find out:
- 12pm – 12am market is what the sign says, but things don’t really seem to kickoff until the evening. I’d recommend going at 6pm or later.
- The market happens at Baan Silom every Wednesday and Friday and many of the vendors also vend at the original location’s pop up market at The Festival Walk Mall on Kaset Nawamin.
- There isn’t a ton of seating, so this may be problematic in the future. However, there’s plenty of restaurants to pop your head into and grab a table.
- If you don’t already know, this slice of Silom is big in the art scene. Expect the galleries nearby to get involved, so there’s more art in future markets too.
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