Bangkok Restaurant Review: Arawy Vegetarian Restaurant and Wat Suthat

Posted by on Sep 27, 2013 in Travel | 0 comments

For a couple of days while I was in Bangkok my meetings didn’t start until 10am, which meant I had the luxury of getting up early and going for a run or walk and having breakfast outside of the hotel.  One morning I went to Ethos for a dragon fruit and banana smoothie and some of their delicious granola served over fruit with coconut cream. 

Dragonfruit and banana smoothie

Dragon fruit and banana smoothie

The second morning I decided to check out Arawy Vegetarian Restaurant, a little hole-in-the-wall vegetarian restaurant just down the block from the Democracy Monument.  If you read the reviews on Happy Cow, you could be forgiven for giving Arawy a pass.  People talked about a rude owner who charges different prices for “farang” and greasy deep-fried food, which sits out all day in big vats. I was eager, however, to check it out for myself and form my own opinion. I’m glad I did.

Arawy Vegetarian Restaurant

Arawy Vegetarian Restaurant

I got to Arawy just after they opened, at about 7am, to see a variety of curries and soups on display.  I asked the owner what was best and she pointed to the green vegetable curry and dished me up a bowl, along with a big plate of red rice.  Once upon a time I would have balked at the idea of having curry for breakfast, but now as much as I love breakfast foods, it seems silly the way we designate certain foodstuffs to specific times of the day.  The curry was delicious, with nice big chunks of pumpkin, bamboo shoots, and plenty of basil. The coconut milk soup had just the right amount of sweetness, complemented by the very spicy green curry paste.  I was very glad she recommended it.

Green Curry

Green Curry

I had a bit of rice left over and so decided to try a red curry too.  The clear red curry was brimming with thai eggplant, bamboo shoots and mushrooms and was also really yummy. Very spicy, but in a good way!

Clear Red Curry

Clear Red Curry

There were a selection of deep-fried mock meats out as well, but I decided to give them a pass.  As I was finishing the meal, the owner pushed a banana in my hands and said “free.” In all, the two curries and rice with a bottle of water came to just 60 Baht. 

Now, a word about those other reviews: I could see why people might think the owner a bit gruff. She barely speaks English and used mostly gestures to communicate with me. But she was pleasant enough. It bugs me when foreigners act like they are entitled to special treatment.  Be nice! I thought the price for my meal was fair, but if she charges more to “farang,” then so what? My meal came to just under $2, I could afford to pay more than double for it.

So, if you’re in the area, give Arawy a try.  The food is really good! And if you’re experience was anything like mine, you’ll enjoy it!

After I visited Arawy I continued walking down Dinso road and came across a beautiful Buddhist Temple, Wat Suthat Thepwararam. The complex houses the temple (wiharn) and an ordination hall (ubosot), each with a large bronze Buddha inside. 

Wat Suthat

Wat Suthat

What sets this Wat apart is the Buddhas that line the perimeter of the wiharn. The Buddhas toward the front of temple were bronze, but as I walked around I saw Buddhas that were black: some of them matte, others shiny, and some of them wearing saffron scarves, others bare. I had never seen black Buddhas before, so I was pleasantly surprised! And of course I left wondering about their significance. 

wat buddhas

Buddhas

Black Buddhas

Black Buddhas

Black Buddha

Black Buddha

Cute scene!

Cute scene!

Love elephants!

Love elephants!

As I walked toward the ordination hall I heard chanting. Quietly I took off my shoes, walked in and sat down and listened, as monks wrapped in saffron robes chanted their morning prayers.

Chanting monks

Chanting monks

I stayed for a few minutes before I had to rush off to get back to the hotel and prepare for my meetings.  

Arawy Vegetarian Restaurant
Address: 152 Dinso Road (opposite City Hall, near 7-Eleven) 
Hours: 7am – 8pm Daily

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