Monday, November 19, 2007

Thailand KFC Ranks High Among Fast Food Experiences

By Scott McLean

Just as many Americans now love Thai food, so do Thai people enjoy American fast foods.

It's obvious that fried chicken is a favorite in Thailand and from my personal observations, KFC is a fixture of Bangkok. After all why should a fondness for fried chicken be an exclusive trait of American life.

While the restaurant chain in the United States and Bangkok, Thailand features tasty fried chicken, meal options and individual items differ greatly.

KFC and other fast food restaurants in Bangkok are found in shopping malls and rarely have their own buildings like in America. Mother Nature doesn't announce downpours ahead of time, so being located in malls has advantages for customers. As I learned during my trip to Thailand, it's best to be somewhere you can hang out for a while.

Bangkok KFC workers bring water to customers. That's wonderful. Also, tables usually are spotless, which is rarely the case in American fast food restaurants. Thailand restaurants were just so much cleaner, from my experience. Cleanliness is a positive trait of most Bangkok quick service restaurants.

Travelers will find Bangkok's fast food workers to be friendly, and from my experience they are very helpful and kind. While it wasn't always easy to communicate in English with them, ordering is easy due to meal numbers.

Fried chicken is why people fill these restaurants all over the world, and Thailand was no exception. But in other ways the menu is strikingly different from the chain's restaurants in the USA.

Instead of biscuits, Bangkok KFC serves rice or french fries with meals. Mashed potatoes and gravy is available although a salad with tuna and pineapple was every bit as popular.

Meals on the menu are numbered. The number 2 meal, for instance, was enough for leftovers unless two very hungry people share it. At less than $5 for three large pieces of chicken, chicken strips, chicken nuggets and french fries, it's quite filling. Try finding a lunch or dinner deal like that in America. It's not going to happen.

My favorite meal included one good-sized piece of chicken and rice with a small container of vegetables in a mild spicy sauce. And it was only 60 baht or about US $1.50. That's a great price!

Another cool thing about the Bangkok KFC experience is the ice cream section of the store, usually positioned near the doors. I suppose that is for the obvious reason that people take dessert with them.

Who could refuse an ice cream cone for just 9 baht, or less than 25 cents? KFC also serves sundaes. An orange sundae, featured one month, was delicious. It made me want to eat at KFC again, which I did a week later.

Note: republished article, orginally published on my blog Faster Food Yummy! on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2006. KFC Thailand will be on my list of favorite fast foods. That is why I have posted this article again.