As Thai restaurants continue to pop up around the city due to Korean’s love of travel to the Land of Smiles, another small Thai eatery has joined the ranks of Busan’s growing international food scene.
Chang Thai Noodles, located on the first floor of the Centum Hotel across from BEXCO in Haeundae-gu, serves up a small sample of Thai treats in its intimate diner.
Opened in early February last year, its no-frills approach to food and decor offers quality dishes at affordable prices.
With only six main dishes — Thai Beef Rice Noodles, Pad Thai, Tom Yum Koong Fried Noodles, Tom Yum Koong Rice Noodles, Thai Basil Pork with Rice and Thai Pork and Egg Fried with Rice — they are all reasonably priced from 8,000 won to 11,000 won.
Three other appetizers, including Thai Fried Coconut Bananas, Thai Fried Meat and Fish Balls and Thai Chicken Karage complete the menu.
On a recent lunch trip, I tried a couple of my staple favorites, which were the Thai Basil Pork with Rice and the Karage chicken.
The prices are right for a simple quick meal. The attentive owner was very kind, and the food came quickly. The Thai Basil was good, but maybe a bit less spicy then I’m used too.
The lightly-breaded fried bite-sized Chicken Karage was very delicious, and dipped into the sweet chili sauce was the highlight of the meal.
A bowl of fresh beef broth that accompanied the meal had an unexpected spicy kick that also was refreshing and had a flavor I was hoping to get from the main dish. It’s early open hours (8 a.m.) also means you can grab a simple Thai breakfast if you’re looking for one.
The menu is lacking a lot of the Thai favorites — no Somtum, curries, larb or any of the signature Thai restaurant dishes you come to expect. For a restaurant that has noodles in the name, it has a surprising lack of noodle dishes.
For a quick, light and affordable Thai lunch, Chang Thai Noodles is a good place if you’re in the neighborhood. For 15,000 won, the meal hit the spot when I was in a hurry to head out to an early afternoon meeting. It’s not exactly what I would call a date place, as its simple decor and food are just what they are. The friendly atmosphere makes it a nice place to grab a quick bite for breakfast, lunch or dinner and is a nice addition to the Centum foodie scene.
Open: 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., Closed Sunday
Address: 20 Centum 3-ro, U-dong, Haeundae-gu, Busan
Parking: Available at the hotel, 2 hours free
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