Sometimes one culture sees what another is doing, takes note, and improves it. The Japanese and their Yōshoku come to mind, and being the burrito eating American I am so does Tex-Mex. While both of these are on offer in Chiang Mai, I want the Thai take on what things need improving. I want lava bread… Doesn’t it just sound sexy?
Some things are far from what their name suggest (Coq au vin being criminally understated by its signature), and some things are as on the nose as physically possible (Thai ice cream sandwich, anyone?); lava bread somehow seems to be both.
This dish is essentially just toast and topping. How could you possibly improve on that? Well let’s start with the fact that the bread is buttered before, and not after, toasting – giving a deeper level of that sought after GBD finish. And this ain’t no sticking slice of squishy Wonder Bread jammed in a garage sale toaster. It’s a pillowy high rising bun, that would be at home on any Thanksgiving table; sans orange plastic bag (you know the one I’m talking about).
After brushing on all sides and an electric girdling the bread is cratered with a wooden spatula to make room for the fillings. a number of which are on offer here: Strawberry jam, milk cream, chocolate lava, salted egg lava, pandan custard, and Thai tea frosting. The milk cream seems to be the best seller here, and for good reason. I wouldn’t sleep on that salted egg lava though – especially if your inclined to sweet and savory.
My favorite thing to have here is, like the lava bread itself, a conjoining of two already good things to make something greater than the sum of its parts. I like to order a jam as well as a milk bun, then transplant half of one’s filing to the other. This creates a ripple of red and white amongst a sea of opaque pink. What every toaster strudel wished it could be.
Just like a good romp, the rising actions are just as enjoyable as the completion. Well, not quite, but they’re sure as hell a highlight. The prolonged looming of the bread crisping. That smell which can only be described as something cooking in butter (well a butter like substance). The waterfall’s deluge forming a lava flow’s ooze. Culminating at the point where the cream filled bun slides into an adorably small paper bag that becomes instantly translucent from lust.
They have tables here if you want to enjoy your toasty and filled convection circle-side, although most everyone gets them to go. Which is a real shame to be honest, because these go down hill at the same rate McDonald’s fries do. It’s an understandable one though. As to eat these, to really eat these all manners and customs for a civil and polite society must go out the window. You will need napkins. Your cheeks and nose will be sticky. But, you will be left satisfied; probably in need of a post coital cigarette.
The lovely folks over at Streetalicious have done a nice video on this spot that is worth the click.
Price: 25 baht- Strawberry Jam, Pandan Custard, Thai Tea Frosting
30 baht- Milk Cream, Chocolate Lava
35 baht- Salted Egg Lava
Open: 17:00-22:00 Monday-Friday
Closed: Saturday and Sunday
Motorcycle parking available around Santitham Circle with car parking down a side soi.
The Good Stuff Chiang Mai