My Local Beer Buffet! Rod Sabieng Restaurant

I'm writing this post at the risk of exposing one of my favourite little hideaways, where I regularly sip on some cheap beer with close friends, sing along to terrible 90's songs, order the same three dishes over and over again (they are that good), and eventually stumble home after getting one too many "crazy-falang" looks from the waiters. The place is called Rod Sabieng Restaurant, which sits unobtrusively opposite the train station, and offers great, affordable Thai food until late at night - but enough of that. The important thing is, this is my local beer buffet, and nobody seems to know about but me (the fact that almost nothing related comes up in a Google search should tell you enough).

The beer buffet has been around as long as I've lived here (going on 16 months) which says a lot for Rod Sabieng, as most beer buffets in the city seem to quench the bar owners' thirst for money within a few weeks, and leave plenty of people wondering where to drink without breaking their budgets. However, there have been a few changes over the last few months, with the new alcohol tax in Thailand bringing the price up to ฿139 when it used to be cheaper. But who's complaining at that price, right? Also, they don't leave the jug of beer at your table like they used to, but instead bring it round when they feel like filling it up (I suspect we might have had something to do with this new rule - whoops).

The food is consistently good, and after a few meat-mishaps in the early days, the staff now understand that I'm the difficult one who sends back pork-filled Vietnamese spring rolls which I had asked to be vegetarian. Make sure the staff know what you're on about as they are all very willing to put up with any requests, especially strange ones after you've had too much beer. They also have a great stock of mushrooms and tofu, so veg-versions of most dishes will be bulked up and filling, if you know how to ask for it!


Rod Sabieng Breakdown:




Drinks:Cheap! Chang Draft buffet every single night, from 5 pm til 8pm, for ฿139 per person.

Other drinks available, ranging from large Leo beers for ฿70 to a small bottle of Sangsom for ฿179. Not bad at all!
Food:Pretty much everything myself or my friends have eaten at Rod Sabieng have received positive mmm's and oooh's. The food is solidly and authentically Thai, packed with strange ingredients and way too much chilli (just how I like it).

- The majority of the menu's dishes range between ฿69 - ฿99 a plate.
- The fried fish dishes are more expensive at around ฿179 or so, each.
- Dishes with snapper fish are the most expensive at ฿249.
- Surprisingly, the international food section of the menu is not more expensive than the Thai section, with a burger being a reasonable ฿80.- There are some great bargain dishes, including Pad Thai, Khao Soi and Sukiyaki, for ฿45 - ฿55 each, and fried rice dishes for ฿49.
Pros:- Atmosphere. The simple wooden chairs amidst hanging plants and dim lights are a great way to spend an evening unwinding.
- Service is good from most of the staff, although it was better before when you could fill up your own glasses.
- The bathrooms have recently been renovated, and look fancier than ever.
- Music. Most of the time, sing-along tunes come from the big box speakers dotted around the restaurant - think Eric Clapton's Tears in Heaven, The Eagles' Hotel California, and Celine Dion's My Heart Will Go On. So bad they are good, with the occasional Avril Lavigne or Robbie Williams thrown in to make it even worse (ie: better). Usually, you can expect great live music from a guitarist or pianist when it gets a bit later.
- Food. The food is a great introduction to typical Thai fare done well. My carnivorous friends rant and rave about the Neua Tied Tieaw (sesame sun-dried beef fried with crispy lime leaves), while we all collectively rave about the Pak Boong Tord (deep-fried morning glory salad, with an unbeatable sauce filled with chillies, coriander, peanuts and shredded carrot). Special mention goes to all the Thai spicy salads on the menu - they never disappoint with their spiciness. In fact, they make you cry.
- Location. Great for me! It's right near my place, which could be a bad thing, actually...
Cons:- Location.  There aren't really any nearby bars or places to hang out after the beer buffet, which is why it's just really for some dinner and beers with friends.
- Service. The beer jug is no longer left at your table, but now filled up irregularly by whoever decides to saunter over. Personally, I don't enjoy or see the need for you to be interacting with staff more than a few times in an evening, which is a downfall for Rod Sabieng. You have to constantly draw attention to yourself, and even when you ring the bell provided, they are reluctant to rush over. Also, there are two or three waitresses with bad attitudes who seem to seethe at the idea of bringing over a mosquito coil or ashtray, leaving the task for a good fifteen minutes every time. (Unfortunately, you do come across this behaviour in many different places in Thailand - I tend to chalk it down to their own personal problems or depression, and try not blame myself.)
- Mosquitoes. As usual (this is Thailand, people).


View Market of Eden Nightlife Map in a larger map


Khao Soy beer Chiang Mai
Khao Soy and beer - perfect combo!
Having a poke around inside the Khao Soy... yum! 
Thai spicy food seafood
Thai spicy seafood salad. 
Thai vegetarian food
Stir-fried mixed vegetables (Pad Pak Ruam).
Sukiyaki Thai food
Excellent Sukiyaki (Japanese noodle and soup dish).
Thai food beer
Deep-fried morning glory with spicy dipping sauce - hard to resist after a few beers!
Thai food beer buffet
These two signs stand outside the restaurant.
Restaurant Chiang Mai buffet
A daytime shot before the sun goes down.
Nature Chiang Mai restaurant
The place is filled with ferns and plants, just how I like it.
Some natural d├ęcor.
Little seedlings sprouting in homemade pots.
Vintage posters.
Great mood-lighting (I detest fluorescent lights).
Evening ambiance.
The inside area where the guitarist usually sets up shop.
Menu shots - click to zoom.
These are dishes from their Specials menu.

Regular menu starts here with appetizers and recommended dishes - click to zoom.
Curries and spicy soups.
Thai spicy salads and Veggie's lover (we still haven't figured out who Veggie is, sadly).
Seafood and fried dishes.
Noodles (number 1005 is Khao Soy) and drinks.
Steaks, sa-paghetti and sammiches!

11 comments:

  1. pork spring rolls vegetarian? oops

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  2. All the places you visit have such long menus and seem very reasonably priced

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    1. Anon, I might be mad to take pictures of entire menus! But yes, Thailand does have a thing for novel-long menus, which just makes you want to order everything!

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  3. Bring On the Beer!

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  4. Reading this makes me miss Thailand soo much :'(

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  5. I want to visit Thailand to try as much of the food as I can. Can anyone send me a ticket? I don't take up much room and can sleep in someone's shower if need be. I am also quiet and well behaved I just eat a lot.

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  6. Thanks, Buddy. I have also enjoyed your blog and will continue to check in to read your posts.

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  7. Oh my god you love spicy food so much haha. You are crazy. That seafood salad scares me!!!

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  8. This is where I ate Khao Soi Gai for the first time, it was really good! I like this post, captures the place well

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  9. This food looks INSANE! I WANT!!

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