The best is to be found at Paak Pao restaurant on Yaowarat Rd in Phuket Town, close to the Bangkok Hospital. This is where Peamakorn Sakrontwan from Chonburi serves up blow-torch spicy noodle soups – tom yam and kwaytiao reua – made to the secret recipes passed down to her by her mother.
When she was young, Mrs Peamakorn watched her mother making money from noodles every day.
She herself decided to do something different at first, opening a small spa and massage place.
But when she moved to Phuket 18 months ago, the noodles called; they must have been in the blood. That’s when she opened her noodle shop, starting first with the dark and flavourful – and scorching hot – kwaytiao reua paak pao.
The spicy noodle soup was an immediate hit with local students and office people, who jammed the restaurant from 11am to 1pm. When she added tom yam to the menu, that very quickly became the favourite with customers.
Her spicy soups go well with noodles and a choice of pork, seafood or fish balls. And although Mrs Peamakorn specialises in hot, hot, hot, she says every customer is important, so she can reduce the spiciness if requested.
And everything is always fresh – Mrs Peamakorn goes everyday to buy ingredients before opening for business.
The restaurant is open from 10am to 9pm everyday except Wednesdays. Prices start from B35 a dish, with drinks starting at B15.
To get there, head into town from Tesco Lotus, toward Bangkok Hospital Phuket. The restaurant is about 150 metres before the hospital, on the opposite side, facing the local CP Fresh Mart.