Deep Fried

Polo Fried Chicken

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Recommended by
Luke C.

Anyone who knows Bangkok's food scene will almost certainly be familiar with Soi Polo Fried Chicken. It enjoys almost legendary status for its whole deep-fried chickens.

KFC could learn plenty of lessons from Soi Polo Fried Chicken. The 50-year-old third generation eatery has perfected the art of gai tod - golden skin and tender, succulent meat without being oily (like much of Bangkok's fried chicken can be). Fistfuls of crispy fried garlic are tossed over the top. Interestingly, though fried chicken is a southern Thai speciality, the rest of the menu is North Eastern Isaan food - som tam papaya salads, meaty larb and grilled catfish.

I'm stretching the idea of street food with Soi Polo Fried Chicken. It's a large quite modern eatery split in half - one side is open-fronted and other is boxed in and air conditioned. Both spaces are utilitarian and while it's a perfectly pleasant place to eat it's not somewhere you visit for the atmosphere.

A whole fried chicken at Soi Polo (good for two as dinner or four as part of a larger meal) is 260 THB (US $8.35). Most of the other dishes hover around the 60-120 THB mark (US. $1.93-3.85), though there are a few expensive exceptions. 

Lumphini Park just next door makes for a scenic place to work off your lunch.

What to order

It's all in the name. Just about everything else is overshadowed by the fried chicken. A nam jim jaew made from chillies, fish sauce and lime works well, as does a tamarind-sweetened version. Always order sticky rice. The som tam papaya salad at Soi Polo Fried Chicken is passable, but nothing to write home about. For something a little more interesting, try ordering the salad with kai khem, salted egg.

Elsewhere on the menu you'll find fried and grilled fish, a spicy crab salad, several drinking food favourites like sun-dried and fried beef, slightly sour fermented Isaan sausages and fried pork ribs. Whatever else you decided to order, do not skip the fried chicken here.

Directions to Polo Fried Chicken

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130-260 THB
7h00 - 21h00

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