Where to Dine in Chiang Mai, Thailand: 12 Top Chiang Mai Restaurants

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After more than a year of living in the northern Thai city of Chiang Mai, I can confidently state that I’ve identified the top Chiang Mai eateries. This guide will show you the greatest places to eat in Chiang Mai, from traditional street cuisine to breakfast at high-end resorts!

Western fusion restaurants or eateries that are more Western than local. This is my option since it is not difficult to locate decent local cuisine in Chiang Mai. In fact, I’d say it’s difficult to find awful local cuisine there. With a few exceptions, you’ll note that all of the eateries I list here are Thai.

Almost every street food vendor or hole-in-the-wall eatery delivers delicious local cuisine. I’ll highlight a couple of my favorite local eateries, but the bulk of this list is comprised of Western or fusion cuisine.

The Top 12 Chiang Mai Restaurants

4 Thoughts on Food

+66 53 217 3955 Moo 1 15

One of my favorite restaurants in Chiang Mai and my go-to when I’m stuck for ideas. The menu emphasizes healthful alternatives like as salads and wraps with substantial quantities. The majority of the ingredients are organic, farm-to-table, and obtained locally.

I primarily enjoyed to come for breakfast or lunch, however they do offer supper alternatives. This tasty waffle with bacon, fried egg, and chutney was worth waking up early to prepare for the morning menu:

The menu is packed with vegetarian and vegan alternatives, and the majority of their meals can be converted vegetarian if desired. So don’t worry, carnivores, there’s enough for us as well. They also make fantastic burgers!

A spicy tilapia wrap. pancakes with bacon and spicy syrup, and mango My favorite foods are the Mexican wrap (with guacamole), the savory waffle, and the banana bread.

Roast Chicken from Cherng Doi

+66 81 881 1407 Sukasem Soi (Between Nimman Soi 2&4)

I believe I took practically everyone who came to see this place: every Couchsurfer who stayed with me, every blogger who passed through town, and even a few first dates. Cherng Doi delivers simple yet dependably excellent local cuisine.

The restaurant is called Cherng Doi, but we nickname it the Crispy Chicken Place. I know it doesn’t appear like much, but believe me when I say that everyone I brought here enjoyed it and virtually all of them made a point of returning before leaving town. This will most likely be the first supper I eat when I return to Chiang Mai.

I had never seen a rendition of the famous Thai papaya salad before at this restaurant. The papaya is battered and deep-fried in their version, with the dressing offered as a dipping sauce.

Crispy chicken, laab moo, spicy papaya salad, and sticky rice are some of my favorite foods. All accompanied by a nice Singha beer, of course.

David’s Restaurant

Davids Kitchen is my favorite fine dining establishment in Chiang Mai. Here is where you go to celebrate a birthday or anniversary, impress a date, or just enjoy a delicious dinner.

The majority of the menu consists of French dishes such as lobster bisque, escargot, and salad Nicoise. The restaurant also serves seafood and local cuisine that have been refined to gourmet dining standards.

The chefs favorite meals, and the ones hes perfected most, are beef. Since this is one of Chiang Mais’s most popular restaurants, reservations are strongly suggested and almost always needed if you want a table on most weekends or holidays.

My favorite meals are the grilled duck breast and the beef cheeks braised in a red wine reduction.


Village No.8 Soi 4, Wat Umong 52 +66 94 842 01972

The proprietor is continually updating his menu of traditional and fusion cuisine. Rosy Cheeks employs an enthusiastic young chef.

The food emphasizes seasonal ingredients (thats why it constantly rotates). The cuisine is generally healthier, yet it is not lacking in taste. The presentation is stunning, and the service is dependably outstanding. I’m excited to return since I’ve heard the restaurant has grown since my previous visit.

My favorite meals are the pesto prawn pasta, the phoritto, and any new dishes the chef has introduced since my previous visit.

The Beast Burger

Nimmanhemin Soi 17 + 66 80 124 141414 Nimmanhemin Soi 17

There is much dispute over which restaurant serves the finest burger in Chiang Mai, but if I had to choose only one, it would be Beast Burger. The restaurant offers a rather conventional menu, burgers, and your option of three varieties of fries, but everything is done extremely nicely.

Burgers that are big and delicious, with crispy fries and your choice of condiments. The only thing that might improve this place? If they sold beer, that is.

The Beast burger with aioli and normal crinkle-cut fries are my favorites.

Brunch is served at the Shangri-La Hotel.

The Kad Kafe, located within the iconic Shangri-La hotel, serves possibly the greatest breakfast in Chiang Mai. Grilled lamb chops, cheeses from across the globe, cooked-to-order foie gras, made-to-order pasta, an excellent dessert variety, and much more can be found on the international buffet.

The lunch costs 1188 baht ($34 USD), which is a bit of a luxury but well worth it.

Searching for the greatest Chiang Mai brunch? Read my article on the greatest brunch venues in town by clicking here!

Salsa Restaurant

+66 53 216 6054 26 Huay Kaew Road

If you follow me on Instagram, you know I’m always looking for Mexican cuisine, no matter where I am. It’s become simpler to find since I moved to Mexico, but it’s not always that simple in Southeast Asia.

Salsa Restaurant has the greatest Mexican cuisine I’ve found in Asia. It’s more Tex-Mex than authentic Mexican cuisine, but if you have a hankering, Salsa Kitchen will more than satisfy it. When I lived in Chiang Mai, it was practically just outside my front door, so I went there much too often!

My personal favorites are the handmade guacamole and the chicken enchiladas.

The Barefoot Café

Canal Road, Chang Khian Subdistrict44 +66 83 564 71071

Incredible Italian cuisine in Thailand? When I initially heard about this facility, I confess I was skeptical. But I knew I’d appreciate this business the minute I came in and saw the proprietor behind the counter hand spinning pasta.

Fresh pasta, traditional Italian meals, and the best quality ingredients are combined to create dishes that are simple yet unbelievably delicious.

Salads and made-to-order pizzas cooked on their proprietary made-in-house dough are also available.

Start with a seasonal salad topped with crispy bacon, then choose between spaghetti bolognese and lasagna.

a pinch of sea salt

Soi Thong 113 +66 99 551 100923

This modest eatery is a little out of the way, but it’s definitely worth the effort to discover. It seemed extremely homely to me, almost as if I were sitting in a friend’s kitchen, drinking wine as they made my meal.

I’d say the menu varies everyday, but while we were there, the chef altered it on the spot. When my companion and I were perusing the menu, he stated that he had fresh barramundi, which is one of my favorite fish. He volunteered to make us lunch using the fresh fish, even though it wasn’t on the menu.

We were so satisfied that we arranged a meal for our friends and gave the chef entire discretion over the menu. What he had put together astounded the whole group. Every item was amazing, whether it was roasted lamb with apricot chutney, sautéed veggies, or a full roasted bird. If you have the opportunity, reserve the cooks table.

I’ll impress you even if you don’t like me. My favorite foods are whatever is in season and whatever the chef is in the mood to make. I would suggest this at just a few places, but this is one of them. Tell him what you like

Blue and rustic

+66 053 216 420 Soi 7 Nimmanhaemin Road

Another of my go-to patterns is Rustic & Blue. Its menu is full of organic, farm-to-table cuisine. In fact, many of their components are grown on their own farm. The restaurant began as a brunch spot before expanding to include supper service. Several of their brunch offerings, such as the chicken and waffles and avocado eggs Benedict, remain among my faves.

You can also find yogurt bowls, French toast, vegetarian and vegan alternatives, chorizo burgers and sriracha fried chicken on the menu.

Inquire about their monthly farm supper, which is held on their own farm outside of Chiang Mai. I’ve gone to a few, and they’ve all been incredible multi-course meals with craft beers, unlimited wine and drinks served family-style on the farm with live music in the background. It is definitely a must-see!

Green eggs Benedict, bacon and cheese loaded jalapeos, and baked ribs are among my favorite recipes.

Teak House, hurry!

+66 53 279 230 Lane 1 Moon Muang Rd

This restaurant is as beautiful as it is delicious. Constructed in northern Thai style with teak wood throughout, I often took guests here when I wanted to treat them someplace a little better but yet served genuine and excellent local food.

I normally find Thai service to be excellent, but this restaurant takes it to the next level; the service here is virtually faultless. Expect to pay for it, though. Keep in mind that this is one of the few restaurants in town that will automatically add gratuity to your bill. Live music is often performed at the restaurant. Call ahead for outside patio seating.

My personal favorites are the full fried fish with garlic and the crispy pork salad.

Mae Sai Khao Soi

+66 53 213 2841 Ratchaphuek Alley 29, Bangkok

Another contentious subject in Chiang Mai is who offers the greatest khao soi. This famous Burmese-inspired soup contains two kinds of noodles and a coconut curry broth (one served as a crunchy topping). It normally comes with pork (but occasionally beef or chicken) and a selection of sides, such as lime and pickled mustard greens, as well as chili to personalize your bowl.

As I was craving this food, I went to Khao Soi Mae Sai. It’s also popular with locals, and getting a seat for lunch might be challenging. I’ve also gone numerous times after the lunch rush just to discover that they’ve run out of soup. Arrive early, get in line, and ready to be amazed.

Special mention:

You can’t talk about Chiang Mai restaurants without mentioning the woman in the pink hat serving khao kha moo, who became famous when Anthony Bourdain paid her a visit during his stay in Chiang Mai.

The meal consists of a savory sauce-simmered pig leg served over rice with a hard-boiled duck egg. On the side, shallots, garlic, and chilies are offered to decorate your entrée.

To be honest, her version is no better than other versions available in the city. It’s pretty nice, but practically every other version is as well.

It’s jam night. She became a celebrity following Bourdain’s visit, donning her distinctive pink hat night after night. You may find her at the street food market across from Chang Phueak gate (North gate). In general, she’s simple to find since she’s the sole seller with a queue at her stand. We used to come here after a night at the North Gate Jazz Club, which was another location I liked to take people. If possible, go to the jazz club on a Tuesday night for open mic.

Are you planning your first trip to Thailand? Check out our Thailand travel guide to make the most of your stay there!

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