James Fancourt discovers the culinary delights of Thai Park…
I won’t lie. I rarely find a reason to visit Wilmersdorf, or even the West; but when spring kicks in and the weather turns warmer, there’s one very good reason to visit, quite possibly every single weekend you can – Thai Park.
Berlin was a bit late to the street food craze, but these days you’re no longer short of options when it comes to sampling foods such as pulled pork and fancy burgers at regular events like Street Food Thursday. The downside to this popularity however is that when you go to a street food event you can expect long queues and a much lighter wallet when you leave.
Enter Thai Park. This ad-hoc food market taking place every weekend (weather permitting) is the essence of true street food – minus the hipster tax.
Located in Preußenpark, rows of (mainly) Thai women sit with their delicious home cooking in front of them, ready to serve up some tasty authentic food at a great price. Being no expert on Thai Food I couldn’t tell you all of what’s available – just that all of it tastes great. Red and green curries, pork, fish, tofu, chicken satay, spring rolls, noodle soups, the list is endless.
Since the selection is overwhelming, the only real limitation is the size of your stomach. Perhaps ironically given all of the choice, one of my absolute favourite things here is also one of the simplest: the sticky rice balls that feature magical spices and ingredients my unrefined palate can’t discern, fried and served up with some sweet and sour sauce – amazing.
It’s not all about the food though. For refreshments there is the usual assortment of local beer, plus a few Thai varieties such as Chang and Singha. On a hot day in Thai Park though I always like to grab a caipirinha. There are several people selling them but for the best, look out for the extremely smiley woman wearing a sun hat. Not only do they taste great but at 3 euros each, it’s hard to just have one.
Living in Berlin, you really feel that it’s a unique, magical city, and places like Thai Park are a reminder of why. The only downside is that it’s only on during the warmer months. Now you’ll have to excuse me whilst I go back to incessantly checking the weather forecast for the weekend.