Must Try Food in Chiang Mai : Gai Yang

Gai Yang Chiang Mai

A month has passed after my visit to Chiang Mai last year, and now, I can’t deny the fact that I kinda miss it.

It feels like yesterday when I hopped from one coffee shop to another, having a cheap tasty lunch in between, visiting the night market on weekend.

I kinda miss it, you know. I miss the small-but-not-too-small city, I miss the chilly atmosphere, I miss the cheap food, I miss the friendly locals that kept me smiling all day, I miss walking around wearing short pants without getting any cat calls. Damn, I miss Chiang Mai!

One food that I kept on eating while I was there is Gai Yang. At a glance, it looks just like a normal grilled chicken you usually find, which is probably true. But, there’s something about it that makes it so addictive. I don’t know what, maybe it’s just its charm? You’ll see.


Some spell it Gai Yang, some spell it Kai Yang. And I found, on the internet, that it’s called ไก่ย่าง. (Can’t read it!). Whatever, it’s the same thing.

I found that there are basically two types of Gai Yang – first one is the one with bones, and the other one is the boneless type, which I prefer.

They usually sell it as a whole chicken, or a half. And serve it with some dipping sauce. Now the dipping sauce might differ from one place to another. In fact, of all the places I’ve visited, none of them share the same kind of sauce. The chicken itself was marinated before grilled on a low heat for a quite long period of time. It tasted mild and slightly sweet, but sometimes you can taste a hint of tanginess.

Cherng Doi Chiang Mai
Dipping Sauce at Cherng Doi
SP Chicken Chiang Mai
Dipping Sauce at SP Chicken



Although there are a lot of places which might sell Gai Yang, these are a few list of my favourite, and also the most popular one in town, sorted by my preferences!

1. Gai Yang at Cherng Doi

Gai Yang Cherng Doi Chiang Mai
Gai Yang at Cherng Doi

I found Gai Yang at Cherng Doi best as it is boneless and also a lot juicier than any other chicken around. Maybe because it contains more fat?

Gai Yang at Cherng Doi Chiang Mai
Gai Yang at Cherng Doi Chiang Mai, the boneless one.
Som Tam at Cherng Doi
Som Tam at Cherng Doi

Don’t miss the Papaya Salad (som tam) here. It was bloody good! But beware, it was a very spicy som tam. Our favorite is the fried one as they are fried, obviously, and they separate the sauce so you don’t get the much burn on your tongue. You might also wanna have some beer to accompany you and your glorious chicken.

Cherng Doi
Suk Kasem Rd, Mueang Chiang Mai

2. Gai Yang at ไก่ย่างวิเชียรบุรี Soi 11, Nimman area

Gai Yang at Soi 11 Chiang Mai
Gai Yang at Soi 11

Som Tam Chiang Mai

Now this is another favourite of mine. The chicken is not as fatty as the one at Cherng Doi, but they marinated the chicken just beautifully. If you happen to go here, don’t miss their whole chicken and som tam (papaya salad). Som tam was not too spicy, which is just perfect for me!

Nimmana Haeminda Soi 11, Chiang Mai

3. Gai Yang at SP Chicken, Old City

Gai Yang at SP Chicken
Gai Yang at SP Chicken

I heard a lot of reviews about SP Chicken even before I got to Chiang Mai. Don’t get me wrong. It was good, but not outrageous. It was a bit too dry to my liking. But it’s still packed up with flavors.

And oh, do try their BBQ Pork. It was awesome.

SP Chicken
SP Chicken. Doesn’t look appealing compared to the other Gai Yang.
ไก่ย่าง เอสพี (SP Chicken)
9/1 Sam Larn Soi 1 Road, Pra Singh, Chiang Mai


Most locals, I spotted, had Gai Yang with sticky rice. Sounded odd to me, and it still does, but I guess it’s the perfect combination for locals. I tried eating it with sticky rice once, but didn’t really like the taste, so the next time I had Gai Yang, I had it with steamed rice instead.

Gai Yang Chiang Mai

What I like about Gai Yang is that the whole chicken is perfectly marinated and then grilled on a charcoal over a very low heat so that it doesn’t burt. That way, it took quite sometime to grill a chicken but the best part of it, which is the meat, stays juicy and not dry. I did try make some for last NYE dinner and it was not easy.

Heading to Chiang Mai anytime soon? Don’t you ever EVER miss this food!

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4 Komentar

  1. hobilari berkata:

    so delicious…

  2. winnymarlina berkata:

    sharooh ciang mai itu rekomended bgt untuk dikunjungin ya

    1. Sharon Loh berkata:

      Aku pingin lagi sih kesanaaa hihihi. Enak soalnya kota kecil, jadi hassle free gitu. Terus byk mknn local enak plus cafe cafe lucu dan murah :3 wihihihi

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