I quickly realized two things after moving to Bangkok. First, it’s always hot. Second, one of the best ways to cool off from the heat is at a street-side drink cart. Filled with everything from water to coconuts to iced coffee’s, they’ve got the gamut of refreshments covered. There’s no question a freezing cold water can bring you back from the brink of a tropical heat stroke, and an iced coffee can shock your system back to life with a Thai sugar rush. However, I’ve never been much of a coffee drinker and sometimes crave more than just a cold water. What quenches my thirst and recharges my batteries is cold, fresh-squeezed orange juice; a welcome beverage anytime of day on the streets of the Big Mango.
Pronounced ‘Nam Som,’ Thai orange juice is made from an orange with a slightly greener exterior and that’s around the size of a tangerine. Stacked in pyramids or filled to capacity in bags, the carts usually have hundreds of oranges at the ready. Continuously cut, squeezed, bottled and put on ice throughout the day; freshness is 100% guaranteed for just 20 Baht ($0.67). Finding an orange juice cart on the streets of Bangkok is pretty easy as they’re on most street corners or along the road sides, usually paired next to a fruit cart or food stall. In my opinion this oj serves as the perfect morning wake-up or afternoon refresher and rivals anything made by Minute Maid. If you happen upon one definitely give it a taste.