Rider Cafe in Phuket Town
Yes, back in Phuket Town. I head into town more and more these days for food, drinks, coffee, a few beers with friends or just a walk with the family. Rider Cafe is in the old town area, my favourite part of Phuket and opened in 2012. There have been a number of new cafes and restaurants opening in the area in the last few years as the old town slowly becomes more popular with locals and tourists. I start to worry that the whole old town will be cafes, but I don't think so - most of the buildings are owned by old families and are home to old businesses like hardware stores, fabric shops, shrines, printers ... the old town is a mix of old and new. Last weekend I was in town for the Baba wedding street procession, celebrating local culture, and after the procession had passed I met up with Tim who also lives in Phuket with his family and writes a blog, and we looked for somewhere to eat - it was Sunday and a lot of places are closed on Sundays, but I saw the Rider Cafe sign shining down the street ...
I'd been a couple of times before just for a beer, but this time was glad to see it open - I like a burger now and then, and was told that Rider Cafe does good burgers. The menu is a mix - there is Thai food, but more burgers and big breakfasts, plus coffee and cakes. I was certainly ready for a burger, and there's a good choice of burgers and good ol' western food on the menu ...
I went for the Rider Bacon Burger, and a beer of course. It was a quiet Sunday, just us and a couple of other customers. No sign of the owner - his name is Teddy - he's a guitar playing, Harley riding spinal surgeon who works part time at the Phuket Bangkok International Hospital and plays in a band too! Last time I stopped by at Rider for a beer the staff told me he was out playing guitar at the Hard Rock Cafe in Patong. So, he's a busy guy! I hope to bump into him sometime.
Maybe the place is busier sometimes in high season, I hope they get enough business to stay open because I do like small interesting restaurants with a bit of character. Phuket Town has plenty of this, every place has it's own style and that's great. This is the inside of Rider Cafe ...
What's this? Burgers on the way! Looking good!
Looking like my bacon burger on the left, but what is this monster on the right with an egg on top? Looks like Tim ordered the full-monty V-Twin burger .. which is what I will get next time! Burger report - I was not disappointed. The bacon burger was juicy, full or flavour, the ingredients fresh, a good portion of chips. I do normally eat Thai food, but .. burgers are good!
(above) My burger at Rider Cafe
A short period of gluttony followed, which I plan to repeat sometime soon. Rider Cafe could become a more regular hangout. If only I had more time to hang out! And Phuket Town has many good places to stop for food and drink, away from the crowds. This is my Phuket, not the mainstream tourist Phuket. I'd suggest that if you want to really see Phuket, stay a few nights in Phuket Town (see Hotels in Phuket Town) as well as staying near the beach. It's very different.
UPDATE OCTOBER 2016 - Rider Cafe has been sold. Owner Teddy is now working as a surgeon again. I have not been since it changed hands, but it is open.
Related Phuket Blog posts :
Kopitiam Restaurant on Thalang Road
Abduls Roti Shop
Phuket Town Central Market
The Oldest Herb Shop in Phuket
Rider Cafe - Location Map
View Rider Cafe - Phuket Town in a larger map