• Jay Fai's signature is a pillowy crab omelette the size of a football. (Getty)
Jay Fai has earned a star for her famed crab omelette in Bangkok’s first Michelin guide.
Lauren Sams

11 Dec 2017 - 7:30 AM  UPDATED 11 Dec 2017 - 7:30 AM

A Thai street food seller, Jay Fai, has won a prized star in Bangkok’s first Michelin guide - the only street food vendor to do so.

Jay Fai (or Auntie Fai - “Jay” means “auntie” in Thai), who is 70, is known for her fiery noodles with prawns and crab, cooked over steaming charcoal, and her crab omelettes and yellow crab curry.

Auntie Fai’s restaurant was the only street food vendor awarded a star. 

Famously, she never uses MSG, something of a rarity in the Thai street food world. She’s been cooking at her small restaurant, where diners sit at plastic tables, for four decades, and though her food is slightly pricier than most of Bangkok’s street food, customers line up day after day to sample the goods. She defended her prices to Vice, saying that the amount she charges reflects her value of her workers and Thai cuisine itself. "I think we should value our own seafood and cuisine the way the Japanese and other cultures do. I pay my staff well and I use the best ingredients. If people don't like the prices, they can go elsewhere."

The first Bangkok Michelin guide has awarded stars to 17 restaurants, though no restaurant scored three stars (the highest Michelin accolade). The guide also included 28 street food recommendations, though only those with a physical address (so no mobile food carts) were included. Auntie Fai’s restaurant was the only street food vendor awarded a star.

The guide comes after a turbulent year for street food owners, who were told in April that the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration were planning to ban street food in an effort to clean up the city. After substantial public protest, the BMA did not put the ban in place, choosing instead to enact stricter guidelines for hygiene and waste removal. 

Will travel for street food
Follow the red neon sign to this Asian street food playground
Order your sashimi, Korean fried chicken and beef rendang with roti all at the one place.
Toongabbie's legendary Sri Lankan street food comes to Glebe
Inner-city folk rejoice - egg hoppers, fiery curries, lamprais and kottu roti have a second home at Dish in Glebe. Even the late Kerry Packer was a fan.
Could this Argentinian sandwich be Australia’s next favourite street food?
You’ll find vendors peddling these hot dog-style sandwiches on the streets of Buenos Aires, and, if you know where to look, in Australia too.
Son-in-law eggs: The gruesome story behind this street food delicacy
Creepy origins aside, this is one Thai street food classic you'll want to fry up immediately.
Phew! Bangkok’s street food is not going anywhere
A loud outcry followed news the Bangkok government was banning the city’s beloved street food, but happily, the Tourism Authority of Thailand say it’s staying put.