This Saphan Khwai bar is a cafe by day and a full-fledged cocktail bar by night
For many decades, Saphan Kwai has never been considered cool—the residential stretch has always been home to non-characteristic shophouses, rundown motels, decades-old restaurants, not to mention a number of that kind of massage parlors. Recently, however, an assortment of new restaurants, cafes, and bars have sprung up, injecting the beginnings of gentrification into the area. One of them is Perfect Strangers, a part-café-part-bar specializing in coffee drinks.
Perfect Strangers is located within an imposing gray structure bearing the marked signature of modern industrial architecture. A4 papers printed with words like “OPEN,” “Hello Strangers,” and “Come Inside” are pasted on the façade, inviting passersby to take a second look and possibly venture inside. Swing the door open and find yourself in a high-ceilinged space that effectively combines marble, steel and polished wood. The bar is divided into two sections—one half features high-tech coffee makers like Mavam and Trinity One, while the other half is lined up with spirits and liquor bottles.
The word “mocktails” might sound the alarm for overly-sweet and juice-heavy tipples—as we have encountered at similar establishments—but the bar team at Perfect Strangers is prone to producing well-balanced concoctions that do not overpower what’s seemingly a pervading key ingredient: coffee. “One thing that we have to be careful with when making coffee mocktails is putting in the espresso shot at the right time, so the crema of the shot and the body of the coffee are still there,” explains Natwara “Mine” Pattanapermpoonsin, one of the baristas. Game-changing juices, made daily from fresh fruits in season, complement the mocktails as in the frothy Artful (B150), which combines orange and passionfruit with vanilla, egg white and a shot of espresso.
The booze-inflected part of the bar, meanwhile, churns out well-balanced cocktails created by Komsupat “Boom” Sirijutalak, who was a bartender at Backstage Cocktail Bar. Coffee is still dominant in the cocktails menu, appearing in drinks such as Trinity Fare (B360), a vodka-based, oliang-inspired concoction mixed in with niam leaf, chrysanthemum, Yellow Chartreuse liqueur, and coconut juice. The coffee in this drink is made with the Trinity One brewer, hence the name.
For a non-caffeinated option, go for Undress Me Now (B360), a sweet, head-turning number that reinvents the Negroni by mixing butter-washed single malt, Campari, sweet vermouth and chocolate bitters.
Overall, Perfect Strangers offers decent drinks that will appease both café hoppers and bar crawlers. The venue also serves flavorful bar food like chicken liver pâté with brioche bread (B140) and truffle-infused fried rice with scrambled egg and mushroom (B290).
|Venue name:||Perfect Strangers|
|Opening hours:||Wed-Mon 11:00-24:00|
|Transport:||BTS Saphan Kwai|