The best cocktail bars in Bangkok
This cozy bar on the lobby level of Playhaus Thonglor Boutique Hotel was given a revamp by six of Bangkok’s leading bartenders. The entire venue is decorated after four famous stage plays including Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and the Rattanakosin-era epic See Pan Din.
Run by the same team behind cult favorite Sugarray Bar in Ekkamai Soi 21, Q&A serves innovative cocktails within a setting reminiscent of a vintage train carriage. The bar is nestled inside a little alley on Sukhumvit Soi 21 with just a little sign above a green marble wall to give you a hint.
Located behind a wooden door next to Ainu Japanese restaurant, Rabbit Hole is a three-story bar that retains the rustic structure of its converted shop house shell but revels in a luxurious renovation involving polished copper and brass. Whiskey fans can pick their favorite from a selection of bottles straddling the copper rack behind the bar.
Located on Soi Nana in China Town, this gin bar – the first in Thailand – is hidden behind a big wooden door just waiting to be discovered. This place serves almost 80 gin-based drinks (the drinks list changes daily, mind you). Plus, its mixologist, Niks Anuman-Rajadhon, is always there to make sure you have a good time.
Bangkok-based Japanese bartender Hideyuki Saito finally opens his own cocktail joint, Bronx Liquid Parlour, within the more quiet enclaves of Thonglor. As you might expect, Bronx has the elements of a vintage jazz bar-slash-speakeasy, from its polished wooden furniture and warm lighting to the framed images on the wall.
Situated on party street, Sukhumvit Soi 11, Havana Social keeps itself unseen, hiding behind a telephone booth and requiring a secret code to get in. The interior presents an interpretation of pre-revolution Cuba in the ′40s, said to have been the “Las Vegas of the Caribbean” at that time.
In case you have no idea where Soi Thonglor 1 is, Just A Drink (Maybe) makes for a good reason to explore this mysterious alley hidden within Bangkok’s nightlife capital. The playfully named bar is set in a casual, laidback atmosphere that easily convinces the post-work crowd to get “just one drink” before going home. But that’s not gonna happen here.
In Bangkok, Moretti begins a new chapter in his life by infusing classic concoctions with local flavors and aromas. Try Oh Beautiful (B340), one of his signatures, a well-rounded sweet and sour concoction that mixes pineapple skin-infused tequila with house-made pandan syrup, fresh pineapple juice, egg whites, Galliano vanilla syrup and fresh lemon juice.
For first-timers, the experience of discovering this hidden gem in the Old Town can be quite spine-tingling. In a small alley by Brown Sugar jazz bar is an abandoned-looking building that sits behind a spirit house (it’s an ideal setting for a Thai horror film). A heavy gate leads to a spooky stairway that climbs up to a third floor.
The hyped-up food and booze district of Sukhumvit 33 welcomed Dim Dim, a Chinese-inspired bar that replaced the modern Taiwanese eatery Bao & Buns. Situated next to Peppina pizzeria, the dimly-lit cocktail hub features a vintage-style, red-lit setting decorated with Oriental teahouse furniture and shelves lined with East Asian clichés like Japanese lucky cat charms, Chinese tea sets and jars storing exotic-looking herbs.