The best cocktail bars in Bangkok
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. The cocktails list rotates on a monthly basis, registering classics with a bit of a tweak. Have a go at the Pinkish, which gives a twist to the usual Negroni mix by using homemade rhubarb and grapefruit gin as the base spirit.
This elegant, dimly lit restaurant plays is a worthy addition to the limited gourmet dining scene in Silom. The drinks list, meanwhile, was initially conceived by London mixology team Fluid Movement and includes barrel-aged tipples and classic mixes like Hemmingway’s Sazerac (Bulleit rye, Hennessy VS, Peychauds bitters, Angostura bitters, dash of absinthe and lemon zest air). Take slow measured sips while noshing on a plate of parma ham and burrata cheese.
Situated on party street, Sukhumvit Soi 11, Havana Social keeps itself unseen, hiding behind a telephone booth with a sign that says ‘TELéFONO,’ and requiring a secret code to get in. All the drinks are inspired by Cuban culture. Their signature drink and best seller is the Caribbean Smashed Mojito, made Cuban style with fresh sugar cane. The list also includes the Hemingway Daiquiri, which uses four-year-old rum in the mix, and The Ricardo Robson, Bacardi black rum mixed with orange juice, honey and honeycomb (amazing!), both of which were popular in pre-revolution Cuba.
Evil Man Blue is run by Liam Baer, the head mixologist and man behind the strong signature drinks. Let’s start with Honey Badger, the most famous drink and Liam’s favorite (if he has to pick one). This Bourbon cocktail is inspired by penicillin and uses rosemary-washed Bourbon with a hint of lemon, ginger and honey before adding Yellow Chartreuse.
WTF Bar & Gallery took over a old shophouse and turned it into an laidback and convivial bar just like what you’d find in a random street in Paris or Brooklyn. The space is tiny and is usually crowded every night. Forget trying to snag a seat and just hang around the bar. Grab a bottle of Singha or ask for one of the cocktails of the day (check the board above). A playlist of indie-pop and world music tracks is courtesy of next-door vinyl shop Zudrangma records. The second and third floor serves as gallery space.
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. The drinks list combines herbal, smoked and homemade ingredients to play up signature cocktails. A must-try is the Cosa Nostra, an Old Fashioned-inspired drink with cherry-infused cognac served in a cigar-smoked rock glass.
This small bar in the lobby of Playhaus Thonglor Boutique Hotel was once known as Behind the Scene Lounge & Bar before it got taken over and revamped by six of Bangkok’s foremost bartenders. Grab a seat beside the bar and let the barman customize a drink for you. Or choose one of their signature drinks. Our favorite is the Dead Poet, an elegant martini with saffron-infused gin at its base.
Revolucion spices up your night as it does your palate. The eponymous cocktail is definitely one to try. Combining Cuban rum, Havana Club, with apple and passion fruit, the Revolucion cocktail is for those who like their drinks both sweet and sour. The Casse-noisette is a deadly mix of coffee-flavoured vodka with hazelnut and cream, and is perfect for those who like sweet and unassuming drinks that give a slow-creeping buzz.
Inspired by Shanghai in the 1950s, Maggie Choo's is a visual spectacle of stone sculptures, dungeon-like smoking rooms and heavy steel doors. The drinks list, created by celebrity mixologist Joseph Boroski, offers swanky choices that hype up local fresh ingredients. Entertainment varies on a nightly basis.