Dining and cocktail o’clock in Bangkok

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Where can one have a delicious meal in Bangkok? In so many places, based on what we saw and tasted during our trip. Bangkok truly is a city of street kitchens and great variety. The fresh and juicy seafood and fruit, the tasty curries, fried noodles (pat thai), the dim sum in Chinatown, and the delicious list continues.

I felt safe to try different delicacies on the street, because the food was well cooked. When talking about recommendations and Bangkok it can be difficult to suggest a particular place, because all the small restaurants don’t necessarily have names. We often go where there are a lot of local people. But I’ll still share some dining and cocktail time tips.

If we go for a minute from where to eat to what to have, the indisputable first place goes to Tom yum soup (in the picture above). We had it for the first time on the day we arrived at the Chatuchak Weekend Market and pretty much had  it every day since. And with that I mean that we shared a portion or a hot-pot and had other dishes as well, but the soup became a must-have. It’s a spicy soup with a clear broth and often it contains prawns. It can have other seafood, mushrooms, lemongrass, chili peppers and chicken as well. We even bought the soup in instant form as homecoming gifts for our family and had it for breakfast at the airport. So yeah, it’s safe to talk about an addiction.

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One good place to have dinner is the lively Chinatown. You’ll see food stalls one after another and the plastic chairs of the small restaurants spread on the streets. The neon signs shine as the darkness comes down, the streets are full of bustle and the air is filled with different aromas. Chinatown is a good possibility to try some dim sum, whole white fish in lime juice and Beijing Duck, to name just a few.

One original restaurant experience was Cabbages and Condoms in the Sukhumvit area (10 Sukhumvit Soi 12). The restaurant was established partly to increase better understanding of family planning and to generate income for the activities of population development. The restaurant has a big garden which is quite atmospheric in the evening with the lanterns and the lights in the trees. Mannequin dolls were wearing creative costumes made out of condoms. The service wasn’t super friendly and one of our orders was forgotten but due to the tasty food, cosy garden and the special decor the place deserves a mentioning.

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One thing I wanted to try in Bangkok was an afternoon tea. First we planned to have it at the known Mandarin Oriental Hotel (48 Oriental Avenue ) by the River Chao Phraya , but we ended up changing that plan to having drinks on the riverside terrace of the hotel. It was really nice as the lights on the riverboats and the trees lit. If you decide to go there, note that the dress code of the restaurants changes around six o’clock (if I recall correctly) and becomes stricter.

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But back to tea. We enjoyed it at TWG Tea at the Siam Paragon Shopping Centre (Rama 1 Road, Pathumwan). The tea shop/salon was beautifully decorated with tea items and orchids. Although the tea room was inside a shopping mall, the atmosphere was calm. We chose to have the tea time set menu called Dignity (points to the branding people here) which consisted of a shared pot of tea (chosen from a very comprehensive list), four cocktail canapes, two oven warm scones served with jam and whipped cream and three macarons. Everything was savory and of very good quality. I would like to attach a picture of our tea time menu products here, but they were strangely strict about what one could take pictures of. Frankly something I don’t really understand. But besides the photo control it was pleasant and delicious. The price for one person was 740 Baht. Energized by the tea we headed to the tailor and to do some shopping.

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And what is a visit to Bangkok without visiting a sky bar? We tried three and undeniably the best one was the Vertigo and Moon Bar at the Banyan Tree Hotel (21/100 South Sathon Road, Sathon). It’s an open-air bar and a restaurant on the 61st floor of the hotel.  You really get the feeling of being on top of Bangkok there. The prices are rather high but having one or two drinks with the view is definitely worth it. Quite the perfect datenight spot on the top, with a pinch of luxury and the magic of the metropolis.

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