Bar hopping at The Standard, Bangkok Mahanakhon
Not your standard night out
When it comes to a casual night out, you may not think of a luxury hotel as it is too formal. But The Standard, Bangkok Mahanakhon, may have you reconsider.
Not only are The Standard's dining outlets well-known for their signature dishes but their drinks are also noteworthy as a wide selection of cocktails are crafted with distinct character to befit each outlet's concept.
"Easygoing" is how I would describe an evening at The Parlor. A cosy lounge on the lobby floor is filled with eclectic 70s retro references, with a low-rise terrace looking over the city’s business district. To match your mood and time of day, the cocktail menu here is varied, ranging from low-proof concoctions for daytime libations to spirit-forward drinks for painting the town red after a long day.
Be Wild (B320) is what I started with. Given the impression its name suggests, I was looking forward to a big punch, yet the whisky cocktail was surprisingly refreshing, with citrus flavours and an aromatic touch of smoked rosemary. What set my mouth on fire was Twofold (B360), a Tequila-based drink spiced up with jalapeno syrup and a slice of the Mexican chilli pepper. In The Standard's tradition, happy hour at The Parlor starts early and runs daily from 5-7pm, offering a two-for-one on signature cocktails.
I did not expect to find a cool cocktail bar inside the famous Mott 32 Bangkok, as this Chinese restaurant is known for its signature Peking duck and crispy roasted pork belly, and how difficult it is to get a reservation. However, they have pulled off the drinking corner with a striking octagonal bar counter, which is obviously about the feng shui.
Expect nothing but Chinese-inspired cocktails, of which Mott 32 Bangkok boasts a couple of signature selections from the well-known restaurant in Hong Kong and its own Thai-version drinks. The Hong Kong iced tea (B420), an alcoholic jasmine tea with slices of fresh lemon and basil seeds, and Fujian Negroni (B460), a Chinese version of Negroni spiced up with ginseng, black tea and Sichuan pepper, are two must-try drinks. From the Thai side, go for White Tiger (B380), which is pretty light and refreshing, thanks to mangosteen juice, yuzu zest and housemade Thai jasmine rice cordial.
Squeezing out of my hazy memory after having many glasses on a roll, the glamorous Ojo offers a line-up of cocktails with Mexican twists. Mezcal, a Mexican spirit, is put in the spotlight on the drinks menu. The base of a tequila cocktail like Porque Paloma (B400) has been replaced with mezcal and cognac to make it smokier, with the cocktail glass rimmed with xni-pec, a combination of chilli flakes, salt and orange zest. Another version of Negroni to try is the Negroni Extra (B400), where the word "extra" in its name refers to a shot of mezcal that tops the drink off. No reservation needed after 8pm as Ojo is open to walk-ins for a seat at the terrace bar only. Visit standardhotels.com/bangkok/properties/bangkok.