Guru By Bangkok Post rounds up tipples that will keep you hydrated well into the New Year. Whether it is new bars, relocated bars or new menus, a bit of liquid cheer never hurt anyone!
Baccarat is the new bar located at the Davis Bangkok Hotel on Sukhumvit 24.
The interiors are a mix of colourful banquettes in navy, green and yellow. Soft candlelight, a crackling fireplace (with climate change, Bangkok may need one, you never know) and candelabras contribute to the warm and inviting vibe, especially this time of the year. Though it does remind one if classic and cosy New York bars. The playlist is a mix of R&B, Afro Latin and House, which sets the mood for after word drinks. Though later in the evening, it deepens to an energetic pulse.
But let’s talk about why one is here: the cocktail menu. A creative nod to the iconic card game, Baccarat, each drink is a flavourful. For the more adventurous, there are specially selected spirits in bottles or different shots x six packages, offering an assortment of bold and distinctive concoctions.
The O.S.S. Bar
Adding to the new bar list is The O.S.S. Bar, where the intriguing legacy of Jim Thompson meets masterful mixology.
Nestled within the iconic Jim Thompson Heritage Quarter, the bar offers an immersive experience, blending historic tales with inventive cocktails. The bar draws inspiration from the enigmatic life and mysterious 1967 disappearance of Thompson. Subtle hints of Thompson's connection to the Office of Strategic Services (O.S.S.) is found around the bar through vintage photographs, cherished artefacts and whispered tales that set the stage.
The menu showcases Thompson’s myriad adventures and his larger-than-life persona in four chapters. Each chapter, from his early life to his associations with the O.S.S., and his profound connection to Thailand, offers cocktails inspired by pivotal moments and locales in his journey. It is designed as a field manual, where each drink unfolds a tale. Symbols hinting at its flavour profile — sweet, sour, spicy, bitter or more — convey a nuanced message in a glass. Instead of traditional ingredients, scenes from Thompson's life offer subtle clues about the cocktail's essence.
“Chapter I - Early Life” delves into Thompson's formative years. Born March 21, 1906, in Greenville, Delaware, US, to a prominent textile magnate father he was a descendant of Union General James Harrison Wilson. This chapter gives rise to two evocative cocktails: The Grand Papa, a luscious, sweet blend, and Class Of 28, a robust drink with subtle bitter notes. "Chapter II - The O.S.S. Time" reflects on Thompson's tenure in military intelligence, capturing the essence of missions like “Fort Monroe”, “Operation Forth", “Ceylon" and “C47". The flavour profiles trace his covert journeys from America, through North Africa and Sri Lanka (Ceylon in those days), culminating in Bangkok.
“Chapter III - Thailand: A Dream Come True” unveils Thompson's time as Thailand's silk king. Celebrate this era with concoctions like the thrilling “Golden Banana" and the balanced "The House On The Klong". While “K.Yee & K.Tun” pays homage to Thompson's dependable cook and houseboy, who were a soothing constant in his life. The chapter concludes with the captivating “Sunset At Mekong”, a liquid ode to Southeast Asia's mesmerising allure. “Chapter IV – The Unsolved Mystery” delves into the enigmatic disappearance of Thompson in 1967 in Malaysia's jungles, represented by two cocktails: “Moonlight Cottage” and “Mystery”. While the former is inspired by the Cameron Highlands, the later remains the bartender's secret — every sip evokes the profound mystery surrounding Thompson's last days.
There are also crafted mocktails and a curated wine list because by day, The O.S.S. Bar transforms into a tearoom — The O.S.S. Room — and offers afternoon tea.
Find The Photobooth
Forget Sukhumvit 11, the nightlife has moved to Ban Tad Thong Road in Samyan. But don’t take my word for it, the proof is in the fact that Find The Photobooth has relocated and opened shop on the road.
Find The Photobooth, the sister bar of #FindTheLockerRoom in Thong Lor, has retained its essence of playful innovation and Thai influence. The iconic bar shifts the spotlight to include an electrifying music programme, curated by Kris Chaovalit. With her vast experience in the music industry, Kris is set to infuse the bar with an eclectic mix of genres, ensuring every night is an unforgettable experience of sound and spirits.
The music is also reflected in the cocktail menu, where seven major musical chords are compared to classic cocktails and music connotation to the classics with a twist. The link between Find The Photo Booth 1.0 and 2.0 versions is clearly visible, through the classics and classics with a twist concepts.
For example, A-major is represented by Aviation cocktails and A-Flat (a connotation of A-Major) is an Aviation with a twist. B-Major is represented by a Boulevardier and B-Minor is its twist. The Flat, Minor, Seven and Sharp also represents the style of the cocktails: Seven=Sour, Minor=Fizzy, Flat=Fruity and Sharp= spirit-forward.
Find the Photobooth. Find the Music. Find the Magic.
The popular bar on Charoen Krung Road has launched their “Tropicology Menu”, which is their fourth instalment.
The menu mixes, matches and redefines the word “tropical”, expanding flavour profiles. Using techniques found in tiki but also modern complexities, the menu ensures no gimmicks, no trendy concepts, but just new flavours extracted from playing around with different fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices.
Expect thirst-quenchers like the Copacabana Dub (Flor de Caña 12-year rum, strawberry, umeshu, Bigallet China-China and rhubarb), which is intense; Crossroads (Tito’s Handmade Vodka, port wine, tomato, pineapple, coriander, hot sauce, agave and celery bitters), which is savoury, Double Dance Lover (Stranger & Sons Gin, pandan, goat milk, monsoon mango sticky rice tea and lemon), which is floral, and more. Though I would order the flavourful For A Cooler You (Naked Malt Whiskey, raspberry, mango, apricot, peach, salted maple syrup, roasted coconut and lemon), if just for the glass it comes in.
If you want to embrace the vibe to a T, is there anything better than a Pina Colada Supreme (Havana Club 3-Year Rum, pineapple, coconut, lemon and Angostura Bitters)?