One City. One Magazine. Bangkok 101 is the ultimate guide to Thailand's capital and beyond. It let us know the best restaurants to eat at; the coolest bars to drink at; the most luxurious spas to relax at; the hippest clubs to shake your booty at; and the most interesting art galleries to stand around and stroke your chin at.
A restaurant, a lounge and a bar in one, SEEN Restaurant & Bar has much to offer. The unique brand and concept designed by M&J London offers a majestic panoramic view of Bangkok skyline.
The 26th floor rooftop restaurant is the brainchild of the Portuguese chef-preneur, Olivier da Costa, the floor-to-ceiling glass-wrapped ‘S’ shaped restaurant design is meant to offer the best view and food to match.
Lead by Chef Alexandre Castaldi, diners favourites include organic beetroot carpaccio served with aromatic feta cheese, fresh orange, caper vinaigrette, dill and sweet macadamia (B490); the SEEN Taco—crispy tacos served with fresh and succulent Alaskan King Crab, fresh mango, guacamole, red cabbage topped with Tobiko roe, pomegranate and a dash of spicy mayo to balance the overall flavours (B620 for 2 pieces); deep fried Tapioca and cured cheese served with spicy guava jelly (B290); or the Maguro Tataki—six slices of Bluefin Tuna sliced thin served with Sumiso sauce with chives and Daikon radish (B590) and many more.
Also available is the lineup of trend-setting world-class DJs brought by Scotty B, the Music Director. Former Director of Entertainment for Starwood hotels and resorts and a former Music Curator for W Hotel Beijing, he was the creator of the first W Music Festival in Asia and has headlined many international luxury brands.
“Bangkok is a world-class culinary city with new and exciting things happening every day and everywhere.
“We work with a handful of talented taste-making DJs to craft the best best for each night.
“We want to create an atmosphere that is hip, cool, yet interactive. Our music ranges from soulful, deep, funky, nu disco, house, urban, eclectic, alternative, diverse and upbeat with a feel-good vibe that allow guests to experience the sonic identity of our venue,” Scotty B mused about the SEEN experience.
With a penchant to innovate and explore in expressive music styles, Scotty B’s ability to hype up the crowd guarantees a memorable experience for all.
SEEN Restaurant & Bar 26th Fl, Avani+ Riverside Bangkok Hotel 257 Charoennakorn Rd Open: Daily from 6pm to 1am Tel. 02 431 9120 www.seenrooftopbangkok.com
CHAR Restaurant wins global ‘Luxury Grill’ from 2019 World Luxury Restaurant Awards
Hotel Indigo Bangkok Wireless Road is thrilled to announce that CHAR Restaurant was named Global Winner of the ‘Luxury Grill’ category by the 2019 World Luxury Restaurant Awards. This establishes CHAR as one of the best fine dining destinations in Bangkok, featuring Chef Nikolas Ramirez’s modern grilling techniques and takes on classic cuisine.
Established in 2015, the World Luxury Restaurant Awards is an achievement in the luxury restaurant industry offering international recognition. Online votes are contributed by guests, travellers and industry players alike, taking into consideration food quality, luxury, service and customer experience.
Consisting of three venues in one location, CHAR Restaurant, CHAR Private and CHAR Rooftop Bar are located on the 25th floor of Hotel Indigo Bangkok, Wireless road. With unique menus and ambience under the concept of ‘Wood Fire Grill & Wine Bar’, CHAR Bangkok is open everyday from 6pm-12pm.
For more information or reservations please call 02 207 4999 or email CHARbangkok@ihg.com.
This Saturday, July 20th, 2019, the Penthouse will be taken over by Maggie Choo’s from 8pm-2am.
This is certainly a special guest arrangement where one of Bangkok’s most popular nightlife haunts, Maggie Choo’s will emerge from its underground speakeasy and go appear above the city lights, taking over the 35th floor of the Penthouse at Park Hyatt Bangkok in a unique collaboration.
Maggie Choo’s will entertain guests at the Penthouse with Maggie Choo’s Shanghainese girls, a hot live jazz band and their Asian-infused signature cocktails. Barkeeps Anders Olsen and “Kong” Worachai Duangkong, will be shaking and stirring four signature cocktails from Maggie Choo’s own menu to serve up, L’Amour De Choco, Rum in Tea, Black – Blood, Red in Town each at B320++ at the Penthouse’s exquisite bar.
We invite all to come for a fun weekend night and check out the festivities for a night with Maggie Choo’s at the Penthouse.
Don’t miss performances by Maggie Choo’s signature 1930’s Shanghainese Girls at 9pm, 10pm and 11pm and enjoy live jazz from 9pm-midnight followed by Penthouse’s DJ, spinning beats until late.
An unassuming cave-like restaurant with big flavours
Don’t expect any signage on this well-hidden location, however, this small restaurant manages to pack its seating daily with both new and returning patrons.
Entering into the unassuming entrance, one emerges into a cave-like interior decked of earth-toned furniture with a collection of artwork on one wall and a compact bar setup on the far end.
Bambino Bangkok is definitely tricky to find for any first time visitors, but once found, it’s hard to forget. The three-storey townhouse building is located in Soi Nai Lert on a residential street just a short walk away from Ploenchit BTS station.
Bambino Bangkok offers something different both in terms of atmosphere and food. Serving delicious Japanese izakaya in modern interpretations, the menu packs an array of delicious creations by chef Arnie Marcella that is sure to dazzle and excite any visitors time and time again.
The must-not-miss dishes include eggplant dengaku served with flavourful scallops in sweet sauce (B220); the mapo tofu (B400)—a mountain of crispy egg noodles served with Chinese sausage (goon chiang) topped with Sichuan-style spicy mala sauce.
The delicious wagyu sando (B550)—an Australian wagyu striploin cut with a coat of panko breadcrumbs dunked in the sizzling hot oil before serving in bite size pieces. For non-beef eaters, the restaurant also offers pork neck sando (B400)—marinated pork neck cutlet coated with panko breadcrumbs fried to a delicious crisp that may not be as juicy as the beef although just as delectable. We’d recommend to try both anyway.
For those with a sweet tooth, please give the homemade ice cream a try. Although flavours may vary from day to day’s availability, whatever flavour picked is sure to be enjoyable.
While the beverages on offer are anything but typical for those available at any izakaya restaurants, beer and wine are available by the glass and by the bottle. Other choices include the rustic cocktails like highballs (B280)—refreshing and cooling bourbon drink with lemon juice and a scent of elderflower, is a great start. A more rustic variety includes the General Farmer (B340)—rosemary-infused vodka with apricot liqueur, homemade raisin syrup and lemon. Fancying other variation or a more classic cocktails? The able bartenders are at the ready to make that happen as well.
Wanting to exercise his creativity, the easy-going and soft-spoken Chef Nikolas Ramirez of Char, Hotel Indigo proudly presents the new ‘Surprise Menu’ concept. The special nine-course menu comes in an omakase-style dining option where the chef has all the say on what to serve.
First up was smoked Hamachi served in chilli water with delicately sliced cucumber and sour mango. This refreshing dish was perfect to stir up the sleepy palate, preparing the taste buds for the journey ahead.
Now that the taste buds are properly stimulated, a savoury plate of seared Maine lobster followed. The meat was served with caramelised truffle honey creating a perfect blend of creaminess, sweetness and smokiness in every bite.
The Mexican-inspired grilled baby corn served with cream sauce and a dash of coffee powder to cut the taste with bitterness.
Fried milk skin taco with truffle and cheese offers delightful mouthfeels. The burnt milk texture with cheese and delicate mixture of truffle made for a very attractive experience.
Next came a confusing yet pleasant surprise, a savoury oddball of pickled white asparagus served with sweet caramelised white chocolate and a piece of pungent blue cheese which strangely balanced the flavours of the plate.
Main courses started with Butterfish cooked to perfection with great texture while the taste is enhanced with sweet bread Nantua and a drop of hollandaise sauce.
Another play on chef’s heritage, the chilli con carne–a 250-day grain-fed Wagyu steak marinated in special sauce served with chilli and cream topped with onion and cilantro offers fulfilling taste and aroma in every bite.
Winding down finally, desserts started with a homely pumpkin pecan pie with pumpkin confit and cream with cinnamon, ginger and clove; concluding the meal with a perfect palate cleansing freshness, raspberry cheesecake.
The nine-course Surprise Menu is priced at B3,000 with an additional B1,400 for wine pairing (must be ordered by the entire table).
In the main boulevard heading to the Grand Palace and the Royal Parade Ground close to the Royal Rattanakosin Hotel, there sits a place that no foodie should miss–a classic restaurant called ‘Sky High’. A local favourite that has witnessed and survived many important political situations. Besides Sky High’s reputation for exceptional dishes, it is also a meet-up place for all kinds of people from news reporters, poets, writers, politicians, activists, protesters, artists mixed with a family of regulars who are here to share the same things; good times, good food and real conversation.
Sky High is turning fifty this year and remains a popular destination for all. It is owned by the same family and still continues to offer their original recipes and tastes. One of the dishes famous among Thais is Tom Super Kha Gai (chicken feet in herbal tom yum soup). It might make people turn their faces away from the graphic appearance but one should give it a try because the soup itself is so exciting with spiciness from chilli, sourness from fresh lime and up-lifting freshness of herbs. The benefit of the chicken feet is that it adds thickness to the soup’s texture and is full of collagen which benefits the elasticity of our skin. I love munching on them without thinking of any benefit beyond its texture! Another popular dish is Khao Ob Sapparos (pineapple rice with curry powder). Inside the hollowed-out pineapple used as the serving dish is the combination of al-dente fried rice with shrimp seasoned with curry powder giving an interesting twist of taste that has elements of sweet and sour of pineapple along with the tang and spice of curry. Another special offering is the dried bamboo soup made with a special type of bamboo that has been completely dried; when cooking, it needs to be treated by soaking in water overnight until the soft texture is restored. Again, this dish doesn’t look like anything close to photogenic but once I have it in my mouth, it flips me with the beautiful aroma and taste of fresh cut bamboo! The crunchiness of the young bamboo texture reminds me of chewing on big, fat, firm asparagus. To add protein to the meal I ordered Ped Palo (duck in five spices). The aroma of star anise and cinnamon arrives at the table before the dish. The soft duck meat and thin skin absorbed the juice like a sponge meeting water, adding a bit of excitement to the taste withe the chilli vinegar sauce.
The heart of eating at Sky High is Khao Tom. My joy of eating here could almost come only from the aroma of the jasmine-boiled rice. It has its own life and texture that set a very high standard of what Khao Tom should be. Delicate, soft and soupy. There are not many places or times when rice is a star of the menu–yet here it is. The beauty of having a meal here comes from nothing fancy, just having a tender, warm and unforgettable food experience.
Marriott International, Inc. is launching the second “MLive Food Market.” The vibrant culinary and cultural festival that showcases the finest street food in Thailand’s capital city will happen from July 19 to 21, 2019. The MLive Food Market will bring together numerous mouth-watering dishes from Marriott’s top chefs, paying tribute to the simple yet delicious street, or ‘soi’, cuisine of Bangkok.
MLive Food Market will take place on The Surawongse Rooftop, the outdoor event space overlooking Bangkok’s skyline at Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse. The three-day event is not-to-be missed because it will showcase an extravaganza of Thai and international food from 19 Marriott hotels all across Bangkok as well as exciting culinary events, including live chef battles and fun activities for all ages. The event is open to the public, with no entrance fee showcasing an amazing array of local Thai favorites, Asian delicacies, innovative international cuisine and delicious desserts at affordable prices ranging from B60 to B150.
From 5pm up till 10pm over the weekend of July 19 to 21, the rooftop of the Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse will be transformed into a vibrant Thai street food market. Diners can enjoy the evening with casual seating, picnic areas, a kids’ zone, fun crafts and a live music stage for an upbeat or chilled out vibe.
All online registrations at www.MLiveFoodMarket.com will get a chance to win one of 200 B250 lucky draw vouchers, which can be redeemed at the event. Registrations are open now, and winners will be randomly selected and notified via email on July 12, 2019.
For more information about the event, participating hotels and dishes and to pre-register, please visit www.MLiveFoodMarket.com.
*A List of all participating hotels include:
1. Marriott Executive Apartments Sathorn Vista
2. Marriott Executive Apartments Sukhumvit Park
3. Le Méridien Bangkok
4. Renaissance Bangkok Ratchaprasong Hotel
5. Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen’s Park
6. The Westin Grande Sukhumvit, Bangkok
7. Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse
8. Courtyard by Marriott Bangkok
9. Marriott Executive Apartments Mayfair
10. Four Points By Sheraton Bangkok, Sukhumvit 15, Bangkok
11. Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit, Bangkok
12. Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit
13. Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel & Towers
14. Le Méridien Suvarnabhumi Bangkok, Golf Resort & Spa
15. JW Marriott Hotel Bangkok
16. The Athenee Hotel, a Luxury Collection Hotel
17. W Bangkok
18. The St. Regis Bangkok
19. Aloft Bangkok – Sukhumvit 11
The thin, brown paper sachet feels delicate in my hands—its refined, matte texture interrupted only by a smooth, salmon-pink pentagonal label. The artwork features a playful, yet cryptic, array of symbols: rays of pink light emitting from a green sun, and colourful beans tumbling from mountain-like shapes. In the centre dance a male and female couple: two halves of a single cacao pod shaped in a heart—holding hands and revealing a deep pink core bursting with yellow confetti. What this all means, it seems, we’ll discover upon experiencing the contents.
Tearing the top off this petite packet feels almost like a trespass; yet, I go ahead. Shaking the envelope gently, my reward inches out: a glistening, wafer-thin bar of dark chocolate. No extravagant debossed logos or psychedelic patterns here: just 24 small oblongs, each patiently waiting to be discovered. I snapped off a tiny 1cm-wide block. As it melts in my mouth, it reveals a tantalizing poetry of flavours: a dark sweetness that, in time, unveils a complex fruitiness reminiscent of red berries; a noticeable acidity—but one that’s well-balanced by a round nuttiness. Moments later, I feel a palpable lift in energy, clarity and focus—and reach for more.
This 22g of goodness is the chocolate of Shabar, an emerging micro-batch chocolate producer based in Bangkok, founded by 30-year old Narut Ampakorn. Narut’s calm demeanour and measured tones belie his fiery passion for this dark ambrosia. He is part of the growing collective of young Thai craft chocolate makers seeking to elevate Thai cacao and chocolate—and put them firmly on the map. When he’s not exploring the country’s hinterlands for quality cacao, you can find him deep in R&D, concocting new formulas and techniques, facilitating workshops with renowned expert Hazel Lee—or working alongside some of Bangkok’s finest F&B establishments (including Asia’s top 50 bar, Teens of Thailand).
Cacao has actually been growing in the kingdom for over a century, though it only began to be seriously researched and produced around 40 years ago. Initially brought to Asia by the Spanish via the Philippines, the superfruit eventually made its way to Indonesia and Malaysia—and was from there introduced to Southern Thailand. While the majority of cacao is today produced in Chumphon, a large proportion is also grown in the north, in Chiang Mai; producers are now also emerging elsewhere—including Prachuap Khiri Khan, Chiang Rai—and even Khao Yai. Indeed, the bar that I’m in the midst of demolishing is Shabar’s 70% cacao dark chocolate, made from 100% single-origin beans from Chanthaburi in eastern Thailand—a region usually best-known for its durian and snake fruit.
As I finish my (Sha)bar, flip over the packet to examine the back label. The cacao couple now dance in the apex of the pentagon. Their epithet reads: ‘Heart-warming fine chocolate, crafted by Shabar to fill your day with happiness and ignite your bliss’. As I bound into my day with a newfound lightness and joy, I’d say it definitely delivers on its promise—and the artwork is a mystery no more.
ICONSIAM celebrates Buddhist Lent or Khao Pansa Day with The ICONIC Candle Festival, a riverside candle showcase from 12-17 July.
ICONSIAM, The ICONSIAM Residences Corporation Ltd., and The ICONSIAM Superlux Residence Corporation Ltd., Thailand Post Co., Ltd., government and private business alliances will celebrate Buddhist Lent with The ICONIC Candle Festival, a form of Thailand’s unique candle festival at ICONSIAM, aiming to preserve the traditional candle procession and the art of candle carving.
The opening ceremony takes place on 12 July 2019 at 5pm at River Park, ICONSIAM. Crafted candles from Ubon Ratchathani will be displayed portraying an excerpt from the story of Buddha with a five-metre highlight piece by Weera Meesook. The event will also feature contemporary Isaan performances that include dance, music and literature. Buddhists may bring small candles for donations and visitors are encouraged to dress in traditional Thai costumes for the event.
At Rasada Hall on the 1st Floor will be an exhibition on the history of Buddhist Lent, a candle carving demonstration from craftsmen from Ubon Ratchathani, and a wax candle flower workshop. At Suralai Hall on the 7th Floor, from 12-14 July at 1pm, sermons will be given as a dedication to His Majesty King Mahavajiralongkorn for his 67th birthday on 28 July.
Free Admission. For more information, call 02 495 7000.
Returning to the roots and the beginning of a new journey
Emerging into the lush green land in Pranburi District, rows of greenhouses and growing patches are a welcoming sight.
Echoing laughter can be heard coming from the unassuming structure ahead where the chef and proprietor of the Boutique Farmers, James Noble, discussed all things food and plants with his guests.
Practically growing up in the hospitality industry, the ability to drop off the grid and do a sustainable, low-carbon operation has always been his end goal.
“Boutique Farmers is a zero carbon-footprint, organic, sustainable restaurant where the menu changes on a daily basis, depending on the available ingredients and produce,” said James.
However, his aim was not to flood the market with the products. His outlet is established to give chefs exactly what they need to create that perfect dishes they want for their restaurants.
“It is a unique operation. It is a reverse farming project where people instruct us about what they want us to grow or tell us the quantity of products they want and we’ll tell them how much space they will need to realise that and how much the rent would cost.
“To guarantee that our products reach the chefs in prime, ultimate condition, we do the delivery ourselves,” he added.
The reverse farming allows the farm to grow just what a chef needs within months. Some of his clientele include Gaa (Michelin Plate, Best Female Chef 2019), Sühring (one Michelin star), and Paste (one Michelin star) to name a few.
Of course, this requires a lot of homework done in order to study and/or create the perfect conditions the plants or produces need to grow.
The point, he said, is to hopefully let chefs mull over the available local ingredients they could use when designing a dish or a menu rather than ordering in from abroad just because they can.
Not only specific to growing plants, they also raise geese, goats and mussels in Sam Roi Yot district nearby while seafood and other meat items are sourced from fishermen, chicken and pig farmers when required.
Serving a small number of guests on a weekly basis, there is really no clear cut ideas of what will be on the plates until Thursday when the harvest come in, then only by Friday that they will have four appetisers, four main courses and four desserts finalised.
Saturday will see bistro menus and some tapas sets, while Sunday features a brunch with an amalgamation of all things available cooked in different ways so there is no repetition of any food during any particular weekend.
Only 30 kilometres from Hua Hin, Pranburi is short of four hours on an easy drive from Bangkok and Boutique Farmers is surely worth a visit, food enthusiasts or not.