The dining scene in Bangkok is ever-evolving. And lately, there is a new breed of food-centric community malls that cater to sophisticated palates – The Commons and 72 Courtyard. Both places are now packed with hip restaurants and cool joints, serving an exciting array of small plates and decadent dishes. From Asian-fusion street-eats to authentic Mexican tacos, these are the best bites we’d recommend.
The dish: roasted pork belly al pastor tacos
Australia-born gastropub, Touché Hombre offers a selection of Mexican street-eats, fun cocktails and rare tequilas. With a blend of local seasonal produce and exquisite imported ingredients, they craft a series of tasty authentic tacos with homemade corn tortillas. The roasted pork belly al pastor: our favourite taco, hands down. The soft corn tortillas are crisped up on a griddle and then filled with tender pork belly. Topped with tangy pineapple, sweet white onion salsa and spicy achiote chilli drizzle, the finished taco plays with a myriad of flavours and textures.
Touché Hombre, 72 Courtyard, Sukhumvit 55, Thonglor, Bangkok, +66 84 452 4533
The dish: paella de mar y tierra
After the success of its original branches in Boston and New York City, Toro opened another Barcelona-style tapas bar in Bangkok. Situated within 72 Courtyard, Toro has an industrial vibe enhanced by white bricks, dark wood and exposed pipes. Here, you can enjoy a selection of sensational Spanish small plates with local flavours; to name a few: spice-rubbed hanger steak with caramelised red onion and green curry butter, and smoked pastrami mousse served with dried squid and shrimp crackers. While all the tapas are spectacular, it’s their paella de mar y tierra that keeps bringing the crowds. The succulent rice boasts an exceptional flavour and mingles in an aromatic stock with spicy chorizo, briny calms and sweet prawn. Bring a friend – or two – and devour this paella together. You won’t regret it.
Toro, Floor 1, 72 Courtyard, Sukhumvit 55, Thonglor, Bangkok, +66 2 392 7790
Soul Food 555
The dish: khao soi cowboy burger
Soul Food Mahanakorn’s small-scale stall within The Commons, Soul Food 555 delivers a wide range of Thai comfort food in a laidback setting. Hop on one of their wooden stools and enjoy a selection of classic Thai delights at their bar counter. We’d recommend their khao soi cowboy burger. The pulled pork burger with khao soi elements – crisp-crunch egg noodles and curry spices – is a messy one oozing with bold flavours. Sandwiched with lime, cilantro and sweet mustard pickles, the monster-sized burger isn’t as hefty as it sounds. And go ahead, pair it with a Belgian ale from The Beer Cap.
Soul Food 555, Ground Floor, The Commons, 335/1 Thonglor, Soi 17, Khwaeng Prawet, Khet Prawet, Bangkok, +66 2 101 4526
The dish: braised pork belly bao
Specialising in regional street-eats from Mainland China and Taiwan, Xiao Chi offers a compact menu of small, scrumptious bites. From authentic spicy dumplings to steaming hot buns, the street-eats here are a delight. But nothing tops their traditional braised pork belly bao. A perfect snack bite that is slightly messy, the succulent braised pork belly is sandwiched between soft, pillow-like buns, and topped with a sprinkle of crushed peanuts. You’ll probably want seconds.
Xiao Chi, Ground Floor, The Commons, 335/1 Thonglor, Soi 17, Khwaeng Prawet, Khet Prawet, Bangkok, +66 2 185 2497
The dish: Vietnamese noodle bowls
Eastbound prides themselves on offering healthy, authentic Vietnamese cuisine. They also specialise in a number of vegetarian-friendly dishes, all prepared in traditional recipes with a modern twist. Here, our top pick would be their delectable Vietnamese noodle bowls. Simple, vibrant and colourful – the noodle bowls consist of fresh herbs, raw vegetables, chilled vermicelli noodles, deep-fried eggrolls and your choice of meat or tofu. Drizzled with a sweet, tangy sauce, the noodle bowls make a great summer dish.
Eastbound, Ground Floor, The Commons, 335/1 Thonglor, Soi 17, Khwaeng Prawet, Khet Prawet, Bangkok, +66 2 185 2508