From homegrown herbs and tropical fruits, to creative remakes of popular Thai food dishes, Thai ingredient infused cocktails are on the rise in Bangkok. Drawing their inspiration from the multi-faceted culture and its culinary favourites, many bars are giving classic concoctions a Southeast Asian makeover, or even coming up with entirely new creations. Often seasonal, sometimes spicy, and always locally sourced, take a look at these Bangkok bars serving up some of our favourite Thai ingredient infused cocktails in the city.
With a cocktail list that changes daily, the much-loved and charmingly free-spirited Teens of Thailand serves a vast array of gins from around the globe, yet still draws inspiration from the street just outside to create a number of Thai style gin cocktails. Prepared by mixologist Niks Anuman-Rajadhon (also owner of the Drinks Academy), popular creations have included sun-dried banana, Thai tea, Chiang Mai passion fruit, and even pepper pork jerky gin infusions. Creative yet committed, Teens of Thailand is a bar that is focused on gin, with delicious complements from Bangkok.
Teens of Thailand, 76 Soi Nana, Charoen Krung Rd., Bangkok, +66968460506
Canvas is well known within the Thonglor neighbourhood as an elegant spot for fine dining and fine company, with the city’s buzzing metropolis serving as inspiration to many of the dishes created by chef Riley Sanders. Head upstairs to the bar before or after your meal, and watch this inspiration evolve and translate into a both intriguing and sophisticated cocktail list. Mixologist Naphat Natachon takes the stage here, incorporating locally-sourced ingredients into cocktails such as a mangosteen gin and tonic, a jackfruit and palm cocktail, a Cognac infused with neam leaves, and even a coffee with sweet Vermouth and smoked with anise.
Canvas, 113/9-10 Sukhumvit Soi 55, Klongton Nua, Wattana, Bangkok, +66996141158
Popular late-night dining destination Eat Me has the most extensive Thai-infused cocktail list in our collection, and it’s an extraordinary one to say the least. Bringing gastronomy to the glass at their downstairs bar, there’s everything from Ketel One laab moo and pad Thai cocktails, over to a Bacardi mieng kum and Hainanese chicken rice number. Whilst the drinks menu reads like food items (and indeed often tastes like the popular food items), Eat Me grants a delicious element of surprise by perfectly combining alcohol with authentic Thai flavour notes. Meticulously decorated to give each cocktail a unique character, Eat Me’s cocktails prove an inspired choice, and are a must-try for all die-hard Thai food lovers.
Eat Me Restaurant, Soi Pipat 2, Silom, Bangkok, +6622380931
A few steps away from Canvas lies Rabbit Hole, an elegant three-story bar with an extremely impressive liquor collection, showcased within an extremely impressive rose gold liquor rack. Yet whilst Rabbit Hole’s interiors are sure to make it to any Instagram story, it is the bar’s drinks that really steal the show. From the ‘Spade Gardener’ apricot-infused rum with plum bitters and lime juice, to the ‘White Lady’ of vodka, lotus syrup, lime juice and egg white, Rabbit Hole’s award-winning mixologists touch on age-old local flavours and favourites. Our tip? Definitely try the ‘Cry Me The Moon’, a cocktail made with truffle gin, pandan syrup, apple juice, and lemon.
Rabbit Hole, 125 Thonglor Sukhumvit 55, Bangkok, +66989691335
Located in Rattanakosin, Ku Bar is the kind of place you could have only stumbled upon on an evening walk, or have your extremely hip friend give you an insider’s tip about. Found in an abandoned-looking building inside a casual alley, the bar’s outside has something of a horror film set — and the drinks are chillingly good. The brainchild of Anupas Premanuwat and Elaine Sun, Ku Bar sources its ingredients from the nearby old markets, and keeps things sleek and simple by naming their cocktails after single components. With a monthly changing menu, past favourites have included the ‘Gooseberry’, ‘Roasted Corn’, or ‘Melon’ – a mix of tequila, Chinese celery, honeydew melon juice, and tabasco sauce with absinthe spray.
Ku bar, 3/F, 469 Phra Sumen Rd., Bangkok, +6620676731
Image Credit: Instagram
Recently featured on our list of hangover cures as the ideal spot to embrace the Hair of the Dog, Photo Booth is a speakeasy bar, hidden behind an entrance that doubles as an unsuspecting photo booth. Once inside, guests can enjoy a selection of classic and Thai-inspired cocktails, many of which bear imaginative names. The ‘Bangrak, You’ve Got Mail’ consists of Captain Morgan Spiced Rum, Pampero Blanco, Moscato, homemade spiced mango honey, and fresh lime and ginger ale, and even comes with a mini paper letter attached to the glass stem. Other options include ‘Sorry, Only BTS This Country’ (coconut-infused gin with white sesame Vermouth), or ‘Bond Loved Jasmine’ (jasmine Vermouth and Chrysanthemum bitters). No matter what you’re sipping, the cocktails here are packed with personality, much like the country itself.
The Photo Booth, Sukhumvit Soi 11, Bangkok, +662 117 2636
Image Credit: Instagram