Cooler weather and the end of rainy season in Bangkok mean it’s time for some alfresco dining and drinking. Yvonne Liang scouted out the best spots for having your meal or enjoying a drink outside. Photo by Johnny Murphy.
Best known for being the premier venue of Kolour Sundays, Viva Aviv can go from full on party mode to relaxing with a cocktail by the river. Dine overlooking the Chao Phraya River complete with atmospheric music provided by a live DJ every night. The décor has a nautical theme with a bar constructed out of wooden crates and sailboat pieces hanging from the ceiling. Dishes and drinks have quirky names such as WTD?! (What The Duck?!) (B180) a platter of duck, mango pickles, fig paste, apple and bread. The river cruises load up just at the pier in front of Viva Aviv restaurant and bar.
B/F, River City Shopping Complex, 23 Yotha Rd. Open from 11am to 12am.
Housed within a magnificent colonial home, the owners of Indigo have created an elegant ambience for your meal. Outdoor seating is available within the green courtyard, or those preferring to dine under the moonlight can opt for the garden tables. The French Mediterranean cuisine is heavy on cows with bovine dishes ranging from succulent veal with morel sauce to a cote de boeuf (B1,500, 1.4 kg). There is also an excellent cheese soufflé for those less carnivorous. The bread from neighbouring La Boulange also comes highly recommended.
6 Convent Road (Silom). Open daily from 11.30am to 1am.
Located on the fourth floor of Arun Residences, Amorosa lures people in with its unbeatable sunset view of one of Bangkok’s most beautiful temples, Wat Arun. When evening falls, the temple seems to shimmer with gold. You can add a river tour to your trip by taking the boat ferry to Tha Tian pier and then walking up Maharat Road and down into Soi Pratoo Nok Yoong. While the dress code is casual, the drinks are higher than most places, but it’s really the atmosphere you’re dishing out for. Make sure you get there in time to see the sun on its descent. Food is available downstairs at The Deck, which offers a similar view of Wat Arun.
Arun Residence, 36-38 Soi Pratoo Nok Yoong, Maharat Rd.
Situated with Fraser Suites, Amontre offers an array of modern international and Thai dishes. Amontre’s sleek interior with high ceilings creates a classy atmosphere that’s totally unpretentious. The signature dish is the Amontre burger with ground beef, sautéed onion, egg and cheddar cheese. Those wishing for Thai can try the khao phad Amontre, fried rice with tuna in green curry sauce. Amontre gives its own twist on classic cocktails, such as using coriander rather than mint in its mojito. The Credit Crunch Soothing hour is from 5pm to 8pm when guests can enjoy a buy-one-get-one-free deal.
Fraser Suites, 55 South Sathorn Rd.
This trendy restaurant is in the increasingly popular expat area of Ari. Just a short walk from Ari BTS, it’s worth the trip even if you’re not a local. The food and drinks have intriguing names such as Sugar Daddy and Some Thyme. With so many regulars coming here the atmosphere can be quite lively so there’re no awkward silences for those on a first date. Be prepared to exercise some patience as the kitchen can get overwhelmed with orders on busy nights. The extensive menu is filled with Japanese sushi and sashimi, wood-fired pizza, French cuisine and fusion dishes like rib eye steak with wasabi (B300).
Ari Soi 4, Open daily from 5pm to midnight.
Al Majlis Tearoom
The best part of Al Majlis is its open air courtyard where comfortable seating makes you feel right at home the moment you sink into the cushions, especially in the evenings when everything is dimly lit by lanterns. Live music and vocal performances complete the relaxing mood. The cuisine is Moroccan with tagine, couscous and grilled meats priced at around B300. Those wishing to go the whole Mid-East hog can try some sweet mint tea or indulge in some shisha with flavours ranging from apple to mint (B300).
Al Majlis has moved to; 68/2 Soi Julin Sukhumvit 21(Asoke), Sukhumvit Road
Based in the former Russian embassy, Aubergine exudes warmth and cosiness as if it were your own home. If you prefer outdoor seating there’s a patio for you to enjoy a balmy night. Service is exceptional with the waiters as smart as their attire. The menu is predominantly French with as dash of Italian and tracings of Thai and European fare. Enjoy a foie gras terrine, pan-fried frog legs, duck confit and crepe suzette, or those with a substantial appetite can try the beef cheeks served with mashed potatoes. Wine from France, Chile, Italy and California vie for your attention with bottles ranging from B1200 to B10,500.
71/1 Sala Daeng Soi 1/1, Silom Rd. Open daily from 11.30am to 2.30pm and 6pm to 11pm.
In the 17 years since it first opened in Sathorn Road, Baan Khanitha has been noted for serving authentic Thai cuisine untainted by the need to pander to wussy western taste buds. Signature items include Yam som-o, a salad of pomelo, shrimp and chicken; jim jaew som tam, imported sirloin steak served with northern style red chili sauce and papaya salad; and pla hima nueng manao, steamed snow fish with chilli, lime and garlic sauce. Dated furniture, antique ornaments and Buddha statues fills the atmosphere with an undeniable Thai-ness.
69 South Sathorn Rd