There is no lack of choice when it comes to locations to eat and drink in the Thai capital, but it is somewhat surprising that the term ‘gastro pub’ isn’t often voiced in connection with Bangkok’s dining scene. Perhaps this is because of the availability of delicious low-cost food on every corner? Whatever the case, the city’s ‘chic pub’ scene has been relatively slow to embrace such eateries in the way the UK and USA have.
That said, this has not deterred Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit from taking the bold decision to switch the vibe of its BarSu venue from a ‘drink, dine, dance’ destination to a modern gastro lounge, although the change isn’t immediately noticeable. The décor remains strikingly familiar, albeit with minor variations – the DJ booth has been retired and the open kitchen has morphed into a quaint delicatessen.
The real revamp, however, can be found in the pages of BarSu’s playful new menu. With a philosophy of rustic ‘down-to-earth food at down-to-earth prices’, the hotel’s Executive Chef Luca Cesarini has composed an extensive choice of offerings encompassing the usual gastro favourites prepared with local twists.
Of note is the feisty Yellow Fin Tuna Tartare (B390) which sparkles with a combination of lime and chilli – a wonderful taste sensation that works effortlessly. The Chicken Massala Asian Skewers (B320) also hit the mark, aided by a tomato, coriander and mint salsa with a frisky mango relish for balance.
However, any self-respecting gastro bar lives and dies by its burger range. Not quite ‘taster’ size, yet more manageable than the overbearing portions at some fashionable joints, BarSu’s burgers certainly aren’t found wanting in the taste stakes. The signature Chicken Burger (B360) comes topped with a generous helping of powerful Blue Jack cheese in a beet-dyed bun with sides of sautéed mushrooms and chunky home-style fries.
In terms of drinks, BarSu’s list includes Rossini’s Italian range of imported craft beers alongside regular domestic offerings. The cocktails are the real showstoppers here though. The potent Lady Killer cranberry caipirinha (B290) delivers a buzz akin to a kick with a steel toe-capped boot but without compromising on flavour, while the signature Su Su Margarita (B300) offers an icy chalice of slushy deliciousness that should be tried at least once. Still finding its feet in its new guise, BarSu’s revamped menus certainly suggest that this old dog has the potential for many new tricks.
Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit, 250 Sukhumvit Rd | 0 2649 8358
barsubangkok.com | Open daily 10am-11pm