An all-female squadron of bartenders makes spectacular, fuss-free drinks
A transplant from Singaporean shores, spirit aficionados may already have heard of the cult following that Highball enjoys. After reading some descriptions however, the idea of an exclusively all-female ensemble of bar staff seemed like a bit of a gimmick to draw in the punters. Thankfully, Highball Bangkok turned out to be anything but.
By definition a “highball” is a spirit and carbonated mixer combo. After bursting its way into the European drinking scene circa the 1700s, it was adopted into the very essence of Japanese Izakaya drinking culture. If you want a change from beer, but still want something with a decent amount of alcohol, highballs serve as a lighter, but still thirst quenching alternative—which is especially welcome in Bangkok’s often unrelenting heat.
The bar is located just a stone’s throw away from Terminal 21 and the Asoke BTS station, on Sukhumvit Soi 19—a particular stretch of road that is often overlooked by locals because of the ubiquity of tourists milling around. But the owners of this bar clearly mean business and aim to attract a local crowd as well. Not only have they partnered with Jim Beam brand bourbon, they’ve also managed to nab an exclusive draft machine which carbonates each highball beverage to perfection—every time.
As an absolute novice in this world, the fact that they use Hozaki ice, and that its carbon particles are finer than anything on the market, flies over my head. All I know is that you’ll absolutely enjoy every gulp. This place has now been bookmarked as my after work ‘local’. It’s obsession inducing.
The all-female staff are trained from scratch here, and the investment shows in each perfectly executed drink. The Yuzu Highball (B220) is a dream. Made with fresh yuzu juice, it’s sweet, piquant, and I have the sneaking suspicion that it’s one of those drinks that catches up on you before you even know it. By contrast the Bussaba Highball (B220) is an interesting home grown addition, blending the Thai flavours of Kaffir lime, lemongrass, butterfly pea, and elderflower into a fresh, easy to drink concoction. There’s also a list of four rotating cocktails hand-crafted by the bartenders themselves—with the gin-based Fish Bowl (B300) being a current stand out.
Of course, they don’t just do highballs here, as they also have an extensive cocktail menu and will even go as far as to make bespoke drinks to suit your fancy. The beautifully light and sweet Lychee Rose Gin Fizz (B380) takes a lot of arm strength and effort, but is definitely worth the toil—and I swear it isn’t a “girlie drink”. Meanwhile, the absinthe infused Morning Glory Fizz (B320), made with Teacher’s Highland Cream, may just blow your mind.
Not one to do things in half measure, they also have a selection of nicely executed Western and Asian light bites, such as marinated chicken wings, with prices ranging from B120 to B250. By Zipporah Gene
GF, Sacha’s Hotel Uno
28/19, Sukhumvit Soi 19
Open daily: 6am-1am
Tel: 064 429 8624