Character launches second branch
Inside the Compass Skyview Hotel (Sukhumvit Soi 24) sits a cozy little whisky and cigar lounge called Character—the second one to open in Bangkok this year (the first branch is in the Anantara Siam Hotel). This newly launched cigar sanctuary shares the 32nd floor with the hotel’s popular Mojjo Bar, but the vibe is pure “gentlemen’s club”, with padded leather sofas, glass cases displaying quality spirits, and a walk-in humidor stocked with a wide selection of premium handmade cigars. The bar, meanwhile, puts the emphasis on fine and rare whiskies, including newly imported single cask selections from Duncan Taylor, Hepburn’s Choice, and First Editions (independent bottlers in Scotland). And, when weather permits, the outdoor terrace provides extra room for enjoying a puff. Open Monday to Saturday from 5pm to 1am. Memberships fees vary from B40,000 to B165,000.
The bar everyone is “talking” about
Local arts scene personality Bruno Tanquerel is one of the folks behind the much talked about Sevana Bar, which opened at the end of August on an unassuming soi off Chan Road (soi 16 to be precise). The name translates as “chatty conversation” in Thai, and the close quarters within this narrow low lit spot are perfect for getting acquainted with whoever else has dropped in to enjoy the cool atmosphere, good music, relaxed vibe, and specially created cocktail list. Bruno, who designed the interior, chose the Chan Road area precisely because it’s “not developed”, but judging by the other hip spots which have opened nearby (Eats, Payao, Birds Rotisserie, etc.) this locale may not be off-the-beaten-track for much longer. Open every night except Sunday, from 7:30pm onwards, and as an added bonus the late night kitchen serves up great Thai food.
For the sake of sake
Situated in an immaculately designed space that combines the spirit of Osaka’s backstreets with the laid-back soul of Bangkok’s old town, Jua(672/49 Charoen Krung 28) is on the radar of both foodies and boozies—is that a word yet?—as their food and drink menus offer yakitori, kushiyaki and Japanese shared plates, along with a well curated selection of shochu, highballs, and whisky. But it’s the sake selection, including labels such as Masumi, Born, Tedorigawa, Kozaeman, Tamagawa, Sakunohana, and Bijofu, that have truly piqued the interest of many. Open 6pm till midnight, Tuesday to Saturday.
Ratchathewi gets radical
If you haven’t had a reason to get off at Ratchathewi BTS stop lately, then go check out Figure 8, a recently opened cocktail bar and gallery—exhibitions are set to rotate every three months—with a dark gothic decor and an inventive cocktail list. The man behind the drinks menu is former Sugar Ray mixologist Prince Armornkunathum, who has named each signature beverage after an influential artist. Add to that a soundtrack that mixes jazz, soul, electro, and even live acoustic performances and DJ sets, and you’ve got the kind of edgy intimate spot that this neighbourhood needs more of.