World-class wine bar that isn’t just all about wine
Walk past the retail—the long stemware, the mouth-blown glass, the decanters in impossible shapes, including the serpentine Mamba and Boa—and come face to face with the showpiece at the Riedel Wine Bar & Cellar: the ‘Wine Emotion’. This example of oenological intrigue contains 40 fine wines, evoking not so unfounded comparisons to a display of macarons and cakes at a Hong Kong patisserie. Beyond, the wine finally flows, and the whole place starts to feel like a Maserati showroom on steroids, where you can somehow test-drive the wheels without ever leaving the building.
You would be hard-pressed to find another bar that puts so much emphasis on the entire wine-drinking experience than this one. The shelves display a range of world-class products from Austrian glassmaker Riedel (the bar is licensed by Riedel, after all), the staff includes the soon-to-be Level 2 sommelier Dirakerit ‘DK’ Kotchawong, and there’s that one-of-a-kind Wine Emotion mentioned above—a machine that dispenses but prevents wines from oxidizing, so you can sample multiple labels without having to buy the bottles.
However, the bar has recently been made over and, believe it or not, Riedel is no longer just about the wine. Executive Chef Patrick Martens, formerly of Zuma (in London, Hong Kong, and Bangkok) and the Sapparot Group, was brought into the fold to revamp the food menu. He’s now offering what he calls “refined, rustic European cuisine”. Interpret that to mean lots of touches from across the wine-making regions of Europe. For example: Spanish-style Prawns Cooked in Olive Oil (B590) with chili and garlic; Smoked Burrata Cheese (B350) with basil, confit tomatoes, and aged balsamic; and 200 grams of Ibérico Pork Pluma (B890), a fatty, succulent cut of pig that comes from the neck/shoulder region—a cut that reportedly is only found in Spain.
The food is a little more fine-tuned, the menu makes more sense, and the tapas-style method of eating is more appropriate for the social gatherings Riedel is hoping to invoke as Gaysorn Plaza prepares to open its adjacent tower. The foot traffic has already increased; when the office annex is complete, it’s easy to see Riedel becoming a popular spot for boozy business lunches or after-work drinks—especially now that there’s a proper list of cocktails to enjoy.
Well-travelled barman and consultant Francesco Moretti, of Vogue Lounge fame, has added some exciting options for the non-wine-inclined. His takes on the Negroni—the Parmanita (B320), with lemon and pomelo zest as well as grapefruit juice, and the Espresso (B320) featuring coffee-infused Campari—will wow those who prefer bitter notes, while Memory (B320), a fruity and aromatic gin fizz with jasmine tea-infused gin, kaffir lime, and lemon zest in the egg white, is an absolute crowd-pleaser. And with buy-one-get-one deals from 5pm until 9pm (Wed-Sat), you might find yourself going back just to try all these new cocktails. (all prices listed are net)
Riedel Wine Bar & Cellar
2F, Gaysorn Plaza, 999 Ploenchit Rd.
Tel: 02 656 1133
Open daily 11am-midnight