Where to find the best drinks deals at Bangkok bars
From rooftop bars with views to hole-in-the-wall dens with quirky décor, there are plenty of options when it comes to finding cool cocktails with fabulous food to match, at happy hour prices, in the Thai capital.
- April 2020
Hit refresh after a day of sightseeing at these wonderfully quirky bars, where flaming cocktails and preening parakeets mean no two nights are the same.
Tuba Design Furniture & Restaurant
If you like your drinks strong and served with a side of quirk, walk past the cabinets of knick-knacks and taxidermied falcons and take a seat. At this bar, located in a vintage furniture showroom six minutes drive from Ekkamai BTS station, you can sip buy-one-get-one-free cocktails (don’t miss the Light House cocktail made with triplesec, blue curacao and rum) and beer between 5pm and 8pm against a backdrop of 1970s troll dolls and old TVs. It is an unusual mix, but it works.
Each of the eight venues surrounding the fairy-light strewn deck in the middle of this popular post-work hangout in Thonglor has its own deal, so pick your fave. If beer is your thing, Beer Belly has about 30 on tap, plus quirky food like Ovaltine flatbread (it’s pizza bread topped with Ovaltine and condensed milk). Lucky Fish offers a cool Japanese vibe, CarBar has the best wine deals and jazz bar Evil Man Blues is big on whisky. They also offer a deep dive of counter snacks and meals, including fried chicken knuckles and budget pizza, plus there are regular live music and themed nights. Hours for the best deals vary, so do a quick reccy before you pick your bar stool.
Early happy hours can dip into shopping time but that is no problem with this rooftop bar as it is located on the 55th floor of the huge CentralWorld mall. Get comfy in a pod chair or in one of the slouchy red sofas between 4pm and 5pm for buy-one-get-one-free cocktails (the Cinnamon Fizz with its mix of cinnamon-infused whisky, lime juice and ginger ale is perfect for cutting through the late afternoon heat) and enjoy the same deal on snacks such as mini beef sliders and parmesan French fries.
This moody den doesn’t have a front door – instead, you enter via a photo booth in another bar on Soi 11, near Nana BTS station. The entry may be gimmicky but the cocktails are not. #FindThePhotoBooth is run by four of Asia’s premier bar keeps – local Ronnaporn Kanivichaporn, Hidetsugu Ueno from Tokyo’s Bar High Five, Nick Wu from Taipei’s Bar Mood and Colin Chia from Singapore’s Nutmeg and Clove. Inside, you will find dim lights, dark leather and a soothing escape from the Bangkok heat. Turn up during Aperitivo Hour (6pm-8pm) for cocktails at marked-down prices. And don’t miss the great burgers at nearby Daniel Thaiger.
Le Café des Stagiaires
If you want to forget you are in Bangkok for a bit, this quaint bar transports you straight to Paris. Tucked away in the busy Silom district, you will love its shabby chic, Parisian café vibe complete with croque monsieur and mussels mariniere on the menu. They have two happy hours (5pm-8pm, midnight to 1am), the perfect time to order a beer, wine or cocktail. Fancy going virgin? They offer a selection of alcohol-free tonics and mocktails. And on Wednesday nights, it’s buy-one-get-one-free pizzas.
Octave Rooftop Lounge & Bar
Bangkok is all about glitzy rooftop bars but this 49th-floor space is urban glam without being stuffy (they let you wear sandals). Between 5pm and 7pm, any of their 10 “Colors of Thailand” cocktails are half price. The 360° skyline views are free - The seats on the skyscraper side get the best sunset views – and the bar snacks, such as pork belly sliders with soy and ginger, are worth trying. Find it on floors 45 to 49 of the Bangkok Marriot Hotel Sukhumvit in trendy Thonglor.
Clouds Across the Moon
The area around Phra Khanong BTS station teeters on the edge of gentrification with its tiny back alleys of unpretentious street food stalls jostling with hipster record stores. But it is home to (an almost) well-kept local secret, where happy hour beer joins two-for-one classic cocktails, including a delicious flaming-sugar topped Caipirinha, between 5pm and 9pm. Expect lava lamps, old TV shows projected on walls and music to get you singing.
Inside a ramshackle wooden shed near Saphan Taksin BTS station, Jack’s Bar comes complete with a preening parakeet sitting on the shoulder of the cashier. No matter what time you turn up, a large beer will not put a hole in your wallet – and that is despite being so close to the Chao Phraya River, you could dangle your feet in (please don’t!). Grabbing a seat along the rickety wooden ledge and watching the boats float past as you tuck into one of their signature dishes like Stor Pad Kung (stir-fried prawns and local beans) is one of the great Bangkok experiences.