We’re halfway done with 2018. Here's your mid-year drinking checklist.  

A Bar

This rooftop bar at Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen's Park divides a beautiful space overlooking Benjasiri Park into two floors and two bars, one with a focus on dark spirits, one specializing in gin, and both well worth your time.

37-38/F, Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen’s Park, 199 Sukhumvit Soi 22, 02-059-5555. Open daily 5pm-1am;7pm-1am

 

Aire Bar

Hyatt Place enters the rooftop-bar fray with this no-frills, Benjasiri Park-view venue that’s ideal for after-work drinking. All signature cocktails are B280, which in the world of rooftop bars is a steal, while the list of 30 wines also does not disappoint. 

28/F, Hyatt Place, 22/5 Sukhumvit Soi 24, 02-055-1234. Open Mon-Sat 5pm-1am; Sun 3-11pm

 

The Bar Upstairs

Be transported to a secret French jardin at this Soi 11 bar from the powers behind Havana SocialCharcoal and Above Eleven

3/F, 33/30 Sukhumvit Soi 11, 02-038-5113. Open Sun-Thu 5pm-midnight; Fri-Sat 5pm-2am

 

 

Brain Freeze

The team behind some of Bangkok’s most sophisticated cocktail bars—Sugar RayQ&AThaipioka—is behind this neon-drenched slushie cocktail bar where everything goes down real easy.

Arena 10, Thonglor Soi 10, 090-656-0711. Open daily 7pm-2am

 

Cactus

Sanya Souvanna Phouma (who gave Bangkok Bed Supperclub, Maggie Choo’s and Sing Sing) is behind this, Yen Akat’s answer to a mid-century Palm Springs lounge bar. Think dusty fire-pits, warm-wood seating modules, views framed by palm trees and a list of on-theme cocktails created by Joseph Boroski (from B250).

15 Yen Akat Rd., 02-249-1451. Open Tue-Sun 5pm-1am

 

 

Escape

Swanky EmQuartier dedicates some fifth-floor, mall-top space to a venue that’s part tapas bar, part tiki bar and wholly committed to its “downtown beach club” theme.

5/F, The EmQuartier, 693 695 Sukhumvit Rd., 02-258-6515. Open daily 5pm-midnight

 

 

Find the Photo Booth

The team that brought us The Locker Room are back with another hard-to-find speakeasy whose cocktails come in the form of classics and their Thai-twisted counterparts.

Sukhumvit Soi 11, 02-117-2636. Open daily 7pm-2am

 

Frank Mansion

Ari finally has a proper cocktail bar that’s not also a beer bar-slash-cafe. Frank Mansion comes from the same team as common Ari names like Sousaku, Porcupine Cafe, Landhaus, Sasori Izakaya and O’Glee and whips out cleverly crafted cocktails, dishes courtesy of Chalermpon “Van” Rohitratana of Phra Athit’s Rarb and live music.

3-4/F, Ari One, Ari Soi 1, 02-048-3225. Open Mon-Sat 6pm-1am

 

 

Iron Balls 

Ashley Sutton’s back! He of Iron Fairies and Maggie Choo’s fame has opened a second branch of his gin distillery, Iron Balls, right beside another of his creations, Sing Sing Theater.

Sukhumvit Soi 45, 02-662-4478. Open daily 8pm-1am

 

Kangkao 

The team behind Ku Bar, the uber-cool secret cocktail bar in the Old Town, has opened another bar one floor below it, this time dedicated to natural wine. An intimate nook that's the perfect place to bring a date to avoid bumping into all your friends on Sukhumvit. 

2/F, 469 Phra Sumen Rd., 02-067-6731. Opening Wed-Sun 6pm-midnight

 

Koi

This swanky Japanese party lounge combines Koi restaurant and next-door hotspot, The Club by Koi (a takeover from former Ce la Vi).

39/F, Sathorn Square, Narathiwas Rd., 02-036-8899. Open Tue-Sun 6pm-1am; Fri-Sat 6pm-2am

 

NOMA

Standing for “Now Our Mother’s Angry,” this bar took the space once Cosmic Cafe and turned it again into a stomping ground of music industry insiders that feels like a friend’s house party.

RCA Block C, 21/66 Rama 9 Rd., 080-939-7899. Open Wed-Mon 6.30pm-2am

 

Pirate Saloon

Thonglor Soi 13’s classic, pre-Commons hangout spot Seen Space is now Pirate Arena, home to this sprawling galeon-themed bar complete with membership-only games room. Just the place for knocking back coconut-and-Captain Morgan cocktails (prices around B380)..

251/1 Thonglor Soi 13, 083-639-9919. Open daily 6pm-2am

 

Rewind Bar

Hidden away down a dead-end Thonglor soi, this intimate bar serves up nostalgic ‘90s-era vibes (think disco balls, neon lights and Spice Girls) made for fun get-togethers.

Thonglor Soi 6, 094-949-1619. Open Tue-Sun 7pm-1am

 

Residence De Canal

The guy formerly behind Club Culture and Cafe Democ has taken an old shop-house by a canal and turned it into a shelter for the underground electronic dance music scene.  

463/72 Luk Luang Rd., 02-061-8289. 

 

 

Ryn Speakeasy Bar

The boozy ice cream trend arrives on Sukhumvit with this bright little bar-slash-cafe. Try the Khan Kluay Mao Vodka made of lemongrass vodka, coconut and pandan for a delightful local treat.

2/6 Sukhumvit Soi 34, 095-151-9914. Open Mon-Sat 5pm-midnight

 

Sake Forest

At 100 labels, the collection of Rain Hill’s new minimalist bottle shop puts it in the class of the city’s finest sake establishments.

2/F, Rain Hill, Sukhumvit Rd., 02-258-4975. Open Mon-Sat 11am-8pm

 

Shuu Shuu

From the owner of too-cute Nahim Cafe on Yaowarat’s Soi Nana comes this weekends-only spot dedicated to Japan’s syrupy liquor umeshu

Songwat Rd., 089-783-3099. Open Fri-Sat 7-11pm

 

TaladNath

Thonglor's hidden bar highlights underrated spirits. Instead of a menu, Nath Arjhan, whips up concoctions using spirits that don’t get too much love around these parts.

160/5 Thonglor Soi 6, 084-553-7706. Opening daily 7pm-1am

 

The Woodshed

Tucked inside rustic European restaurant Harvest is a new bar with a jazz band and a rollicking menu of craft spirits and cocktails.

24/1 Sukhumvit Soi 31, 097-235-8286. Open daily 5:30pm-midnight

Yao Rooftop Bar

Sip on botanical cocktails at this Shanghainese-inspired spot whilst taking in the Bangkok skyline from one of the best 360-degree vantages in Silom and Sathorn.

32/F, Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse, 262 Surawong Rd., 02-088-5666. Open daily 5pm-2am