BANGKOK RESTAURANT

El Lugar

New Spanish restaurant El Lugar puts the focus on tapas and wine in a bright, modern setting. The menu ticks all the expected boxes, from carne (meat) to seafood and paella. Highlights include the paella negra with squid and squid ink rice (B750).

The Buzz: The new Spanish restaurant El Lugar puts the focus on tapas and wine in a bright, modern setting. Situated in the midst of Asoke, an existing shophouse has been renovated into a modern Spanish bar while a Filipino Chef from the recently closed Parata Diamond is manning the stoves, cooking up traditional Spanish dishes alongside a few fusion options.

The décor: Looking to capture the mood of a contemporary Spanish tapas bar, a number of the cement walls are covered in swirling red patterns, while Moorish arches and Miro-esque forms add to the Iberian atmosphere. The first floor is more of a traditional tapas bar, given its white marble counter suited to knocking back some Iberian wines. The high wooden tables are designed at the same level as the bar, again for that tavern look, with the chefs clearly visible in action at the open kitchen. The mezzanine floor is much more of a restaurant, with softer lighting, Spanish ceramic plates hanging within arched niches lined along one wall. In the future, they also plan to open a karaoke room on the third floor.

The food: The menu ticks all the expected boxes for classic Spanish dishes, from carne (meat) to seafood and paella. Dishes like aceitunas negras en el quesso feta (black olives with feta cheese, B175) and tapa de salmon, which is a creamy smoked salmon with candied lemon (B180), showcase Spain’s mix of Atlantic and Mediterranean produce. As does the paella negra with squid and squid ink rice (B750). Heading inland, you might want to try the cerdo asado, slow-roasted pork belly rolls with onion marmalade (B200). Finally, make sure to give yourself a little sweet hit with the churros served with lemon sorbet (B250).

The drinks: While they are still working on their signature cocktails during their soft opening, there are already a few (mainly Latin) wine options. The price per bottle starts from B800 for a Marqués de Riscal from Spain or La Posta wines from Argentina. Wine by the glass starts from B180. Bottled beers start at B90 for Singha and Tiger to B100 for San Miguel. 

The crowd: Mostly expats looking for a place to chill out with some wine and tapas. 

Venue Details
Address: El Lugar, 120/11 Sukhumvit Soi 23, Bangkok, Thailand
Phone: 02-662-1875
Area: Phrom Phong
Cuisine: Spanish
Price Range: BB
Open since: October, 2013
Opening hours: daily noon-3pm, 5pm-midnight
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