The Balvenie Lounge

The of-the-moment Scotch brand brings Bangkok's latest whiskey and cigar lounge to Ruamrudee. 

The buzz: Lurking in the rafters above a vast cigar and spirits-specializing boutique called Cohiba Atmosphere, The Balvenie Lounge lets you sit down and try the premium offerings downstairs amid a predictably chocolate leather and dark wood setting.

The decor: 300-sq-meters of fresh-from-the-packet rustic charm spreads itself across several different rooms. Nearly everything is blanketed in rich woods, from the floor to the wall cabinets to the bar and the ceiling, while a few Christian Develter commissions of Cohiba-smoking celebrities add a modern touch. The main room offers seating in deep leather armchairs, at the bar, or around upturned whiskey barrels. A couple of smaller rooms host more intimate parties looking to smoke and drink in private. 

The drinks: Whiskey, whiskey and more whiskey—but not just Balvenie. They're a little cagey about exact prices, but will say that drinks start at B500 per glass (for that, we guess you're looking at the 12-year-olds from Glenfarclas, Cragganmore and Balvenie) and go all the way up to B5,000, for which you'll get some serious, triple-decade-old stuff like Old & Rare Port Ellen 35. But the exhaustive menu doesn't limit itself to just Scotch. There are plenty of Japanese names on there too before you get down to Calvados, Port, Amegnac and other drinks befitting a heavy, smoky environment. Want to stay and polish off a bottle? They begin at B5,000.

The food: We had a word with next door's Italian restaurant, Italics, who say they'll happily send dishes over to the Lounge. Plates of cold cuts and cheese (B390-590) might not be haggis, neeps and tatties, but they still fit the mood pretty well. 

The crowd: On opening night; men, lots of men, mainly pushing 40 and dressed in either polo and chinos or a work suit. This is Ruamrudee, after all. Oliver Irvine

Venue Details
Address: The Balvenie Lounge, 2/F, Cohiba Atmosphere, 63/3 Soi Ruamrudee, Phloen Chit Rd., Bangkok, 10330
Phone: 02-650-9006
Area: Phloen Chit
Open since: October, 2015
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 10am-11pm
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