EmQuartier mall's rooftop bar goes for “downtown beach club” vibes.
The buzz: 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.
The decor: A wealth of Instagram-ready nooks is reward for anyone expeditioning through the huge, tropical-plant and pink-flamingo festooned area. The outdoor portion, which is most of it, is Samui transplanted: sofa beds, hayneedle patio umbrellas and lots of bamboo. There are four bars in total, but the restaurant bar occupies the only real cover. Beside the restaurant, the tapas bar shares a semi-enclosed space with a sport bar dedicated to football on flat screens, and the remaining bar is out in the open.
The drinks: Despite the decor, it’s not all tiki and pineapple here. The Myth Maguey (B340) is a Manhattan with a tequila base, which would usually throw us back to college in a bad way, but it goes down smooth here with the help of some Chiang Mai honey. More tropical, but still spirit forward, is the Sailor on Wrath (B340), a mix of rum, tequila, Pina Con Criollo Puree, Creole aromatic bitters, lime juice and a blow-torched topping of sugar coated pineapple. Our favorite mix is the Legend of Union (B340), which combines five different liquors whose names you won’t remember either when you’ve gotten to the bottom of the glass.
The food: Bar grub like Australian beef sliders (three miniature beef burgers, B450) or salmon tartare served on a lettuce leaf (B290). For heavier stuff, get the spaghetti aglio e olio with Isaan sausages (B390).
The music: Beach bongo and reggae from 5pm with more electronic sounds coming later in the night. Starting at 8pm nightly, a live musician—violin or trumpet or saxophone, depending on the night—plays to a backing of DJ beats.
The crowd: Instagrammers, tourists with big cameras and a smattering of locals just enjoying the outdoors.
Why you should care: This stunning space right next to the skytrain hits the spot for an after-work sundowner or lazy, breezy weekend boozing.
Check out our video of Escape below: