Sab Bar by Sansab
Isaan gab glam and icy beer in the heart of Thonglor.
This sports bar specializes Northeastern Thai (Isaan) food, reinvented to match perfectly with a cold beer. As well as classics like laab moo tod (spicy, deep-fried balls of minced pork) and somtam, there's also fusion dishes such as laab ped nachos (corn chips coated in Thai-spiced mince-meat. The sports-themed décor provides the perfect setting to watch the big game, while Mon-Thu they have a buy-one-get-one-free deal on select beers.
Located alongside Thonglor Soi 13’s many popular dining options (including the first branch of dessert empire After You), this Isaan restaurant more than holds its own. Run by the management team behind Isaan chain San Saab, Sab Bar is an extension of the brand’s passion for spicy Northeastern food, repackaged under a sports bar concept with lots of draught beer (Singha, Carlsberg, Est. 33 Copper, from B100) and live football.
A wood-heavy, loft-like design, complete with a galvanized iron ceiling, meets a vibe befitting a sports bar—think brass stools, framed football shirts and vintage-style marquee signs. LED screens figure prominently both indoors and outdoors, so you won’t miss any of the sporting action. Unlike other such venues, the food here is not limited to greasy bar snacks.
You’ll find all the Isaan favorites, plus some fusion picks, with meaty dishes proving the highlight. The Sab Bar grilled chicken (B255) spotlights three marinades— turmeric, lemongrass and a subtle “secret” sauce that basically makes the chicken taste like really good gai yang, with meat so tender that our plate didn’t last long. Similarly addictive are the moo grob grib (deep-fried pork with roasted rice powder, B130) and nam tok kha moo tod (deep-fried German pork knuckle with spicy salad, B450), both of which are crispy on the outside but oh-so-tender inside. We especially love the tamarind-heavy jaew dipping sauce.
The signature somtam (B150) is sweet-but-not-too-sweet, saved by a zesty hit of lime, the extra crunch of corn, and the freshness of water mimosa. Less well-balanced are the mee ka ched (stir-fried rice noodles, B140) and nachos laab ped kluk klik (spicy duck larb with nachos, B175), though the latter is still worth your time. The tom sab pork ribs and tendons (B210) are a return to spicy form.
Sports fans might be disappointed that Sab Bar is not a particularly raucous place to catch the big game (on our visits, most tables have been more interested in the food than the EPL matches), but this bar-slash-restaurant compares favorably to other air-con Isaan establishments in the neighbourhood. More successfully than, say, Thonglor Soi 11’s Tum Thonglor, it combines a fun atmosphere with food that nearly always hits the spot.
This review took place in October 2016 and is based on a visit to the restaurant without the restaurant's knowledge. For more on BK's review policy, click here.
|Address:||Sab Bar by Sansab, 87/5-6 Thonglor Soi 13, Bangkok, Thailand|
|Price Range:||BB - BBB|
|Open since:||June, 2014|
|Opening hours:||daily 10am-11pm|
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