Boyy handbag designers Wannasiri “Boy” Kongman and Jesse Dorsey’s café is, on the surface, exactly the same as half a dozen other restaurants opened in the last couple of years. But while there are patterned floor tiles, marble countertops and industrial caged lighting, there is also an eye for detail at this modest coffee shop and brunch spot that’s simply better than its competitors. Clearly, the furnishings have been chosen by someone with a real eye for style and materials, from the beautiful fabric wall panel in faded teals and browns to the tactile leather bench seating.
And Boyy Café has a lot more going for it than a pretty dining room. The simple menu does not try anything too ambitious, featuring just a few baked goods, salads, sandwiches and pastas, but the ingredients, for the most part, taste fantastic. We don’t know where they get their air-dried beef for the bresaola salad (B300), but it’s seriously good; salty and tender with a rich, musty aftertaste. Likewise, the arugula leaves are peppery and crisp, the parmesan sharp and the tomatoes fresh—all lightly dressed in what tastes like a quality olive oil. Yes, at B300 for a salad, you might expect something that could pass as a full meal—which this definitely does not—but at least you can taste where the money’s gone.
The chicken diablo sandwich (B250) fares slightly worse thanks to chicken that is just on the acceptable side of moist, as well as bland, mushy roasted peppers, but the bread is delicious, the chipotle mayo tangy and not too sweet, and there’s a nice handful of those same arugula leaves.
We came to Boyy Café expecting fairly mediocre food—the garnish to a pretty dining room. Not so. The dishes are comforting and well considered, while the drinks are just as good, whether it’s a shot of their excellent espresso or one of the only negronis (B280) we’ve ever ordered in Bangkok which is actually served like a negroni in Rome: big, in a solid-bottomed glass filled with ice cubes that actually chill the drink rather than a pretentious ice ball. Mixed in such potent portions with Hendrick’s gin, it justifies the price. More than enough to make up for the patchy (but pleasant) service and a soundtrack that features the New Radicals.