Sonie Sushi & Bar
Reinvented from a 20-year-old Bangkok restaurant, this American-style sushi spot offers explosive flavor combinations and a fun atmosphere.
Sonie has been dishing out explosive, fusion-style sushi since 1999. Never down-the-line Japanese dining, here you’ll find more-is-more creations like “sushi pizza” (a staple on the menu since Sonie first opened that substitutes pizza dough for a flat layer of sushi rice layered with tempura flakes, avocado, ebiko and scallion), as well as an easy-going, college kid kind of vibe that’s at odds with most Japanese restaurants.
The buzz: This sushi restaurant dating back to 1994 has relaunched in a new location and with an updated, down-with-the-kids concept. Run by Japanese head chef Sonie Hirokazu Koyama, Sonie claims to be Bangkok's first American-style sushi restaurant, offering explosive, fusion flavor combinations in roll form and a fun atmosphere. In its 20-year history, the restaurant has trawled through a number of locations, including the old Playground and J Avenue on Thonglor.
The decor: Sonie is and never has been down-the-line Japanese dining, and this new creative direction reflects that. Floor-to-ceiling graphic murals of rising suns and Samurai warriors say Japanese culture from a Western perspective, while lots of bare concrete, dangling incandecent bulbs and Tolix chairs keep it running with Bangkok's young restaurant pack.
The food and drink: The menu starts with a small selection of sushi and sashimi (B60-120 for sushi / B180-290 for sashimi) but that's not really what Sonie is about. Think more-is-more creations like "sushi pizza" (a staple on the menu since '99 that substitutes pizza dough for a flat layer of sushi rice on top of which is layered tempura flakes, avocado, ebiko and scallion, B240), volcano rolls of hot-seared ebiko, tuna, salmon, hamachi and kanimayo (B280) and the hotate truffle roll (B320) which blends Japanese scallop with truffle oil-infused cream. You'll also find some Japanese-style spaghetti dishes (B230-480), typical fried Japanese bar snacks and salads. Drinks-wise, Sonie's offers a selection of newly-imported canned Japanese craft beers like the Belgian-style Kaguya Blanc (B350) and heavy Yona Yona Ale (B200) as well as Asahi on tap. You can also get that other American sushi-staple, the sake bomb—a shot of sake dropped in a glass of beer (B160 on top of the beer price).
Why you should care: There's an easy-going, college kid kind of vibe here that's at odds with both the all-you-can eat buffets and straight-faced, windowless taverns that make up most of Bangkok's sushi scene.