First Look: Monte Wan adds Bang Sue Bar to the new Khao San Road


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Image: Yvonne Tsui

Khao San Road is back and this time, there’s a 50-seat bar on the second floor. Bang Sue, the bar’s moniker, is a nod to Bangkok’s main train station.

If you’ve ever driven by the restaurant’s former location on Adelaide, you will have seen the line-ups out the door. No doubt, Bang Sue will be a great waiting area where people can nibble on Thai-inspired bar snacks and sip on cocktails. But owner Monte Wan hopes it will be an attraction in its own right as the menu is entirely different and the beverage options are plentiful compared to the one-beverage offering of Singha beer in the Khao San Road dining room.

 Wan hopes the off-King address helps to create a “chilled-out vibe” and becomes the “living room of people in the condos” that surround it. 


(IMAGE: YVONNE TSUI)

 

The bar is made of corrugated tin and wood panels to resemble the street stalls in Bangkok and a mural by Parisian-born abstract artist Jimmy Chiale occupies an entire wall. Wan describes his style as his “subconscious mind print.” 

For the cocktail menu, Joshua Leblanc (Track and Field Bar) and Adam Clift (Belfast Love) have collaborated on a menu of Thai-inspired libations that are “fun, adventurous and pay homage to Thai cuisine but are not exclusively Thai cocktails,” says Leblanc. 


(IMAGE: YVONNE TSUI)

 

Prud’homme Beer Sommelier Maarten Nederhof (Louis Cifer) oversees 18 beer taps — mostly local and craft. Six of those taps will be permanent, with one dedicated to a draught cocktail.  

Those who’ve ordered off the late-night menu at Nana (sister restaurant to Khao San Road), will see a few familiar things on Bang Sue’s menu from chef Chantana “Top” Srisomphan, a Northern Thai native. Dip with shrimp chips, peanuts with Tom Yum spice and the 4-Flavour Caramel Corn is a combination of sweet, sour, salty and spicy. All snacks, no doubt, are meant to encourage another round of drinks.


(IMAGE: YVONNE TSUI)

 

Those looking for something a little more substantial will find offerings such as steak tartare, chicken satay, marinated pork jowl and fried chicken. If by chance one still has room for dessert, the Khanom Krok, a coconut custard which scarcely resembles a bare takoyaki ball is worth trying — if only to experience a dessert that contains green onion. For those who prefer onion-free desserts, there are three gelato flavors (coconut, Thai tea and pandan) to choose from made by neighbor, Millie Creperie. 

Bang Sue Bar (at Khao San Road), 11 Charlotte St.

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Yvonne is a freelance food and drink writer by night and PR Manager at TouchBistro by day. She's always in search of delicious — decor and service be damned, food is king. Follow her @life_of_y.

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