Bangkok Betty

Fun and Unique Restaurant on Sukhumvit

Bangkok Betty is the latest themed bar and restaurant to open with the magical touch of Ashley Sutton, an Australian expatriate who has been delighting Bangkok with his quirky and original venues. Here the theme is 40s Americana – a cross between an ammunitions factory and a modern, industrial-chic bar. Bangkok Betty is a fun and friendly establishment with excellent service and original cocktails. Food is decent and the live music helps to keep you in the retro mood.

Situated on the ground floor of the Holiday Inn Hotel on Sukhumvit 22, it’s easy to get to, almost equidistant between Phrom Pong and Asok BTS sky train stations. It is open every day for dinner and drinks between 18:00 and 01:00.

As soon as you walk through the glass double doors you are greeted by a sexy pin-up sitting on a large silver bomb. In fact, these polished explosives make up a large part of the decor, hanging from the ceiling and denoting the table reservations. The tables are repurposed from factories, just big enough for one and with small drawers to store your nuts and bolts. Behind the bar, painted onto the grey brick work is Bangkok Betty herself, a cartoon pin-up. To add to that industrial feel there are also hooks and chains hanging from the ceiling. The only slight disappointment is that the window on the left looks out onto the taxi drop-off point for the hotel, which prevents you from being completely absorbed in the atmosphere, as you would be at Iron Fairies or Maggie Choo’s (previous creations of Mr Sutton).

The menu at Bangkok Betty is an unusual mix of comfort food and high-end cuisine, ranging from a meatloaf to scallop carpaccio with avocado. We start with the crispy calamari, which are seasoned to perfection, and share a whole chicken as our main. The chicken is served on a bed of roasted onions and carrots, with a side dish of parmesan sprinkled chips. It’s the kind of simple plate that would keep you coming back for more. Dessert is a chocolate tart served with salted caramel and a scoop of ice-cream. It’s sweet without being cloying, but lacks any originality. Dinner here leaves you feeling full and there are some satisfying dishes, but the menu needs a few tweaks to make it really stand out.

Drinks come with cool names like Cyanide for Hitler and Dinah Might. We tried Mon Tete Rouge, a refreshing gin based cocktail that combines homemade raspberry soda, grapes, cucumber and honey. These excellent drinks are definitely worth popping in for, the live music is fantastic, with smooth jazz on Mondays, The Fab Four Thailand playing every Thursday, and live music on Fridays and Saturdays as well.

Usually Sutton’s themes flow well, linking the food, drinks, atmosphere and music together. For some reason, Bangkok Betty doesn’t shine quite as much as the rest of the family, but it’s worth a visit for the cool cocktails and unusual design.

Betty Bangkok

Location: Bangkok Betty, G/F, Holiday Inn, 1 Sukhumvit Soi 22 Bangkok, Thailand
BTS: Phrom Pong
Tel: +66 2 6634223

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