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More Than Meets The Hipster Eye

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Moose head decorating the bar, fruity cocktails and beers paired with Thai food, kitschy statues, and Jazz music, all give Moose Bangkok Bar Unique face.

By Emmi Laine

Quirky, retro-chic, hipster. These words can easily define Moose Bangkok Bar (●24 Ekkamai Soi 21, BTS Thong Lo, 02 108 9550). But wait. When CNN listed the bar as one of the nine best in Bangkok, it said Moose is a “tastefully ramshackle space.” But there is more to Moose than meets the eye.

moose4“This is not a place to be seen, but to be cool,” says Drac Suvarnapradip, owner and manager of Moose, and also part of the team behind the creation of other indie bars such as Sonic and Cosmic Café. The bar’s name was actually inspired by his nickname: Drac, Kwang, The Deer, Moose. And Drac, indeed, lent much of his characteristic style to the bar.

Iconic moose heads deck the bars as if supervising the place, while the eclectic mingling of odd wooden chairs, kitschy statues, and a stuffed raccoon make it even funkier. The walls are adorned with naked art photography, and a drum set is ready for frequent live band performances. Happy hour (“buy-one-get-one-free”) from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. makes booze cheap, and the soil is fertile for art enthusiasts to go and craze.

moose5But those going to Moose for drinks alone will not be disappointed. Prices are reasonable: you’ll get draught Asahi for THB 150, Scottish craft beers and some Belgian ones (like St. Bernardus) start at THB 220, while a few lambic fruit beers cost THB 180 only. The same is true with cocktails. Most of the signature ones are fruity, like Ekamai Jungle (THB 250), mixed from Havana rum, lemon, basil, dragon fruit, and ginger ale, which is one naturally refreshing choice with a respectable sting of rum.

With a similar brisk character, Raspberry Fitger (THB 260), mixed from cachaça, triple sec, fresh raspberry, and lemon juice is another winner. Melon Cooler (THB 240), contains Absolut Vodka, triple sec, fresh watermelon, syrup; and Cosmic Paradise (THB 240), is made with Sangsom, roselle juice, lemon juice, and syrup— very light, syrupy, and possibly only as dangerous as a Christmas punch.

moose7The food menu follows the vein of Drac’s preference: spicy Thai salads, curries, and deep-fried or stir-fried meats. Of these, the Vietnamese lemongrass fish (THB 270) stands out. A deep-fried fish cut into fleshy bites, where the fish’s skin provides a practical plate. Perfect crispy batter to crunch in between the drinks, and tame a late-night hunger. Also, the supposedly hottest choice, Orange Spice Glass Noodle Salad (THB 165) proves weirdly farang-friendly. Dip your forks into the accompanying spicy sauces, and look on the bright side: the dishes fit many preferences, they are beautiful, fulfilling, and the ingredients are clearly fresh.

Music was Drac’s major in school, and it shows in a well-advised playlist full of soul, funk, old school hip-hop, and electro beats. While sinking into the weathered leather sofas, sipping on a fruity punch, and listening to some jazz, it is easy to forget the passing fashions. Truth be told, it doesn’t take a hipster to feel cool here, indeed.

All prices are plus tax.