ABar, the new bar on the 37th floor of the recently revamped Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen’s Park hotel on Sukhumvit Soi 22, takes inspiration from the Victorian Era and Sherlock Holmes.
The venue is huge — taking up what seems to be an entire floor of the hotel — and dark, with endless corners to sit and chat in cozy armchairs, both indoors and out. As a friend said about the bar, “It’s the perfect place to meet someone you’re having an affair with.”
Though the bar management prefers to say that the two-month-old drinks spot “blends the mystery and magic of Victorian London with the gritty edge of 1930s America.”
The retro cool vibe is completed by brocades, classic green library lamps, old books, telescopes, and lots of dark wood. Perhaps the coolest thing about the bar’s decor is the secret artwork of Sherlock Holmes that can only be seen at night. When it was pointed out to us after a cocktail, we were not sure if we were imagining it. Take a look around the for it, and if you can’t find it, ask one of the friendly and knowledgeable staff.
Head barman Rojanat “Ping” Chareonsri, formerly of Washington D.C.’s Nopa, serves up a menu that is “a celebration of American cocktail culture from 1910-1960,” in his own words.
The drink names reference Sherlock Holmes and, on a recent night, we tried A Study in Stone (THB415), which featured Nusa Cana rum, cream sherry, and citrus oleo sachrum (a sort of citrus cordial). The drink comes pleasingly dressed with a torched orange slice, fresh mint, raspberries, and blueberries.
The classic-looking cocktail is served in a footed highball glass and has a flavor profile designed to dupe the flavors of a tart cherry cobbler, according to Rojanat.
Next up was the Scofflaw (THB425). This drink looks refreshing even before you take a sip. Served in a heavy rocks glass, the peach colored tipple is dapperly dressed with a large slice of fresh grapefruit and sprig of rosemary. It features 12-year-old Chivas Regal whisky, lemon, Carpano Dry vermouth, and ginger shrub, another old-fashioned cordial crafted of ginger, sugar and vinegar, that the bar makes itself. As Rojanat told us, one of the reasons shrubs have fallen out of favor is because they take so long to make. But ABar prides itself on details such as this.
ABar is technically two floors and two bars, the 37th floor focuses on drinks made with dark spirits, such as whiskey, cognac, sherry, and port. The 38th floor, called A Bar Rooftop, is an outdoor rooftop venue with a more typical hotel bar vibe, and focuses on gin drinks. We’ll have to stop back in to try those and watch the sunset.
Oh, and here’s a hint about that artwork:
Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen’s Park/37th floor
199 Sukhumvit Soi 22
BTS Phrom Pong
Open daily, 5pm-1am