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JUNE 2015 • VOLUME 9, ISSUE NO. 7
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By Dave Stamboulis Not too long ago, Siem Reap was a provincial backwater. Sure, the temples of Angkor were magnificent, but the ordeal of getting here, along with the dearth of decent food and lodging usually made for brief sojourns. Not only has this changed, but the complete renaissance that Siem Reap has undergone has vaulted it from backwater to tourist darling, as it is now the number two world travel destination on Trip Advisor, and for good reason. Here are a few of the new stars fueling the dynamic change. Cambodian chef Pola Siv has gone from a dishwasher with no money to becoming one of Cambodia’s most celebrated chefs. Starting at the bottom of the totem pole, Pola made his way to hotels in Bahrain and the Cayman Islands, where he worked as a server and started making his way up through the kitchen. He saved all his money, got accepted into a hospitality school in Switzerland, and then got a stint working at the Michelinstarred Domain De Chateauvieux, which honed the skills he now displays at his humble Mie Café – Tel. +855 (0) 012 791371, www.miecafesiemreap.com – housed in a charming
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Khmer wood home, where Pola fuses European gastronomy with traditional Khmer cuisine. It’s rather amazing to watch dishes like carpaccio of snakehead fish cooked in citrus juices and served with a tempura poached egg materializing out of the kitchen, this in a town where one previously couldn’t even find an edible bowl of noodles. Cambodia’s always been known for its bugs, and you’ve undoubtedly seen photos from Skuon, the village famed for its fried tarantulas, a popular snack amongst locals. Well, leave it to Siem Reap to bring insects to a new gourmet standing. At the Bugs Café – Tel. +855 (0) 17 764560, www.bugs-cafe. com – the sign outside reads “insect tapas and cocktail bar,” and inside French owners along with a former Sofitel chef combine French gastronomy with local creepy crawlers to create some honestly tasty, if somewhat bizarre, cuisine. Menu standouts include the scorpion som tam (don’t worry, the stingers are removed) and tarantula donuts or tarantula samosas stuffed with feta cheese! For dessert, why not dig into a chocolate fondue with silkworms and crickets.
In most restaurants and markets in Siem Reap these days, one can pick up a bottle of fine homemade infused rum, courtesy of Georges Rhumerie – Tel. +855 (0) 96 8617448, www.georges-cambodia.com. This establishment was started by a father and son team from La Reunion Island, brought to Siem Reap by a sense of adventure. The duo have now opened a restaurant and bar where they serve up their delicious tradition-passed-down alcohol, and pair it with outstanding Creole cuisine, which in Reunion gets mixed with Chinese, African, and Indian influences. Sitting in the neonlit, island-vibe bar munching down samosas stuffed with feta cheese washed down with a piña colada made with aged infused rum, one is hard pressed to believe that the Angkor temples are just down the road. Perhaps the biggest attraction of all in Siem Reap is the circus. Yeah, the Reap has a big top circus, and it is a most awe-inspiring and unusual one. Phare Cambodian Circus – Tel. +855 (0) 15 499480, www.pharecambodiancircus.org – was born out of a group of young survivors from the Khmer
Rouge genocide. A group of nine boys received drawing lessons as art therapy from a French teacher while in a Thai refugee camp and were so influenced by it, they decided to create their own program for disadvantaged Cambodian children, starting up a school of visual and performing arts in Battambang called Phare Ponleu Selpak (meaning “brightness of the arts”), that offers free education and a chance at upward mobility and life transformation.
featuring plenty of acrobatics, contortions, dance, along with the troupe’s own handwritten musical score and accompaniment, and all of the performances come from real-life experiences and deal with themes of poverty, war, genocide, and discrimination. Many of the performers have come from backgrounds of extreme hardship. Pin Phunam, who is the leading lady in the Sokha performance, and a contortionist extraordinaire, comes from a background of family abuse and violence, and spent her childhood picking scraps from the garbage heap to help her mother and siblings survive. Today, she speaks English and French, and recently returned from a world tour with the Phare circus performing across Europe and Asia, just one of the many amazing and touchingly heartfelt stories to be found here in the heart of Siem Reap.
Today, more than 500 students have graduated from the performing arts schools, with many going on to acrobatic and circus careers around the world, including stints with the prestigious Cirque de Soleil. While the Battambang school also puts on performances, it’s Siem Reap that has gotten the brightest and most talented performers, with a chance to perform nightly to large tourist audiences on the big stage, with members of the Phare circus getting trained by local and From the high-flying circus to the hidden gourforeign teachers in juggling, acrobatics, aerial met ghetto, Siem Reap is now well worth a weekacts, clowning, balance, and dance. end, plus a lot more. The locals are friendly, English is widely spoken, and there are hundreds of The Siem Reap troupe has a set of rotating perfor- uplifting stories to learn about if one lingers a bit. mances which change every few weeks, and the And if you do get bored, well, there are always shows combine highly skilled circus techniques those old temples just up the road.
Find us at Sukhumvit soi 11 Telephone: 02-651-1098 email@example.com www.snapper-bangkok.com www.facebook.com/SnapperNZ
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BUSINESSES FOR SALE & RENT
Long Established Beautifully appointed Gentlemen’s Club in Jomtien
Freehold Boutique Apartments Complex in Soi Siam Country Club, Pattaya
You Don’t Need to be a Teacher to Own your Own Schools Network & Make Money
Beautifully designed and wellappointed. This business is profitaprofita ble and offers a very good ROI with capital gain potential. Freehold sale.
10.9 Million Baht
Massage & Spa in Rama 9 Shopping Mall ppp
36 rooms in 2 buildings, Central swimming pool and gymnasium. Parking available. Area 4,300m2. Room rates begin from 900 baht.
95 Million Baht
Below Value Open Bar with Great Location &Low Overheads
Approximately 56m2 on main road. Fully equipped café/restaurant. Currently selling through Food Panda also. Rent is only 18,000 baht a month
Accommodation FREE, FoodDrink for FREE, Plus an Income
140+ Seating Capacity Go Go in Nana Plaza
2 Million Baht
1.5 Million Baht
9.8 Million Baht
Kebab Shop in Prime Pra Khanong Location
Situated in a major Rama9 Shopping Mall, Spa has massage beds, Jacuzzi room, sauna room, change rooms, etc. All staff work on commission only. Rent is 57,000 baht. Long lease pp
3 schools in Ayutthaya and Pathum Thani. Great ROI. MoE certified and already established with curriculum and advertising/marketing material.
Only small, but seating for around 20 in the open bar in a great ex-pat location. Sales of around 150,000 baht a month with low overheads make this bar a money spinner.
Reduced to 500,000 Baht
Large ‘Boat Noodle’ Shop in Sathorn pp
This Bar and Restaurant is the oldest established and most well-known bar & restaurant in Khon Kaen. Seating for about 40, and with upstairs accommodation. Rent is 20,000 baht
Great location, performing very well. Everything you need provided. Staffed and all licenses current. Good rent for this location. Long Lease
Café/Restaurant/Bar Thong Lor with Live-In Accommodation
Thai BBQ Buffet Restaurant for Sale in Hua Hin
Bar with Pool Table in Koh Samui
Please Call for Price
1.8 Million Baht
Excellent location. Seating inside and out. Upstairs has been renovated to Western standards. Long Lease. Owner very motivated to sell to ‘cashed up’ buyer.
Reduced to 2.2 Million Baht
1 Million Baht
02 001 9847
Reduced to 970,000 Baht
Large Dining room with seating for up to 200 guests. Rent is paid annually in advance in January each year at only 5,000 baht a month. Traditional Thai building.
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180m2 (2 floors) open fronted restaurestau rant on main soi location in Suan Plu. Seating for 60. Average sales 10,000 baht a day. 3 years renewable lease & rent is only 48,000 baht a month.
Table seating, Pool Table, Ceiling Fans, Tiled Floor. Rent is only 9,000 baht a month. Located in Maret, Koh Samui. Producing net profit of between 40,000 - 50,000 baht a month
Spacious Seafood and Steak Restaurant in Silom pp
Around 400m2, it comfortably seats 120 in the dining room, private rooms (x2), lounge and bar areas. Walk-In Wine Cellar and Live Seafood Tank. Long Lease pp
13.5 Million Baht
FIXING YOUR DIGI-DAMAGE HOW POOR POSTURE CAN DAMAGE YOUR NECK AND HOW A TINY INCISION CAN FIX IT By Dr. Withawin Kesornsak and Dr. Verapan Kuansongtham, Spine Surgeons at Bumrungrad’s Spine Institute
Today, we live in a golden age of technological progress that has seen yesterday’s science fiction become today’s reality. Smartphones provide instant access to a world of information, computers can be activated by a human voice, and simply by clicking a few buttons on a screen, people from different parts of the world can interact face-toface. While these technological advances have made modern life more convenient, they are not without their drawbacks. Whether working on a computer or keeping up to date with their social networks on a smartphone, people are adopting extremely bad posture for hours at a time. The inevitable results are spinal problems that can often require corrective surgery. Many of the problems that occur in the spine are caused by the process of degeneration. When people move or perform an action, the spine supports their weight. Over time, repeated daily stresses can add up and begin to affect the discs in the spine. The cervical spine is much more mobile than both of the other segments of the spine. There is movement at this joint whenever people nod, shake, or bend their head forward to operate a smartphone or tablet several hours a day. If you’re reading this article on a smartphone or tablet, please lift your head up immediately. I’ll let you know the reason now. Excessive movement, pressure, and weight support can cause injury to three parts in the spine, which are the discs and two facet joints located at the top of the spine. These three parts help give the spine mobility and movement. When the discs or facet joints degenerate, there will be less flexibility and the joints will then increase in strength by becoming larger due to a natural repair response. The problem occurs when the joints become too large and start to damage peripheral nerves, causing pain that radiates down the arms and even leading to numbness in severe cases.
several months, she developed a herniated disc that needed surgery. Bending the head forward to operate a smartphone or tablet for a long period of time is no different because the repeated excessive pressure to the disc can also cause early degeneration. So how does a surgeon treat these conditions? The aim is to relieve pressure on the nerve root in patients with a herniated disc or large joints affecting peripheral nerves. In traditional open surgery, the surgeon makes an incision, the size of which depends on each patient’s body size. The surgeon then removes the muscles so that he can see the spine. Next, he removes the herniated disc to relieve the pressure on the nerves. Fortunately, just as advances in modern technology have caused an increase in spinal problems, advances in the field of medical technology have provided a solution. The development of surgical instruments that make smaller incisions has led to improved patient safety and shorter recovery times. Previously, surgical incisions were large and post-op recovery could mean a long and often worrying time spent in hospital. Today, endoscopic surgery means that very small incisions of as small as 7.9 mm are sufficient. This represents an incredible breakthrough in spinal surgery. Following endoscopic surgery, some patients have even asked me, “Have you performed the surgery yet? Where is the incision?”
Generally, as people age, the spine begins to degenerate from normal wear and tear. However, the negative side of a modern lifestyle is that degeneration can also occur in young people at a much earlier age than was seen before the technological revolution. I once performed surgery for a 26-year-old nurse who talked to her boyfriend on the phone several hours a day by cradling the phone in the gap between her neck To provide an analogy, traditional surgery is like and shoulder, her head bent over to hold it. After tearing down a large part of a wall and walking
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through the gap to take what we want from inside a building. With an endoscopy, we make a small hole in the wall and use a long stick to reach inside the building and take what we want. With the endoscopic approach, the incision is small and does not involve removing muscles, thereby reducing surgical pain and shortening the recovery time. After a half-day, most patients can walk, return home, and have a better quality of life. We doctors are happy to help patients lead a normal life again, but we are even happier when we can help you prevent the problem before it starts. So, it’s time to lift your head up!
SUKHUMVIT’S SOUND OF RETRO & THE UNDERGROUND Friday, June 19 from 9pm
Afrika Islam with Wasabi BYTES
Overground celebrates its second birthday with the legendary hip hop producer Afrika Islam manning the decks and playing a special live set with Thailand’s own electronica sensation Wasabi Bytes. Afrika produced the seminal track Colors for Ice-T and is credited as one of the founders of New York hip-hop in the eighties. He is currently recording an album with Wasabi and this special event will preview some of their new tracks. FREE ENTRY. OPEN BAR 9PM-10PM.
Every Thursday in June: VOODOO CHICKEN Old soul both northern and southern fried. Voodoo Chicken is Australian front man Max White’s new brand bringing power to old soul classics and powerful originals. The monstrous voice of the former vocalist for Phuket Hard Rock Cafe House band the Merchants will be accompanied by local Bkk favorite Siraphop Sitson on double bass and international drummer and percussionist Chris Oldman. FREE ENTRY
SUKHUMVIT SOI 22 (BEHIND NO IDEA) OPEN TUESDAYS-SUNDAYS 6PM UNTIL LATE WESTERN & THAI FOOD ● BEERS, COCKTAILS & WINE
100B LOCAL BEERS ALL NIGHT EVERY NIGHT
MANGO NIGHTS Straight unda Bangkok!
If you’ve been around various DJ and electronic nights in Thonglor’s bars of late, you might have been pleasantly surprised to see a short, but perfectly formed, live hip hop set from Sean Carter, aka UNDA. The music is smooth and slinky, with the vox and words impossibly international and universal in appeal. But while UNDA’s creative work may, to date, be confined to a few live dates and an EP, the project has been twenty years in the making and involves a little known Thailand connection from the distant past. “UNDA started when I was 7 years old in Chicago,” says UNDA. “My brother and I used to record beats off the radio to cassette, loop them, and rap over them. I used to memorize them, but I was too shy to rap in front of the older kids at the park. One day, I spoke up and rapped with them, and they nicknamed me UNDA because I was hiding ‘underground’. From there I started playing instruments, sang choir, taught myself beat and audio programs, received a scholarship to university for Sound Design at SCAD, and have been working full time as a sound and music artist since I graduated in 2010.”
UNDA has been making waves recently with a three-track EP titled “747”. “The “747” EP is a self produced, written, and recorded threepart project, which is a collection of stories and experiences that I went through from 2012 to mid 2014. I was hired as a sound designer by a film studio in Bangkok in late 2012, and I was flown from Atlanta to Thailand for a one-year contract. I had just turned 25, and I was living extremely debauchedly,” UNDA says. “I was traveling a lot for work, and I spent a lot of time in airports. I started to record the sound effects of different airports, hence the name ‘747’ for the EP. It’s centered around airports and planes as a metaphor for growth, progression, and all of the turbulence that comes with it. Each song is a different story, hence the different styles of music. “
myself, and I get bored very easily. The next installment of the EP sounds completely different from the first.”
To our ears, the music is a smooth blend of electronica and hip hop, but UNDA says he isn’t so interested in genres and categories.
UNDA says he was raised in Thailand as a kid from age 9 to 18. “My first major label feature is on an RS Promotion album when I was 15. Back then, hip hop was everywhere in the city. I grew up battling in the Thai underground, selling my mixtapes out of my backpack. Bangkok is a very raw element for me, it’s special and the easiest place for me to create. I feel home amongst the chaos, I need it. I’m American, but I feel like I’m half-Thai. It’s hard to explain, but I’m sure other third culture kids can relate,” he says.
“I don’t care about classifying genres or describing sounds. I’m more interested in just creating and explaining my story through sound and lyrics. Don’t get too used to any of my sounds or styles. I want to keep pushing
UNDA also has some other projects in the works, including an electronic trip hop and jazz band named Naked/Astronaught here in Bangkok. He is also doing the score and sound design for a few international films.
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The Bulletproof Club Scene Bangkok’s nightclub scene appears to have a Teflon-type propensity to confront any challenge presented it – floods, coups, curfews, bird flu – and prosper regardless. In what some regard as an annus horribilis for the nightlife scene, that confidence continues with two big venue openings planned for later this year. The first is in Khao San Road where July will see the launch of the Superflow City Beach Club. The idea behind this venue is simple: Take the beach resort that Thailand is famous for down south and replicate it in the urban environment of Bangkok! As its promo says: “Perfectly combining the best elements of a stylized, fine-designed, Ibiza-style day and night club / cocktail lounge / beach bar / modern & traditional Thai restaurant / French style coffee house & bakery… and fusing it seamlessly with what Thailand is so famous for… the OPEN AIR BEACH CLUB.” A spokesman says, “Think beach party in a proper club setting, where you can actually see the sun and the moon; feel the sand while you sip our delicious drinks and sway in our lounges; fine dine on our Modern Thai tapas menu indoors; or hit the dance floor full-on with hands up, and palm trees touching the sky.” The venue will boast four separate bars, as well as a Thai tapas restaurant and a coffeehouse and bakery. The second is in Sukhumvit 13 where a new club promises to literally fill the void left by the departure of Bed Supperclub.
If the new Chi Ultralounge reminds people of the Bed Supperclub building, that’s because it is the same! When Bed closed down, its distinctive metallic pieces were dismantled and placed in a warehouse.
the old team and recreating some of its fabled vibe.
But there will be some differences: in particular, a DJ booth that is not only gold-plated but will be held aloft by giant spiritual arms, apparently to When a property vacancy came up a mere hun- symbolize spiritual enlightenment! dred meters down the road from where Bed was located, nightlife entrepreneur Daryl Scott seized The two new openings are the pinnacle of what the opportunity to literally take the old building seems to be a major revival in Bangkok’s nightlife out of mothballs and resurrect it on the new site. with a host of bars in Sukhumvit now promotScott has even gone to the trouble of contacting ing more original club, music, and spoken word all the former Bed staff in the hope of rebuilding nights.
NOW OPEN B R E A K FA S T LUNCH-DINNER
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142/22-23 Sathorn Soi 12, Sathorn Road, Silom, Bangrak, Bangkok 10500
MANGO BITES Indus
A few years ago, the mere mention of eating Indian food brought a mixture of reactions from many of my Thai friends, most of whom would suggest a variety of alternatives or a few of the adventurous ones reluctantly agreeing to join me. With the increasing number of Indian restaurants around town, I believe the trend is changing, and we Bangkokians are becoming ever more adventurous with our food. I have mixed reactions to Indian food too, but this is more to do with having grown up on Indian food. When I go out for an Indian meal, I crave the taste and comfort of my childhood homecooked meals. Interestingly, the first time I went to Indus was with my mother, a Thai friend of my mother and her Swedish husband. The first thing that stuck me about Indus is its spacious and serene setting, an elaborate wooden carved door leading into the hallway lined with Rajasthani tapestry and the cosy dining area with views of the garden in the back. Even more interesting is when I glance around the restaurant, I see a mix of clientele – groups of friends, families and business associates. A number of tables were occupied by Thai families enjoying their Sunday meal together. We ordered a selection of dishes, including the chicken curry and the mutton rogan josh. The latter was a bit of a test, given my Thai companion’s perceived dislike of the meat. A short assessment – the meal was a hit, the fact that my previously adverse-to-mutton aunt ordered the rogan josh for take-away at the end of our meal speaks for itself! After hearing that Indus had been entered into the TripAdvisor Certificate Hall of Fame for the 5th consecutive year, I decided to return with some friends – this time making sure they all had big appetites – so I could sample a few more of Indus’ extensive menu. As we were seated and offered the menu, a plate of Papad with a selection of dips were offered, complimentary. My favorite of the dips is the Pudina chutney – mint and coriander leaves blended with yogurt and chilies and a touch of salt – which works perfectly with a number of other Indian favorites like samosas and tandoors.
71 Sukhumvit 26 02-258-4900 www.indusbangkok.com
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Indus offers an extensive choice of vegetarian and non-vegetarian appetizers and main dishes. We selected a few dishes to share, starting with the vegetarian samosas, Kebab-e-Malai, Ajwaini fish and Paneer tikka, tandoori tiger prawns and tandoori creamy broccoli.
MANGO BITES The Kebab-e-Malai, chicken marinated in yogurt and Indian spices, was grilled to the perfect texture with the chicken still tender and moist with fresh flavors. A squeeze of lime made for a perfect start to what turned out to be one of my favorite Indian meals. The tandoori prawns were served using very large prawns, fresh and nicely chargrilled. Add a dollop of the mint chutney, and this could be a nice small meal in itself! The surprising absolute star turned out to be the tandoori broccoli – barbequed whole pieces of broccoli, marinated in tandoori spices and cream. Those that struggle to get your kids to eat greens, try this dish, as I’m sure it will convert even the fussiest eater. For mains, we ordered the Chicken tikka masala, Tarka daal, Raan, Bangan bhartha, some butter and garlic naan, with a bowl of saffron rice. The chicken tikka masala was a rich thick curry where you can taste the tomato base in the curry with a touch of spices. The meat was soft, and the hot gravy worked perfectly with the garlic naan (the best around town by the way!). I’m not usually a big fan of vegetarian dishes, but Indus does them so well. The tarka daal – a staple in every Indian household – is
served thick and creamy, just as I remember them made at home by Mom. Ideally eaten scooped up in bitefuls of roti. The beauty of the tarka daal is its simplicity – a pot of lentils cooked to the thickness of your taste, some spices, and fried onions – and voila! A healthy and delicious source of protein. This dish alone is enough to bring me back again, and again. The Raan, a leg of lamb marinated in spices, yogurt, and rum – yes that’s right rum! – slowcooked to perfection, the meat literally falling off the bone. It tasted almost citrusy without needing any sauce or lime added to it. This is, without a doubt, one of the stars on the menu. Regarding the drinks options, Indus offers a range of beer, cocktails, and spirits, including single malts. The highlights are the various Lassis – drinking-yogurt flavored with spices, and variations such mango and mint versions – light and refreshing complements to your meal. Indus has also introduced a number of signature cocktails, and between the four of us, we managed to try most of them. My favorites are the Wild honey ginger martini, and the Keep Walking (an unusual blend of Black Label with merlot!). My rating of a good cocktail is when you get the perfect blend of flavors from the different ingredients, and it doesn’t taste so much like you are drinking
alcohol, but you certainly feel the buzz from it! The mixologist at Indus has definitely mastered his art. No meal is complete without dessert. I opted for my all-time favorite, Gulab-jamun, while others ordered the Pistachio Kulfi and the Ras malai to share. Many Indian desserts are milkbased, done so creatively using the same base ingredients – milk and sugar – and are then amazingly transformed into a wide variety of rich, exotically tasting dishes. The Gulabjamun, delicious looking golden globes of extravagance are served in a rose-infused syrup, and the one at Indus is brought to the table nicely warmed. We tried the alcoholic version also, flambéed in Irish whiskey, a favorite preferred by some of our group. Recommended
for those wanting a slightly less sweet version, but be warned, Indus are very generous with the serving of Irish whiskey. The Ras malai is not overly sweet, as can be the case in some places, with the Malai (cream) perfectly infused with cardamom. Pistachio Kulfi is another of those special childhood treats, and the Indus version is indeed very special. Think of your favorite ice cream and then imagine a creamier version of it that has been strategically sprinkled with wonderfully nutty pistachios… simply delicious! You cannot leave Indus without ordering the Masala chai – a strong brew of black tea, fresh milk, and spices of cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and a pinch of sugar – the perfect end to a great meal. I will no doubt be back again and again.
The Royal Oak There is no shortage of British or Irish pubs around Bangkok, so what makes The Royal Oak different? For one, it has a certain buzz about it. And it has a distinct English feel to it. Tucked away about 100 meters inside Sukhumvit 33/1, the Royal Oak is close enough to the Skytrain, yet maintains a relaxed, awayfrom-the-main-road feel to it. It has indoor, and semi-outdoor seating, and an upstairs area that is suited for private functions and attracts a regular clientele of expats and local community. The unique thing about the atmosphere at The Royal Oak is that you can feel the buzz and the liveliness, and it draws a crowd on weekdays and weekends alike, yet there is a sense of warm friendliness and coziness to the place. The menu is extensive, offering a mixture of British classic dishes, modern European dining, and Thai dishes. Favorites amongst the regulars include the cottage and shepherd’s pies, the homemade roast lamb and rosemary pie, and steak and stilton pie; fish and chips; and the famous Sunday roast. Yet, it is not just the typical pub fare, and there are some interesting inclusions such as the Piri Piri Chicken and the specialty stone grill menu that offers a choice of beef and tuna steaks that you cook to your liking at the table. Today, we opted for the rib fingers and the salt-and-pepper calamari as our starters. The calamari was nicely done in perfect crispy batter with the squid flavoured with paprika and salt, served with mayo and Thai herbs. A nice start to your Sunday brunch, and it works well as an accompaniment to your after-work, early-evening drinks.
595-10/11 Sukhumvit 33/1 02-662-1652 www.royaloakthailand.com
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For mains, our group ordered from the Sunday roast options, choosing a plate of beef, lamb, and pork. We also decided the Shepherd’s pie would go down well for the afternoon and were certainly not disappointed – the roast beef and lamb was served medium rare, cooked to perfection. The roast pork was the highlight from our roast option, with a crunchy crackling that got diners at the adjacent table salivating as our meal arrived. The roast was a generous portion served with roast potatoes, carrots, broccoli, and peas, in a most deli-
cious rich creamy sauce. We also sampled the Yorkshire pudding – somewhat of a staple with roast lunch for my Brit friends, and the first-ever for this Thai. Tried it with a bit of gravy, and have to say, I was very impressed The Shepherd’s pie was a decent serving of lamb chunks with peas, carrots, and onion, stewed in gravy and topped with mashed potatoes, a hearty meal in its own right. While I enjoy the western meals as much as any expat, I’m still a Thai at heart and need some spice to my meal. So I had to order the chicken Piri Piri when I spotted it on the menu. Described on the menu as chicken marinated in chili flakes, oregano, lemon, garlic, and paprika, it sounded like just the thing needed to whet a Thai appetite amongst all the western fares. The chicken breast is served over rice and a side of green salad with vinaigrette. The vinaigrette mixed with the spices of the rice and chicken made for an interesting mix of flavors. There are also a number of Thai dishes available on the menu, but what I like is that there is a western-flavored option from the traditional Thai dishes. Amongst the Royal Oak’s specialities, there are a number of stone-grilled dishes of Angus beef and tuna, with the meat of your choice served on the piping-hot stone grill that you can cook to your own taste. I noticed a number of patrons ordered the dish, which came in a large portion. The tuna stone grill is definitely going on my must-try for the next visit. For dessert, we ordered the apple and rhubarb crumble with vanilla ice cream, which is a generous portion of apple and rhubarb sauce served in a glass with crumble and ice cream on top. Rhubarb-based desserts are such a rarity in Bangkok, and this refreshing dessert was scoffed down within seconds! Luckily, I decided to order the chocolate brownie as well. The brownie was rich in chocolate with nutty almonds topping, served with cream and vanilla ice cream. Overall, a fulfilling dessert to an already much-filling meal. The Royal Oak is a friendly casual spot for expats and locals alike, where you can get traditional British pub meals, modern European dishes, and some Thai favorites as well. If you want a place to come to enjoy a drink after work, good food, and attentive service in the middle of the city at a reasonable price, the Royal Oak is the place for you. Oh, and don’t forget all the live sports from premier league football, rugby, golf and cricket!
American BBQ – Featuring Barbecue Ribs, Burgers, Buffalo Wings & More
Large flat screen TV’s are everywhere… Looking for Craft Beer on Tap & Great BBQ this is the place… istic
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By Voicu Mihnea Simandan When it comes to its eco-awareness, foreign travel guides are not too kind with Thailand. Several well-known and respected guidebooks mention the conflict between the economic and ecological interests that Thailand needs to balance out. But the blame should not rest solely with the former, the present, or the future Thai governments. As world citizens, tourists should also choose their holiday destinations and accommodations wisely so that their footprint on the Land of Smiles is as light as possible. One such eco-friendly destination that can also be an excellent weekend escape from the hustle and bustle of the Bangkok rat race is Suan Phung, the westernmost district of Ratchaburi province, located on the border with Myanmar. If you plan to recharge your batteries and just take a relaxing trip, then here’s a travel itinerary that focuses more on enjoying the great scenery this part of Thailand has to offer. Remember, your one mission is to travel eco-consciously and support the local economy: visit Khao Bin Cave, make your base at an eco-friendly resort, take a 4WD to Khao Krajom, spend the night surrounded by the sounds of nature, and before you return back to Bangkok, cool your feet in Nam Tok Kao Chan waterfall. To enjoy the most out of your first day, start your trip from Bangkok
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early in the morning, as the 240-kilometer ride to Suan Phung will take a few good hours. Your first stop should be to Khao Bin Cave, an amazing place full of stalactites and stalagmites formed inside the limestone mountains belonging to the Tenasserim Range, which stretches all the way across the border into Burma. The cave is divided into eight main chambers, goes 300 meters deep into the mountain, and covers an area of five rai (almost one hectare). Each chamber is dedicated to a certain deity or mythical legend, and the lighting inside makes it a good place to test out your fancy camera lenses. Next, make your way to your eco-friendly camping resort. There are so many options to choose from that making just one recommendation is quite difficult. As a general rule, these camping places offer high-quality tents for couples or groups and have excellent shared amenities. The camping grounds are well-kept and safe and the tents have electricity, small fridges, fans, and even clothes hangers. There are handfuls of such resorts on agoda.com, so booking in advance and checking out onsite photos shouldn’t be a problem. Once you’ve dropped your bag in your tent, you’ll want to get to the top of Mount Khao Krajom, the highlight of your weekend escape. Hiking all the way up is out of the question unless you’re an experienced mountaineer and in top physical shape, so most weekend
visitors rent a 4WD for the trip. All resorts and camping sites will be able (and most willing) to organize this for you. If you own a four-wheel drive vehicle and feel like driving, be warned that the terrain can be quite a challenge (especially during the rainy season) and involves crossing a creek and a few steep ascents. It’s better if you just relax and enjoy the 8-kilometer ride to the top of the mountain from the passenger seat or the back of a pickup truck. The vegetation is amazing, and if you’re lucky, you might even spot some wild animals. The first part of the road is paved, but the higher you go, the bumpier and dustier the road becomes. Sunglasses, a hat, and a bandana to cover your mouth and nose are must-haves. The peak of Khao Krajom has an altitude of 1,000 meters and offers a majestic view of the lush jungle area that stretches in every direction and all the way into the Burma. Basic amenities, food and drink stalls, and even local products (which make great presents and souvenirs) are available for your convenience. A helipad, a jotting rock, and the setting sun make some great opportunities for selfies and group photos. Although bustling with activity, the peak is surprisingly quiet, and many visitors like to just sit down on the grass and stare out in the distance. The trenches, guard tower, and old army trucks rusting in the sun give people the eerie feeling that there should be someone to look out for… the truth is that the Burmese border is some 15 kilometers further out into the even
denser jungle of the Tenasserim Range and the two neighbors are at peace. The next morning, after a night of sitting up late with family and friends, get up and go for a walk before you even have your breakfast. You’ll definitely find a small hill to climb within walking distance of your camping ground, and if you’re lucky, you might even see local farmers tapping rubber trees. If you’ve been living in the city for too long, you’ll be surprised by the simplicity of these people’s lives and envy their connection with Mother Nature. There are many more attractions to visit and places to explore in Ratchaburi province, but as time is limited, you’ll have to choose wisely. Since this was your eco-friendly weekend escape, before packing up and getting ready for the return trip, you should also visit Nam Tok Kao Chan, the nine level waterfall. Once again, it can only be reached by a 4WD vehicle. If it’s the rainy season, the waterfall can get quite crowded, and the more people that visit it, the more trash is left behind. Do your part and dispose of your plastic bottles properly and maybe even pick up a plastic bag that’s along your way. From Bangkok, you can reach Ratchaburi by air-conditioned bus from the Southern Bus Terminal, and by train from Hua Lamphong and Thonburi Railway Station (Bangkok Noi). If you drive your own car, go up Phetchakasem Road, get on Highway 4, and follow the road signs to your destination.
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BMW R65 with license plate and green book for sale! ฿468,000 — Nonthaburi near Khaerai junction. This bike is around 23,xxx km and still running good with usual maintenance. The bike is legally imported and registered since 1980s and can be transferred at any transportation department. Engine and bike are in excellent condition with original genuine parts. Good for customizing into cafe racer or keep it as collector’s item! Contact K. Chaweitporn Tamthai 0801234312 / email@example.com APT IN SUKHUMVIT SOI 11 for rent. 2 bedrooms + 1 study room, 2bahtrooms. 118 sqm. F/F, open kitchen bright on 9th Fl. Rent: B 33,000/month call 0813070618 Lee (D) LOOKING FOR CONDO TO RENT for 6 months (Nov 2015 - April 2016); size 30 - 60 sqm; rent 13,000 - 25,000 THB/month; walking distance to BTS Nana or Asoke; with bathroom;air conditioned; furnished; fridge; Cable-TV; the apartment should be clean and in good condition; please send e-mail: erichanderl@ yahoo.com (D) DELUXE APARTMENTS FOR RENT close to bumrungrad international hospital. 2 bed room, living room, kitchen, toilet. 0870084400. Email: Louisktv@ yahoo.com (D) RHYTHM SUKHUMVIT 50 (On-Nut area), 35 SQM 23 rd floor, 1 Bedroom fully furnish, fitness, swimming pool. 5 mins walk to BTS On-Nut Station. Please contact 083-685-6609. (D) HERITAGE CONDO THONGLOR / Ekamai Rent 30,000 Sales 6.5mb+. Beautiful Unit, full facilities near BTS. Call David 081-355-3573 / Jiraporn 02259-3269 (D) HOSTEL SHANE BANGKOK. Newly hostel for budget and back pagers travellers in superb location which walking for 3 mins from BTS Nana station. Clean, Safe, Quiet, friendly and good Eng. staffs to accommodate your lifestyle for the best of your relaxation. Equipped with facilities and Free WiFi, we will make your stay with us impressive and worthwhile. Pls visit us via www.hostelshanebangkok.com or feel free to call us anytime at (0) 2 653 3276. (D) NEW MOTIVATED, professional estate agency seeks new listings in the Sathorn, Rama 3 & river front areas. Looking for sales & rental properties to market. Contact us now and let us do the work in marketing and selling your property. Email info@ primepropertythailand.com (E)
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KEBABS + FROZEN COCKTAILS 4 locations: The Scene (Town in Town) + Novotel Platinum Mall + Sukhumvit 38 + Onnut Market • fb.com/JungleJuiceAsia
June 2015 issue of Mango Metro magazine, an English-language, general interest / lifestyle / entertainment magazine distributed throughout B...