Sweltering in the searing Bangkok heat, there’s nothing more gratifying than to chug down icy-chilled beer to cool you down. Take a step back from Heineken, and explore the overlooked territory that’s the local craft beer scene. It’s thriving, and we’re here to give you a heads-up on the leading bars in the city. As most of these were highlighted at The Bar Awards Bangkok 2019, you know they’re impressive.

Mikkeller Bangkok

Looking for a getaway from the grid-locked streets of Bangkok? Take a detour to the tranquil residential neighbourhood Ekkamai, and you’ll be surprised by the number of bars situated in the area. Originally from Denmark, Mikkeller Bangkok boasts some of the finest selection of craft beers in the city, featuring 30 draft taps coupled with a number of bottles from various countries. The bar actively introduces avant-garde creations that cannot be found elsewhere in Asia, making it an always compelling experience for a round of drinks with your friends.

Mikkeller Bangkok is located at 26 Ekkamai 10 Alley, Lane 2, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10110, p. +66 2 381 9891. Open daily 5pm – 12am. 

Hair of the Dog

Should you even be surprised? Besides repeatedly coming on top of Ratebeer’s Thailand Beer Guide since its launch in 2015, Hair of the Dog also went on to snag the coveted ‘Beer Bar of the Year’ at The Bar Awards 2019. So, you know it’s not a stretch when we state that they provide one of, if not the best, craft beer experiences in Bangkok. With both locations situated in the heart of the city, the bar unapologetically oozes a provocative style that’s favoured among locals and travellers alike. Be spoilt for choice by their range of 13 rotating taps and hundreds of bottles from some of the world’s top breweries.

Hair of the Dog is located at Mahatun Plaza, 888/26 Ploenchit Rd, Patumwan 10330, p. +66 2 650 7589, and 593/27 Sukhumvit Rd, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10110, p. +66 2 030 2538. Open daily 5pm – 12am. At Phrom Phong outlet, Sat-Sun 11am – 12am.

Pijiu Bar

Pijiu, which literally translates to ‘beer’ in Chinese, is Bangkok’s answer for an oriental-themed bar. Situated just down the street from gin-centric Teens of Thailand, Pijiu couldn’t have more of a different vibe, its interior transporting guests to 1950s Hong Kong. Their five taps feature imported brews such as the Deschutes’ Fresh Squeezed IPA and German-style Rogue Dead Guy Ale. If you’re up for a bottled beer instead, then take your pick from their wide array of brands which include the locally-based Happy New Beer.

Pijiu Bar is located at 16 Khwaeng Pom Prap, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10100, p. +66 81 839 2832. Open Tue-Sun 6pm – 12am. Closed Mon.

Brewski Bangkok

Everyone loves a good rooftop bar, and Brewski Bangkok will no doubt leave an impression – being the only one in the city that’s dedicated to craft beers. Sitting atop Radisson Blu Plaza, be dazzled by the stunning views over the swanky Sukhumvit sky-line as you carouse to a night of drinks and lively chatter. There are even screenings of international sports events, so if you’re seeking a sports bar, look no further. Presenting over 18 draft taps and 100 ales and ciders, you won’t want to go anywhere else so soon.

Brewski Bangkok is located at Radisson Blu Plaza 489 Sukhumvit Rd, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10110, p. +66 2 302 3333. Open Mon-Sat 5pm – 1am and Sun 5pm – 12am. 

Beer Belly

Take your drinking games to a whole new stage at Beer Belly, where you’ll find all sorts of fun activities for free. From old classics like Jenga and Beer Pong to the stylish Pocket Billiard, there’s zero chance of being bored as you chug a beer or five. There’s no such thing as go hard or go home, since they offer everything from the full-bodied Schneider Weisse to the lighter Hoegaarden. Then, there’s even Italy’s Menabrea and Hitachino Nest Red Rice from Japan, alongside 20 brews on tap.

Beer Belly is located at 72 Courtyard, Klongton-Nua, Bangkok 10110, p. +66 2 392 7770. Open daily 5pm – 2am. 

Save Our Souls

Aside from being a speakeasy, Save Our Souls carries a selection of both local and imported beers with no compromise on quality. As of now, their draft taps include Hacklberg’s Jakobi and Jakobi Weissbier Dunkel, as well as the New England-style TwoTen’s Tropic Cloud. Offering up to 40 cans and bottles of beer together with authentic Thai bar grub, this is a casual and no-frills affair, so don’t look forward to much extravagance. And at times, that’s all we really ask for.

Save Our Souls is located at Charoen Nakhon Rd, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10600, p. +66 98 482 6426. Open daily 5pm – 12am. 

Taproom

You could visit Taproom to get a taste of their well-known Mac and Cheese, but let’s be honest, what you’re really here for is their 26 beer taps on rotation. Be treated to all sorts of premium brews, including established names such as Brewdog and Bear Republic. Want something more West Coast in style? Then, there’s Coronado for you. During weekdays, it’s a chill atmosphere with live bands serenading the crowds, whereas on the weekends, the place goes crazy as DJs set the party mood right.

Taproom is located at 51 Sukhumvit 26 Alley, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10110, p. +66 87 460 2626. Open daily 5pm – 12am.

Changwon Express

Started by Korean expat Ted Ahn, Changwon Express dishes out a fusion of Korean-Mexican cuisine, and yes, craft beers. The bar has branched out into two locations, but you’ll find yourself coming back to both due to their warm and welcoming nature – with cordial greetings and the occasional complimentary soju. Besides serving their very own beers, Asoke Pale Ale and Chao Phraya Stout, they rotate some 30 draft taps at any time, featuring mostly local artisanal brews.

Changwon Express is located at 37 Asoke-Dindaeng Rd, Bangkok 10310, p. +66 99 619 3047, and A-Square, 120/1 Sukhumvit 26, Bangkok 10110, p. +66 85 127 9009. Open Mon-Sat 5pm – 12am. Closed on Mon. The outlet at Flow House opens Tue-Sat 5pm – 12am. Closed Sun-Mon.