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Chinese Culture >> Travel Reviews >> Bangkok

Wine and Dine in Bangkok

First-time visitors might find Bangkok a bit overwhelming, especially when finding a nice place to dine. A dizzying array of Bangkok restaurants is located around town, with all kinds of food imaginable. Most of the upscale places usually have an extensive menu of drinks so you can sip a glass of wine and dine on good food at the same time.

Praised for their remarkable services, sumptuous food and jaw-dropping views of the city and the bewitching Chao Phraya River, Sirocco (tel: +66 2 624 9999) on the 64th floor of the State Tower on Silom road and Vertigo (tel: +66 2 679 1200) on the 61st floor of Banyan Tree Hotel on Sathorn road are definitely two of the best rooftop venues in Bangkok.

Serving first-class Mediterranean and Italian cuisines respectively, Sirocco and Vertigo are always booked up so it's a good idea to give them a call to reserve your table and secure your ultimate dining experience. Eating in Bangkok Rooftop bars are also available at these two venues, offering a wide range of very yummy but pricy cocktails and imported wines. If these places sound like they might burn a hole in your pocket, there are plenty of less expensive choices among Bangkok's bars and pubs.

Thai cuisine is definitely a must try once you are in Thailand. Although you might claim to have tasted Thai dishes before in your home country, there's nothing quite as fun as seeing your friend sweat like a pig after a spoonful of authentic, spicy tom yam kung in a Bangkok restaurant. Of course, you can always ask the cook to tone down the spiciness.

Typical Thai dishes can be found in every single local Bangkok restaurant across the city. However, those wishing to dine on Thai cuisine in an elegant style should try Baan Khanitha (tel: +66 2 675 4200) and Blue Elephant Cooking School & Restaurant (tel: +66 2 673 9353), both featuring royal, mild and garnished Thai dishes in a remarkable, upscale atmosphere.

Bangkok also has a full range of other Asian venues including Japanese, Chinese and Indian restaurants where you can eat. Japanese food lovers should try Tsu (tel: +66 2 656 7700) at JW Marriott Hotel and Keyaki at the Pan Pacific Hotel (tel: +66 2 632 9000), serving real Japanese food and fresh sashimi. Dim sum and other Chinese dishes can be found at the China House at the Oriental Hotel (tel: +66 2 659 9000) and at Bai Yun at the Banyan Tree Hotel (tel: +66 2 679 1200).

For those into spices and curries, Indus on Sukhumvit 26 (tel: +66 2 258 4900) and Royal Indian in the old town (tel: +66 2 221 6565) have an array of Indian dishes to please your palate, while live Indian music, silver-star services and scrumptious authentic Indian grub can be found at Rang Mahal at Rembrandt Hotel (tel: +66 2 261 7100) and Tandoor at Holiday Inn Hotel (tel: +66 2 238 4300).

Steak fans can also find a plenty of steakhouses in Bangkok however there are only a few worth trying. The most well-known for their mouthwatering yet pricy steaks is New York Steakhouse at JW Marriot Hotel (tel: +66 2 656 7700). For a family-styled steakhouse, try Great American Rib (tel: +66 2 258 5942) for its homey atmosphere and yummy ribs.

Italian cuisine is quite famous among locals and as a result, you can find Italian venues everywhere in the city. Some of the most notable ones include the 11-year-old Gianni Ristorante (tel: +66 2 252 1619) and Biscotti (tel: +66 2 255 5443) at the Four Seasons Hotel for their authentic Italian dishes with a creative twist. Meanwhile, Scoozi Pizzeria (tel: +66 2 391 5113) and Bella Napoli (tel: +66 2 259 0405) are famed for their pizzas and pastas.

If you want to find French food at a Bangkok restaurant, your best bet is to try one of the French eateries in the larger hotels. Bangkok's old favourite is Le Normandie at the Oriental Bangkok Hotel (tel: +66 2 659 9000), while Le Vend˘me (tel: +66 2 662 0530) on Sukhumvit 31 is a renowned newcomer and possibly the only good French venue not situated in a hotel. A few fine German restaurants are scattered around Bangkok. Bei Otto (tel: +66 2 262 0892), the oldest German restaurant in Bangkok, serves a wide range of German beers, bakery items and yummy German grub. Bangkok's bars

Even though most restaurants aren't open into the early hours to serve starving party animals, you can always find countless street vendors with their mouthwatering street treats including BBQ chicken, meatballs and kebabs along Sukhumvit and Silom roads. Soi Nana (Sukhumvit soi 4) is very famous for its variety of tasty kebabs.

With a number of restaurants around town, no tourists will ever go hungry in Bangkok. You also don't have to worry too much about your weight as there are so many things to do in Bangkok that you will burn your calories in a flash. By activities, we mean shopping, of course!

About the Author

Travel writer Andy Burrows knows the best restaurants and bars Bangkok has to offer.