Travelogue: Bangkok Food Trip – CDGRE, Gallery Drip Coffee, Ginza Sushi Ichi, Jay Fai, NANA Coffee Roasters, Find the Locker Room

I remembered the last time I been to Bangkok was in September 2019 so I was all excited to go back again. And this time it was a full itinerary of just eating non-stop. I was skeptical if we were going to survive at the end of trip but thankfully we did, though with much difficulties after every meal. One would ask why we planned our itinerary this way then, well, I wondered why too. lol. We booked our trip one month prior so the cost of the air tickets were already going up (with the open of the travel vengeance) but still, was glad this trip did happen

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Our flight was scheduled for 8.20am in the morning and we decided to meet at the airport at 7am. Surprisingly the friend reached before me while I was still catching the sunrise on the way to the airport. lol

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Our flight was delayed and they only started boarding 20 minutes later

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Then we quickly pulled back, taxi-ed for the longest time ever

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And finally up in the sky!

Immigration was smooth, the traffic even smoother (surprise surprise)

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So 35 minutes later, we reached our hotel – Okura Prestige. The hotel was conveniently located right beside Phloen Chit BTS and if you want, you can walk to Central Embassy and beyond as well

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A hotel with touch of Japanese feel

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IMG_7734The bar area has an outdoor seating which overlooks the city. Too bad we didn’t have the chance to visit during our entire stay (No time!)

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The check-in lobby was located on the 24th floor. And unsurprisingly we were too early, so we quickly settled our check-in procedures (which took awhile), left our bags with them and made our way for lunch

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Got on the BTS to Siam Paragon since we figured it will be much faster without the infamous traffic jam

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Took us awhile to find CDGRE cos Siam Paragon was so big but when we finally found it, we were surprised that there was nobody inside at 1130am. And you know sometimes when a place is so eerily empty, it doesn’t really bode well. But we decided to stick to our plan and lunch here

CDGRE is brought to you by Chef Gaggan Anand, Twin Chefs Thomas & Mathias Sühring and the Carnival team so I was really excited to see what food they had to offer with such a stellar line-up

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The drinks menu was quite impressive. It took us awhile to decide what to have

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Fast Cup ฿120

The friend went for their version of Americano and I’m glad she liked it

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Cafe Latte Aux Amandes ฿250

Valrhona Chocolate, Almond, Coffee Latte

While the adventurous me decided to try something different. It’s a combination of chocolate, coffee and everything. lol. I say this was quite an unique drink and you can definitely taste the different layers in it. The taste of almond was quite evident but it helped to elevate the aroma of the entire drink. I thought it was not bad

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Foie Gras & Yuzu ฿480

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Knew we definitely have to order this and I thought it was really delicious. The pairing of the citrusy yuzu with a smooth creamy foie gras on a nicely toasted bread. The flavours worked and we were satisfied

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Pasta w Black Tiger Prawns, Eggplant, Orange, Chilli ฿590

This pasta – I would order it again in a heartbeat. Each pasta piece was evenly coated with the prawn sauce and there was a generous amount of prawns in it. I’m not sure if they make their own pasta here, but the texture of this pasta was actually pretty good too

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We got a surprise when this came. Did we order a happy meal? 😀

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Beef Burger ฿390

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I liked the bun and the well-cooked beef patty but the sauce felt a little out of place. I get they tried to infuse some spice in it, but somehow this burger would taste better without it. But considering this only cost $15.60, I thought the price point was pretty reasonable

I was left pretty impressed here and it was a pity we couldn’t try more cos we were so stuffed already and we gonna have a heavy dinner that evening. But if you happen to be at Siam Paragon or want somewhere you don’t need to make a reservation, you can give this place a try

CDGRE

G15, G Floor, Siam Paragon, 991 Rama I Rd, Pathum Wan, Bangkok 10330, Thailand

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So we shopped for quite a bit since we needed to digest our food before making our way to our second coffee hunt

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But not before Tim Hortons caught the friend’s eye and she lamented she will regret if she didn’t buy these donuts. I told her I will regret if I eat these now. Well, we ended up inside cos I’m a nice friend

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But I got a shock at what I saw when she passed the receipt to me. 10?! I asked if she didn’t eat lunch and she told me she bought mini donuts, like really mini. Right..

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The mini timbits

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We ended up just bringing the entire box back to hotel and had it for snacks. Well, it’s definitely nicer if you eat it fresh out of oven

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We made it to Gallery Drip Coffee which was just conveniently located at Bangkok Art & Culture Centre. So if you are shopping nearby, this is one place to get your coffee run

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Famous for their drip coffee, we ordered the MaeTonLuang with beans from Chiang Mai. All I can say was they really brew it with lots of love and patience. lol

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But it was a good cup of black coffee. There was no hint of acidity and it was very easy to drink. $4 for such a big cup, try to beat that. You can never find this price with this size in Singapore

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Then we slowly made our way back to CentralWorld cos I wanted to get my stuffs from Karmakamet

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and we spent a long time there. lol

We crossed over to Big C Supermarket since it was just opposite

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and guessed it was just snacks and nothing else 😀

(We were very focused on our supermarket hunt)

We took a long time to get a grab but nobody wanna take us. My guess was cos it was such a short distance away. So we ended up in a tuktuk

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which breezed through the traffic like he’s the law :/

All I can say was, I was glad we were finally back in our hotel room

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And here’s our room on the 27th floor which was pretty spacious and modern

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And the bath/vanity/toilet area

We showered and decided to just laze on the bed before making our way out for dinner. I thought that was the best decision ever. Few hours in the heat got us very tired already and so the 2 hours in the hotel room passed by very quickly

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Dinner was at Ginza Sushi Ichi. We were early and was led to the side dining hall which the friend was pretty surprised cos she had always been eating at the main dining hall. Well I was pretty okay to be served by the sous chef so we decided to settle there instead

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He’s Japanese but we thought he was Thai and there was a joke/commotion about it. Having our dinner at the side dining hall has its pros as well. We were well taken care of by the wait staff and our sushi pieces were served so fast

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Cheers to our first dinner of our trip

We went for the Nigiri course ฿5,500 which consisted of appetiser, 13 pieces of sushi, miso soup and dessert

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Green Plum, Crab Meat with Turnip, Soy Bean Tofu

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I like everything on this appetiser platter. The smoothness of the soy bean tofu, the appetising crab meat with the pickled turnip and the plum which had the right balance of sweet and sourness to get your appetite started

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And the crispy hairy friend just for that crunch

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Shima Aji, Akami, Nodoguro, Squid

I thought there was a nice balance between the shari and the fish and I like how well marinated the Akami was. The Nodoguro was good. The skin lightly smoked with a melt-in-your-mouth kind of texture. The squid had a little spice to it yet a little salty towards the end but overall still a lovely texture

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We added on fresh uni from Murasaki

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And it was my first eating fresh uni as it was

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Love it when chefs aburi their fish using hot charcoal

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Aburi Shimofuri, Aji, Akagai, Bafun Uni, Salmoe Roe, Kurama Ebi, Anago, Negi Toro Roll, Tamago (Missing Isaki in the picture)

The Aburi Shimofuri was stellar. The Aji was good but lacking. I enjoyed the crunchiness of the ebi with a touch of wasabi towards the end and the Anago was worth mentioning. The tamago, was a little disappointing in my opinion. It was more custard-like than cake-like

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Miso Soup

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Choice of Dessert – Melon

You can choose what desserts you want and I went for my favourite Japanese Melon. There were choices of icecream too. I’m not sure if they will give you both if you ask for it, but you can try. lol

Personally I thought Sushi Ichi was good, but it didn’t give a lasting impression. Cos if you had eaten at other high quality sushiya, you would think ah, XXX does it better. At the quality that Sushi Ichi serves, I reckon they will just be a one-star. Though it was also my first time that there’s a credit card discount for eating sushi at a sushiya. lol. Can Singapore follow suit please?

Ginza Sushi Ichi Bangkok

3rd Floor,999 Gaysorn Centre Room 3F-08 Lumphini, Pathum Wan, Bangkok 10330, Thailand

We were so full from dinner we decided to take a stroll around. Ended up at Erawan Shrine which we prayed then we chanced upon this local market next to Centralworld selling food

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All sorts of food

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And cos everything looked so inviting..

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We ended up davao-ing fried chicken wings and fruit juice back to our hotel. LOL. We were bumped that they gave us passionfruit instead of orange (cos we really wanted to try their orange juice) but the pomegranate was thick and sweet I wouldn’t believe it was fresh pomegranate

And so that concluded our fruitful Day 1 in Bangkok

We had plans to try Jay Fai cos the friend really wanted to try it. So the plan was to reach there by 8am to get a number. But as luck was on our side, I chanced upon this IG account 2 days before that listed queuing service as part of their business so out of curiosity, I whatsapped them. It turned out, they really would go down to queue for you. After enquiring about their fees, I decided to use their service. So instead of waking up at 7am, we could actually sleep till 9am now. And they were very nice to keep us updated throughout the whole process

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Prices for those interested

How it works: we told them we would like to eat at 10.30am so we had to reach 30 minutes prior

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Told us they got our queue number while we just woke up in our hotel room 😡

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The crowd when we reached. Wow wow. We saw many people walked away eventually. Not sure if they decided to dine somewhere or they decided to come back later. In any case, we found our guide (Mint and her friend), hung around and decided to find somewhere more air conditioned

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Me with one of the guides

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The never-ending line of customers

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At 10am, it was only at queue no 9 but the waiting list was already full. How insane

Since we figured  it’s gonna take some time, we walked to Roots cafe nearby to enjoy the aircon (it was a hot day) and get a cup of coffee to awaken the senses in us while our guides would watch the queue for us and let us know if it would be our turn soon

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Thankful for Roots Cafe that just a short walk away!

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And our flat white to kickstart the day else the friend would be very grumpy without her coffee

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Complimentary fans from Hew Tam Sang (You can search them up on IG)

I came back to join them at 10.45am while watching the queue moved slowly and we were finally seated at 11am. And as I chatted with them, I found out this business idea is run by 2 girls that are still studying. I told them this is a brilliant idea. It definitely will work for people like us who rather sleep that 2 extra hours and of cos hoping they keep their prices reasonable for the future

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Do note that they are particularly strict if you miss your number. So hover around the front if you know your number is reaching. And they are quite soft spoken at times. The last thing you wanna do is be there for so long and not having a chance to dine there

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And the menu

We decided quickly while looking through the menu cos we knew what we wanted to order and then it’s a game of patience as we waited for the food to arrive

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And in doing so, taking some photos of the 78-year old chef was helming the kitchen. We even heard her shouting at she staffs at times. Oops

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You really need lots of patience to dine here cos I could sense my friend’s patience was running thin. It took another hour for the food to arrive, so by the time we were ready to dig in, it was 12pm – just nice for lunch!

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Finally got to try the Thai orange juice which was so different. It’s a combination of sweet and salty and pretty refreshing for a hot day

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Crab Omelette ฿1200

Undeniably, the star of the show. Since we were sitting near the kitchen, our eyes were trailing over the food whenever it came out, hoping it’s ours. So imagine our joy when this omelette landed on our table

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The generous portion of crab meat could be seen here. And I liked how chunky they were. The omelette was good, but I felt a tinge overcooked, like I tasted better omelette in Singapore at normal zichar stalls

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Traditional Thai Tomyum Seafood (Dry) ฿1000

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We went for Thai spicy and could taste the heat overall. To be honest, the seafood weren’t fantastic. They were huge pieces, but the squid and fish were too chewy. And it was honestly nothing to shout about

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Drunken Noodles ฿600

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Also quite famously known for, we gave them a try. The noodles had the wok hei taste in it, but felt a little too sticky. In two words, they were just ‘okay lor’

Jay Fai was an experience. An experience that I had tried once and never again. Prices were not cheap, nor were they particularly street food prices. I personally think it’s not worth the wait for the quality, but if you would like to try once for Chef Supinya’s cooking, then all the best for the wait. Good luck

Jay Fai

327 Maha Chai Rd, Samran Rat, Phra Nakhon, Bangkok 10200, Thailand

So after lunch, we made our way to Siam Paragon for a quick supermarketing before heading down to Ari neighborhood for its abundance of cafes

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The friend decided on Nana Coffee and it was a beautiful place. The place was so big they have their own valet. Lol. They also had a garden seating area which makes a very nice backdrop for ootd #justsaying

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Iced Mocha (฿130) for me and A Hot Drip coffee – Brazil Toucan (฿250) for the friend 

We took our drinks away cos we had to head back to our hotel to change before heading out again. It’s a pity we didn’t get to stay long at Nana cos I liked the coffee there. They sell small bakes/desserts too! Would love to give them a try the next time I visit again

NANA Coffee Roasters Ari

24, 2 Ari 4 Alley, Samsen Nai, Phaya Thai, Bangkok 10400, Thailand

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And next on the itinerary was massage! I didn’t like Healthland so was introduced to this place – EOI spa by a friend living in Bangkok. The location was quite interesting. It looked like it was located in a residential area so the environment was quite quiet

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Menu for those interested

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We went for the Aroma Oil massage (1.5hrs) and were led to the first step of the massage – foot bath

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We were then brought up to the room on the 3rd floor for our massage session. I thought the massage was not bad. I wasn’t feeling particularly tired but the massage put me in a relaxed mood and I was about to doze off from time to time. For those who prefer a firmer massage, you could let the masseur know cos she did it quite soft for me (I’m afraid of pain)

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Towards the end of the session, my very cute masseur did my hair for me (without me requesting), and she kept joking this was a massage/beauty salon. I was amused she was entertained, not that I thought the hairdo was very nice, but oh wells, whatever that made her happy

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Finishing off with some hot tea and a free gift which came in the form of home-made ‘tiger balm’. It’s actually a herbal inhalant which I gave it to my mum. Apparently she said it’s quite effective

EOI Spa

24/3 SOI. CHAROEN NIWET, SUKHUMVIT SOI 35, PRAKANONG, KLONGTOEY, BANGKOK 10110, Nakhon, Klongtoey, Bangkok 10110, Thailand

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Took a grab down for our dinner at Baan Tepa Culinary Space. Read more about it here

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While I would summarise our dinner in pictures here 🙂

We had plans to bar hop after that but considering how full we were, we were literally pacing up and down in their courtyard. Lol

Visited Find The Locker Room cos I kept seeing my friend visiting the bar and I really wanted to see for myself. Located in Thonglor, it’s a hidden bar where the facade was decorated like a locker room and you had to figure out where’s the entrance 

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Here’s the entrance to the hidden bar!

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Look for the skinny walkway next to this shutters

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Figure out the entrance! 🙂

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It’s not a big place so imagine how packed it would be with a big crowd. Thankfully we weren’t there for long cos we didn’t want to stay too late either 

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But the drinks were legit delicious (฿450 each). I told the bartender I was feeling full so I requested a cocktail that could aid in digestion and he brought out this yoghurt based cocktail for me. It tasted like milo I kid you not and I finished so fast the bartender was shocked

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Second drink came in the form of dessert. It’s a dessert based cocktail that tasted like milkshake. I love it too! 

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And it was a great night! Honestly if we weren’t gonna wake up early the next day, I would have stayed there longer and ordered a few more drinks. But I guess, there’s always till next time!

Find the Locker Room

406 Thong Lo Rd, Khlong Tan Nuea, Watthana, Bangkok 10110, Thailand

And so this concluded part 1 of my Bangkok trip. Come back for more! 

 

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