Saturday, February 25, 2017

Khao San Road reopens with a Bang Sue Bar

Media Event - Opening of the new Bang Sue Bar
Where: at Khao San Road
Date:  February 23, 2017
Location:  11 Charlotte Street, Toronto
Website: Bang Sue Bar/Khao San Road

I got an invitation to check out the new Bang Sue Bar that just opened at the new Khao San Road location on Charlotte Street near King and Spadina.  Khao San Road just had a free opening preview the week before so I knew all about it and wanted to check it out.

I have been to the former Khao San Road in it's previous location not far from the Bell Tiff lightbox.  It was a very small space and it always had a lineup out the door.

This new space is 2 levels.  The main level is the Khao San Road restaurant with a lot more space than the previous location and on the upper level is the new Bang Sue Bar which is meant to be a space to go to late night or when you are waiting for a table at the restaurant.  The bar has a different smaller menu of Thai Street Foods which are meant to be simple small bites of food.

I sampled a number of items off the menu starting with their Morning Glory Daiquiri which has kaffir lime in it.

Some of the other items I sampled included:

Tom Yum Nuts, flavoured like the soup
4 Flavour Caramel Corn to represent the spicy, salty, sweet and savoury flavours of Thai food
Shrimp Chips and Dip of Roasted peppers
KSR Potato Salad, not what you would think.. it's more like a hickory stick looking salad.
Pickled vegetables - I really liked this option, it's nice to see something healthy and light
Vegan Spring rolls with tamarind in them for a nice surprise
Steak Tartare on shrimp chips which was my favourite bite of the night.  I asked for seconds of this.
Chicken Satay and peanut sauce, fairly mild compared to others I have had before but good.
Pandan Chicken- Chicken wrapped in Pandan leaves.  A bit messy to eat because the leaves are not edible so you have to unwrap the leaves from the chicken inside.
Pork Jowl - this one tasted like fatty bacon.
Fried Chicken - This was really great chicken that comes with a remoulade and sriracha sauce.

Khanom Krok a coconut custard in a donut like pasty with green onions inside.  This is a very strange concoction that is kind of weird when you first take a bit and then you kind of love it after a few minutes when you realize what it is.
Gelato from Millies- It comes in 3 flavours, I tried the coconut and a taste of the Pandan one which tasted a bit like the tea you get in Japanese restaurants, the other flavour was Thai tea which my table mates said tasted like nesquick.

The bar is really cool looking with great wall art from a local artist.  The wooden seats are a bit hard if you are planning on sipping cocktails for a long time so be prepared for that but overall it's a cozy space.

The staff were super nice and informative and explained the dishes and the concepts.  I could see some products come out of their bar food menu that could be sold as packaged snack foods so will see what happens there.

I still need to revisit Khao San Road downstairs and maybe the next time I go to see a movie at the Lightbox I can pop over for dinner beforehand.

There seems to be a lot of Thai places downtown but this one was extremely popular before and it was full by the time I left so I expect it to be very busy in the spring months when people are out and about again.


*Disclaimer - Food and drinks were provided by Bang Sue Bar but the opinions and photos in the blog post are my own.

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