Sometimes the key to making sure you have a good night is starting early.

That’s what I did last weekend.

My first stop for the “evening” was the new home of Check Inn 99, a legendary live music venue that lost its home a few months ago.

They’ve since commandeered the second floor of Zak’s, a well-known eating and drinking establishment on Sukhumvit Soi 11.

 

 

On Saturdays from 4-8pm, Check Inn 99 is host to an open-mic blues jam put on by the Blues on Sukhumvit Group.

This weekly event is orchestrated by the hardest working man in Bangkok’s live music scene Keith Nolan, bandleader with the blues group Cottonmouth and host of the weekly TV show Access All Areas.

When I showed up, several guests and musicians were engaged in a rousing discussion about whether or not 4pm was technically “day drinking”. Then somebody started ad libbing a blues song called “Day Drinking Blues” and the show got started.

The band began with three members and grew until nine people of all ages and origins were on stage. A 70-year-old horn player from Scotland, a 40-something drummer from the US, a Thai kid on lead guitar who couldn’t be too far out of high school. They came to jam and worship the blues.

The audience grew along with the band, downing pitchers of draft beer, noshing on Zak’s extensive menu and waiting to see who plays next.

The highlight of the evening was when the young Thai guitar player known as “Q” shocked everyone by pulling up to the mic and singing the Bill Withers classic, “Ain’t No Sunshine”. He sang it with passion and guts and even scattered along during his guitar solo George Benson-style.

Four hours flew by and lucky for me the next stop of the night is only a two minute walk down Soi 11 to Oskar’s Bistro.

This posh and popular spot has been a favourite of mine since last year.

First they hooked me with their wine menu, boasting 15 wines by the glass. Next it was their entrées like marinated black cod and two different duck dishes. These days I’m all about the selection of skewers. Beef, pork belly, tiger prawns, lamb … perfect for sharing, but I gobbled down a fistful of them by myself and made my way on into the evening.

 

 

 

An old friend sent me a What’s App message that simply read “come now” and gave a GPS location.

Sucker that I am for a good mystery, I took the bait. Deep in the bowels of Thonglor I found him. Down a back alley, with only an antique motorcycle marking the entrance, bellied up to the bar at J. Boroski, a former bartending school turned hipster cave.

Dark, wood-n-iron, 70s’ tunes oozing out of hidden speakers, badass cocktails being shaken, stirred and consumed … my kind of place. I downed two Maker’s Mark Manhattans and left a trail of breadcrumbs so I could find it again.

 

 

 

By then, the skewers from Oskars had worn off and we had one of those discussions … “What do you want to eat?” … “I dunno, what do you want?” One BTS station away is W District in Phra Kanong; the perfect solution. They have everything.

 

 

W District has been called a community mall, an urban art gallery and a night market. In fact it is all of those things, but for me it is like a big beer garden surrounded by a whole bunch of really good mini-restaurants. It’s as if someone rounded up all the food trucks in town and formed a circle.

Every cuisine you can imagine is represented – pizza, sushi, burgers, seafood and surprisingly good gourmet French. Just order your food, find a table under the stars and wait for the beer girl to come around. So far my favourites are the Vietnamese Ban Phi sandwich and the Mexican joint. Fresh, delicious and cheap!

 

 

My friend and I gorged ourselves on tacos, worked our way through a beer tower and people-watched to our heart’s content. I may have started out the evening with the blues but I ended up with the chills as this place is just too damn cool!

Made it home just after midnight … beer buzzed, belly full and with a half-dozen old blues tunes rattling around in my head.

Just another night in Bangkok.

 

By Bangkok Bart

Comments

  1. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d without
    a doubt donate to this brilliant blog! I suppose for now i’ll settle for
    bookmarking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account.
    I look forward to new updates and will share this site with my Facebook group.

    Chat soon!

  2. Wonderful article! That is the kind of info that are supposed to be shared around the web.
    Shame on the search engines for not positioning this submit
    upper! Come on over and visit my website . Thank you
    =)

  3. Hi there, There’s no doubt that your blog may be having browser
    compatibility problems. Whenever I take a look at your blog in Safari, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer, it has
    some overlapping issues. I merely wanted to give you a quick heads up!
    Besides that, fantastic website!

  4. Thanks for the good writeup. It in truth was a amusement account it.
    Look complex to more delivered agreeable from you!
    By the way, how could we communicate?

  5. This is the right website for anybody who really wants
    to understand this topic. You understand a whole lot its almost tough to argue with you (not that I
    actually would want to…HaHa). You certainly put a new spin on a subject which has been discussed for many years.

    Wonderful stuff, just great!

  6. Simply wish to say your article is as astounding. The clarity in your post is simply spectacular and i can assume you’re an expert on this subject.
    Well with your permission let me to grab your feed
    to keep up to date with forthcoming post. Thanks a million and please carry on the gratifying
    work.

  7. I am not sure where you are getting your information, but
    good topic. I needs to spend some time learning much more
    or understanding more. Thanks for great information I was looking for this info
    for my mission.

  8. Descargar facebook
    What i do not realize is in reality how you’re now
    not actually much more neatly-preferred than you might be now.
    You’re so intelligent. You already know therefore significantly in the case of
    this matter, produced me in my view consider it from
    so many various angles. Its like women and men aren’t interested until it
    is one thing to do with Girl gaga! Your individual stuffs excellent.
    Always deal with it up! Descargar facebook

  9. I just like the helpful information you provide for your articles.
    I’ll bookmark your blog and take a look at once more here frequently.
    I am rather certain I’ll be told plenty of new stuff proper here!

    Good luck for the next!

  10. Quest bars cheap fitnesstipsnew1 quest bars cheap 516999410492780544 quest bars
    cheap
    My spouse and I absolutely love your blog and find many of your post’s to be precisely what I’m looking for.

    Does one offer guest writers to write content for you?
    I wouldn’t mind writing a post or elaborating on a lot of the subjects you write regarding
    here. Again, awesome website! Quest bars cheap fitnesstipsnew1 quest bars cheap 516999410492780544 quest
    bars cheap

  11. I think what you published made a great deal of sense.
    But, what about this? what if you added a little content?
    I ain’t saying your content is not good., but what if you added a post title that makes people desire more?
    I mean One Night in Bangkok – the early bird gets the Blues | REm Magazine is a little vanilla.

    You ought to peek at Yahoo’s home page and watch how they
    create article headlines to grab viewers to open the links.
    You might add a related video or a pic or two to grab people excited about
    what you’ve written. Just my opinion, it might make your posts a little livelier.

  12. Generally I do not read article on blogs, however I would like to say that this write-up very forced
    me to take a look at and do it! Your writing style
    has been surprised me. Thanks, quite great post.

  13. I really love your site.. Great colors & theme.
    Did you develop this site yourself? Please reply back as I’m wanting to
    create my own blog and want to know where you got this from or what the theme is named.
    Thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.