These days, more and more businesses are optimizing their decor and dishes for snap-happy Instagram influencers and foodies. In recent years, Instagram has started to massively influence where people go on holidays, what they wear and what they eat – especially where they eat. The vast majority of us are guilty of snapping pictures of our food before we tuck in and restaurants and cafes are well aware of that trend.
Instagrammable cafes have popped up all over the world with decor, dishes and drinks that are made for the gram’. And you know what? We can’t deny that they’re absolutely beautiful. So, we wanted to round up the best cafe designs and the most creative food from Thailand. The places that you simply cannot afford to miss when arriving in a new city.
Pooltime Cafe (Raccoon cafe)
Pool Time Cafe is home to the cutest, plump raccoons that are silly and mischievous, and of course, oh so adorable! To play with the raccoons, you can pay a separate fee when you order food on the first floor. Once you’re ready, you go upstairs to the raccoon play room to meet these furry friends. Fair warning, raccoons are super curious creatures, so don’t wear anything like shiny jewelry that they can yank on. Bobby And A-Po were super mischievous and climbed over everything! Cuddling and snapping photos with these adorable creatures may take first priority, but the food and drinks come a close second. Try their Pooltime Blue Burger (pork, B329; beef, B359) and pancakes topped with strawberry cream (B220). For drinks, the chocolate salted caramel frappe (B140) is a good choice.
Toby’s on Sukhumvit 38
This mid-2015 opening is one of Bangkok’s very best brunch spots, there is little doubt. Crowds pack out the light and airy, sun-drenched spot for flat whites (B100), cold-pressed juices (B180) and egg-centric fare (try the Egg Mikado, sourdough topped with two poached eggs, cured salmon and yellow hollandaise sauce, B320), all prepped with good produce and enough eye for detail that you could conceivably be in Sydney. One of the very best brunch spots in town, this bright and airy spot offers egg-centric fare prepped with good produce and with same eye for detail that you might find in Sydney. The dinner menu comes packed with a different selection of salads, pastas, meaty sharing plates and satisfying fusion dishes. Try the seasoned zucchini and avocado salad, which comes with a light sprinkling of Parmesan and dash of vinaigrette dressing, and the sweet fig and cottage cheese toast with a sprinkle of pomegranate, pine nut and cinnamon.
Cotton Clouds Cafe is just a 30-minute drive away from Siam Paragon with lots of photo-worthy desserts and drinks! Cafe-hoppers, you can look forward to the beautiful pastel interior with various decorations like neon signs and cloud lamps that can totally make it to the ‘gram! Located in Sukhumvit 26’s The Twenty Six community centre, as the name and theme suggests, Cotton Clouds’ small space lets you feel like you’ve walked into a dream land up in the clouds and you’re here to fulfil your sweet tooth cravings. Focus seems to be on colourful drinks but there are also desserts. If you have a sweet-tooth, this cafe is your sweet heaven – it has a wide variety of desserts like cakes, doughnuts and ice cream! What’s even better is that their photo-worthy cakes adorably shaped into igloos, apples, roses, pumpkins and more. For fruity dessert-lovers, there’s the exquisite Lychee Rose Mousse Cake which is made with real lychee fruit and chocolate, and the Apple Mousse Cake, which consists of caramel-covered chocolate mousse that is then wrapped with another thick layer of chocolate!
Featherstone Bistro Cafe & Lifestyle Shop
Probably one of Bangkok’s most whimsical café, Featherstone Bistro Café & Lifestyle Shop is a unique establishment located at the Ekkamai area of Bangkok – the cafe hopping area. The entire space is divided into 2 sections. The lifestyle shop’s boutique section stocked with vintage fashion accessories, while the food area gives you a private space for your companions. The lifestyle shop of Featherstone is known for its wide array of compelling trinkets gift items and what-have-you’s – from handmade stone jewellery to feathered earrings, from fine leather bags to artisanal French soaps. The charmingly decadent café bistro serves up single origin coffees, teas, sodas as well as Western comfort food from salads, sandwiches, pasta, Italian pizza, steaks, and homemade bakery items. Featherstone’s fine coffee beans have unique flavor character. Their collection comes from single origin farms and cooperatives of distinguished coffee growers around the world, with beans from Colombia, Bolivia, Brazil and Tanzania.
Flair The Espresso Bar
Nestled within Thaniya Plaza, FLAIR The Espresso Bar is a mere three-minute walk away from Sala Daeng BTS Station. Specialising in espresso based drinks, the coffee bar is more of a takeaway kiosk than a cafe for those who are craving for a cup of coffee to go. The coffee place’s small structure makes it easy to go unnoticed unless you are keeping a look out for it but it has been building a steady reputation through positive word-of-mouth by their loyal patrons. Those who cannot survive the day without some caffeine boost can drop by Flair The Espresso Bar for their excellent range of coffee that are mostly priced below THB65/S$2.67. FLAIR The Espresso Bar also has non-coffee drinks including Assorted Hot Tea (THB45/S$1.85), Thai Iced Tea With Milk (THB50/S$2.05), Hot Matcha Latte (THB70/S$2.88) and Hot Cocoa (THB55/S$2.26).
La Mesa Coffee Co.
Open since early April 2018, La Mesa is located on Sukhumvit Soi 68, minutes on foot from BTS Udomsuk Skytrain station. Affable American owners Michelle and Gary have spent months transforming the ground floor of a shophouse – on the corner of a smaller, local-feeling side-street – into a modern, attractive coffee shop. Heaps of natural light streams in through the stylish, industrial-feel windows that cover both the front and side walls, and the space is subtly yet neatly divided up between zones of sofa-like wooden benches with low tables – perfect for casual catch-ups with friends – and tables and higher bar spots that lend themselves to setting up shop for a spell of work. Interior decor at first seems simple enough, but the attraction is indeed in the clean lines and bright colours, and the level of design detail runs deeper than first impressions perhaps suggest. Highlights include a gorgeous front and top to the bar counter, and an exotic-feeling, all-pink, Instagram-friendly accent wall, complete with inviting arched seating nooks that are begging for selfie poses (on launch day, La Mesa‘s first customers responded to that call in their droves).
hile dog and cat cafes are more or less getting more common, it is not all the time you see an alpaca-themed café. Having started life as an Instagram handicraft business, Nahim has now branched out with a brick-and-mortar store and cafe. Here, you’ll find cuteness in every corner, from the hanging swing chairs and fluffy veggie companions to the takeaway packages. Recommended dishes include the Veggie Soup Platter (pick from sweet potato, pumpkin, carrot or corn) with alpaca-print wholewheat bread (B165) and the strawberry Nutella waffle with ice cream (B145). There’s a long list of signature drinks, too, like the Nahim Coffee topped with Thai Tea ice cream, the hot chocolate pot (B95) and their cold brew teas in lovely-designed mini bottles (B85), in intriguing flavors including Pipo (white tea, mango and pineapple), Caramel Popcorn (Rooibos tea, caramel and popcorn) and Pom Pom Berries (pomegranate, apple and berries). There are stuffed toys and lovable smiling alpacas plastered on the walls, colorful wall art and benches with fluffy cushions and tasteful ornamentation that’s excellent for clicking some memorable pictures.