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Wednesday 8th April, 2015

Brilliant Beers of Bangkok

It's April, we're in Bangkok and it's HOT HOT HOT. In just 1 week the whole country is going to stop for Songkran. The Songkran week, traditionally, is a time for family, friends, reflection, relief and hope for a prosperous 12 months to come. In many ways it is similar to the Western Christmas period. It is a time of famine and drought where natural resources are stretched and the prized items become exhaulted. Water is in short supply so what do we do? We use it to honour our elders. Traditionally the water is poured over the feet and hands of our older family members as a sign of respect. Dues are paid at the temple and then the family enjoys time together in the way that people do all over the world...with food.

Fast forward to now. There are still elements of that but now, in high density population areas, there is the let off of steam, pent up frustration and the joy of being able to drive from A to B rather than slowly park your way around the city. There is feasting and merriment. This involves copious amounts of food and, just like Christmas, alcohol. This is where my problem lies. I am an alcohol snob. Gone are the days when I drink to get drunk. I am a husband and father. I have to spend my time more carefully so when I drink I want the best. I can't bear the cheap, fizzy, alcohol that masquerades as beer round these parts. Chemically induced processes that are in place just so the most inept and lowly paid people can produce something that can be drunk to get drunk. I want REAL beer (and decent whisky...but that is another article).

3 years ago I remember being excited when a small stock of Fuller's London Pride would turn up on the shelves of my local Makro. This event would see me stock-piling this old London standard (I lived 5 miles from the brewery for most of my adult, London based, life) in fear of the moment it would run dry. I do love London Pride but it really is a "got to" pint in a barren "fizzy beer" landscape, not something I would chose when given options. Alas the options were SO bad back then that when we visit the UK in 2013 for the summer I flew back with 4 legendary beers which I eeked out over 6 months. At the time some US beers started to appear in Bangkok due to the fine lads at Beervana. With this in mind I was planning to have a small number of high-end beers for my Christmas. Then plans changed as the in-laws (real beer lovers too) booked to stay with us for Christmas. Nearly at the same moment a small business, Wishbeer, opened up delivering personal volumes of the US beers and, surprisingly a fairly wide range of UK beers. That Christmas we bought roughly 20 different beers for our consumption and thought we were in heaven. Little did we know that, just shy of Christmas, Villa Market started to stock some SERIOUS British Brews....

Fast forward to now. At the last count between Wishbeer, Villa Market and TOPS provide just over 80 different British beers. Sure you pay a premium but I will happily pay £3.50-£4.00 a pint in a UK pub. Imagine paying that price but to drink it sitting in a Jacuzzi next to a golden beach in Thailand.....go on..picture it.

Wishbeer delivers across the country and most certainly to marina house. Get enough people together to order B2,000 worth and the delivery is free. Get even more together to create a B4,000+ order and you get an automatic 10% off.

Add to this the small range of micro-breweries providing some fairly decent beers in Thailand and you can see there is plenty of hope for a happy future and plenty of different ways to keep cool over Songkran.

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marina house

welcome to marina house budget bangkok riverside apartments

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soi 70/2

located in a peaceful, traditional, thai soi with excellent facilities

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convenient and quiet

a simply stunning riverside location close to the historic heart of the city

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well appointed rooms

incl. bed, wardrobe, air-con, desk, bedside table, chair, mirror

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western style bathroom

incl. hot water shower, western toilet, wash basin, towel rail, hygiene hose

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7 sqm balcony

with plenty of space to cook, eat and enjoy the stunning river view

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from ฿4,500 per month

including free Wifi (15/1Mb shared) or 50/10Mb "premium" subscription

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