City Buzz

 |  May 27, 2009

It’s official; Xanadu offers the best rooftop view in Chiang Mai. Xanadu, on the 17th floor of Hillside 5, just off Huay Kaew Road, is a bar and restaurant with live music crooning in the background while you sit back and enjoy the 180% panoramic views of Doi Suthep. The best time to arrive is about an hour before dark, so you can thoroughly enjoy the sunset views while drinking down your beverage of choice. The menu is vast with barbeque, international cuisine, Thai, Chinese and Japanese fare. The latest promotion should attract the crowds as a Draft Heineken Buffet between 6-9 p.m. costs only 119 baht per person! Bargain and beautiful to boot.
Open 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.
54 Huey Keaw Road
Tel: 053 406 600 – 6

A new international standard dental clinic, Elite Smile Dental Clinic, provides you with professional dental treatments by a comprehensive team of dental specialists in a variety of fields. Elite Smile Clinic is a friendly and stylish dentist, with spacious waiting areas as well as the most cutting edge in dental equipment technology. The high-tech x-ray Kodak machine lessens radioactive impact on your teeth and provides instant imaging. Two Cool-Light tooth-whitening machines will whiten your teeth and have them shiny and bright (no more nicotine or caffeine stains!) in a painless 30 minutes…without any side effects. The staff and dentists are bilingual, so you will have no trouble with communication and they will also welcome you to a free consultation session when you first arrive.

Open 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Pantip Plaza car park is available free for 3 hours.
Chiang Mai Pantip Plaza, Chang Klan Road
Tel: 053 288 199

This restaurant takes its name seriously. Why wait ’till thanksgiving to devour turkey? Feast on turkey with mash potatoes, gravy and a western salad, all for only 129B. Feeling daring? Try khao man turkey (normally khao man kai)! Big Bird Kitchen offers big birds in a variety of styles: Thai, Japanese, Mexican, western and fusion, all between 59-139B. Unlike thanksgiving however, all their dishes are very healthy and they work to keep everything (including the gravy) low in calories. Citylife highly recommends their Hainanese style turkey with rice – white or brown – and also the Big Bird Pie, tender strips of turkey covered in cream sauce then layered with mashed potatoes and oven baked till golden. Mmmm. Feeling exotic? Check out their ostrich khao soy! Seriously, it’s really good.

Open 10:30 a.m. – 8 p.m.
The Ring Complex.
Nimmanhaemin Soi 17
Tel: 053 895264

Surrounding an old aeroplane, uniform-clad air force personnel pound back cheap beer served by gorgeous waitresses in tight uniforms and watch football games on the projector screen. When there are no games scheduled, live bands entertain you with a wide range of music. Ice cold draught comes at unbeatable prices, until June 15th only 79B for a pitcher and 229B for a tower. Not a beer drinker? No problem, the Air Force Beer Garden is one of the few places left that has no corkage fee and oddly even encourages you to order food from the restaurant next door, Chow Fa Tala Kurm. There is loads of parking, beer and interesting conversation, so do something different get drunk next to a plane and enjoy the uniformed punters.

Open 5 p.m. – 11 p.m. Closed for Air Force Holidays (whenever they are!)
Wing 41 off Suthep Rd. If you do not have a pass use the Chow Fa gate across from the airport.
Tel: 086 6719666

It was thirteen years ago that Jerusalem Falafel excited us all by opening the first Middle Eastern restaurant with a complete menu of regional favourites in Chiang Mai. Zahavit and her husband Chiang have over the years become an institution offering backpackers, expats and locals a mouth-watering menu which includes homemade yoghurts, cheeses, salads with ingredients from the Royal Project and delicious mama-cooked dishes such as falafel, mezze, shakshuka, kebab, moussaka all accompanied by favourite dips such as hummus, tahini, harrissa and babaganush. If these names are as alien to you as noodles to a first time visitor to Thailand, then we highly highly recommend you stop by and ask Zahavit (a wonderful mama) to select some of the house favourites for you to sample. This centrally located, intimate little restaurant serves up some of the best – and healthiest – food in town and at prices which are eminently suitable to these economic times.

Open 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. – 10 p.m. Closed every second Monday of the month.
35/3 Moon Muang Road
Tel: 053 270208

This Italian pizzeria was first located 50 metres from their current location and became such a big hit with expats that they had to move to this bigger location after a mere 6 months of being open. The owner/cook spent years working and learning as a chef in many of the best Italian restaurants in the north of Thailand and has utilised all of his skills to create a relaxing and friendly family restaurant serving up scrumptious fare. Billy serves many different types of pasta – all under 135B – including savoury salmon pasta, steaks, fish and chicken in various fashions, large pizzas and really good wine at great value. Their specials are constantly changing and constantly impressive. Twice a month they host an Italian buffet for only 299B which can’t be missed…call for dates.

Open Noon – 11 p.m.
42 Kampaengdin Road
Tel: 086 6530962 081 2881480

With an abundance of coffee shops in Chiang Mai, it is hard to imagine being excited about yet another. The moment you walk into Mokador however, you know that there is nothing same same about this venue; it’s not just a coffee shop, it’s, uniquely, a Coffee Bar. A great place to pop by all day for mouth watering, freshly ground, beautifully presented coffee accompanied by an array of pastries and pies, free laptops with WIFI available to borrow, a modern and fun indoors as well as loungy outdoors areas and great service. Mokador also offers wines, beers and a selection of spirits and cocktails, so if you are feeling like something a bit stronger, you can move from coffee to something with more of a bite. Make this your aprés dinner stop for frothy and potent Irish coffee, or check out the coffee sorbets with the option of a splash of cointreau, drambuie or kahlua.

Open Tuesdays – Sundays
8.30 a.m. – 11 p.m.
3/11 Samlarn Road (other side of the road between Phra Singh temple and Oasis Spa)
Tel: 053 814806

Mi Casa, one of Chiang Mai’s favourite restaurants, has produced a baby…Su Casa! This petite venue offers a more simple, streamlined, chic and casual dining experience perfect for informal get-togethers. Whether it is a quick breakfast of scrumptious eggs benedict, a light salad or pasta lunch, all day snacks or an evening sundowner accompanied by a delicious selection of tapas – oyster shooters, chorizo slices, meatballs (set of 3 @ 228B, set of 6 @ 438B) – Su Casa, is one of those places that is just perfect for most occasions. Friday and Saturday nights they offer a champagne cocktail promotion (168B/glass or 990 for 7!) and happy hours are Mondays-Fridays 5-7 p.m. for a selection of Spanish wines, sangria and cocktails. Pop into Su Casa, the greatest and latest addition to Nimmanhaemin.

Open Mondays – Saturday 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. and Sundays 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Nimmanhaemin Soi 11
Tel: 053 810088

Most sushi places in Chiang Mai would fail to distinguish themselves in a blind tasting. They are pretty template. Sumo however, has won and wowed fans in the short time since its opening with one American expat gushing that it was reminiscent of the great Nobu – high praise indeed. While Citylife has never been to Nobu, so can not in good conscience make the comparison, Sumo does stand out from the crowd by a mile with beautifully presented sushi and sashimi, creatively crafted, with emphasis on texture, taste and great subtlety in flavours. Yellow fin tuna, a rare treat in Chiang Mai, is often on the menu and the price is ridiculously low, so pop by and sample this fantastic little gem of a restaurant.

Open 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
28/7 Nimmanhaemin Soi 11
Tel. 053 894920