A MenStyleFashion team reunion was held in Bangkok and the venue was Cocoa XO bar which is one of the most exciting rooftop venues in Bangkok located on the 56th floor of the Centara Grand Central World. For those staying or visiting Bangkok, this was a memorable experience.
I was invited with my partner to the 57th floor for cocktails and snacks. As soon as we went through the hotel lobby of the Centara Grand Central World we were whisked up via the elevator to the 54th floor, the first seated restaurant area. The cavernous glass arena that forms the space immediately pressed the senses with an urge to go up. The whole top 5 floors are dedicated to restaurants and bars.
Getting to the 57th floor involves taking some outside stairs. Upon walking around the circular perimeter and admiring the breathtaking views, along with the layout of the red sky bar and restaurant, we were led to the upper levels to Cocoa XO. A name that hints at cognac and chocolate.
Cocoa XO – Cocktails & Snack
From this level, the unobstructed view of the Bangkok skyline offers an eclectic mix of architectural styles which is a both contrasting, yet complimentary vista. The sun began to set, reflecting an orange hue off the glistening towers.
After being seated in a plush cushioned booth we were offered the cocktail menu choice on a tablet device. I scrolled through the extensive choice and opted for the Sweet Dreams (450 baht).
The expert mixologists created a chocolate cocktail with Absolut raspberry, mint liqueur and creme de cacao white, delicately flavoured with sweet white chocolate and topped with two handmade white chocolate straws. This went down very well, and too quickly!
The second cocktail was a cognac-based one called Je T’aime (590 baht) with Martell VSOP Malibu, pineapple juice, vanilla syrup and white egg.
After a glass of ‘Resting Water’ our snacks were brought out to the table.
Having been in Bangkok for a couple of days and marauding around the local markets, I had been particularly impressed by the freshly roasted belly of pork. Being a great fan of pork scratchings, I was salivating yet resisted, thinking of the calorie intake, particularly when leading a sedentary tourist lifestyle.
To my delight, 8 perfectly cooked portions of the bite-size belly of pork were served along with three dipping sauces of honey, bitter melted chocolate and sweet vinegar. Utterly melting in your mouth and with little effort, the perfect crackling layer crunched like popping candy.
Our next dish was Spanish Presa Pork Skewers neatly placed like Jenga on a mini barbecue hot plate served with another chocolate dipping sauce. The meat was tender, and the sweet dipping sauce perfectly complimented the savoury flavour.
As we were finishing these, a further dish of what can only be described as scotch eggs were bought to the table, again served with a dipping sauce. We were informed by the waitress that these were lobster croquettes.
As I cut into the perfect Panko-crusted outer edge, the creamy lobster gooiness oozed out. It was finger-licking good. After a few minutes, I consumed another and as the sauce had cooled down, it had thickened into more of a jelly, enhancing the texture of the dish. It took all my willpower not to lick my plate.
Cocoa Pod – Chocolate Heaven
Feeling entirely satisfied and quite full, we ventured into the ‘Cocoa Pod’. Not knowing what to expect, we were led to an almost secret door behind the blue-ringed bar just as the sun was setting.
As we entered the pod it felt like we were entering an almost prehistoric cave. The walls are moulded and plastered very much like the ‘Flintstones’ cartoon.
Walking through the corridor we were met with a blast of sweet-smelling cold air which added to the feeling we were walking into a cave and then down some steps. Immediately met with an array of various chocolates on display, glistening in the dimly lit area like jewels in a cave. Walking further through we came to the main chocolate room.
Chocolate everywhere! Meticulously displayed on countertops and floor-to-ceiling shelves were what can only be described as miniature pieces of art. From rainbow-striped raspberry cream to fat cigar-shaped praline with almond to high-heeled shoes filled with mint chocolate disks. Even the tree adorning the back wall was chocolate!
The two chocolate fountains of white and milk chocolate that were continuously running with fresh-cut strawberries and kiwi to dip into, made me feel that I had won the golden ticket to Willy Wonka’s factory.
The master chocolatier who had created this magic gave us a brief explanation of each chocolate’s content and invited us to help ourselves. OMG! A kid in a candy shop does not begin to describe my excitement.
All of the chocolates are handmade and of exceptional quality. I tried at least 8, all of which had their own individual taste and texture. I could have had more before being offered a chocolate ice cream with cognac. Delectable creaminess with the perfect ratio of alcohol and chocolate flavour.
As we left the cocoa pod, the sun had fully set. The main bar along with all of the dining tables were lit up with an array of lights that created a warming and intimate hue. That along with the glistening nighttime Bangkok skyline and soulfully curated background music creates a wonderfully buzzy and vibrant atmosphere.
An absolute must-visit not only for chocolate lovers but also for artisanal appreciators. This place is honestly the glint that gives the Centara Grand its five stars.
- Website: www.cocoaxobangkok.com
- Opening times: Daily from 16:00 till 0:100
- Address: 999, 99 Rama I Rd, Khwaeng Pathum Wan, Pathum Wan, Bangkok 10300, Thailand