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Good Places To Drink In Chiang Mai


Crow Boy

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I had to go into CM for dinner with clients last night and afterwards went down to the Downunder Bar. I like the bar even though it is on the wrong side of town for me and I have to make the effort to go there. It is (obviously) an Australian themed pub which is great for the Aussie expats but there was the usual eclectic crowd of visitors from the lessor countries. We Australians like to encourage this so that they have something to aspire to.

The food here is not Haute Cousine but is good, fresh, and reasonably priced. The menu revolves around Pub Tucker so if you are on the prowl for a sauted pheasant with larks tongue don't bother looking here.

The drinks are good, served cold and fresh. I almost always have ice in my beer so I have it in a glass not out of the bottle. There is a simple reason for this. In my old bar we used to stack the beers out the back in a security cage. I couldn't figure out why they were sticky until I realised that the locals used to urinate on them as a tribute to the farung. Never drank direct from a bottle or can since :o

The bar is promoting San Miguel which is Spanish for "goat piss imported from the Phillipines" but a lot of people seem to like it. I think that any beer that needs a twist of lemon to disguise the taste is not worth drinking.

The downunder shows live sport on the big screen so if you are looking for a great place to relax while watching the Rugby (Union and League), the AFL, or GP bike racing check the blackboard listings out front for the times and dates of the telecasts.

It is a laid back bar and they have done well to create a good atmosphere with friendly staff and a nice crowd. You aren't going to be hassled by girls looking for lady drinks so you can happily take the "tin lids" and the "trouble and strife".

I have attached a map to the posting to make it easier to find but it is well sign posted and right next to "The Hutt"

Cheers

CB

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It is (obviously) an Australian themed pub which is great for the Aussie expats but there was the usual eclectic crowd of visitors from the lessor countries.

Australia is still being leased? Why don't they just go ahead and buy it? :o

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It is (obviously) an Australian themed pub which is great for the Aussie expats but there was the usual eclectic crowd of visitors from the lessor countries.

Australia is still being leased? Why don't they just go ahead and buy it? :o

Ok so it slipped past my in head spell checker - should have read Lesser nations - you know those poms, septic tanks, maple leafers, kiwis, and sundry Euro types :D

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> Why don't they just go ahead and buy it?

Then they'd actually have to get a head of state of their own.

And then a flag of their own.

At least they already have a language of their own. :o

Edited by chanchao
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Ah, now I can see why that location would be convenient.

Yeah we just drive around until we see the huge "Post-It Note" in the sky with an arrow pointing down to the Downunder :o

I agree on the Downunder being a good pub for a drink, pub food & watching sporting events - Aussie rules & Motogp - on their giant projection screen. Well worth checking out for a drink & no girly hassles.

The location is a little bewdy too, right on the corner of Nimanhamin Soi 9, just down the road from Fine Thanks, The Monkey Club & numerous other drinking spots with loads of young delectables.

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Ah, now I can see why that location would be convenient.

Yeah we just drive around until we see the huge "Post-It Note" in the sky with an arrow pointing down to the Downunder :o

I agree on the Downunder being a good pub for a drink, pub food & watching sporting events - Aussie rules & Motogp - on their giant projection screen. Well worth checking out for a drink & no girly hassles.

The location is a little bewdy too, right on the corner of Nimanhamin Soi 9, just down the road from Fine Thanks, The Monkey Club & numerous other drinking spots with loads of young delectables.

I am pretty sure it is soi 11 but agree with the other points you made.

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> Why don't they just go ahead and buy it?

Then they'd actually have to get a head of state of their own.

And then a flag of their own.

At least they already have a language of their own. :D

> Why don't they just go ahead and buy it?

Well after bailing out the poms in the last two world wars we couldn't raise the deposit so decided to pay a peppercorn rent on the property in exchange for doing home improvements to raise the value of the property

> Then they'd actually have to get a head of state of their own.

We got over that years ago after dismissing a government of our own. Mothers everywhere still nag but even though we still like her we just don't bother listening to her. She's happy thinking the family is still together but all the kids now it's just for show.

> And then a flag of their own.

We like to keep the Union Jack on our flag because it shows where many of us came from and why we never want to go back - still I prefer that we get our own such as

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> At least they already have a language of their own. :D

Yes but when dealing with many from the old country we find it easier for them to understand what we mean by using sign language vis.

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But we do like our pommy friends because when they win one series of rugby union they knight most of the team because it was so unexpected, then despite losing the entire Test series 5 zip they win a single ODI and start bouncing aroud singing "we are the greatest" You have to admire that sort of craziness in a nation but still it could be worse they could be from New Zealand :o

CB

Edited by Crow Boy
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Oh my goodness gracious. Settle down boys. Tsk, tsk, ask a simple question, and look what happens. :D

Hi Rasseru,

Mate I am sure (jeeze I hope I am right :o ) that everyone knows this is just said in jest and not to be taken as the start of a flame war. I am waiting for Chanchao or one of the others to make a reply which is their right and let it go so that we can get back to the main thread.

You do make a good point though - some of us (me) do sometimes play a bit rough

thanks

CB

Edited by Crow Boy
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> Mate I am sure (jeeze I hope I am right blink.gif ) that everyone knows this is just said

> in jest and not to be taken as the start of a flame war.

Of course!!! :D

> I am waiting for Chanchao or one of the others to make a reply which

> is their right and let it go so that we can get back to the main thread.

Nah, wouldn't want to go too far off topic. And some of my best friends are 'straylians. :o

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> Mate I am sure (jeeze I hope I am right blink.gif ) that everyone knows this is just said

> in jest and not to be taken as the start of a flame war.

Of course!!! :D

> I am waiting for Chanchao or one of the others to make a reply which

> is their right and let it go so that we can get back to the main thread.

Nah, wouldn't want to go too far off topic. And some of my best friends are 'straylians. :o

So when are we all going to meet up at the Downunder for a drink? When is the next England v Australia Rugby match :D I was really disapointed when some of you guys didn't come to the Tusker's get together a few weeks ago, maybe need to do a reschule for a Sunday lunch feed/drink at somewhere like the Downunder.

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> Mate I am sure (jeeze I hope I am right blink.gif ) that everyone knows this is just said

> in jest and not to be taken as the start of a flame war.

Of course!!! :D

> I am waiting for Chanchao or one of the others to make a reply which

> is their right and let it go so that we can get back to the main thread.

Nah, wouldn't want to go too far off topic. And some of my best friends are 'straylians. :D

So when are we all going to meet up at the Downunder for a drink? When is the next England v Australia Rugby match :D I was really disapointed when some of you guys didn't come to the Tusker's get together a few weeks ago, maybe need to do a reschule for a Sunday lunch feed/drink at somewhere like the Downunder.

Sunday, Down Under, I'm in.... :o

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> Mate I am sure (jeeze I hope I am right blink.gif ) that everyone knows this is just said

> in jest and not to be taken as the start of a flame war.

Of course!!! :D

> I am waiting for Chanchao or one of the others to make a reply which

> is their right and let it go so that we can get back to the main thread.

Nah, wouldn't want to go too far off topic. And some of my best friends are 'straylians. :D

So when are we all going to meet up at the Downunder for a drink? When is the next England v Australia Rugby match :D I was really disapointed when some of you guys didn't come to the Tusker's get together a few weeks ago, maybe need to do a reschule for a Sunday lunch feed/drink at somewhere like the Downunder.

Sunday, Down Under, I'm in.... :o

Wish i was in.. :D . Would loved to have seen crowboy's Adelaide get their <deleted> kicked.. Good luck on the thai visa piss up crowboy.. Lot's of talkin but not much walkin.. Top pub the Downunder (on topic).

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Guitar Man - Bar and Restaurant

I like live music and used to do the circuits of Drunken Flower, the Brasserie, the old Fillmore East (Chiang Mai version not the one in New York) and the Interbar. I enjoy watching people play and did it myself for fun. One of the places I used to do the odd gig - that is playing music type gig not picking up a girl for the night type gig before anyone fires off a funny jibe - was at the Guitarman bar. The Guitarman has been around for quite a while and the owner was what could colloquially be called "interesting" I would call her a raving nut case but that's old history. The basic premise for the bar was to have a variety of guitars, basses, a keyboard, and a set of drums all of which looked and sounded like they had been put through hel_l and anyone who wanted to play could get up and start. There was no money involved and was a lot of fun. Over time several guys got together and formed loose bands and some even bothered to practice before turning up. Occasionally a couple of tourists would turn up (presumably lost because it is off the normal bar trail) and some could play - some could play very well, and some could play really well.

The place was eclectic and odd but like a lot of places started to lose its appeal. A band would form and they would play the same set every time to the same audience. I did a couple of gigs (musical not girl) there and would be pissed off when some drunken git decided that he was Ginger Baker's long lost brother and beat the kit into submission as I was trying to play something entirely different.

I stopped going there over the last twelve months and then moved out of town so it was by chance that I rode the bike past the bar on Saturday night after I had done my rounds. The old owner has gone - much to the relief of a lot of people - and the new proprietor "Nick" has done a lot to fix it up and make it interesting again. Nick is English but apart from that is a nice guy. He is a character which is a good start and has more ink on his arms than is normally seen outside of a merseyside street gang (shut up AussieThaid). He is a trained chef who decided he hated it and loves music. He has been a professional musician and is a good guitar player. He also happens to have an absolutely gorgeous Gretch Brian Selzer signature model guitar which would have to be the only one in Thailand. He has tossed out the old "Chinese copy amps" and put in a new line up Vox AC30 for the acoustics and the Gretch, a sweet little Fender for the second guitar and has just put in nice PA system. The old courtyard has been covered over and about 50,000,0000 Baht of plants stuffed into it to add some greenery. The whole interior has been turned around 90 degrees anticlockwise to put the stage directly in front of the audience instead of stuck to the side.

Nick is spending some good coin on doing up the place and has added food to the menu - previously everything was done at the restaurant next door (White Lotus) and carried in on a tray, now it is done on site.

For the Pizza lovers he has a full size gas pizza oven out front and they look pretty good. They are the thin base style and at 100-150baht not expensive. Don't know what they taste like or how they compare to the others around town but they were making plenty for inside and I noticed people waiting outside to take them away.

I got to see some of the guys I knew from 12 months ago play on Saturday night (Bluze Broz Band - were the Sangsom Boys) and they are the resident band. They used to play every night but now restrict themselves to Thursday, Saturday, and Monday starting at about 8:30 on Thursday and Monday and 9:00pm on Saturday. They belt out the normal standards and are a good band - just need to tame the drummer a bit, he gets a bit over loud behind them. Anyone who is interested in having a play is more than welcome and Nick is trying hard to keep it easy and friendly. Some of thes open mike nights get really harsh as the "old hands" do everything to discourage "newbies" - funny how common that attitude can be :D

The usual assortment of beers, and spirits, and I am pretty sure I saw someone with wine there on Saturday but don't blame me if I was mistaken.

There aren't any working girls so the wife will be happy, Nick is getting the serving girls under control but they need to be reminded to check that someone wants a drink even if it means disrupting the girls having a chat by the register.

I like the Guitarman and it has a lot of potential to become a great little pub.

I have added a map to the bottom of the posting to make it easier to find but it is at the very end of Loy Kroh (cross over the night bazaar, past the Red Lion, and diagonally opposite the hungry beaver massage place :o It is almost at the corner of Thanon Charoen Pratet where it crosses the little iron bridge heading to Dukes/Rimping etc.

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Very nice review, Crow Boy, of the Guitar Man Bar and Restaurant, thanks. Tempted to check it out one of these evenings.

Suggest you head there on Saturday night and catch the boys play - say hello to Nick for me - he is a nice guy, I will probably pop in myself depending on what our American visitors are doing over the Weekend.

Have you been there before? Interested on getting other thoughts on what the past customers think, and first impressions on new customers

CB

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Is Richie still around. He used to play the guitar man after he finished his set at my place.

Not sure who is there now, I hope it attracts back some of the guys who used to play there but left because of "management issues"

CB

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Very nice review, Crow Boy, of the Guitar Man Bar and Restaurant, thanks. Tempted to check it out one of these evenings.

. . . . .

Have you been there before? Interested on getting other thoughts on what the past customers think, and first impressions on new customers

No, my impressions would be those of a new customer.

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CB, nice to know I'm not the only boy from aus who takes ice in his beer. Got rattled by some NZ git recently for that, till I pointed out that I'd downed 3 while he was still licking his ring. But your excuse is a good one.

So does guitar man compete with Brasserie in terms of enjoyable music?

Gotta say the second live band at Disc is really creative. Although thai pop, they put some grunt into it. Last night they did a cover of TataSpears Young, but in the style of Lincon Park, made it more than tollerable.

DU bar should go and buy one of the gallon drum bbq's at the prison furniture fair - about the only decent thing on sale there - and have sundie bbq and chips with the footy.

BA, you get around alot for an engaged man.

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CB, nice to know I'm not the only boy from aus who takes ice in his beer. Got rattled by some NZ git recently for that, till I pointed out that I'd downed 3 while he was still licking his ring. But your excuse is a good one.

I rarely get any reaction here at all from it - in Oz last time I had a lot of "what the .....?" but until they pass a law preventing it I will drink my beer how I like it - cold. In North Queensland (townsville and upwards) and in parts of Western Australia where bars were open to the outside and there was no Air Conn everyone used to drink smaller glasses (pots or middie size) instead of schooners and pints, it was not unusual to see someone put a handfull of ice in the beer when it was half way down to bring back the icy cold edge to it. Hate warm beer - in London I used to drink Stella and get the Australian barstaff to put the bottles into a bucket of ice for me because even now in the UK with things like refridgeration, baths, and soap they still haven't figured out that beer needs to be cold.

So does guitar man compete with Brasserie in terms of enjoyable music?

Skillwise - Took is up there on the top of the heap and he knows it which is part of the problem. He doesn't really try and will go for months churning out the same set with the same solo, same facial grimaces as he does every night. I went there a couple of weeks ago and he did two Clapton accoustic numbers and I thought "oh good he has picked up some new songs" but then he went straight back to the same old set of "voodoo chile, smoke on the water etc" the other part is that despite being a guitar player I like SONGS - I get bored listening to some tool doing a 25 minute solo just because he knows the five positions of the blues box fingering pattern and is determined to show them all. I want to hear the song with a good neat and tasty bit of guitar work but not try and emulate the late 60s early 70s super group jam sessions - those days it helped that everyone was so stoned they would have appreciated anything done on stage.

The bluze broz band are no slouch and can play - Italian John is a good guitarist and they have a tight but loose feel so quite often go into extended mode but not over the top. The rest of the acts are a diverse pool of talent some from the shallow end and some with real talent. Nick (the new owner) is trying to encourage some of the guys who used to play there to come back but it is mainly amateur night not a fully polished act.

I think they cater to two different styles and have different functions. I enjoy seeing Took because he is a good player but I can't stand going there all the time. A lot of his audience go there two or three times a week and I think that is also part of the problem - they won't let him change. They want to hear "All along the watchtower" every time so he does.

Gotta say the second live band at Disc is really creative. Although thai pop, they put some grunt into it. Last night they did a cover of TataSpears Young, but in the style of Lincon Park, made it more than tollerable.

I like hearing some of the Thai bands - a guy I met was telling me about the Thais who play out at the Night Safari - he was saying they were the only thing worth looking at out there and so he sat there all night watching them play while the rest of the family went playing "is there an animal in this cage?"

There are a couple of Thais and mixed Thai/farung bands that form and break up around town and they can be good fun. Out in the bar area at the back of Carre Four between the two ring roads there was a Thai/farung punk/reggae band that were good fun. The singer was Thai and played a black 70's Les Paul and the farung bass player had a nice Music Man stingray which he played in a similar style to Flea from RHCP - lot of slap and pop. They did Thai lyrics of reggae and punk songs. I haven't seen them for a while and the bar closed down a while back so don't know if or where they are playing.

My personal dislike is the MOR "eating music" which gets churned out like karaoke while people eat their meal at the restaurant. The good view had one but the girl who sang was very good but I rarely to there because I don't like the food.

DU bar should go and buy one of the gallon drum bbq's at the prison furniture fair - about the only decent thing on sale there - and have sundie bbq and chips with the footy.

He did that last year during the day on Sat and Sun for the football so I suspect he will do the same or similar this year. Hope so - I like a good barbie with a beer and the footy. The wife had given me day release this Sunday so I am going there at 10:30am to see the game between Essendon and The Crows which should be a good one.

BA, you get around alot for an engaged man.

He will probably be getting around a lot more tonight - it's is birthday today apparently

Probably go to the Warm Up and then later stand in the bushes looking for RALF :o

CB

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For what it's worth - and keeping us nicely off-topic - the jazz played live on Wednesday evenings at the UN Irish is supposed to be excellent.

JxP

No I think it is within my original post which was good places to Drink in Chiang Mai, I wanted to know the sorts of places the people like to go and why. It is equally valid if the reason is the great pool table, the clientele, the service, the selection of Belgian Beers, or the live music.

However to keep us firmly right in the middle of the topic - I can wholeheatedly testify that you can get beer and spirits at the UN Irish plus Guiness on tap. I don't know about the jazz band on Wednesday evenings but would like to see someone who has been there do a review for the rest of us.

Me if it has more than 12 bars, uses any scale except the minor or blues patterns, and any chord which mentions add 9, 11, or 13 I don't want to know how to play it :o

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