Akirart Cafe in Bangkok
For young people like me, adulthood is a generation of paper-thin computers and chic IKEA furniture. So walking into Akirart Cafe felt like going into a time capsule that brought me back to the era of “chubby” computers and floppy disks.
Located in the Plubplachai neighbourhood of Bangkok, this old school office-themed cafe was opened in February 2019 by Kendo Naken and New Athinan, best buddies who share a love for film and media.
The story of Akirart Cafe
The cafe sits on the 3rd floor of an old commercial shop lot that’s tucked away in an alley. Pay close attention because they all look identical. Here’s a hint: Eye for the lobby with a table tennis table.
This used to be an office for Kamarart, a production house that belonged to Kendo’s dad in the 90s.
Back then, Kendo’s father came up with the name ‘Akirart’ for his company but decided against it as he was worried it would be too hard for people to pronounce. Today, Kendo has adopted it for the cafe in his dad’s honour.
When you walk in, you will see old school gizmos and gadgets like square-shaped Macintosh computers, steel drawers and shelves, books from the 80s and 90s, and even furniture from back in the day.
Vintage office furniture
Drinks and desserts at Akirart
Once you slide the glass door into the main cafe area open, the aromatic scent of coffee hits you. We started with their signature iced coffee, the Passion Fruit Espresso (฿120).
This beautiful black and yellow ombre drink, garnished with a slice of lemon and mint leaf, marries a shot of espresso with sweet passion fruit juice which turned out to be a surprisingly good combination.
Passion Fruit Espresso
At first sip, you’ll be greeted with the familiar taste of mildly bitter coffee. This is followed by the passion fruit juice, which lightens up the bitterness with its distinctive sour and sweet flavour.
This drink is a nicely crafted combination where the bitter, sweet, and sour tastes are well-balanced and complement one another. It’s worth noting that the drink was refreshing and light, so those who don’t like the strong bitter coffee taste might want to give it a try.
Next, we tried a drink with a much longer name: The Secret Life of Walter Dirty – or just Dirty – (฿120), which was newly introduced as ‘the menu of the month’. The owners let us know that they would love to make it a permanent menu item, so do ask the baristas about this drink when you go.
Old floppy disks are put to work as saucers – that’s so fly!
This iced milk coffee came in an elegant cocktail glass and had a sprinkle with cocoa flakes. The coffee in Dirty offers more nutty notes without being too bitter. The mixture of ice-cold creamy milk made it easy to drink too, and you can chew the cocoa flakes in your last gulp.
We can’t have coffee without some pastries. So we went with Thai Tea Cake (฿60), a cute little cake perfect for 1 person – or 2 if both have small appetites.
Thai tea syrup is glazed over the cake
By the looks of it, the cake is quite plain, so I expected a typical soft and airy texture. But I was in for a surprise because it was super dense, moist, and buttery, which is absolutely my cup of tea (or piece of cake in this case). Also, the aroma of Thai tea added a nice touch to the cake.
The desserts here are on rotation, so you might get to taste different items during your visit, booyah!
Take some hipster photos for your IG feed
Though the building is old, it’s still well-maintained. The decorative items have been carefully placed around and it felt like I was in an art museum – except that everything can be touched. There is a big open area with lots of natural light as well as mini office rooms where you can take photos.
These computers are from the 90s
Since you’re allowed to touch most of the items here, don’t let that opportunity go to waste. Use them as props for your 90s-themed photos.
Note: DSLR cameras and commercial photoshoots are not allowed here. However, feel free to go all out with your phones!
Visit Akirart Cafe for a nostalgic blast to the past
Whether you come for an afternoon coffee or to take some awesome photos, Akirart Cafe is a cafe to definitely check out. This retro space didn’t feel gimmicky at all, and I’ll be coming back here for sure.
Address: 21, Anuson 1 Alley, Plubplachai Road, Khwaeng Wat Thepsirin, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon, 10100
Opening hours: Thur-Tue: 10AM-7PM (Closed on Wed)
Telephone: +66 064-810-8622 | +66 084-504-9146
Getting there: Get off at Wat Mangkon MRT station then walk along Plubplachai Road, or hop on a taxi to get here
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