Earthy, crunchy and yummy
Tucked into the alley that runs behind Burger King across from the eastern end of Khao San Road, Ethos vegetarian cafe does some mean veggie food to go with an impressive spread of beverages. The ambiance is earthy-crunchy and it’s a relaxing spot to check email or read while nibbling on probiotic super-foods or sipping seven different types of Kombucha tea.
With a subdued ambiance that would fit in seamlessly on Ko Pha Ngan or Ko Lipe, Ethos sets the mood with uplifting world music, soft red lanterns, a row of proper wood tables and another row of low-lying tables spread over rattan mats and surrounded by comfortable floor cushions. The free WiFi works great, the laidback staff are usually snappy and the atmosphere is conducive to a nice long lounge. The tables tend to fill up around noon, so we’d suggest settling in here during the afternoon.
A large, one-of-a-kind menu boasts an eclectic range of Thai and international cuisine, with the only rules being that everything is vegetarian and most dishes can be prepared vegan. Huge portions are well worth the 100 to 250 baht price tags. Hearty Thai curries, stir-fries and noodle dishes are chock full of organic veggies and tofu, though we’re partial to the house-made falafel, hummus and pita bread alongside an excellent salad with tahini dressing.
Other distinctive vegan selections include a massive veggie lasagna, spaghetti with vegan “meatballs”, veggie burger and aloo gobi with dal. Ethos makes their own tempeh and muesli, all of their bread is house-baked and they serve organic brown rice. Should you feel like dessert, their bakery churns out apple crumble with coconut cream custard and chocolate fudge cake — both vegan.
Along with the Kompucha teas, an extensive tea menu includes Japanese green, oolong, earl grey, roibus and a range of herbal selections that are served iced or hot. Smoothies and hard-to-find fresh-squeezed juices like beetroot and mangosteen are also exceptional, though you’ll need to pay a bit more than usual for the quality.
The intimate cafe is a good place to spark conversations with other environmentally-conscious travellers, but it’s also suitable for keeping to yourself while reading or writing in a journal. A handful of books are available, and a bulletin board is a good local resource for yoga, meditation and organic foods in the Bangkok area.
If you like Ethos, you’ll also like its more traditionally Thai vegetarian restaurant neighbour, May Kaidee’s.
Address: 85/2 Soi Bowonrangsi (behind the Burger King off Tanao Road), Bangkok
T: (02) 280 7549
Coordinates (for GPS): 100º29'57.67" E, 13º45'30.37" N
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David Luekens first came to Thailand in 2005 when Thai friends from his former home of Burlington, Vermont led him on a life-changing trip. Based in Thailand since 2011, he spends much of his time eating in Bangkok street markets and island hopping the Andaman Sea.
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