Beer Republic Chiang Mai
A sign of a good bar or restaurant in Chiang Mai is a mix of Thai people and farangs. If it’s all farangs, you know the food probably won’t be any good, and the prices will be inflated.
If it’s all Thai people, you may be in a Thai-only speaking restaurant. Not a problem if you don’t have dietary requirements or don’t mind which dish or drink you get served. Unfortunately, I’m a bit trickier with my meals…
Beer Republic is one of those mixed patronage places. And the good omen turns out well. Both North Nomad and I can eat together here, and we enjoy our meals!
It’s a cool little joint, spanning two levels, and with both inside and outside rooms. The décor is bright and cheery, with this enormous tiger painted on the front gates.
In keeping with its namesake, there is a wide variety of beers on selection here. If you need a bit of variety from Singha, Chang, Leo, and Tiger for beer, Beer Republic is a good choice. There’s over 15 international draughts, with German, Belgian, English, Dutch, Czech, American, Japanese, and Laos beers represented.
Being a creature of habit, I choose the Sapporo, a Japanese beer that is vegan friendly. And if you’re vegan like me, and ever at a micro-brewery or beer focused establishment, German (and German style) beers are cruelty free.
We learnt at Steam Whistle on our Beer Lovers Tour in Toronto that German purity laws mean that only certain ingredients can be used in making beer – and none of these include animal products.
If variety is more your style, there are beer flights: 295 baht for 5×100 ML samples, and 550 baht for the 10×100 ML samples.
But on this occasion, we’ve come for a meal, not to drink beer. The menu is rather large. I’ve found a commonality in restaurants with large menus spanning a lot of cuisines – they’re usually total crap.
That’s not the case at Beer Republic whatsoever. The menu appears to have more traditional dishes for countries like Germany and America, as a nod to the beers on selection. It also means there is more than one option for me (yay!) and a stack of things North Nomad can eat.
There’s a range of American style pizzas, Japanese fusion style seafood salads, Thai style seafood and meat dishes, pasta dishes, stir fries, curries, burgers, and assorted fried sides.
Despite seeing some healthier veggie Thai dishes (like morning glory which I love) and veggie pastas, I cave and order the mushroom tempura, with Thai sweet chilli sauce. We get the mixed fries to share – but the share is a façade, I eat most of them with my potato addiction.
North Nomad has been dying for a burger, and orders the U.S. Angus Beef Burger. You can get it with brie, gorgonzola, cheddar, or bacon. He chooses the cheddar and bacon. I can barely get a word out of him about how his burger is, as he’s enthusiastically chowing down on it. When he finishes, he tells me it’s a delicious burger.
My fried mushrooms are divine. Some places make these so oily that they become limp, but these are crispy and the mushroom meat is cooked perfectly. I like it when you can still taste your veggies in the tempura! The sweet chilli sauce has a real kick to it.
The mixed fries are fine. Nothing spectacular, but also not bad. I’d suggest if you’re just going for beer and snacks, choose one of the sides other than fries, because there is so much choice.
The service was also friendly and very prompt. The waiters all have tablets and take your order, speaking good English. I notice some jerk farang next to us treating the waiter with contempt because there was an accident on his bill. Two beers had accidentally been put on the bill, instead of one. Rather than treating this like a mistake (and a very easy one to make by tapping too hard on a tablet), the guy chews out the waiter like he’s trying to pull one over him. There’s always one, right?!
Do be warned that downstairs, the cigarette smoke from people sitting outside will still waft inside as there are no real doors/windows dividing the areas. If this bothers you when you eat, you may wish to sit indoors. I learnt the hard way!
bookings & reservations | 053 216 568, 081 531 4765,
Contact Details: Landline 053 216 568, Khun Eak (Thai) 087 304 7888, Khun Kik (Thai/Eng) 081 531 4765, Khun Pook (Thai/Eng) 087 656 9595
Opening Hours: 4pm to Midnight, Kitchen open until 11pm
Location: Nimman Soi 11, off Nimman haeminda Road, Chiang Mai, 50300, Thailand.