Nestled amidst the hustle and bustle of City Hall is The Bar at 15 Stamford. As I entered the charming mahogany cloaked 80-seater bar, I felt like I was entering the hull of a ship.
Here, guests can enjoy a rare sense of privacy, making it the perfect place for an after-work tipple or an intimate gathering. Even the way that tables and couches are arranged make you feel like you have your little private area that overlooks the grandeur of the extensive bar.
The Bar’s newly launched cocktail menu seeks to explore the wonders of Austronesia and takes guests on a voyage across the Pacific Ocean into the histories of familiar countries such as Taiwan, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand.
While more famously known for their extensive rum collection, the new menu at The Bar employs a range of spirits from gins to mezcal. There are 16 cocktails split across the two sections of the new menu: Signature Cocktails and Austronesian Islands.
AVENUE ONE visited The Bar to try out its new cocktail menu – read on for our favourite drinks.
The new drinks menu
Start your night with the Hoto Matua 1000 (S$25) – a bubbly and refreshing start to open the palate for the range of flavours that will follow on.
Made with Six Saints Grenada Rum, amaro, angostura bitters, peychaud bitters, and sparkling wine, this is a bubbly drink with a herbal tint that might not be delightful as first sip. However, the flavours does grow on you over time and the cherry at the bottom gives it a nice sweet finish.
To take things up a notch, go for their signature Plantation 1840 (S$24), which comprises Black Tears Rum, sweet vermouth, pineapple juice, sugarcane juice syrup, lemon juice and fresh mint, and served in a copper mug.
The drink pays homage to Balestier who planted pineapple and sugarcane during his time on the island whilst setting up copper stills to distill rum from sugar syrup.
Each ingredient in this drink was carefully handpicked for this. It is also a crowd-favourite and has withstood the test of time with its vibrancy and fruitiness.
What comes next depends on your tastebuds. Do you prefer to head north to Taiwan or South to New Zealand? If the winds take you to Taiwan, you are in for an oriental treat.
The Ilha Formosa 1542 ($25) gave me a sense of calm with the deep floral notes of Tie Guan Yin tea leaves. The tea blend is shaken with cognac, gin and dry vermouth and finished with citrusy aromatics. This is a drink that reminded me of the vast plains in Taiwan.
The Endeavor 1769 ($25) dazzled me with its glittery appearance.
Named after the ship James Cook sailed when he landed on New Zealand, the celestial-looking drink is inspired by voyages and how seafarers used the stars to navigate.
The gin-and-mezcal cocktail is served in a tall glass, infusing citrus, passionfruit and kiwi notes and topped with edible glitter. This is a drink that will make both your heart and mouth skip a beat with every sip.
After a long voyage, end the night with familiar and full-bodied Nonya flavours of pandan and gula-melaka. The Peranakan Old Fashioned (S$25) packs an intense amount of flavours while still being smooth with every sip.
Besides the Nonya ingredients and elements, this cocktail also has house-made falernum and is served with a torched cinnamon stick to bring out the aromatics.
I’m definitely biased given that I love anything with gula-melaka in it; but this was such a well-executed cocktail with a harmonious balance in flavours of east and west.
Another drink with familiar flavours to look forward to would be the Penjajap 1509 ($25).
Made with Dewar’s Blended Scotch 12 Years, Wild Turkey Rye Whiskey, assam syrup, coconut, citrus, and pineapple, this is an elegant take on the classic pina colada.
The drink is made with ingredients that are commonly found and used by Southeast Asian countries so if you like regional flavours – don’t miss out on this one!
In between each sip, I enjoyed nibbling on small bites and find that they help to bring out the flavours of the different cocktails and cleanse the palate along the way.
I was delighted to find that The Bar has some interesting bar bites such as a Salmon Kueh Pie Tie, Char Siew Short Ribs, Fried Cauliflower and crispy Nori Fish Skin. I have never had Kueh Pie Tee with salmon in it, but this was such an umami packed combination of flavours that went really well after the intense flavours from drinks such as the Peranakan Old Fashioned. The Fish Skin Chips are a great starter to have as you sip on the bubbly Hoto Matua 1000.
Disembarking from a night at The Bar at 15 Stamford is a difficult process. While the voyage is long and arduous, taking you through multiple countries in a short span of time, the ingredients used to profile each country will leave a long-lasting taste on the palate. With that said, you should head down to The Bar at 15 Stamford for your next after-work tipple to hang out with the buddies!
The Bar at 15 Stamford is located at 15 Stamford Rd, Singapore 178906.