Month by month, Singapore’s cocktail scene continues to grow. Last week, it was announced at the World’s 50 Best Bars awards that six local watering holes have made it onto the list. This October, the openings are few but they certainly are exciting, with a bar inspired by Indian flavours and heritage and another entirely pinball-themed.
The Elephant Room is not your run-of-the-mill speakeasy. For starters, it’s founded by Yugnes Susela whose wealth of experience includes helming the bar at Smoke & Mirrors and stints at Tippling Club and Chicago’s The Aviary. The Elephant Room is his homage to India as well as Singapore’s own Little India, and takes inspiration from the district’s tapestry of colours, flavours, and heritage.
The first thing you’ll notice upon your entrance are the vermillion walls, gold accents and bar counter that’s made of raw vent blocks. The menu, which features the cloth of a sari, centers on seven cocktails inspired by the precinct. For instance, Buffalo Road is a flavour-packed Gin and Tonic and Tekka is an ode to the lively hawker center with its punchy, full-bodied coconut and fermented banana. To complement the drinks menu, the food choices are, likewise, takes on Indian dishes such as crispy pani puri, and Butcher’s Lamb Broth, a hearty, peppery reinterpretation of the classic mutton soup.
You can now find the alps in Singapore, courtesy of Junior ‘The Pocket Bar’, the city’s first watering hole with concepts that rotate every six months. Its current is the Petite Chalet, which sees the bar transformed into a ski lodge with drinks and food inspired by après-ski culture in the 1970s.
The commitment to the concept is impressive, with alpine-themed decor complementing its libation menu made with alpine liquers. Choose your poison according to the season. Spring sees infusions of elderflower and rhubard; summer has aperol, German wheat beer with mint and dill herbs. Autumn is a showcase of stronger liquors like cognac, while Winter sees cocktail interpretations of hot chocolate with sprinklings of cinnamon.
Its name leaves little room for imagination, but we’re still intrigued. Pinball Wizard is brought to you by the same folks who created retro arcade bar Nineteen80. Located at Sim Lim Square, it’s Singapore’s first pinball bar and club, and is kitted out from wall-to-wall with the machines. The bar is made for letting your hair down. Sip on cocktails, shots, or craft beers, dancing to tunes of the ’90s amidst neon lights. Whatever your favoured genre, there’s a themed night for you, with Wednesdays reserved for rock and roll, and Thursdays for hip hop.