It was really a love for hosting that got Mark Tay into a JAM (sorry, the pun was irresistible) — and the F&B business. Nightlife and alcohol were always on the former magazine editor’s radar, but it was only when he started to host guests regularly in his new home that he started thinking casually about bottled cocktails — and Sunday Punch made its debut in late 2014. He helped concoct the newly opened restaurant and cocktail bar Jam at Siri House in Dempsey, along with co-founders Ming Tan and Jeremy Cheok, who head up the kitchen side of things. “Our food and service are all crafted around being refined, but without the stiffness associated with fine dining,” shares Mark.
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“We took months to conceptualise the flavours we wanted. The Maize Runner is very fragrant and punchy — I’d say it’s a mix between an Old Fashioned and a whisky sour. We used bourbon, roasted coconut distiller, peanut froth and corn salt on the side. It’s built to be quite familiar, with a hint of local flavours, and corn salt for a bit of crunch at the end.”
“I’ve always loved cafe-bar experiences that let guests enjoy light, low-ABV (alcohol by volume) cocktails as well as coffee and tea. I pop by Bar Termini whenever I’m in London because of its shorter serves and wide range of negronis — this was definitely an inspiration for our half-serve cocktail range. Fuglen in Tokyo is an awesome place to spend a breezy afternoon.”
“Try Jam’s Pappardelle In A Crustacean Sauce — handmade pasta with vegetable sauce, tossed in a lobster-and-prawn reduction and topped with charcoal-grilled mussels and tiger prawns. Pair with something clean, like a whisky soda, or a gin and tonic to cut through the dish and cleanse your palate.”
Late morning: “Surfer tunes or ’60s classics are a great audio backdrop for an Aperol Spritz, Americano or even just a good lager.”
Midday: “Classic ’80s to ’90s hip-hop from groups such as A Tribe Called Quest, Jurassic 5 and The Pharcyde keep a good groove going. Refreshing whisky highballs and mint juleps are great to stave off the heat.”
Late evening: “Nothing beats a good Old Fashioned or Boulevardier to wind things down. If it’s been a good day, some new-wave music is great to keep the smiles going. If it’s been a bad one, some Davis, Coltrane, Getz and Baker may help me see the silver lining even on the most trying day.”