World Cocktail Day: Canned, Bottled & Takeaway Cocktails
STORY: Annette Tan & Sim Ding En
13 May 2021
Want to celebrate World Cocktail Day (or any other day, honestly), and knock back a few drinks - but want to stay (safe at) home instead?
Happily, we can still leave the mixing to the experts as more bars and purveyors of potent potables have introduced canned and bottled cocktails for our convenience. These are a few to consider.
The Old Man Singapore
We live in troubled times, what with the pandemic and other social issues swirling around us, not only here but throughout the world.
And yet, as Ernest Hemingway - who inspired this bar at Keong Saik Road (which has been recognised as one of Asia's and World's 50 Best Bars) - wrote in his Pulitzer Prize-winning novel "The Old Man and the Sea": "Man is not made for defeat." Now, we'll drink to that!
And while we're at it, why not check out the bar's bottled cocktail offerings, all named after works by Hemingway. Among them:
- The Sun Also Rises #1924 (a mixture of Copra fat-washed applejack, curry leaf infused Beefeater gin, sweet vermouth sous-vide pandan leaves and lime kafir)
- A Moveable Feast #1964 (Rotovap sea, clear spiced cherry tomato, coconut, basil-tomato seeds and oyster leaves infused in cheesewax)
- The Garden Of Eden #1985 (Rotovap honeydew wild turkey rye whiskey, goat milk wild turkey bourbon, caramelised sauterne cordial and orange-phosphate bitter)
In short, the answer to troubled times: good spirits!
Academy of Drinks
Academy Of Drinks debuted its online shop just in time for Christmas and it’s full of lovely libations that make great gifts or nifty additions to a year-end party.
There are sample sets of four 100ml bottles of spirits (from $99) – think whiskeys like Woodford Reserve Rye and Benromach 10, and rums such as Don Papa 10 and Plantation Pineapple – as well as bottled cocktails from Laiba (from $12.50), including flavours like Cold Brew Martini (vanilla-infused vodka, black rum, cold brew coffee and salted caramel) and Laiba Sour (whiskey, lemon, nutmeg, hazelnut-infused salted caramel, apple and bitters).
There are even curated selections of affordable wines. The best part: same day delivery if you order before 3pm.
Don’t turn your nose up at supermarket cocktails because these pack a delicious punch. Australian purveyor Curatif has canned cocktails (from $12) that make stay-home drinking as easy as pulling a tab off a can and imbibing.
Choose from four flavours: Archie Rose Espresso Martini, Four Pillars Negroni, Plantation Pineapple Daiquiri and Tequila Tromba Margarita.
Each is made in collaboration with some of the world’s best crafted spirits and is available at selected Cold Storage outlets, on Redmart, at EC Proof and Huber’s Butchery.
The brain child of Yap Hwee Jen and Mark Tay, Sunday Punch (started in 2014) offers small-batch bottled cocktails that are just the respite you need at the end of long work day - and for some us (especially those of us working from home), offers much-needed liquid courage to get us through that fifth back-to-back conference call.
And so, like the remedy to workplace woes that they most certainly are, these bottled cocktails look decidedly - and appropriately - medicinal, but sound absolutely delicious.
What's caught our attention: the intriguing #88 (London Dry Gin with a blend of pineapples, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, and a touch of extra dry vermouth; from $38), Le Petite Pear (spiced gin, pear, gentiane liqueur; from $42), and the Sunday Punch Tasting Set - $90 gets you a selection of five different flavours (100ml each).
Choose from drinks like Ristretto Negroni, comprising gin, Italian bitters, vermouth and roasted coffee; Old School, made from Japanese whiskey, plum liqueur and cocoa nibs; and Mr Jerez with rum anejo, bianco vermouth, sherry, banana and sage.
They’ve even put together a playlist of jazz, swing and blues tunes that you can enjoy with (or without) your drinks.
The award-winning Manhattan bar has some ambrosial cocktails that are great for impressing with at home. Try the spicy Hendrick’s gin-based Yule, or the toasty, chocolate-y Joyeux Noel made with Michter’s rye and French toast syrup. Manhattan’s cocktails retail for $88 for a 350ml bottle and can be picked up from Regent Singapore’s takeaway booth or ordered online.
"Laut" is the Malay word for "sea". Not only does it refer to the orang laut (Malay for "people of the sea" or nomadic sea gypsies who inhabited Singapore before the arrival of the British in 1819), it also signifies the abbreviation for Southeast Asia.
The culture and produce of Southeast Asia inspire the stuff offered by Laut, not least when it comes to the flavours of their bottled cocktails (from $48). Think: Soy (gula melaka arrack, spiced mango, tamarind, clarified fermented soy, chrysanthemum), Grass (rojak gin, toasted rice vinegar, pickle brine, grass kombucha) and Dragonfruit (Straits spiced vodka, red dragonfruit, smoked longan, sour plum cordial).
At sea (nudge, nudge) with the choices presented before you? Laut has three-flavour ($120) and six-flavour ($228) sampler sets too.
Since bars have been off the table for most of the year, the feted Jigger & Pony Group are bringing their drinks right to our homes.
Its beautifully packaged bottled cocktails make impressive gifts or are perfect for sharing since they come in 200ml or 500ml bottles. Premium spirits like Roku Gin, Maker’s Mark Bourbon Whiskey, and Suntory Chita Whiskey go into classic offerings like a Negroni ($32/$74) and Old-Fashioned ($33/$76), and more contemporary flavours such as the Sakura Martini ($34/$78) and Chocolate Boulevardier ($34/$78).
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