The Bar at 15 Stamford is so under the radar we nearly dismissed it as another cookie-cutter lobby lounge. But this fledgling rum bar, helmed by Atlas alum Edriane Lim, is worth considering on several fronts.
For one, it’s remarkably handsome—mahogany on white with Peranakan tiles and art deco-esque lattices. You get a bonus history lesson too: that Singapore had a short-lived dalliance with rum-making in the 1830s, led by US consul Joseph Balestier who ran a sugarcane plantation and rum distillery; the site of the hotel was once home to the Balestiers.
Aptly, The Bar has even worked with Plantation Rum to launch their own bottling—a Sauternes cask-finished Guadeloupe rum that’s rather beginners-friendly, with treacle notes and an easy finish. With over 160 rums (from $12 for a 45ml shot), The Bar carries one of the city’s largest selections. There are tasting flights too (from $27 for three samplers), including a trio of navy strength rums to showcase the big and bold, and an aged agrichole series to encourage reconsideration of those famously hard-to-love herbaceous sips.
Naturally, rum dominates the cocktails list. Darker Than Stormy ($22) makes a good refreshing starting point. Cocktails with local elements often exaggerate sweet and/or spicy elements, but thankfully, the Peranakan Old Fashion ($22) bucks the trend, using house-made falernum to register subtle pandan notes and gula melaka complexity. Alternatively, pick a rum and have Lim fix that into a cocktail for a supplementary $6 over the shot price.
Lobby level, The Capitol Kempinski Hotel Singapore, 15 Stamford Road. Tel: 6715 6871.