World's Best Bar
World's Best Bar
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Feb 21, 2019
It’s not very often that you come across a bar so proud of its roots it mixes them into its drinks – literally. The relaxed, fun ambience of this creative bar, located in Singapore’s buzzing Amoy Street, draws a mix of the curious and cocktail connoisseurs alike, both local and international.
A strong contender for the most innovative bar in Singapore, Native offers a selection of seven cocktails each concocted using plants, mushrooms or even insects foraged from the local environment. With an interior built by local and regional craftsmen, Native’s cocktails are crafted according to the same rules, each infused with the local, Singaporean foods its founder, Vijay Mudaliar, grew up on.
Every eco-friendly cocktail is constructed in a lab above the bar and represents a local place, story or custom. Plants that grow together tend to pair up well and Native uses this principle to create complex, yet perfectly balanced, intense and exciting flavour profiles that are unique to this island city.
The spirits here are strictly only from Asian distillers; this is an import free zone. Cue a collection of Indian whiskies, Indonesian rums, Japanese gins and original Asian alcohols like arrack – coconut flower sap aged in wood – from Sri Lanka as well as baijiu from China.
The result of all this: cocktails infused with sourspop, mango, turmeric and cinnamon – even foraged ants and grasshoppers. They’re served up on lotus leaf coasters with flower stem straws, courtesy of a local florist.
You can’t visit without trying the Antz cocktail that put Native on the map. Made with weaver ants foraged by the founder himself, it blends the insect’s natural acidity with Chalong Bay Rum, coconut yoghurt, soursop and salt-baked tapoioca, for a zingy yet creamy cocktail. The garnishes are, of course, ants too – this time from Thailand.