Mixes from Mars' new cocktail bar takes cues from local zi char flavors
The buzz: From the folks who brought you Duxton Road pop-up bar Mars Bar comes their second (also temporary) outfit with more locally-inspired drinks in the RedDot Traffic Building.
The décor: Simple and DIY. The long wooden bar is the centerpiece of the long space but the wood and pipe metal shelves deserve special mention for being cobbled together by the barkeeps. There are also low-lying tables and couches to the side, as well as a small but healthy herb garden at the entrance.
The drinks: Inspired by local zi char flavors, their concoctions are throwbacks to yesteryear. The Georgetown Special ($22) is inspired by assam laksa and aptly made with vodka, mango, mint leaves, tamarind paste and lime, while the Arab Street ($23) is a pink and girly concoction made with G’Vine gin, pomegranate syrup, saffron rose water, apple juice and smoked with cherry shisha that evokes memories of Kampong Glam in the good ol’ days. The Golden 933 ($21) is a particularly accurate reinterpretation of cereal prawns using cereal and butter fat-washed Angostura rum, a chilli tincture and curry leaves.
The food: Nothing but little snacks like gem biscuits and everyone’s childhood addiction the white rabbit creamy candies.
The music: A mix of top 40s remixes and 90s throwback hits that really hit the spot for feelings of nostalgia.
The crowd: Mostly those who have faithfully followed the head bartender Kino Soh who was formerly of Bar Stories, as well as those who frequent Mars Bar. There are after-work CBD strays that pop in for their cheeky tipples, too.
Why you’ll be back: Their lease is due to expire next October as the RedDot Traffic Building is reclaimed by the government, making this a hot ticket before they close. They also do delicious interpretations of hawker favorites, which turns into a great guessing game of “name that dish”.