Past a certain age and income bracket, people don’t need to party harder; they want to party better. Drinks should have more than two ingredients (that don’t include cola), be served by staff dressed in tailored suits, and in a sophisticated setting that plays music not featured on current Top 40 lists. The Monarchy Cocktail Bar & Ultra Lounge promises all of that.
Its founders have party pedigree. Robbie Hoyes-Cock was the CEO and founder of The Podium Lounge, while Steve Yallop was the former executive director of Pangaea at Marina Bay Sands. Together they’ve put together a concept inspired by the optimistic Cool Britannia era of the UK. This means classic British cocktails with a twist, all named after songs by British bands, in a space ﬁlled with paintings of prominent British ﬁgures by artist Alex Wakeﬁeld. There’s even a display window for the wares of local bespoke tailor Kevin Seah, who designed The Monarchy team’s dapper uniforms.
The lounge area opens from 10pm on weekends and the eve of public holidays with all the usual trappings: bottle service, a DJ console, VIP table, dance platforms and reinforced chesterﬁelds for those want to re-enact Footloose on the furniture instead. But you come here for the well-crafted cocktails, speedy service and the fact that it’s the only bar on the street that opens till late (3am for Tuesdays to Fridays, 4am on Saturdays).
Even the paintings are for sale, and the last customer who bought one of them enjoyed a limousine ride home and next-day delivery. If you’re happy to just admire them from your leather booth, do so with a “Message in a Bottle” (whisky, Dubonnet, sweet vermouth, orange liqueur and maraschino) or even the cheeky “Mr Churchill Says” (gin, more gin and green olives). 56 Tras Street.
01 BRITANNIA, HO!
The bar is styled after the heyday of English cool.
02 SIGNATURE COCKTAIL
Message in a Bottle contains whisky, Dubonnet, sweet vermouth, orange liqueur and maraschino.
03 MONARCHY FOUNDERS
(From left) Steve Yallop, Rob Scott and Robbie Hoyes-Cock all have party pedigree.
Whisky was a new entrant to the Knight Frank Luxury Investment Index last year, but it made it to the top spot (beating coins, wine and art) thanks to the growth of Scotch whisky sales in the Asian market. Sales in Singapore grew 24 per cent in the first half of 2018.
02 IN THE PINK
Pink gin (not to be confused with the cocktail) is on the rise, thanks to its pretty blush colour and fruitderived sweetness. But, if you’re still ﬁrmly in the camp that believes gin should be dry, bitter and herbal, Chapel Down’s Pinot Noir Gin could be a good introduction to the category without compromising the spirit’s original character. Claiming to be the world’s ﬁrst gin distilled from pinot noir skins, the English winery has created a juniper-led gin with gentle aromas of red berries and a citrus ﬁnish. www.chapeldown.com
03 CHAMPAGNE SUPERNOVA
Heaven forbid we should think the British are only good at making gin. For over 30 years, Nyetimber’s sole mission was to produce bubbly that would rival those from Champagne, and it was the ﬁrst English producer to exclusively grow the necessary grape varieties. The cool climate in southern England ensures the slow ripening of the grapes, leading to wines of great delicacy. Head winemaker Cherie Spriggs was named “Sparkling Winemaker of the Year” at the International Wine Challenge 2018; the ﬁrst time it was awarded to a winemaker outside Champagne and the ﬁrst time it was awarded to a woman. Following the winery’s plan to up Asian distribution this year, you can now see what the fuss is about at Shangri-La Hotel, The Ritz Carlton, Odette, Iggy’s and 1880.
04 FULL HOUSE
Even if winter never arrives in Singapore, drink in solidarity with the characters stuck in Westeros with a Game of Thrones-inspired single malt scotch collection. To celebrate the eighth and ﬁnal season of the acclaimed HBO series, Diageo has released a set of eight bottles from the distilleries of Dalwhinnie, The Singleton of Glendullan, Cardhu, Lagavulin, Oban, Talisker, Royal Lochnagar and Clynelish, dedicated to the seven clans of Westeros and the Night’s Watch. Even those who aren’t fans of the show may want to consider getting their hands on the set for unique bottlings like the Talisker Select Reserve (House Greyjoy), Dalwhinnie Winter’s Frost (House Stark) and Lagavulin 9 Year Old (House Lannister).
Available at 1855 The Bottle Shop stores and www.asherbws.com
TEXT CHARMIAN LEONG