Recently-opened French-Japanese restaurant Le Binchotan may be named after the special white charcoal used for grilling many a Japanese delicacy, but what’s more impressive than its food is its cocktail bar, with a drinks list that’s playful and delicious at the same time.

French-Japanese tapas restaurant bar Le Binchotan is one of the latest additions to the incredibly crowded Amoy Street stretch, one that in recent months has seen the likes of Burger Joint Singapore, Employees Only, BoCHINche and Ding Dong join incumbents Sugarhall, The Spiffy Dapper, and Jigger & Pony in the same area.

But while Le Binchotan brings some French-Japanese culinary panache to the fore, it is the cocktail bar, managed by head bartender Sugar Ray Ruban, that truly impresses. The 26-year old, who has worked in the likes of Dempsey Brasserie, Fern & Kiwi, Cufflink Club, and Vasco, brings all that experience together to put forth a drinks list that’s both fun and charming, and able to pair well with the fare put out by head chef Jeremmy Chiam at the same time.

The Gin, The Flower and The Bowtie

We’re big fans of the naughtily-named Sake My Cucumber ($21+), which combines sake, cucumber, fresh mint, Chartreuse and sparkling water for a palate-cleansing tipple, as well as the similarly refreshing The Gin, The Flower and The Bowtie ($23++, above), the gin, lemon, coconut and roselle creation at once flavour-forward and as well as a mixology exercise in balance.

For something more substantive on the palate, Ruban’s Flowers From Paris ($21+), a floral Aperol and vodka concoction that’s accented by lavender and rose syrup.

For those not into cocktails, Le Binchotan’s remarkably well-curated wine and sake list should put you into a good mood. We’re particularly chuffed to see Bourgogne’s Domaine Faiveley Macon-Village 2012 ($19+) and Pinot Noir 2013 ($19+) on the house pour list, both of which should pair exceedingly well with the food presented here. Otherwise the Nabeshima Junmai Daiginjo ($225+ per 720ml bottle) from Aiyama should equally do the trick.

You can find Le Binchotan at at 115 Amoy Street, #01-04.


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