CIN CIN, one of Singapore’s first gin-focused cocktail bars, has unveiled a refreshed drinks menu with 12 brand-new cocktails.
Gin bars are dime a dozen in Singapore these days, but just five years ago they weren’t quite a thing yet. There was grungy dive bar The Spiffy Dapper in 2013 with its modest lineup of around 10 gins, before gin-focused cocktail bar CIN CIN at Oasia Hotel Downtown appeared in 2016 with a far larger range. By the time grand lobby bar ATLAS opened to grand fanfare in early 2017, the gin bar concept had became a prevailing trend.
And while it doesn’t quite have the grandeur of ATLAS’ magnificent gin tower, CIN CIN has been a huge if quiet gin proponent in Singapore. CIN CIN’s head bartender Fadly Sujebto and his bar team regularly held gin masterclasses for those interested in learning about the juniper-based spirit, as well as promoted local food and gin pairings. Their gin cocktails ranged from classics for the traditionalists, to flighty and whimsical creations that are aimed at attracting the younger, more transient drinker.
Its latest cocktail menu, comprising of 12 totally brand-new cocktails, follow that same ethos.
There’s Revitalize, a highball that combines Hendricks Gin, cucumber syrup, lime juice and cold-pressed watermelon juice for a supremely refreshing cocktail that you’re guaranteed to finish all too quickly. Gin-Tea-Ni is basically a Martini with big tea flavours – Brass Lion Dry Gin, Gryphon Tea’s white gingerlily tea, Aperol, and ginger cognac combine for invitingly familiar flavours and a strong kick.
Majulah Singapura is CIN CIN’s liberal twist on the Singapore’s national cocktail the Singapore Sling. It’s made the usual way – Cointreau, Benedictine DOM, cherry brandy et al – but using Brass Lion gin. But this recipe eschews the grenadine and tops it off with soda to help dial down the classic cocktail’s usual sickly sweetness.
Then there’s Kopi Kaki, essentially a coffee Negroni made with Kyro Dark Gin, Mancino Kopi vermouth, Campari, and topped off with a coffee foam. Those who prefer their savoury cocktails can consider the Umami Vesper. Made with Four Pillars Olive Leaf Gin that’s been further infused with kombu, Ketel One Vodka, and Cocchi Americano, this semi-dry concoction is a taste of the sea. Or if you enjoy an Old Fashioned, the Old Nuts is its nuttier gin take made using Kyro Dark Gin that’s been fat-washed with peanut butter.
But if you have a sweet tooth, the brilliantly pink-hued Sweet Lah You is as sweet as it looks. Basically a sugary take on the Gimlet, it’s made with Kyro Pink Gin, house-made cotton candy syrup, lemon juice and cold-pressed watermelon juice.
Our favourite cocktail of the lot? Marmeladi. This is essentially a White Lady meets Margarita, made with Kyro Gin, orange marmalade, Cointreau, and lime juice. The pricks of black pepper – replacing the usual salt in a Margarita – adds complexity and class.
Feeling peckish? There’s a range bar bites for you to consider, although options are rather uninspired. The Spicy Sriracha Buffalo Wings and Honey Soy Chicken Wings make decent finger food, while the Chicken Quesadillas and Truffle Cheeseburger Sliders provide the necessary carbs to help line the tummy.
If you’re truly hungry, opt for the Fox Platter, which comes with those wings along with some delectable Baked Meatballs that we rather enjoyed.
We suspect the gin trend is going to chug along quite a bit. And based on what we see in CIN CIN’s new cocktail menu, they’ll be right there driving the trend along as they’ve always done.
Address 100 Peck Seah Street, Oasia Hotel Downtown, #01-02, Singapore 079333 (Google Maps link)
Opening Hours 5.30pm to 10.30pm Mondays to Fridays; 3pm to 10.30pm on Saturdays; closed on Sundays