Manhattan Bar presents a walk through Central Park

Alright, so my favourite Black Tuesdays (pictured above) has been wiped clean off the menu at Manhattan Bar, but hey.. the new Central Park menu does prove to contain some gems in its sprawling green realms. Representing the 843-acres of public park, Central Park provides a piece of tranquil serenity in the midst of the concrete jungle it is located in; the alcoholic libations and accompanying snacks do walk in the same relaxed stride.

To start, we had the convivial Rose Club ($27++) to represent all things peachy. Named after the famous lounge of The Plaza Hotel on Fifth Avenue that has shared its stage with one, too many jazz and pop musicians such as Miles Davis and Duke Ellington, the drink doesn't take itself too seriously yet transcribes a sexy complexity from its roots. Here Four Roses single barrel bourbon is sweetened with St. George Spiced Pear Liquer, Mathilde Peach liquer, orange, pink grapefruit and lightened with some fizzy action from the Perrier-Jouet Champagne. 

For something that carries a little less guilt factor in its consumption theres the Greensward Plan ($24++), almost vegetal in flavor profile due to muddled peas, this is not for everybody. Thank goodness for the smoky floral notes in the Encanto pisco that comes swooping into the rescue along with the sweet hints of moscato nonino grappa to further smudge the innocent beginnings of this green cocktail.

More spirit-forward consumers will enjoy the Blockhouse No. 1 ($23++), melding Rebel Yell Bourbon with Cynar (artichoke liquer), vermouth, herbal bitter Becherovka and Rosemary Tincture. Coincidentally, this turned out to be favourite drink, till the scales were tipped later upon my chance encounter with the Crystal Room ($29++).

Don't be surprised to find many patrons visiting the bar on empty stomachs, in fact, I will implore you to do so as Manhattan Bar carries a rad menu of bar snacks that like its menu compartmentalization does a brilliant job of showcasing the various districts. From the Central Park Menu comes an entourage of global and varied snacks such as the Barbecue Pulled Pork ($21) on neat rectangles of crispy tortilla chips, seasoned to the T after a quick flash fry and supremely unbeatable when chowed down with huge dollops of accompanying cucumber yogurt.

I almost chipped a tooth on the Cabbage Cured Salmon Bagel ($20), the minature halved bagels toasted or fried till chip form a far cry from the true form of chewy Jewish bread. Despite the textural mis-representation, the stunning purplish hues on the tips of the salmon (effects of being cured in red cabbage juice) more than made up for it. Dive into that piquant cream cheese dip for maximum enjoyment. Less cheeky and a little sexier is the Charred Jerk Octopus ($22), this one is tender beyond belief despite the gorgeous charred crust, and yet substantial enough to serve as appetisers for two on a night out of town.

Should we be painting the scenario of after-dinner drinks, may I strongly suggest either imbibing your desserts via the Crystal Room ($29++) or  nibbling on the Strawberries and Cream Eclairs ($12). The former is for a lack of a better word, revolutionary, the exceptional peat-bruiser Lagavulin 16 Years is tamed by creme de cacao, a touch of lime for a spark of brightness and the entire concoction enjoying fleeting moments on the palate via the use of frothed egg whites. I loved it to the moon and back and glanced nervously as my partner proceeded to swig his last mouthful in fear of him crossing the boundaries. No sir, this drink is mine.

For the best sort of date-night out with a sophisticated lady, look no further than Manhattan Bar at Regent Singapore. But I must warn you that reservations are crucial to avoid looking like slacker.

Manhattan Bar's seasonal Central Park cocktail and bar bites menu will be available in the months of November and December 2016 this year.

Manhattan Bar
1 Cuscaden Road
Regent Singapore
Level 2
t: 6725 3377

Operating Hours:
Sun - Thurs: 5pm - 1am
Fri - Sat: 5pm - 2am
Violet Hour: 5pm - 7pm (weekdays)

Sunday Cocktail Brunch: 11 30am - 3 30pm

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