Cocktails at the Black Swan, Singapore

It is cocktail Thursday again; and even though it’s soon two months since our trip to Asia, I still have places to review. Today we have something cool for the banker types, the Black Swan in the Central Business District (CBD) of Singapore.

We were originally headed for the Powder room, which is a separate lounge inside the Black Swan. It is run by the same owner, so the cocktail list is pretty much the same. Unfortunately we were misguided by false information on their website and the Powder room was not open on a Monday. So we went for the second best thing, the bar at the Black Swan itself. It is a pretty venue, so I didn’t mind, as long as I got my cocktails. The Black Swan is located in a 1930’s Art Deco space, the former home of the Kwangtung Provincial bank, so it is worth visiting just for the look of it.

The drinks list is original, not your average Mojito but not as innovative as some of the other places I have reviewed (like Operation Dagger). I went for a Pie in the Sky with apple, rhubarb, orange bitters and some bubbly; and M for the Salty Sea Dog with house spiced-rum, ginger syrup, orgeat, fresh pineapple juice and angostura bitters. Both drinks were good, but perhaps a bit uninspiring after the week of crazy innovative cocktails in the speakeasy scene of Singapore. The prices were not that bad though with 19 SGD being on the lower side of what we had paid for our drinks in the past week. A friend of ours who came to help with the sampling opted for a beer as he was not too fond of the sweet flavors clearly dominant on the drinks list. Fruity is not for everyone.

You can also order food at the bar, and they seemed to have some Happy Hour oysters on promotion. We had just had dinner (and I don’t really like oysters anyway), so we skipped the snacks this time, but in general I like having the option to eat something in between my cocktails. Perhaps next time I can try out the food menu.

We were not that impressed, so we skipped the second round of drinks (and headed for Hong Kong 28). I am not saying the drinks were bad, but they were just plain boring in look and flavors compared to everything else we had had that week. In general the bar is nice, and I could imagine sitting there with colleagues after a long day at the office (if I worked in Singapore). This is definitely the place for groups as there is much more space than in many of the other cocktail spots in the city. However there are better places if you look at quality or creativeness of drinks, so depending on the company the Black Swan would perhaps not be my top choice.

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