Bar Guide: Orchard Road (Part 2)
Plenty of deals for early drinkers
Situated outside ION, this outdoor Italian restaurant-bar is a perennial favorite for those looking for an early tipple. The attentive service staff, fairly efficient service and breezy al fresco setting come together to form a delightful bar to hangout at. On top of that, the drinks promotions are pretty attractive, and extensive: beers at $5 from 11am to 4pm ($19 for two after 4pm); two hours of free-flow of Prosecco; house white and red wines at $42 per bottle; and 10 to 30 per cent off martinis (up to your fifth round), to name a few. Antipasti, pasta, pizzas and mains like the succulent braised lamb (all starting from $15) will help line the stomach.
Alfresco Gusto | Address: #01-15, ION Orchard, 23 Orchard Turn l 6509 9380 l Opening hours: Sun-Tue 11am-midnight; Wed & Thu 11am-1am; Fri & Sat 11am-2am
Live music for retro crowds
What was once the jewel of Suntec City for almost a decade – thronged by white-collared workers and a regular stream of SPGs almost every night – is now a bar shuffled in a multi-storey carpark. It hasn’t been dumbed down; as a matter of fact, it looks and behaves smarter than its younger self. The Balaclava of today is set in a more intimate and plush setting with legendary seven-piece homegrown band, Shagies, rocking out Top 40 hits, Latin and retro tunes to a more appreciative crowd.
Balaclava | Address: #05-02 ION Orchard, 2 Orchard Turn l 6634 8377 l Opening hours: Mon-Thu 5pm-1am; Fri & Sat 5pm-2am
Swish bar to not get sloshed in
A swanky-looking bar in a swanky hotel. Embodying the very nature of its name, the Onyx Bar stands out with its, erm, golden onyx wall feature behind the bar. It’s a stylish atmosphere to feel all posh and proper in. If you’re looking for an open-air setting, Bar Canary, located on the 4th floor of the outdoor pool, is worth checking out.
Onyx Bar | Address: #01-00 Grand Park Orchard, 270 Orchard Road l Tel: 6603 8854 l Opening hours: Sun-Thu noon-1am; Fri & Sat noon-2am
A wide range of Japanese craft beers
Director of the Japanese Craft Beers Association, Charlie Guerrier, is also the founder of this bar which has grew to become a particular favourite among sud aficionados for its focus on Japanese craft beers. Mainstays include the ladies’ pick – Kinshachi Imperial Chocolate Weizen ($17) from Nagoya, the easy-drinking and flavourful – Yona Yona Pale Ale ($12.50), plus the extensive ranges of Shiga Kogen ($16-$48.50) and Hitachino drafts (from $10). If you’re hungry, staple Nippon comfort food like donburi (Japanese for ‘rice bowl’) and soba (‘buckwheat noodles’) are available.
JiBiru | Address: #01-26, 313@Somerset, 313 Orchard Road l Tel: 6732 6884 l Opening hours: Sun-Thu 11.30am-11pm; Fri & Sat 11.30am-1am
Bavarian beers and food
For an all-Bavarian experience, Brotzeit encapsulates the very best of the culture with a sumptuous spread of authentic dishes and beers enjoyed at its biergarten located at the sheltered outdoor walkway of 313. The lip-smacking honey Bavarian pork ribs ($32.50) is elevated when paired with the Dunkel Hefe Weissbier (dark beer brewed from roasted wheat malt with an abv of 5.3%, $12.50). There are seven bottled beers like the Salvator (the strongest one of the lot with an abv of 7.5%, $12.50) and hearty beer mixes like Weissbier and cola ($8.50-$12.50) if you are looking to work on your beer palate.
Brotzeit (313@Somerset) | Address: #01-27, 313@Somerset, 313 Orchard Road l Tel: 6834 4038 l Opening hours: Mon-Thu noon-midnight; Fri & Sat noon-1am
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