Cocktail bars are perfect for first dates. For starters, there’s alcohol in the mix, which is a great way to calm those first-date jitters. Then there’s the warm lighting and background chatter to set the mood. And unlike dinner dates, which are usually at least a couple of hours long, cocktail bar dates can be as short or long as you want them to be. Getting on like a house on fire? Order another round of martinis. Zero chemistry? Get the bill and split.
But there are 4 cocktail bars in Singapore that we think are especially awesome for any kind of first date, whether it’s with a guy you met on Tinder or an old classmate who asked you out from out of the blue. On top of serving some of the best cocktails on the island, they’re intimate yet unfussy, making them perfect for that first date.
A good cocktail bar doesn’t just serve top-shelf tipples, but transports you to another world. Idlewild at the InterContinental takes this a little more literally than most, fashioning its interior after the glamour and luxury of first class air travel in the ’40s (think dark wood and gold accents, dreamy mood lighting, and velvet, lots of velvet). The air travel theme extends to the drinks menu, which features 20 signature cocktails inspired by 10 cities along the popular Transatlantic Route: Dublin, Rome, Lima, Lisbon, New York, Casablanca, London, Paris, Mexico City and Havana.
Our pick? The French Cook, $26, a blend of French Gin, fresh lemon, chardonnay and lightly carbonated Chartreuse Genepi.
Tip: For a little more privacy, get a seat at one of the raised bay window booths. Oh, and there’s live jazz music on Wednesday to Saturday nights, if that’s your thing.
Idlewild is at InterContinental Singapore, 80 Middle Road.
Smoke & Mirrors
This is the most atas bar on this list, in more ways than one. Perched on the rooftop of National Gallery Singapore, it offers panoramic views of the Padang and CBD skyline. Throw in the slick wood-and-copper interior and some of the most inventive cocktails on the island, and you’ve got one killer date spot. The drinks menu features classic drinks with experimental twists, and is split into six categories of different flavour profiles like “Fizzy & Elegant”, “Fruity & Punchy” and even “Savoury & Umami”.
A standout is The Japanese Gang is Still Alive, $25, a version of whiskey sour infused with black sesame and rice vinegar.
Tip: Why not check out one of the exhibitions at the National Gallery first before drinks?
Smoke & Mirrors is at #06-01 National Gallery Singapore.