There’s plenty of dedication to the concept at newly opened Revival, a cocktail bar in the Robertson Quay area that took over the space formerly occupied by whisky-focused Japanese-run venue Coffee Bar K.
At Revival, the idea is simple: cocktail menus based around reviving (thus the bar’s name) long lost expressions. For its debut menu, they’ve gone with the approach of playing with classical art styles.
While the idea is simple, the execution is anything but. From art movements like Neoclassicism to Romanticism, to techniques like mural painting and children illustrations, everything in the art world is a source of inspiration for them to turn into libation.
The printed menu itself is a work of art. Drinks are categorised according to the era it belongs to – Baroque, Impressionism, Modern etc. – and are accompanied by artworks done according to their respective defining styles.
The art piece’s name is also the name of the cocktail, and the drink in turn mimics the artwork in form. This is when the bar team’s skills are put to the test, requiring them to both be a master of mixology and (to an extent) art.
The result is drinks like The Scream (S$22). Portraying a piece that requires no introduction, the tequila and peaty whisky based cocktail is at once tangy, smoky and spicy, thanks to expert use of lime, a chipotle distillate and red capsicum.
Then there’s drinks like Esfinge ‘The Sphinx’ (S$24). We not only enjoy this creative carbonated concoction for its use of shochu and a homemade carrot ferment, but for its roundedness and crazy combination of flavours too.
Our favourite pick has got to be the Napoleon Crossing the Alps (S$24), a Martinez-like cocktail that is spirit-forward, punchy in the right ways, and mighty with its myriad of flavours. Keep this one for last as a nightcap that’s sure to hit the spot.
The only other drink we might recommend as the final one is the mouthful-to-say Marcelle Lender Dancing the Bolero in Chilperic (S$22). Following a Sazerac template, this stiff and highly potent tipple hits hard with rye, absinthe, and a barrage of bitters. It’s just the thing to end the evening with, or to start with, given the mood.
If you need any food to munch on, Revival rotates in a new chef every six months to keep things fresh. The launch menu sees a small selection capable of keeping the hunger pangs at bay. Think things like Pressed Roast Beef and Cheese & Charcuterie and you’ll get the picture.
To get the best Revival experience, we recommend pulling up a seat by the 9m-long marble bar counter, where the jovial bar team and impressive back bar will keep you rightly captivated.
If not, a private mezzanine level provides a nice respite from the goings-on below, while breezy outdoor seats are great for gathering the crew together for a catch-up sesh with drinks in hand.
While here, you might just bump into a few familiar faces if you’ve ever visited Barbary Coast. The team behind Revival are the same folks behind that award-winning multi-concept bar – so you know you’re definitely going to be in good hands.
Revival is located at #01-76, 205 River Valley Road, Singapore 238274.