Revered, time-honoured adventure novelists seem to have a way with inspiring bars and their drink programmes.
From Ernest Hemingway-inspired bar The Old Man to Joseph Conrad-inspired craft beer brewery/restaurant Heart of Darkness, storytelling in drinks have taken on a literal meaning at these famed drink spots. With headquarters in Hong Kong and Vietnam respectively, plus outposts in Singapore, these concepts have travelled well out of their homeground, not unlike the authors they were inspired by.
And we’re not complaining. The association with exploration and wonderment is an allure tied intrinsically with our needs for igniting imagination and satisfying curiosity. Stepping into a bar that harkens back to a bygone era of seafaring and charting new lands is charming, to say the least.
That allure is amplified, we think, during this pandemic-induced period of prolonged isolation and grounding of flights. So it is that one of the newest cocktail bar openings in Singapore, Set of Six, has arrived on the scene at the opportune time.
Stepping into the speakeasy space on Craig Road transports you into another world. Behind hidden doors find opulent furnishings and quirky decorative items catching your eye, as well as a giant, glimmering disco ball hanging overhead alluding to possible revelries to be had.
The story of this parlour is best told through its cocktail menu that’s mirrored with Joseph Conrad’s anthology A Set of Six. The six short stories in the volume – Gaspar Ruiz, The Informer, The Brute, An Anarchist, The Duel and Il Conde – correspond to the same six cocktail collections on the menu.
Find two drinks in each story section (for a total of 12), both depicting a common narrative thread as told in the book. Under The Informer for instance, that takes place in England, find a riff on a Pimm’s Cup, Lady Amateur, made using London dry gin, Pimm’s, citrus, cucumber, ginger spice and mint.
Definitely try The Mutiny, belonging to An Anarchist, a rum-forward sour packing delicious pineapple and spice notes. Both Plantation and Diplomatico dark rums are used to good effect here, giving the drink equally complex funk and tropical punch.
Who will you bring to sip a drink at the bar with us tonight?Posted by Set of Six on Monday, January 11, 2021
Our favourite has got to be the tequila- and mezcal-based Blessed Earth, found under Gaspar Ruiz. The spirit-forward, smoky agave drink is at once tart, sweet and refreshing while delivering potent flavours. All cocktails are S$25.
If you’re feeling peckish or have decided to come for food too, Set of Six offers an equally thematic dining menu. The ceviche and mackerel are sure-hits, and pairs well with the drinks.
For those looking for more tipples, a sizable wine list is available, plus a couple of beers and sakes too, just in case you’re more in the mood for those.
And if you’re really trying to get the party started, book the private room, where a ‘Press for Champagne’ button – that requires no explanation for what it does – will sort you out nicely.
Set of Six is located at 20 Craig Road, #01-01, Singapore 089692.
About the Author
Dannon Har is the Managing Editor of Spill. Discovering his innate gift for drinking only at a ripe age, he spares no time trying to find more delicious drops to imbibe during his time on Earth. When he’s not minding every detail at Spill, he spends his time concocting luscious libations and sharing them with folks that visit his home bar.