Smoke & Mirrors: Creative Cocktail Bar
Located on the first floor of the National Gallery Singapore sits one of the best rooftop bars in Singapore overlooking the bay with a stunning view… Smoke & Mirrors. This cocktail bar serves a number of exquisite cocktails which are carefully curated as though exhibits from a museum itself. The drinks served here are where style meets substance, such as the Picasso’s Pencil, a cocktail made from distilled pencil wood.
The bar is located on the first floor of the National Gallery Singapore and has a stunning view which can be perfectly enjoyed with its outdoor sitting area. There are two main areas, an outdoor part which faces the Marina Bay Sands while the indoor area is air-conditioned. The bar is circular in design, with the bartenders concocting from within.
The bar is headed by Jorge Conde, originally from Galicia, Spain and the main designer of the bar programme at Smoke & Mirrors. The new menu is based on three core ideas – Illusion which ties back to the Smoke & Mirrors name, and evokes the idea of magic and surprises, Art because of the unique location atop the National Gallery, and with some of Jorge’s favourite artists throughout the menu as inspiration; and Flavours, which is one of the most important components of cocktails. This menu is all about finding unique ways to extract flavours from ingredients and combining them for a result that keeps people on their toes.
“All the drinks on the menu are quite different and unique from each other. To really experience the full menu, guests should try at least one on each of the six categories. Some of my favourites are The Japanese Gang is Still Alive, La Fumata Bianca and Picasso’s Pencil.” — Jorge Conde, Head Bartender of Smoke & Mirrors.
Smoke & Mirrors Menu
Smoke & Mirrors have designed a menu separating it into 6 sections, which are strong & neat, sour & neat, long & refreshing, fizzy & elegant, fruity & punchy and savoury, with each section being quite distinct offering something for everyone.
Dali’s Self Portrait
Strong & Neat
The Strong & Neat section features spirit-forward serves such as Dali’s Self Portrait, inspired by the surrealist artist who showcased the madness of his dreams and hallucinations in unforgettable images. Paying homage to the renowned “Soft Self-Portrait with Grilled Bacon,” this twist on a Manhattan adds bacon fat and artichoke to a base of whiskey and vermouth. Lacing the glass with wisps of burnt rosemary smoke, an invisible garnish lends a herbal quality to the rich, Mediterranean-inspired drink.
The Japanese Gang is Still Alive
Sour & Neat
The Japanese Gang is Still Alive is an experimental take on the whiskey sours using infusions of local ingredients. Black sesame and black rice are used in two forms, first fat-washed with butter and whiskey, then dehydrated and repurposed as a garnish to give an additional layer of texture. Adding rice vinegar and aquafaba – a substitute to frothy egg whites – the resulting combination comes to life with bubbly effervescence as the drink is enjoyed, evolving the overall flavour profile which every sip. One of the best drinks on the menu, this elegant take on the whiskey sours has the nice umami flavour of the black sesame with its flavour and texture.
Robbery At The Museum
Long & Refreshing
A modern spin on the classic Singapore Sling is the Robbery At The Museum, introducing several variations of sour cherry to the traditional mix of gin and pineapple. Maraschino liqueur, cherry brandy and house-made cherry bitters blend with gin, local herbs, fermented pineapple and a fizzy foam of aquafaba and soda water for a playful take on the local favourite. This modern take on a modern classic pays homage to Singapore’s national cocktail in more ways than one, not only with the use of fermented pineapples, but also giving the drink an interesting twist with its cherry bitters leaving a refreshing feel.
The Heart of Vincent
Fizzy & Elegant
Th agave-based The Heart of Vincent is inspired by a famous quote from The Letters of Vincent van Gogh. “The heart of a man is very much like the seas. It has storms, it has its tides, and, in its depths, it has its pearls too.” Savoury elements are woven throughout the drink with a depth of flavours from sea salt, quinine, sparkling wine and pickled purslane, an edible local succulent plant.
Fruity & Punchy
Picasso’s Pencil is designed to celebrate flavours of Picasso’s native southern Spain. A true artist, Picasso’s first word was noted as “piz,” short for “lapiz,” the Spanish word for pencil. Taking guests back to primary school, aromas and flavours come to life through distilled pencil wood, combined with smoky agave, preserved lemon, fruity Manzanilla sherry, apple vinegar and tonic. The cocktail has a mild smoky flavour from the pencil wood and agave, which tartness from the apple vinegar balancing the drink quite well.
Peel and See
Savoury & Umami
Peel and See is a banana cocktail inspired by Andy Warhol’s iconic piece for The Velvet Underground. The unlikely combination of banana, miso and olive oil are integrated into the gin base through a multi-step process of sous vide, dehydration and fat-washing, then combined with quinine aperitif and served with an additional dash of olive oil for garnish. This umami cocktail has a pronounced sweetness from the banana, but is balanced well with from the saltiness of the olive, leaving an interesting contrast of flavours on the palate.
Smoke & Mirrors
1, St. Andrew’s Road,
#06-01 National Gallery Singapore,
Monday to Thursdays, 3.00 pm to 1.00 am
Fridays, 3.00 pm to 2.00 am
Saturdays, 12.00 pm to 2.00 am
Sundays, 12.00 pm to 1.00 am