Classic elegance and refined drinks service at historic hotel bar in Kuala Lumpur
June 18th, 2013
Epitomising the style and gravitas of a grand colonial-era hotel bar, The Bar at the iconic Majestic Hotel Kuala Lumpur masterfully recreates a refined bar service rarely experienced among the current generation of bars. With its meticulously authentic Art Deco period decor of dark timber paneling, brass fittings, luxurious leather upholstered bar stools, and marble mosaic floors, The Bar sits comfortably within the opulence of the restored heritage building, and takes discerning customers back to an earlier era of fine libations and impeccable service. Bartenders formally attired in white tuxedo jackets serve well-crafted drinks from a leather-bound compendium featuring classic cocktails from the 19th century, and the signature drinks that evoke the history of the Majestic Hotel. In an atmosphere of relaxed refinement guests can enjoy the sublime cocktails and re-capture the zeitgeist of colonial-era British Malaya.
Head Bartender Johnnie Yap and his team behind the bar take pride in serving up simple, fresh, uncomplicated cocktails- with a focus on the classic cocktails of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The vintage style menu showcases a concise list of cocktails and includes a brief historical background on the both the classic cocktails, and the locally-crafted cocktails from the hotel’s past. Cocktail aficionados will be familiar with many of the drinks- Brandy Crusta; The Martinez; Tom Collins;- and can become acquainted with the unique drinks that boast a local heritage- such as the Straits Sling (perhaps the inspiration for the famous Singapore Sling); Jungle Bird; and Gin Pahit.
Standing boldly in the centre of the room is the black grand piano- directly beneath the beautiful dome ceiling finished in gold-leaf- a restored original feature of the original hotel. Nightly the current generation descendants of the legendary maestro Alfonso Soliano, a family whose musical traditions date well back into the nation’s history, entertain guests nightly with their classic jazz renditions.
The Bar is open daily from 11:30 am to 11:00 pm.
Directly adjacent to The Bar, the Colonial Cafe, themed around the colonial-era heritage of the Majestic Hotel- serves the classic English -style comfort foods that became popular in the time of British Malaya. Diners at the Colonial Cafe can also order cocktails from The Bar to accompany their meals.
Inside The Bar at The Majestic Hotel Kuala Lumpur
Luxurious soft leather upholstered bar stools line the black marble topped bar counter.
Beautifully restored decor includes the mosaic marble floor, overhead brass ceiling fans, and dark timber paneling.
The elegantly furnished The Tea Lounge occupies the adjacent space to The Bar- with the Colonial Cafe extending across both sides of the bar area. The Tea Lounge serves a traditional Afternoon Tea that is once again immensely popular- particularly on the weekends.
Head Bartender Johnnie Yap- and the impressive array of premium bottles arranged under the dark timber arches of the handsome bar.
Signature Cocktails- classic cocktails that evoke the heritage of The Bar
Code 55 & 2 Bulat- Beer, Lemonade, Gin & Whisky. A cocktail with a history -creation of previous Bar Captain Mr. Tan Meng Tan. click on the snapshot from the menu below for the full story behind this unusual concoction.
(click on image to enlarge)
Tanqueray Blue- Tanqueray 10 Gin, lemon juice, sugar syrup, cranberry juice, blue ginger infusion (blue ginger is a wild flower native to Malaysia). A refreshing aromatic cocktail that highlights the blue ginger’s distinctive colour and taste.
Malayan Colada- a local twist on the classic pina colada. Rum, cocont cream, Angostura Bitters, single cream, salt, Golden rum,pineapple chunks.
Jungle Bird– Campari, Rum, lime, sugar, pineapple juice. A previously obscure Malaysian classic cocktail, first created in KL in the 1970’s, now enjoying a renewed popularity.
East India Cocktail- Cognac, Maraschino liquor, Cointreau, raspberry syrup, Angostura Bitters.
First appeared in an 1882 Bartenders manual- created to represent the mix of flavours from the colonies of the British Empire.
The Bar- at The Majestic Hotel, Kuala Lumpur
Address: Majestic Wing, Jalan Sultan Hishamuddin. 50000 Kuala Lumpur. Malaysia
Reservations: +60.3. 2785 8000
Daily 11:30 am~ 11:00 pm
Dress Code: Smart Casual
Promotions: Nightly live music from The Solianos