Japanese hospitality veteran brings renowned cocktail skills to his new Saigon bar
January 23rd, 2021
Highly regarded for his cocktail bar accomplishments in Shanghai, veteran Tokyo bar maestro Kohei Yamamoto helped launch a number of popular cocktail bars there in collaboration with legendary Spanish restaurateur “el Willy”. From 2010 bars like el COCTEL, el Ocho and Bikini were among the most popular bars in Shanghai and set a benchmark for the evolving local cocktail culture. After a decade in Shanghai, Vietnam’s new developing cocktail destination attracted Kohei – and in mid-2020 he launched Kohei’s Bar in the heart of the Dong Khoi street nightlife precinct of Saigon’s District 1.
Located on the 1st-floor above the colonial-era Art Gallery Arcade – Kohei’s Bar shares space in a serendipitous collaboration with the well-known Brothers barbershop, Saigon Cigar Club, a bespoke tailor, and espresso bar Lacaph. Within the intimate space, comfortable leather sofas and bar stools offer seating options respectively for small groups or bar-front conversations.
Drink highlights in the new menu at Kohei’s Bar include classic cocktails with a twist; an eclectic selection of “My Friends Choices”; and newly-introduced cocktails featuring Mashed Up Craft Gin – from the local Brewstillery. Utilizing the up-cycled mash from local Furbrew craft beer, the Mashed Up Craft Gin is double-distilled in a traditional process – adding complex malty notes to the typical botanical and citrus taste profile of gin. The unique gin is well-expressed in Kohei’s new signature “Stormy IPA” – a refreshing summer drink that combines Mashed Up Craft Gin with lemon, ginger beer – topped with a dash of craft beer.
Kohei’s Bar is open daily from midday – closing late. Check the Facebook Page for details on promotions and daily Happy Hours.