If you’re after cool bars in Bali, then there’s nothing cooler than settling into a sneaky speakeasy late at night to enjoy a special drink that goes above and beyond expectation. Those on the island’s south are spoilt for choice when it comes to stepping out for a tipple. There are craft beer bars, whiskey bars, wine bars, and cocktail bar…and then there are the quirky joints. Here are three of our favourite bars in Bali that offer something ‘different’:
There’s a connection between fine spirits and fine words. That’s right, booze and books just go together; and in Bali, Akademi Bar makes that connection quite literally, by serving their drinks amidst stacks of mixology literature. The venue is kind of a quiet watering hole where you can get excellent drinks and thumb through a a number of books on mixology and cocktails. Created by award-winning bartender and author Dre Masso, Akademi is a hub for the world’s most celebrated and innovative mixologists and a centre for the craft. He has been named UK Bartender of the Year three times and in 2005 published his first cocktail recipe book, ‘Margarita Rocks’. He recently published his second book ‘Classic Cocktails at Home’. Both of his books are available at Akademi to read.
Also a learning lab, Akademi welcomes a roster of international mixologists who will explore local flavours and create innovative cock-tails as well as help train a new generation of local bartenders to international standards by passing on their knowledge and experience.
BEHIND CLOSED DOOR
The 1920’s, in the United States, is marked as the Prohibition era where alcoholic beverages were banned. This sparked the birth of illicit bars and bootlegs. In today’s world, the concept of the roaring twenties has been brought to life by many food and beverage play-ers in the world, and it has now arrived in Bali. The latest venture of the country’s renowned chef and proprietor, Mandif Warokka, Modicum is a hidden watering hole where you can sip on some of the forgotten concoctions like The Manhattan, Martini, Gimlet, Old-Fashioned and Negroni, to name a few, whilst a vinyl record plays Miles Davis, Louis Armstrong, or Etta James in the background.
Modicum’s door is always locked. To get in, you have to buzz the door first; if they like you, they’ll let you in. Inside, it’s a through-the-wardrobe experience, where you can feast your eyes on the sassy interior that is dominated by dark colors, warm wood, luscious velvet and bare bricks. A small army of staff delivers cocktails around the place.
Modicum Gastronomy & Artisan Bar
A : Kayu Aya Square, Oberoi, Seminyak
T : +62 877 6101 1987
UNLOCKING SECRET LIBATIONS
Everyone loves to be in on a secret, which probably explains why people still lose it over the concept of the speakeasy. And when it comes to achieving that speakeasy vibe, the location of Baker Street Social wins out. The bar is located on the second floor of Shearlock Barbershop & Coffee, and has no signage, no window, no anything to hint its existence from the outside.
That said, Baker Street Social still manages to be among the best in town – they continue to sling quality craft, tailored cocktails (as well as spirits) in their cosy digs. With dim light, cement walls, concrete flooring and leather seats, the space exudes an air of exclusivity, accommodating only 30 people tops. The way the bar treats the patrons, especially those who have the “key”, is probably what sets Baker Street Social apart from the other late night spots. You’ll be really well taken care of if you have the key (actual, physical key), and that you have the access to that secret libation not available on the menu. The number of the keys is very limited. So, if you’re endowed with one, you’re in for an amazing treat!
Baker Street Social
A : Level 2, Jalan Petitenget 17C, Kerobokan Kelod
T : +62 811 3865 869