67 Bussorah St, Singapore 199480 Tues-Sun,12.30-2pm and 5.30-11pm
Just off bustling Bussorah Street, hip Indian bar-diner Flying Monkey has launched its latest cocktail menu, deploying an intoxicating blend of Indian spices and ingredients into some impressive drinks. The quirky concoctions are inspired by the flamboyant side of Indian life – from colourful Bollywood actors, to inspiring cross-cultural love stories, poets and legendary sports personalities. Owner Sumeet Singla is behind the winning concept – he also owns the excellent Pizza Fabbrica next door, so you can go from sleek, glam India to rustic, homestyle Italy in a few steps.
We settle into a cosy table in the relaxed, space, leafing through the entertaining illustrated cocktail menu (which includes a solid mocktail selection for non-drinkers). We start with Baby Doll ($18), named after a famous Bollywood hit song, sung by former porn star-turned-actress Sunny Leone. It’s a dreamy, delicate drink made with reyka vodka, saffron, pineapple juice, vanilla, lemon and egg white.
Honey? Where’s My Chai!? ($20) is a strong, spicy blend of Drambuie, dark rum, Kahlua, espresso, chai and cardamom bitters, served icy-cold in a metal cup. Lassi Wassi ($20) is a mellow take on the traditional Indian smoothie, laced with Monkey Shoulder Whisky, yogurt, mango and turmeric. The Master Blaster ($20) is a smashing combo of Glenfiddich 12, coconut liqueur, coconut cream, pistachio and coconut water, named after cricket star Sachin Tendulkar – this one is our top pick, leaving us considering ordering another.
What’s to eat?
The ‘small plates’ menu is designed for sharing, and the portions are hearty. Vada pav ($8) are a popular Indian street snack – soft rolls filled with masala potato and spicy sauce. Mutton kebabs served on mini rotis ($16) are really good, and we also find it hard to stop crunching on the kurkuri bhindi ($8), okra crisps coated in spiced gram flour. We planned to head out for dinner after our cocktails, but there’s no need. My plus one declared it; “the best Indian food I’ve ever tasted.”