#ThirstyThursday: Nutmeg & Clove’s Cocktails Tribute Nature’s Bounty

Male drinkers will be pleased to know that the new menu offers a Tongkat Ali-infused cocktail

Regular imbibers of Nutmeg & Clove would know the bar is one to embrace Singapore’s heritage through its array of invigorating cocktails. From drinks that reflect the nation’s colourful eras to festive specials, such as the orangey Huat Ah!, offered during this year’s Lunar New Year, the bar may perhaps be the watering hole version of say, CBD’s Lau Pa Sat – something undeniably Singaporean.

So what’s new this time around?

Giving a nod to the country’s alias of Garden City, the bar has churned out 12 new cocktails that embody the natural biodiversity of Singapore. The inspiration came to Founder Colin Chia when he browsed through William Farquhar’s pictorial book Natural History Drawings: The Complete William Farquhar Collection: Malay Peninsula 1803-1818, which depicts beautifully drawn illustrations of Singapore’s flora and fauna.

Segregating into four sections of Herbs, Fruits, Spice, and Flowers, the cocktails presented are reinterpretations of some classics, where a single Singaporean ingredient champions every pour.

Here we tried out four pairs of Nutmeg & Clover’s concocted classics and its renditions and gave our verdict:

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Herbs: Hanky Panky ($18) & Midnight Flings ($22) 

If you’re hankering for a taste of a strong cocktail, look to both of these brown liquor mixed drinks to quell your alcoholic desires. Concocted from Bankes London dry gin and Italian Vermouth, the Hanky Panky, while bitter, is surprisingly easy to swallow. The key component that makes it a classic? A drop of Fernet Brace – bitter herbal liqueur from Italy. Surprisingly, the Midnight Flings doesn’t stray too far from the Hanky Panky in terms of taste. With its base as Milagro Blanco tequila, this version also boasts flower power of chrysanthemum and osmanthus, but of course, it is the homemade Tongkat Ali that takes centre-stage. A men’s aphrodisiac if you will. We can’t quite put our finger on its flavour profile since it is our first, but the cocktail is like a liang teh overall.

Winner: Midnight Flings, only because this is our first time trying Tongkat Ali

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