Singing about the Singapore Sling
As a lover of all things cultural, I felt it only my duty to find out about Singapore’s best-known cocktail, the Singapore Sling. We can actually thank a bartender, Ngiam Tong Boon, at The Raffles Hotel, for creating the world-famous cocktail back in the early 1900’s. (I haven’t sampled a Sling too many, the original date veers from around 1910 to 1915 depending on who you ask.)
The drink’s actual ingredients list is almost as hazy. Not predicting his creation would become one of the best-known drinks in Singapore, Mr. Boon’s Sling recipe was lost. Later, a guest asked a waiter who remembered its creation for the recipe and left it behind on a slip of paper – an artefact that can still be viewed at the hotel. It included a heady mix of Gin, Cherry Heering and Cointreau, with Benedictine, a herbal liqueur overlooked in many versions of the drink, with pineapple juice, grenadine and lime juice.
Today, The Raffles still serves that Sling at its Long Bar, but new renditions have appeared in other bars in Singapore recently as a cocktail craze has taken off. Nutmeg & Clove, on Ann Siang Road, ages its Sling in barrels and observes it’s colonial beginnings by serving the tipple in a porcelain cup and rattan rickshaw. See? I told you this was a drink steeped in culture.
Sip on your first Sling right here at my hotel. Bartenders at Rumpoles bar will give you a fine rendition just right for cocktail hour. You can also watch my Singapore in 24 Hours video and plan your themed bar crawl!
P.S. My team at Tanglin Hotel has been working tirelessly on the reopening of the hotel – we’ve just had a makeover! If you haven’t already, drop by and say hi. I really like the spanking new look!