Kuala Lumpur is not just a melting pot of various cuisines, it is also host to great cocktail bars all over the city. Looking for spirit pairings and flavours that you have not heard of? You can probably find them at one of the many cocktail bars in town. Whether you prefer to relax over sweeping views of the city or showing off moves on the dance floor, KL definitely has the place you’re looking for.
Heli Lounge Bar
Bar, Cocktail Bar, Pub, Wine Bar, Pub Grub, Asian, $$$
Enjoy incredible views of Kuala Lumpur at this helicopter pad turned rooftop bar. One of the city’s nightlife hotspots, the helipad is still in use during the day but transforms into a spot where you can enjoy your drinks as the sun sets. You can take in the beautiful views while sipping on drinks from the portable drink station or head down to the Heli Lounge Bar downstairs to start the party.
Bar, Contemporary, $$$
Steam rising from a big pot of boiling water and customers sitting on stools slurping on noodles greet you at the entrance of Suzie Wong. Behind wooden doors, lies a world reminiscent of Hong Kong director Wong Kar-Wai’s movies. The whole place is beautifully orchestrated to pack in fleeting bits of sensations that build up to a mood – Lan Kwai Fong in the 1950s. You will find rich velvety furniture cosily placed all over the place, corridors and pathways cleverly hidden behind curtains, a bar that is literally behind bars, female performers quietly perched on stairways or stoically sitting on a swing, and cabaret performances to keep you entertained throughout the night. As one of KL’s premier bars, it’s best to make reservations early to avoid disappointment.
Bar, Cocktail Bar, Asian, none
Petaling Street has been going through a multitude of changes over the years. New restaurants and bars have been sprouting replacing old businesses. Bar Zhen, a relatively new player to the drinking scene, is decorated in lush traditional Chinese style. Their unassuming entrance is next to a chee cheong fun food stall at a back alley. The cocktails here are similarly influenced by the East with flavours like red dates, ginseng, osmanthus, wolfberry, eucommia, and more.
The Berlin KL
Bar, German, none
True to its namesake, Berlin is the place where you will find smashing drinks and a party that you wouldn’t want to miss. Much like the clubbing culture in Germany’s capital city, music is religion. The vibe here is raw, edgy, and underground. Walls are lined with graffiti and neon lights illuminate the bar. With only a few seats here, party-goers dance to the tunes spun by DJs – be it house, R&B, or even hip-hop.
Mantra Rooftop Bar & Lounge
Bar, Restaurant, Asian, Fusion, $$$
Mantra, a modern-tropical inspired sanctuary in the ever lively Bangsar, has the perfect atmosphere for a chill and stylish crowd. Perched on the fourth floor of Bangsar Village, the bar offers spectacular views overlooking this neighbourhood. This watering hole is decked out in plush lounge chairs, daybeds, and private cabanas. Mantra’s menu offers exciting and unusual tastes – classic cocktails are reimagined by fusing familiar flavours with a local twist and the food offered, like the nasi lemak maki, features unusual pairings of various cultures.
Three X Co
Bar, Contemporary, $$$
Three X Co is where East meets West – classic Gatsby-inspired deco paired with tasty cocktails with an Oriental flair. Opened by three friends – Daniel, Eugene, and Wai Hung – this speakeasy is where you will find drinks created by one of KL’s top mixologists, David Han, who won the 2017 Giffard West Cup. David is not one to shy away from unusual ingredients like winter melon tea, Pei Pa Koa (Chinese herbal syrup), tie guan yin, and more. To get to Three X Co, keep an eye out for an old school barber chair.
Bar, Restaurant, European, $$$
Get ready to be blown away by amazing live music performances as you drink the night away. Bobo KL plays host to talented local and international musicians alike. If you are feeling peckish before the shows, head to the restaurant first for modern European fare. The lounge upstairs offers a variety of drinks, from gin concoctions and classic cocktails to a variety of red, white and rosé wines.