Coley Is Still One Of Bangsar's Best Cocktail Bars
A New HQ
One of the best spots for quality cocktails in Bangsar, Coley recently moved to a new premises a few doors down from its old spot. The bar itself has a sleek layout, using lots of black, wooden and subtle gold tones, with elements of nature interwoven throughout the interior.
The bar's name is a tribute to famous bartender Ada Coleman, one of the most iconic female bartenders of all time who rose to fame at The Savoy, London. Her signature, the Hanky Panky, also receives a spot on Coley's menu as an homage.
The bar specialises in offering inventive drinks that draw inspiration from timeless classics and Malaysian flavours, creating a unique portfolio of contemporary cocktails.
Peanut Butter Jelly
With a name like that, you know what you're getting yourself into with this drink. Made for adventurous drinkers and breakfast lovers, this drink smells and tastes like a PBJ, with a tequila and white vermouth presence to round out the flavour profile.
You'll find Ocho blanco tequila, ambrato, blueberry liqueur, roasted peanuts and sea salt in this beverage, faithfully recreating the taste of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in liquid form. Whether that works to your favour will be entirely dependant on how much you like peanut butter and jelly in the first place. While our initial sip landed more on the weird side, we learnt how to appreciate the drink a lot more as time went on.
Rum takes the focus with this cocktail, with cacao white, strega, pineapple, lime, aloe vera, maple syrup and basil to complete the drink. The cream on top isn't really cream at all, but instead is a foam made of gin-infused goat cheese topped with crushed pistachios.
Even with a long list of ingredients, the flavours never clashed, instead highlighting the rum and citrus dominant tastes complemented by a sweet nuttiness at the end. Despite being topped with goat cheese foam, it wasn't too overpowering at all, instead providing a surprising satisfactory hint of savouriness.
If you're looking for a spirit forward cocktail with a hint of fruitiness, double take is an interesting choice. Cobalto gin, blueberry, rinomatto and cucumber bitters make up this beverage, served with a prune and lime on a stick. The cocktail itself has a nice bittersweet aroma, followed with a sweet but strong entry and a long finish. It's a drink that's strong and punchy with a nice blueberry hint at the end.
Coley also welcomes a new and focused bar bites menu, with their beef tataki standing out for offering a juicy and flavourful chew in between sips. The beef itself is slightly charred and succulent, with a nice truffle and black pepper taste profile. Oily, slightly spicy and quite luxe, it makes for a delicious bar snack, which when paired with the rum and jambu cocktail makes for a great mix of flavours.
Rum & Jambu
A signature of the "koktel" section of Coley's menu, which is dedicated to local flavours, rum and jambu is a simple yet satisfyingly refreshing beverage, especially on a hot day. It's a light concoction, using fresh guava juice, lime and asamboi as local components that's beefed up by Angostura blanco reserva and amaro. And for that hint of nostalgia, it's garnished with haw flakes on top.
A highlight of the bar that takes the first page, the hanky panky is the signature drink of Ada Coleman. It's a spirit focused cocktail made of gin, genever (a juniper flavoured liqueur), red vermouth and fernet branca (an Italian bitters), making for a bold drink that's made for sipping and enjoying its complexities. Because of its strong flavours, it's a drink that should be best enjoyed last.
Coley is run by owner, local bartender and entrepreneur CK Kho, who also owns gin bar Pahit. The bartending team at Coley are friendly people and are always happy to recommend cocktails should you feel indecisive, making for a warm hang out spot for you and your friends.
However, the bar is very popular on the weekends, so be sure to make a reservation if you want to pay the place a visit with a group of friends.