Stylish live jazz music and cocktail bar at The NCO Club
Stepping into Cool Cats transports you to another world—one reminiscent of the golden age of jazz speakeasies and blues clubs. To get in, two sets of doors stand in the way, with only a tiny cat logo at the first one signalling that something cool lies behind it and at the end of the corridor.
Once in, choose to hideaway in a quiet corner on leather sofas, take a front row seat by the stage, or pull up a high stool at the bar to see resident mixologist Nikola Patero in action. In line with the venue’s concept, every one of the 14 signature drinks is inspired by a moment in jazz history. By the Mississippi Railway ($26), for instance, is a dedication to W.C. Handy, the Father of the Blues. The drink is simple (whisky, vermouth and pickled watermelon rind for garnish), but layered and spirit-forward.
Then there’s the truly complex Ways of a Diva ($24), an ode to Bessie Smith when she released her version of "St. Louis Blues" with cornet player Louis Armstrong. Each sip of this clear cocktail is a balanced aria of flavours. You get smokiness from mezcal, tartness from a pear cordial and silky chocolate notes from Mozart liqueur hitting you at the same time.
Try also the toasty Cafe Society ($26), filled with fragrant coffee scent thanks to the use of Mr Black liqueur, while a homemade charred corn agave infusion rounds out the whole drink like a sweet, delicious dessert soup. If you’re still unsatisfied, the hard-hitting Bolden Punch ($26) will sort you out nicely. Made using four spirits—a Cognac, bourbon, dark rum and white rum—plus fruit, tea and spices including Sichuan peppercorns, this tribute to New Orleans-style ragtime legend Buddy Bolden is a bold, multidimensional expression of flavours contained in a glass.
When the munchies hit, a decent selection of hot bar snacks, cold cuts and premium cold seafood items await. But when you’ll really wanna come is for the full experience as the jazz band plays. At 9.30pm every night it opens, the first of two sets start. So come by after dinner and appreciate the crooning with cocktail in hand.