The former patisserie at the Ritz-Carlton KL has been remodelled and turned into a stylish new bar that reflects the sophisticated aesthetic of this exclusive city hotel. As part of the launch of the new RC Bar on the first floor, we were invited to a sampling of a new Gin added to their menu, the No. 3 London Dry Gin.
Before the gin presentation began, the evening started with some beautifully presented nibbles of breadsticks, olives, cheese, nuts and dried fruit. The gin expert explained the gin-making processes and the difference between a London Dry, a Dry and other distilling methods.
We were then invited to smell the sniffer glass of the No. 3 London Dry Gin and try to detect the juniper and the other spices used to flavour it. Having initially sniffed the gin, we were invited to look at the six small jars of the botanicals sitting on our table. These are the flavours that make up the No. 3 gin. We took a moment to smell the dried grapefruit, lemon, cardamom pods, cumin seeds, angelica root, and the main flavour-maker, juniper berries.
After smelling each botanical, we were encouraged to smell the gin again and see if we could detect the notes of it in the drink. Having given our noses a great treat, we let our tongues do the work and took our first sip of the straight spirit—the burst of citrus flavours and the perfectly balanced herbs made for a wonderfully smooth drink. We were told that the first sip, just a small amount to coat our tongues, was to help open up our taste buds and let the palate adjust to the alcohol content.
We took a more generous amount for our second sip and held it in our mouths for a few seconds to savour the flavours and enjoy the drink's bright citrus and earthy tones. Next, we were encouraged to use a small dropper bottle and add two drops of water to the glass to show how even a minuscule amount of water can change the drink's profile.
Trays of mouthwatering hors d'oeuvres such as tempura prawns, a salmon pate, chicken Vietnamese-style rolls and mini quiches were served as we were offered a Martini or a Gin and Tonic. As the dessert bites were presented, mini strawberry tartlets and to-die-for chocolate and coffee pastries, we were given the opposite cocktail to the one we had already had.
The Martini was simply divine. James Bond would have approved of the bright yet balanced flavours. I am not a major tonic fan, so I was a little worried about the 2nd drink, but as it turned out, the flavours of the gin balanced it out enough that I could enjoy that, too.
The evening was topped off by the 3-piece band playing tunes such as Putting on the Ritz and some more jazz-styled modern-day classics on piano, saxophone and guitar.
The 1920s-style decor and the jazz music created the ambience of luxury and relaxation, while the food and drinks complemented the evening perfectly. The RC Bar offers the perfect venue if you are searching for a classy and stylish place for a pre-dinner drink or a relaxing nightcap. With its vast selection of drinks, including the delicious No. 3 London Dry Gin, you will surely find the right beverage for your night out.
The RC Bar is located at Level 1, Ritz Carlton Kuala Lumpur.