The speakeasy bar Charles H., accessible via a secret passageway within Four Seasons Hotel Seoul, has launched its new cocktail menu for 2024.
Ranked #7 in Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022 and #1 in Korea, the bar pays tribute to Charles H. Baker Jr., a world-travelling writer and bon vivant, who was passionate about New York’s Prohibition-era speakeasies.
“Charles H. Baker’s books remain bartender bibles to this day,” explained Head Bartender, Odd Strandbakken. “Our Big Apple-inspired cocktail menu is both an opportunity to celebrate Charles H. himself and immerse our fellow cocktail connoisseurs in the vibe of New York’s Prohibition-era speakeasies.”
Strandbakken, in collaboration with Beverage Creative Director Alyssa Heidt, is welcoming 2024 with five artful New York-inspired cocktails, adding to the collections of London, Havana and Hong Kong-inspired drinks.
The new cocktails include –
- NYC Flight – A reimagining of the year-round Charles H. signature menu favourite, these Manhattan cocktails are inspired by the creations of famous contemporary Big Apple mixologists and named after New York neighbourhoods.
- Bay Ridge – created by Tom Macy at Clover Club in 2014 – is a play on a classic Vieux Carre with dry vermouth;
- Bushwick is a full-bodied take on a classic Brooklyn cocktail thanks to 2009 creator Phil Ward of Mayahuel;
- Little Italy – a 2005 creation by Pegu Club’s Audrey Saunders – is a twist on a Black Manhattan with Cynar amaro.
- Yellow Taxi – A creative take on the classic Penicillin cocktail, Yellow Taxi channels iconic New York vibes with a smoky mezcal base and homemade ginger-honey mustard and a unique hot dog-inspired smoky float, garnished with ginger jelly with a chilli kick.
- All Day Mary – Inspired by the cold-pressed Bloody Mary from the iconic New York bar Dante, this piquant blend combines freshly-juiced Korean vegetables with lacto-fermented chilli puree and an New York-style “Everything Bagel” salt rim.
- Old Fashioned Highball – This sophisticated sipper artfully merges two classics: Old Fashioned and Whiskey Highball. The bourbon’s aroma is enhanced by citrus notes from Korean Jeju mandarins, with a hand-crafted mandarin and cherry fruit “leather” garnish.
- Knickerbocker (mocktail) – A fragrant homage to the Knickerbocker New York classic cocktail, this non-alcoholic version treats non-drinkers with a homemade rum-flavoured base of burnt caramel, nutmeg and vanilla bean, while local bokbunja juice adds the classic berry Knickerbocker flavour.
Additionally, the bar will host visiting bartenders from other iconic establishments on the World’s and Asia’s 50 Best Bars list across January, February and March. Taking a leaf from Charles H. Baker Jr.’s Gentleman’s Companion, the bar’s Companion Series will see Rogerio Igarashi Vaz from Tokyo’s Bar TRENCH on January 30th, Tameryn Cooper from Singapore’s 28 Hong Kong Street on February 27 and a visit from Singapore’s Manhattan bar in March.
Bar TRENCH is #92 in Asia’s Best Bars 2023 and featured in the Netflix docu-series Midnight Asia, while 28 Hong Kong Street was ranked #59 in the World’s 50 Best Bars 2023 and Manhattan Bar cam in at #63 in the World’s 50 Best Bars and #21 in the Asia’s 50 Best Bars in 2023.
“Like our namesake, we know that life’s finest pleasures are always best shared, so we can’t wait to collaborate with some of the world’s best mixologists,” added Heidt. “Our ethos has always been to bring together like-minded enthusiasts in the spirit of creativity, friendship and the latest flavours.”
For more infomation, follow the bar on Instagram @charleshseoul.