Sunday, October 25, 2015

Ojos Bar @ Jaya One

Taiwanese bartenders have invaded Malaysia, & they're playing with fire: Meet the Klang Valley's latest speakeasy-inspired bar, hidden behind thick, heavy doors, serving striking cocktails that succeed in making a stirring impression.

Ojos is founded by Taiwanese expatriate Cindy, who has lived in KL for three years & is eager to nurture a venue that evokes her homeland's night-life & craft cocktail culture. She has brought in Min, a bartender who honed his skills in Kaohsiung, & David, a Malaysian mixologist, to help her - if they remain consistent in their efforts, this could become one of PJ's best bars.

Let's have a tiki: This combo of rum, mango & persimmon makes for everything we look for in a cocktail, with satisfying nuances at sensible prices (each drink here costs between RM40 to RM45, within a reasonable range for a bar of this calibre).

 Distinctively topped cocktails include one featuring vodka, coffee & raspberry, garnished with a house-made caramel 'bird's nest,' & another with Bols Creme de Cassis, ginger, a dusting of cocoa powder & crown of cotton candy, all with delicious flavours. Food isn't available yet at Ojos (which is Spanish for 'eyes'), but a selection of Taiwanese snacks is in the pipeline.

 Take a seat at the counter to watch each cocktail being painstakingly crafted & presented in eye-catching fashion: Try the elegant carafe filled with whiskey & Tie Guan Yin oolong tea, or the sensual glass of Campari, spiced Caribbean rum, Dom Benedictine & Sauvignon Blanc, pegged with herbs cultivated right here at Ojos. Note: A formal cocktail menu hasn't been printed so far, & communication with Min can be complicated because of language issues, so patience is vital. 

Ojos Bar
H-99-G, Jaya One, Petaling Jaya (same row as Wendy's, but on the other end). Daily, 6pm-2am


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14 comments:

  1. Wow, impressive! The fire looks so pretty, like an art performance. :)

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    1. CK: ya, it was fun to watch the show, heheh :D

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  2. Hi Sean, what an amazing place, and I agree with C K Lim, the fire does look pretty and reminds me of an art performance of sorts. Do I see someone smoking at the bar in one of your photos? See, here in Montreal they stopped people from smoking in public places quite some time ago. So nobody can smoke in office buildings, restaurants, bars or any other public places, including shopping malls.

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    1. Linda: it was interesting to sit at the counter and snap these shots :) you're right - smoking is allowed in many bars and bistros here :)

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  3. I don't think communicating with Min would be a problem to me :) let's wait until they come up with food menu before going there.

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    1. Leo: oh ya hor, that's true, i think you and Min could definitely chat! :) food should be available in a week or two, i think! :)

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  4. Bartenders from Taiwan? What's wrong with the locals? Not up to their standard?

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    Replies
    1. Suituapui: there is a Malaysian mixologist working here too, but since the owner of this place is Taiwanese, it does make sense to bring in a fellow Taiwanese to collaborate with :)

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  5. Playing with fire? Anytime for me :D

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    Replies
    1. Ken: wah! living dangerously! heheh :)

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  6. I was there last night. The cocktails were quite a visual buffet to say the least, drinks weren't half bad.

    They have a menu already with quite a few signatures and classics too. But there's nothing below Rm45 (except beers) . Many are above rm50 Even a small food menu of 4 Taiwanese food items.

    What I don't get is that when I spoke to cindy, she mentioned the owner was a Malaysian who loved the Taiwanese bar scene and decided to bring it back.. Which is quite different from what you've mentioned in your article. Curious.

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    1. Fire Angel: yeah, i think this is the place to hit for customers who want elaborate, eye-catching cocktails done decently ;) hmmm ... i'm curious about the food menu, i guess, since pairing taiwanese food with cocktails is relatively unconventional here :) ooo, maybe there was a miscommunication - i bet your version is the accurate one :)

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    2. Well there are only 4 items now. Lol. She said they plan to expand it though.

      Mine might not be either. My mandarin's so bad lol.

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    3. Well there are only 4 items now. Lol. She said they plan to expand it though.

      Mine might not be either. My mandarin's so bad lol.

      Delete