By: Emily Finch
This little courtyard bar sits at the front of Gattopardo Ristorante di Mare on quaint Tras Street. Here, aperitivo (that’s Italian for pre-dinner drinks and nibbles – an Italian social tradition!) is the name of the game. I never tire of a shophouse bar setting, and this one has an air of peace and calm about it, just perfect for a tête-à-tête with a good friend; or for a small group, for which you could take over the whole courtyard. It’s open to the elements here, but don’t worry – there are fans; and if it’s raining, you’ll just have to treat yourself to a table in the main restaurant instead!
The Chosen One: It’s got to be the Aperol Spritz ($18) – the trendy Aperol, Prosecco and soda mix; or the potent Etna Soil ($18) – Monkey 47 gin, Averna, muddled basil and lime juice.
The Cheapskate: All their superb cocktails are $16 during Happy Hour, from 6pm to 9pm, Monday to Saturday.
Bite on this: For every cocktail ordered, you receive three complimentary bites to accompany your drink, such as ocean trout crepe with salmon roe, bread fritters with ricotta truffle mousse, wild mushroom arancini and pig trotter terrine, to name a few delights. The canapé menu changes regularly, so you never quite know what you’re going to get!
Last but not least: Gattopardo’s Chef Lino Sauro was recently awarded Sia Huat Chef’s Choice Award at the World Gourmet Summit Award of Excellence 2016, and, at the recent Savour competition, the dishes submitted by Gattopardo won first place. After all these awards, this pretty Italian spot with its sweet courtyard bar is likely to be en vogue, so be sure to book ahead.
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