BarZhen @ Jalan Balai Polis

January 10, 2018

It's five p.m. on a Saturday evening as we stumble through an empty Chinatown alley, searching for the neighbourhood's new secretive bar. BarZhen's address is supposed to be '5, Jalan Balai Polis,' but there's no sign of that on this shop-house street. We hesitantly push through a side door that looks like it could lead to danger, dismemberment or death.

Fortunately, our fears prove unfounded. Fifteen minutes later, after bumping into BarZhen's friendly team, we're upstairs, admiring the venue's atmospheric ambiance and sipping on the Asian-inflected cocktails that remain the rage across KL. The selection is short but seductive, headlined by the Ginseng Honey Paloma (RM35; ginseng-infused Cognac, tequila, agave nectar, house-made grapefruit syrup) and Tongkat Ali Kopitini (RM35; rum, kopi tupai, tongkat ali coffee liqueur, Irish cream).

Tip (or spoiler): BarZhen's primary entrance faces a mural of two birds.

5 Lorong Panggung, Off Jalan Balai Polis, Off Petaling Street, Kuala Lumpur. Open Tues-Sun, 5pm-late. Tel: 012-671-5883

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