PS150 is a gorgeous find in the middle of the city, a clandestine bar located behind a vintage “toy store” façade. It is enchanting to say the least – located in Chinatown in what formerly was a brothel and warehouse. The cocktail bar is headed by famed bartender extraordinaire, Angel Ng and the ambiance is wonderful as it still maintains its pre-war building character located just under the popular coffee shop Merchant’s Lane. The entrance may be obscure and softly lit, behind rusty wooden doors, but there is actually a sign outside telling you precisely where the bar is, therefore it isn’t a speakeasy.
The single thing that sets this cocktail bar apart is its unique concept, inspired by historical references of South East Asia and Asian aesthetics. The space is stunningly divided into three different sections, separating three areas or “eras” of the history of Indochina. The first area is called the Opium Den, bearing a vintage look with dim red lights and private seating booths (very dreamy). The second section is called the post-war space where it’s an open-air courtyard with empty beer bottles hanging from the ceiling and old fixtures that create a rustic environment. It’s fanciful for larger groups or if you are planning to hang out and chill while standing. The main bar area is the final room, a dark and mysterious space where all the magic happens – a mix of modern and old.
The cocktail menu is divided into five eras – vintage, classic, tiki, disco and contemporary. Every cocktail category features an original concoction while the classics are given a unique twist. Take note that PS150 changes the cocktail menu every three months to keep things fascinating, but one thing that they’ll always emphasize are South East Asian flavors. Our favourite cocktails include The Salty Chinaman and The Eldef. The concoctions draw from bold Asian flavours using distinct ingredients that are native to this part of the world. A wide collection of spirits and liqueurs are offered for you to choose from and expect the unexpected from obscure vermouths to local ginger wines. An adventure of the senses await you at PS150, transporting you through time and space.
We spoke to Angel Ng, bartender and co-founder of PS150 about the inspiration behind these exceptional cocktails and her favourite thing about being a bartender:
What inspired you to open PS150?
We love Chinatown, it's a beautiful area with real stories. It gives off a different energy, some might say dangerous vibe while others will comment that this is just reality. Either way, the location was why we opened up a bar in the first place and thus PS150 was born.
What makes PS150 unique in comparison to other cocktail bars in KL?
Aside from our amazing service staff who will always try to meet your every need, we concentrate on classic twists using South East Asian ingredients. This will educate the guests on what the basic cocktails are all about and how you can twist it up to your own liking. We would like them to eventually take our recipes and try it at home. You will only know how to appreciate cocktails once you step behind the bar.
What are the ingredients in The Salty Chinaman and The Eldef? (The two cocktails featured in our Pi Mana? Video)
Chenpi Infused Vodka - 60 ML
Fresh Lime - 15 ML
Orange Bitters - 2 Dash
Lemonade Soda - 90 ML
Absinthe - 20 ML
Elderflower Liqueur - 15 ML
Elderflower Syrup - 15 ML
Fresh Lemon - 30 ML
Favourite thing about being a bartender?
Too many, it's really hard to answer this question. Being a bartender is like a well-rounded artiste who understands the balance of art and business; the theories of sociology and psychology, the process from one fine grain to a bottle and lastly the skills of a historian tongue. This is what bartending is all about and these are the reasons why I fell in love with bartending.
What inspires the cocktail creations?
Use what you have on hand. Vanilla pods are great and elderflower is a life saver but they are expensive. In South East Asia, we have an abundance of ingredients that many countries will be envious over. We should embrace this land that has provided for us and make full use of it.
What do you want patrons to experience while drinking at PS150?
A classic stroll back in time through different eras with vast passion of all things Asian.
Describe PS150 in three words.
Lots of character.
Congratulations to Angel Ng who has been crowned as the 2016 winner of the Kuala Lumpur Gin Jubilee 2016 with her amazing G&T, the Cantabria Imperial!
Address: 150 Ground Floor, Jalan Petaling, City Center, 50000 Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Opening Hours: Tuesday – Saturday (6pm – 2am), Sunday (2-10pm)
Contact: +603 2022 2888
Pi Mana? PS150