Tucked quite comfortably behind Honest Chocolate Cafe on Wale street, the Secret Gin Bar is a Mediterranean style, exclusively gin-serving spot that started providing the centre of Cape Town with some creative gin cocktails about 2 years ago, and is the last thing you’d expect to find behind a chocolate store. Rich in (some rather creepy) history, the bar used to be an embalming room of a mortuary for 65 years, and the bar has embodied their seriously cool decor around that fact.
Boasting an impressive collection of over 40 locally crafted gins, the mysterious bar concocts some really tasty mixtures of the stuff. And we got to taste a few of the favs, as well as their gin of the week – Bloedlemoen.
We tried, we tasted and we even stayed a little while longer to order one more. Here’s what we got to taste at the Secret Gin Bar, which is just a fraction of what’s on offer.
The Basil Smash
The traditionally German cocktail is a herby mix of gin, agave syrup, a lil’ lemon and of course, a lot of basil. The particularly healthy way to drink gin (if there ever was one), tastes fresh and slightly sweet, with an amazing aroma of basil that you can’t escape.
One of The Secret Gin Bar’s house gin and tonics, is a remedy mix that promises to cure impulse buying, “big car” syndrome and lust. It also supposedly promotes humility and assists with manifesting wealth and success. It’s a classic G&T made with Triple Three Juniper Gin, Fevertree Elderflower Tonic, thyme, cucumber and a whole stick of cinnamon – quite possibly one of the best gin and tonics we’ve tasted.
The Corpse Reviver #2
This cocktail is a particularly strong, but an equally as delicious drink. Originally a breakfast cocktail, the Corpse Reviver was popular in the late 20’s and can be made with an array of different spirits, and you can order it at any bar (you’ll sound like a real cocktail connoisseur). To make sure your Corpse Reviver is gin-based, don’t forget the #2 – this is what makes the Corpse Reviver #2 the ginny goodness that it is.
Gin of the Week
The bar hosts a different gin every week, and makes a fitting gin cocktail to go along with it. This week it was Bloedlemoen gin. The Secret Gin bar created a classic gin and tonic with some blood orange, citrus buchu foraged from the Oranjezchit farmers market, all spices, berries and a Fitch & Leedes gin and tonic. It was an authentic and pretty cool experience to be able to taste an original crafted G&T by the exclusive bar.
Take a look at our trip to The Secret Gin Bar.
Videography Megan-leigh Heilig / Highbury Media