The owners of Agua in Camana Bay have opened a new venture adjacent to their restaurant, fittingly called Next Door, and it comes highly recommended.
Friends and family were invited to sample some of its wares on 29 July before it officially went live the week after. Since then, clients have been stopping by to see what all the buzz is about.
The room is cosy, with the amber glow of cognac bottles highlighting red velvet chairs and intimate booths. ‘Chicago’, ‘Moulin Rouge’ and a classic speakeasy come to mind when one steps inside, particularly when there is a jazz trio playing live, as there was on the night we paid Next Door a visit.
A long bar resides on the left, just inside the main doors, with well-stocked shelves featuring name-brand liquors and liqueurs. Probably a good idea to have such a wide variety of ingredients at hand, considering the extensive cocktail list. Try the Deja Vu with rum and spiced apple, or the Fixer Upper with gin and red peppercorn.
Fans of familiar tipples will be happy to find the Mai Tai, White Russian and Mint Julep on the menu, but don’t be surprised to discover elevated versions of the classics here. For example, the Mojito is a clear, crisp, refreshing take on Hemingway’s favourite. We also liked the extra touch of graphics beside the drink descriptions, revealing the type of glass in which each would be served.
There are many fabulous mixologists on the island — including award-winning bartender Cory Scruggs, who can be found most nights at Next Door — and some of them were asked to contribute a recipe to the collection, as well as international submissions.
Amba Lamb from Jacques Scott is the creative mind behind Soul of the Village, while Simon Crompton of Door No4 gave them Straight Outta Crompton. (See what he did there?)
There are also quality mocktails available, as well as Champagne, beer, and a host of other options too numerous to mention.
Pair your beverage with some small bites, such as the delicious Burrata Crostini, Tuna Tartare or the Charcuterie Board made for sharing, and it’s the perfect night out.
If you’ve been craving a trip abroad but, like many, are unable to travel right now, Next Door could be just what you’re looking for to sweep you away for the evening.