Manja Old Malaya: a cocktail experience like no other
Manja Old Malaya not only has a host of Malaysian-fusion food, but it also has a list of cocktails that has a Malaysian twist.
The restaurant has an extensive drinks menu and alcohol selection, but we decided to sample their interesting cocktail list.
The rooftop seating area affords patrons a close-up view of the KL Tower and the gorgeous night sky, if the weather permits.
The highlight of the night was Manja’s take on an Espresso Martini. The Kopi Ping Martini (RM35) highlights the aromatic and rich flavour of our local coffee.
The cocktail is thick and not watered down. It is also perfectly balanced with vodka, kahlua, and Manja’s delicious Kopi Ping ice cream. I’ve had Espresso Martinis before, but this is by far the best I’ve had!
Another favourite was Mr Hicks (RM42) which was a very cool looking cocktail that came served with dried ice! It tasted like a Malaysian Baileys cocktail with a creamy cendol ice cream, rum infused with pandan leaf and gula melaka.
You have to wait for the ice cream to melt to get a good combination of all the flavours. If you love cendol, you’ll definitely love this unique cocktail!
Spirit of Borneo (RM29) was another interesting cocktail that featured our Bornean rice wine tuak. The drink combines tuak, lime, elderflower and egg white. It is then infused with chilli to give the drink a spicy aftertaste.
The cocktail is well balanced, it is not overly sweet, and I loved the tanginess from the lime!
The Oriental Peck (RM33) is another yummy cocktail that combines sake, lemon, sugar and creme de mure (blackberry liquor). The flavours work well together and the sourness and sweetness are well balanced.
Li Chee Lai (RM34) tastes like a lychee martini with a twist. It combines vodka, lychee liquor, lychee juice, lime, mint, ginger beer, basil and bitters.
The lychee is the prominent flavour in this cocktail, with the lime and leaves providing a lovely freshness. If you’re not looking to be particularly adventurous, this is a “safe” and familiar drink to order.
Taman Mezcal (RM42) is a cocktail with a lot going on. It has vodka, mazcal, lychee syrup, blueberries, mint, lime wedges, sugar and ginger ale.
I wasn’t particularly fond of this drink as I am not fond of the taste of mezcal, which was quite prominent in the flavour profile of this cocktail.
Whiskey drinkers would enjoy the Blac Chyna (RM34) that features bourbon whiskey, brown sugar, water and bitters. However, it is quite sweet. But the sweetness from the sugar cuts the sharpness of the smooth bourbon – making it pleasant to drink.
Manja’s cocktails are unique, and paired with the chilled and relaxing ambiance of the restaurant, it is an ideal place to unwind and enjoy a well deserved drink!
The prices of the drinks are also decent for Kuala Lumpur standards. It is an added bonus that the food here is excellent! You can check out our food review here.
Don't forget to also check out the cigar lounge upstairs, a classy little nook for the businessmen to talk shop.
Manja Old Malaya
Address: 6, Lorong Raja Chulan, 50250 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +60 12-373 7063
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday, 11.30am-2am.