CHEF’S BLEND

The Peak (Singapore) - - Food View -

Beppe de Vito of Il Lido Group (Aura, Os­te­ria Art, Braci) is swop­ping plates for drams at his lat­est open­ing, Room For More, a ca­sual whisky lounge for the in­trepid tip­pler in the leafy Dempsey Hill area. We ask the chef-restau­ra­teur – who took to whisky de­spite it not be­ing part of Ital­ian cul­ture – about his lat­est ven­ture.

SIN­GA­PORE­ANS KNOW THEIR WHISKIES – AND THEIR WHISKY BARS. WHAT WILL SET ROOM FOR MORE APART?

There are many pre­con­cep­tions of tra­di­tional whisky bars be­ing ul­tra-ex­clu­sive places that wel­come only a cer­tain group of con­nois­seurs, and are quite safe with their whisky of­fer­ings. I wanted to cre­ate a space for those look­ing for a ca­sual en­vi­ron­ment to un­wind in. I also try to keep prices ac­ces­si­ble for ex­plo­ration.

SO WHAT’S YOUR CRI­TE­RIA WHEN SE­LECT­ING WHISKIES FOR THE BAR?

Along with qual­ity and char­ac­ter, I think proper whisky ap­pre­ci­a­tion is about ver­sa­til­ity and va­ri­ety. While we of­fer clas­sics from Scot­land, we’ve also brought in whiskies from less popular prov­inces, like the Slyrs Bavar­ian Sin­gle Malt from Ger­many, and rare bot­tles from lost dis­til­leries like the Port Ellen Spe­cial Re­lease 35 YO and the Karuizawa 1984. I want the ex­pe­ri­ence to be an adventure.

DO YOU WORRY PEO­PLE WON’T BE AD­VEN­TUR­OUS ENOUGH?

Not at all. I think this is ex­actly what peo­ple have been wait­ing for. Tip­plers are ad­ven­tur­ous by na­ture and, given the right en­vi­ron­ment and en­cour­age­ment, will be keen to ex­plore. I want to give cus­tomers the space and con­fi­dence to delve fur­ther into whisky ap­pre­ci­a­tion and dis­cover ones they didn’t know ex­isted. This is why the ma­jor­ity of our se­lec­tions are avail­able by the shot, so we can tickle their cu­rios­ity.

HOW DO YOU EN­JOY YOUR WHISKY?

Level 3, 40C Hard­ing Road.

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