Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Sling And Sightseeing

My time in Singapore is up and I am now heading up through Malaysia. All in all I was pleasantly surprised with Singapore as I wasn't expecting much, just a sterile, soulless city. Yet what I found was a swirling melting pot where the inputs of the Chinese, Malay, Indian and British communities are displayed like a badge of honour, and are mixed together to form a charming whole. I can think of no other place where the same (short) street could accommodate a mosque, a church and a Buddhist temple.

Apart from wandering around and just soaking up the atmosphere I visited the Asian Civilisations Museum (probably the best museum I have visited since the Mexican national museum of anthropology), which helped introduce me to the many peoples and cultures of southeast Asia. I have also paid my respects at the Changi chapel memorial, site of the infamous Changi PoW camp where, amongst others, the novelist James Clavell was held. He later drew upon his experiences to write King Rat which was then made into an excellent film. And finally, due to popular demand from an avid reader (by the way, if you have any suggestions about what I should see or do just let me know) I had to stop by Raffles Hotel and try a Singapore Sling, their legendary signature cocktail (a bit too sweet and tastes too much of grenadine), though I won't be having one again in a hurry as it cost almost as much as 2 nights accommodation in my hostel!
For those of you who like the occasional tipple and would like to try the famous beverage and can't afford the hotel price (let alone the air fare to Singapore) here's the recipe:
  • 30ml gin
  • 7.5ml Benedictine
  • 15ml cherry brandy
  • 7.5ml Cointreau or Triple sec
  • 120ml Pineapple juice
  • 15ml fresh lime juice
  • 10ml grenadine
  • dash of Angostura bitters
  • Garnish: maraschino cherry, pineapple chunk, and orange slice

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