The cocktail categories in Suderman’s drinks menu are a homage to Cologne’s Agnesviertel district. A closer look will reveal everything from down-to-earth drinks to lavish cocktails. When it comes to the spacious interior, you can expect muted colours, an extra-long bar, lots of wood, stone and leather and straight-up chic – a no-fuss attitude that is also reflected in the meticulously mixed cocktails. The rum-based Laubbläser (Leaf Blower) is a sour and spicy affair with betel, oolong and lambic beer, along with pear and lemon for added freshness. And the Träumchen vom Pfläumchen (Plum Dream) with bourbon is flavoured with plum, date, lemon, ginger and various spices. The homemade ingredients take these concoctions to the next level, leaving you spoilt for choice. One more for the road?
Sudermanplatz 3, 50670 Cologne, sudermanbar.de
At Toddy Tapper, you can drink your way around the globe. The continents of Asia, Europe and America on the menu represent ingredients and spices. The Asia section is dedicated to arrak, an unspecific generic term for a variety of spirits and probably the oldest distilled spirit in the world. It also forms the basis of the bar’s signature drink, the Ceylon Mule, where it is joined by a symphony of Japanese citrus fruit yuzu, palm sugar syrup, citrus and spicy ginger ale. Its tantalising sourness in combination with the spicy aromas is one of a kind. True to form, the Caribbean section includes the rum-based The Master, flavoured with coffee and Christmas aromas. And with the friendly, attentive service here, it’s hardly surprising that gourmet magazine Falstaff declared the bar’s owner Indika Silva “Bar Host of the Year”.
Schillingstr. 27, 50670 Cologne, toddytapper.de
Seiberts is the definition of classic bar culture. To enter this establishment, patrons first have to ring the bell. Once inside, your coat will be taken and you will be guided to a seat – either al fresco on the ‘Liquid Garden’ patio, at the bar, or on the brown leather armchairs, all in an elegant private club atmosphere. The menu is brimming with highly original specialities, all of which are prepared using complex methods such as cask ageing and sous-vide. The extensive menu categorises the drinks according to production method, region and spirit. To get your evening off to a sparkling start, we recommend Sakura Night, a prime example of the utmost attention to detail this bar devotes to cocktails: fresh, understated and fruity, it is made with homemade pineapple and vanilla-infused rum, yuzu sake and champagne, lavishly garnished with an edible orchid.
Friesenwall 33, 50672 Cologne, seiberts-bar.de
The Grid Bar
The stylish entrance area might give the impression that this is a private club. However, The Grid Bar has set its sights even higher, starting with its world-class drinks. The space is large enough for up to 350 guests and the interior is extremely sophisticated. And the menu comes in the form of a booklet in English, in which the three different flavours of each cocktail are listed with its own story. Champagne cocktail Lens Flair – orange, buttermilk and champagne – offers perfectly coordinated flavours with a sparkling freshness. Windsor Punk, on the other hand, packs a far more powerful punch, bringing aquavit, apple and champagne together in an aromatic three-way with plenty of contrasting flavours. Cigar aficionados can sip their cocktails while puffing away to their hearts’ content in the cosy courtyard lounge, which is particularly busy on Sunday evenings.
Friesenstr. 62, 50670 Cologne, thegrid.bar
At Little Link, the focus is squarely on great-tasting, varied cocktails. The drinks menu comes in the form of an elaborately designed cocktail atlas that divides the drinks into different groups, based on their style, ingredients and place of origin. One mighty fine example of their gourmet-style concoctions is the aromatic and fresh Goatherd with gin as its base spirit, chartreuse verte and goatherd cordial (goat’s cheese, saffron, thyme and lime juice). The Witches’ Brew from the smoky section, with porcini bourbon, port and silverskin onion shrub, walnut bitters and herb smoke, is served to spectacular effect in a smoking skull. And the Atom Limo with seamlessly integrated bourbon, PX sherry, apple, lemon, ginger and ginger ale from the menu’s cask-aged spirits section is an absolute must-try. The bar and its crew regularly win awards for their creations.
Maastrichter Str. 20, 50672 Cologne, littlelink.de