This Japanese inspired cocktail is rich in flavour and vibrant in colour – sparkling red, with a dark plum sitting gracefully at the bottom of the glass.
The cranberry juice, a strong and fragrant addition, softens the blow of the alcohol, presenting itself in taste as a sparkling fruit drink.
The plum wine, on its own, is sweet, strong and thick. The rice wine is thin, dry and almost flavourless.
Together, they blend for a tasty bittersweet concoction.
“Guys aren’t afraid to drink this cocktail,” said Tepui owner and cocktail-creator Antonio Lopez de Haro, saying that the rich red colour did not throw them off.
When asked if the Sake Rojito could be Phnom Penh’s first bisexual cocktail, Lopez de Haro laughed.
“I suppose you could say that, if you mean men and women drink it equally,” he eventually replied, adding that it was a hit with all sexes.
Some customers preferred the hints of Sake bitterness, others are lured by the sweetness of the plum wine, and for some the cranberry tartness is the draw.
Lopez de Haro designed the cocktail under Japanese influence. The ingredients are imported from Japan which, he said, meant the cocktail made very little profit because its ingredients are expensive.
“I haven’t seen or heard of this drink anywhere else in the world before,” he said. “That’s not to mean it hasn’t been done before – I just haven’t seen it.”
Tepui is the bar on the first floor of Chinese House. The dining room is upstairs.
Cost: US$5. Happy hour $5 with tapas.
Ingredients: plum wine, sake, cranberry juice, lime, dried plum.
Address: Tepui at Chinese House, 45 Sisowath Quay.