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Summer Cocktails from The Strand Yangon

December 19, 2016 Luxury Hotels No Comments Email Email

Australian weather can be hot and steamy at this time of the year, similar to Myanmar’s which is hot and steamy for much of the year. As the mercury rises, why not take a leaf out of The Strand Yangon’s book and mix up a long cool cocktail at the end of a hot day – the same drinks enjoyed by patrons of the Hotel’s bar since colonial times.

Opened by the Armenian Sarkies brothers in 1901 and overlooking the Yangon River, The Strand Yangon is one of the most famous accommodation providers in the region, and is considered one of the finest hotels in Southeast Asia.  Following extensive renovation to restore the hotel to its former colonial beauty, The Strand Yangon has recently reopened to guests, many of whom now enjoy cocktails at the renamed Sarkie’s Bar at The Strand Hotel

For over a century, The Strand Yangon’s bar has been the epicentre of social life in Yangon and gathering place for adventurers, raconteurs and explorers such as Sir Noël Coward, Orsen Welles and Rudyard Kipling. The newly opened teakwood-panelled bar has been given a glamorous club-like make-over, with luxury leather seating and a carefully crafted new menu of cocktails and single malt whiskies.

Just as Raffles in Singapore has the world renown Singapore Sling, The Strand Yangon’s Strand Sour is a cocktail that has become synonymous with the hotel’s colonial grandeur. Originally mixed by the bartenders at The Strand in 1968, the refreshing mix of local Mandalay rum, lime juice and Angostura bitters is the perfect long cool refreshing drink to combat the heat of the day.

The Pegu Club, a cocktail steeped in British colonial era history is another popular choice at Sarkie’s Bar. Famous mixologist Harry Craddock wrote in the Savoy Cocktail Book in 1930 that the Pegu Club cocktail is “one that has travelled, and is asked for, around the world.” First mixed in the early 1900s, the drink was a popular choice among British soldiers in old Burma and is a perfect hot weather refresher comprised of gin, Cointreau, lime, and bitters. The bar staff at The Strand Yangon add orange juice to give it a more balanced flavour.

The more recent Bagan Breeze, concocted in 1976, symbolises the friendship between Burma, the former USSR and Cuba and is a local version of a mojito combining vodka and rum with fresh mint and lime.  The bar staff at The Strand Yangon muddle the mint leaves together with the stems to warm the mint and extract the oils, maximising the flavour.

Why not add these long cool drinks to your cocktail repertoire this festive season and capture the essence of Myanmar from the comfort of your own kitchen.

Strand Sour

  • 50 ml Mandalay rum
  • 25 ml fresh lime juice
  • 10 ml egg white
  • 2 dashes bitters

Dry shake all ingredients, then shake again with ice. Served in an old fashion glass. Garnish lime wedge and slice of lemon.

Pegu Club

  • 45 ml gin
  • 15 ml dry orange curacao
  • 20 ml fresh lime juice
  • slice of orange
  • 2 dashes of bitters
  • 10 ml sugar syrup

Shake all the ingredients with ice and double strain in a chilled martini glass. Garnish with slice of lime.

Bagan Breeze

  • 25 ml vodka
  • 25 ml white rum
  • 5 leaves of mint
  • 25 ml fresh lime juice
  • 20 ml sugar syrup

Shake well with ice and serve in an old fashion glass. Garnish sprig of mint and lime wedge.

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