From a bar with a name like Eau de Vie Apothecary, you’d be expecting great things; great, alchemist type things that would boggle Heston Bloominhell and confound Steven Hawkins. Well, prepare for great things indeed!
I remember the first time I went into the science labs at high school. The gas taps and Bunsen burners on the desks, the test tubes, the microscopes… it awoke the inner geek in me. I was excited.
You get the same feeling when you first find Eau de Vie’s latest venture: Eau de Vie Apothecary. The weird and wondrous glass jars and pipettes, conical flask and canisters filled with fizzing, smoking or bubbling libations set the scene for a mad scientist’s dream.
However, far from being a clinical, cold laboratorial atmosphere, the romance and old world appeal of Eau de Vie Apothecary is in abundance. It’s dark and moody here. Dark wood and colours hold you close, and the tinkle and toot of classy jazz tunes reach out to you.
Sitting at the bar, you can watch Dr Phil – the superbrain behind this amazing venue – work his science. Alternatively, for a more intimate secluded experience, book a kissing booth. This is what we went for. And believe me, it’s true romance.
Tucked into the wall, we had our own little table for two and a curtain to shield us from everyone but the bar staff who brought us our drinks. And what drinks!
We tried the ‘His and Hers’ three course cocktail experience – well, we are Mr and Mrs Romance after all!
Inspired by the first drink that Dr Phil bought for his wife, a Bellini, the first course is like the first stage of courtship.
This sophisticated glass of champagne takes a turn and a twist to amp up the romance factor. And as a relationship develops, so the glass of champagne changes when you add the extra ingredients he provides you with.
An effervescent tablet, a few drops from an alchemist’s beaker… it’s a wonderful way to drink.
The second course becomes a tactile experience. Creating drinks for each other, touch and smell are further brought into the experience. You shake and pour each other’s drinks, reaching across the table and bringing one another closer at the same time.
Amazingly, the second course cocktails contain the same ingredients as the first ones but look and taste completely different. Subtle flavour infusions create the gender differences plus some Ayurvedic remedies are added to enhance performance!
The third and final course is even more hands-on and the most dramatic. Not wanting to spoil the surprise, it includes liquid nitrogen and a rack of test tubes, each with the perfect measure of ingredients to make the most sensational drink of the three.
The level of thought, attention to detail and creativity that has gone into this menu is ridiculous. We’re purposefully concealing more details of this experience so that you can experience the magic for yourselves. And it really is something to experience.
The one drawback of being something of a virtuoso cocktail genius, Dr Phil gets bored with his concepts and changes them all the time. It’s only a drawback because we want this His and Hers menu to stay forever. But mark my words, Dr Phil’s next mad scientist concept will be even better than whatever’s come before.
Eau de Vie Apothecary
Open: Thurs-Sat 6pm-12am – we recommend making reservations for a kissing booth.
With the three-course cocktail menus, you can choose to have all three ($60pp) or you can buy individual drinks ($20 per drink) from any experience instead if you like. The His and Hers experience is $120 for two people, which makes sense!
Mrs R and I agree this was pretty much the best cocktail experience we’ve ever had. What’s the best cocktail you’ve ever had? Tell us in the comments.