Opened in May 2016, this riverside bar offers secluded dining with hearty meat dishes and an impressive lineup of Japanese whisky. We met up with co-owner Yui Shirako (who also co-owns seafood restaurant Cedros) over a glass of red wine and a delicious wagyu appetizer to chat about the food, the space, and the cozy, lodge-like decor.
Could you describe the inspiration behind the decor and menu?
To be completely honest with you, we initially wanted to open up a bar with a speakeasy concept (hidden door, password, etc.). But when the real estate agent first showed us the current space, it really looked nothing like a speakeasy and more like a cabin or a lodge. So [my brother and co-owner] Lui and I decided to go ahead with the cabin/lodge theme and curated a place where people can enjoy a nice glass of whisky (or craft cocktail) and hearty meat dishes in a warm and cozy atmosphere.
With the fireplace, taxidermy art and rustic decorations on the wall, we wanted our customers to truly feel like they’re hanging out with their family and friends in a secluded cabin somewhere in the woods.
Tell us about the whisky on offer.
We have a large selection of whiskies (50-plus bottles) at Cabin from Japanese, Bourbon, Irish and Scotch. Japanese whisky is becoming quite rare these days do to the increased popularity after Yamazaki won the best whisky of the year for 2015. Any Japanese whisky that is aged 12 years or older is almost impossible to find.
We have a large variety of these bottles at Cabin – just to name a few: Hibiki (21 years), Yamazaki (18 years), Hakushu (18 years), and Taketsuru (21 years). We also offer handcrafted cocktails including a selection of craft beer, wine and liqueur to cater to every palette.
How often will you be changing the menu?
We change our menu seasonally and we introduce new food and drink specials every week.
Any dishes that come recommended by you and Lui?
Definitely our homemade thick bacon that we cure, dry and smoke in-house – this is a standard on the menu. Also, the US Prime Beef Short Rib Curry with Butter Rice is one of our crowd favorites. For a light appetizer, go for the wagyu starter.