Images Your Meal
The first speakeasy wine bar in Malaysia can be found hidden behind a vibrant yellow door, creating an air of mystery between the brazen bars and restaurants of Persiaran Zaaba, TTDI. Private Room sits on top of an ominous stairwell that acts as a portal to the ‘20s. Those who make a reservation will receive a password to key in, but ringing the doorbell alerts a pair of eyes to the slot. When the clandestine door slides open, majestic red curtains are the final symbol of exclusivity before the venue is revealed.
An intimate setting is offered to unwind and converse after the thrill of getting in. The speakeasy theme is continued with elements from the Prohibition era being used to decorate the place. There’s an antique looking chest of drawers in the corner and a poster of Charlie Chaplin, both of which mesh well with the contemporary marble bar and deer head silhouettes on the wall – below that you can find the happy hour promotions and carefully selected house-pouring menu chalked onto the wall.
The playlist consists of smooth jazz that adds character to the classic black leather seats, and then picks up to house music when adjusting to the mood of the night. Aside from the standard bar stools and tables setup, there are two lounges – and you can further the intimacy of one by drawing the velvet curtains to create your own private room.
The fully-fledged wine bar is adorned with bottles, but customers are encouraged to handpick their own bottle themselves via the well-stocked wine rack accessible to all. Try and make sense of the labels as you browse through the shelves for a touch and feel experience. Wine plebs need not worry; two sommeliers are available to guide patrons after gaining an understanding of their drink palates and price range. Trust us, with more than 200 labels available at Private Room, you will need help. Being a speakeasy, the culinary side of things is minimal and food serves a reversed role; to complement the wine instead of the other way around. Naturally, the after dinner experience is catered to with light dishes such as salmon bruschetta (with crackers instead of bread) and the obligatory cheese platter. However, they do go against this idea of modesty with considerable portions of meat in the menu. These servings can all be paired with choice wines as selected by the sommeliers, whom worked closely with the kitchen team to create the menu.
Interestingly as revealed by one of the founders, Keith Chong, the people behind Private Room were just a group of friends who picked up the habit of drinking wine. None of them were from the F&B industry, so they brought Vice President of the Sommelier Association of Malaysia Justin Ho on board and hired another award winning sommelier Danny to add credentials to the proceedings.
Private Room is everything the owners intended it to be – a bar where you can appreciate good wine over audible conversation. There’s a feeling of notability as you sneak behind the yellow door and up the stairs to input the given password. The ambience inside will have you at ease and that continues with the reasonable prices (by wine’s standards, that is). It might just be the right place to loosen up after work or have a date under the romantically dim lights – especially if you live around TTDI.
48A-2, FIRST FLOOR,
TAMAN TUN DR ISMAIL,
60000 KUALA LUMPUR.
T: 019 334 6631
OPEN: 5PM – 1AM (MON – THU) / 5PM – 2AM (FRI – SAT)