If you read my review of EAST, Miami, you’ll know that one of the highlights of this sophisticated hotel is the stylish rooftop bar, Sugar.
After 24 hours at this hotel, we had already crammed in all sorts of sights including the Wynwood Walls and Little Havana. After a freshen up and shower to heal our throbbing feet (we walked about seven miles on our first day!) we were feeling like new again and ready for some pre-dinner cocktails at one of Brickell’s hippest hangouts.
Cocktails at Sugar rooftop bar, EAST Miami
In keeping with the rest of the EAST Hotel, Sugar rooftop bar takes on an east-meets-west vibe. So, weather permitting (it was a bit blustery when we visited), a visit to the Balinese-inspired rooftop garden is a must.
Earth-coloured lanterns hang from the trees and various nooks and seating areas allow you to get different views of the city. The focus point of the garden is a beautiful carved wooden bar where you can pull up a stool and feel like you’re in a tropical oasis.
You won’t get the best sunset views here, but you’ll certainly feel like you’re up in the clouds as you eye up the skyscrapers around you with a 270-degree panorama.
And if you need more convincing, how’s this for critical acclaim? Sugar was voted one of the 10 best rooftop bars in the US in 2017, by no other than Conde Nast Traveler. Impressive stuff…
The inside area of Sugar is quite different to the rooftop garden. It has more of a sleek and sexy nightclub feel with velvet seating and moody lighting.
Come dressed to impress as this is definitely a spot for Brickell’s fashionable crowds. But what impressed me more than the sophistication and exclusive feel, were the cocktails and the fantastic service. You’re in for a treat.
As mentioned, in keeping with the roots of the Swire hotel group, the cocktail menu here at Sugar is very much Asian inspired. Infusions of hibiscus flower, shiso leaf, jasmine, chai tea and yuzu juice are just some of the enticing ingredients you’ll find in their crafted cocktails and sake makes a strong appearance (so get ready for something potent!).
BC’s favourite was the Nashi, a punchy mix of Macallan 12-year-old whisky, Hennessy vsop cognac, Lillet Blanc (a type of vermouth), Nashi pear and tangerine.
Meanwhile, the waitress very kindly ordered me a delicious low-alcohol take on the Lychee Blossom, which typically uses vodka and sake, but she topped it with a dash of prosecco, which I loved. And if cocktails aren’t your thing, there are plenty of wines, spirits and bottled beers for you to order.
If you can, I’d highly recommend you try the snacks menu at Sugar. If you like Asian-style sharing plates, you’re going to love the food here.
Highlights include steamed buns, dumplings, sashimi and sushi which we’d have loved to have tried. But as we had a reservation at Quinto La Huella, we didn’t want to overdo it. So we settled for wok-tossed edamame beans. They don’t sound that exciting but these garlic and soy-soaked beans are ridiculously addictive and will have you constantly licking your fingers and wondering how they taste so good. A great pre-dinner snack.
Sugar is probably not the type of bar I’d typically go to anymore, however it was refreshingly, unpretentious and the people around us were incredibly friendly and chilled – especially the group we got talking to next to us, who were visiting Miami for a work’s trip (lucky them!)
Sugar attracts some renowned DJs and I’d love to come back to Sugar when I can fully party into the night (with real cocktails!) and when the weather is a bit warmer, to fully experience that gorgeous outside bar.
But what made our night so special here was how super-friendly the service was and how brilliant the staff were at adapting to my alcohol-free demands. Who said O% cocktails weren’t fun? They taste pretty good here. Especially when they’re enjoyed high in the sky…
Sugar, EAST Miami, 788 Brickell Plaza, 40th Floor, Miami FL, 33131