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Interviews

LA-Dreaming, Killer Fried Chicken, Don't Make Parliament Bar's Daniel Raghani Drink Long Island Ice Teas!

 

Hi Daniel! First off thank you for sitting down with us – Parliament is just over a year old and already it’s become a favourite hideout for many, nestled in the vibey Keong Saik area.

As they often say in most anything worth doing, the first year is probably the most eventful, so we’re sure you’ve had quite the year. As the man behind the stick of this dive bar-inspired, rock music-fueled, be yourself-focused hangout, we can’t wait to hear all about your adventures!

Parliament Bar: Menu | Instagram  


 

88 Bamboo (88B): Tell us about yourself – what got you into the world of bartending? What were some pivotal early moments, as well as sources of inspiration that tipped you into this world? What’s driving the man whose only three Youtube playlists are bar essentials, music inspiration and cats?

Daniel Raghani (DR): I stumbled into this industry by chance. Hearing thrilling stories from close friends about working behind the scenes in restaurants always intrigued me. The idea of having my own place or concept became increasingly appealing. Marcy's was my first dive into the unknown, where I had the privilege of setting up a bar from scratch. Everything leading up to Parliament happened organically, and eventually, I teamed up with Tong Hann, who co-owns Parliament with me. This industry can be demanding physically and mentally, but maintaining an active lifestyle helps keep me in check. Prioritizing self-care sets the right tempo for conquering each day. By the time we open, I'm usually focused on operations.

 

88B: Turning towards Parliament, what convinced you that this was the concept you wanted to go for – why the name “Parliament”? Has that evolved or developed over the past year? What would you distill the essence of Parliament to be and what does each mean to you – music’s obviously been a big part of it!

DR: During my time studying in the States, I was exposed to legendary venues in LA. These bars and clubs, steeped in rich history, inspired me to create a venue with a similar essence. The name Parliament was inspired by one of my biggest musical influences, Parliament-Funkadelic. Their wild, wacky stage presence resonated with the playful nature of our business.

  

Parliament-Funkadelic.

 

88B: If you were to close your eyes, take a deep breath, and visualize it, what scene are you picturing of Parliament? What would you like for Parliament to stand for to your ardent fans?

DR: Singapore's culinary scene is known for its innovation and evolution. When we started Parliament, we aimed to bring it back to the basics: quality pours and no-frills cocktails. We envisioned a place where people could enjoy solid drinks and good music without breaking the bank. As we progress, we're committed to offering competitive prices and ensuring our guests feel comfortable, especially in the current financial climate.

 

88B: For anyone who checks out Parliament’s Instagram, you’ll see the words “Fried Chicken” feature no less than three times in their Bio alone, and is in fact the first thing listed.

What is a killer Fried Chicken? How does one go about evaluating the godliness of said Fried Chicken? And then more importantly – why Fried Chicken?

DR: Simple, tender & juicy inside with a crispy outer shell! Fried chicken is definitely an American staple, everyone can enjoy a solid fried chicken (no offence to the vegetarians out there)!

 

Parliament's buttermilk fried chicken burger!

 

The name Parliament was inspired by one of my biggest musical influences, Parliament-Funkadelic. Their wild, wacky stage presence resonated with the playful nature of our business.

 

 

88B: We’re going to do a little lightning round – as the man behind the bar we need your answers! 

Most Overrated Cocktail: Ramos Gin Fizz

Cocktail You Wish More People Ordered: Whiskey Sour

Go To Beer: Pabst Blue Ribbon

Underrated Bar Tool: Bar Spoon

Can’t Pay You Enough To Drink: Long Island Iced Tea

Best Post Service Spot: Home!

Add This To Make Everything Taste Better: Angostura Bitters

Too Many People Say: No Sugar

Instead They Should Say: Less Sugar (Because a little goes a long way)

Best Fried Chicken From (no self noms!): Between Buns (Fried Chicken Sandwich)

Best Cocktail Bar: Republic Bar

  

88B: Now that we’re all fired up, let’s talk guest shifts. Why are we such fans of guest shifts? What makes an incredible guest shift?

You’ve played host to the likes of Beckaly Franks from Hong Kong’s The Pontiac. What was that like? Any interesting stories to share?

DR: Guest shifts are invaluable for staying connected with the industry and learning new skills. Working with recognized bars globally has provided us with invaluable experiences. One memorable shift was with Pontiac, where their vibe and energy left a lasting impression. We learned a lot from their clear message: COMMIT TO THE LIT. 

 

 

88B: Looking ahead, what’s Parliament going to be up to for the rest of the year

DR: Streamlining our business goals is a top priority. Finding ways to offer competitive prices and diverse programming for our guests remains a challenge. We aim to stay engaged with our guests by introducing guest shifts, new cocktails, and music programming to keep things fresh.

 

88B: Now if someone’s still not been to Parliament, give us your best rizzed up one liner on why they need to be here ASAP.

DR: No BS cocktails and super funky music daily! We're committed to providing an authentic and vibrant experience for our guests every day. 

 


Thank you Daniel for your answers, it’s always awesome hearing from the people behind our favourite bars! 

Definitely check out Parliament Bar in Singapore if you’re in town, and if you’re not, why aren’t you booking your flights over right this minute?

Great vibes, awesome music, legendary fried chicken, amazing bar folk – check them out below!

 

Parliament Bar

Address: 18 Teck Lim Rd, #02-01, Singapore 088390

Opening Hours: Tues - Sat, 5pm - 12am, Closed Mondays and Sundays

Menu | Instagram  

  

@lotusroot518