New Southeast Asian inspired wine bar Makan has opened its doors on Flinders Street, bringing a burst of flavour and eclectic vibes to the dining precinct.

Makan, meaning ‘to eat’ in Malaysian/Indonesian, is the brainchild between Ben Liew and Karl Tang, who currently work at East End’s Southeast Asian fusion restaurant, Paper Tiger.

The new bar has a large focus on natural Asian wine varieties, a point of difference that Co-Founder Karl Tang, is excited to introduce.

“Makan is a place where people can expect the unexpected when tasting wines, and food for that matter,” Karl says.

“Our wine list has 50-60 varieties, and while we will have a range of great local small batch labels, we’re really concentrating on flavours that people may not be familiar with”

“We also offer customers a range of Sake and Umeshu from Japan, as well as Chardonnay from China…We’re delivering a wine portfolio that is different and unlike anything else in South Australia which I’m very excited about,” continued Karl.

As well as wine, Makan also serves a range of spirits and beers.

When curating Makan’s menu, Ben drew influences from Southeast Asian cuisines, including Indonesian, Vietnamese, Japanese, and Malaysian, serving up twelve small plates, five larger dishes and a few desserts, all designed to share and enjoy with company.

Unlike the current restaurant, Ben is using Makan as his experiential kitchen and tapping into his creativity, experimenting with different ingredients.

“At Makan, I want to embrace my creativity, experiment with various flavours, and share new dishes with everyone who walks through the door – It’s going to be my playful kitchen,” Ben says.

There’s a focus on smaller plates which includes prawn doughnut, crispy capelin and Szechuan grill eggplant, along with some bigger plates that feature sesame tantanmen, a spicy pork mince, smoked cauliflower and a 60 day dry aged scotch fillet that will be part of an evolving dry aged menu, focusing on some interesting flavours such as honey and chocolate.

Although curated by Ben, the menu is executed by Head Chef, Yung-Xun Wu, who has previously worked in the kitchens of Chinatown’s Japanese BBQ joint, Kyoku Yakiniku, Minimono Noodle Bar on Rundle Street, and most recently, Paper Tiger.

Boasting hues of greens and black, with pops of warm yellow from LED lights, as well as a large balcony space, the loft-style 60-seat bar promises to bring a relaxed yet energetic atmosphere to the Flinders St location, with live music on the cards.

Makan is located at Level 1, 116 Flinders St – for opening hours and to book visit the website.