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Entertainment, Food & Beverage

Bar's cheeky name draws eyeballs

Be careful what you name your shop.
December 5, 2012
By: Victoria Barker
| More
Bar's cheeky name draws eyeballs Coq & Balls, whose name plays on a crude phrase referring to the male private parts, has been raising eyebrows since it opened in October.

IT WOULD be perfectly understandable if you did a double take on seeing the name of a recently-opened gastrobar in Tiong Bahru.

Coq & Balls, whose name plays on a crude phrase referring to the male private parts, has been raising eyebrows since it opened in October.

Sales executive Mark Davids, 30, who came across the Kim Tian Road bar-eatery last month, said he was taken aback that the "funny" name was given the go-ahead by the authorities.

"It's quite witty, but I think it's pushing the envelope a bit, in terms of what's acceptable here," he said. 

The outlet's owners said that, so far, they have received nothing buy compliments.

Mr Goh Zhuwei told My Paper: "So far, everyone who has come in has had a good laugh, and there have been numerous occasions when people have walked by and taken snapshots of the signboard, laughing."

Mr Goh, 26, owns and runs the establishment - which serves up Japanese-Western fusion cuisine and boasts over 30 brands of craft beers, among others - with two other Singaporean partners, Mr Sean Lawlor and Mr Michael Leong, both 28.

He added that the rooster, or the cock, is known as a symbol of luck in many cultures. "(The name is also) befitting of the cheeky and in-your-face attitude we wanted to portray," Mr Goh said.

The Consumers Association of Singapore's advertising-regulation arm, the Advertising Standards Authority of Singapore (Asas), said it has not received any complaints about the gastrobar, or on business names in general.

However, in November last year, a Circular Road pub drew ire from some members of the public for being named Auschwitz. This is because of its similatary to the name of an infamous Nazi concentration camp - Auschwitz - during World War II. The pub subsequently removed its signboard.

Dr Tan Sze Wee, Asas' chairman, said: "(We) will attend to complaints on such names if the name is featured on a signboard or on advertisements."

A spokesman for the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (Acra), which governs the registration of businesses, said its online registration system has a list of words which are deemed offensive, vulgar or abusive.

"In this particular case, to date, Acra has not received any public feedback objecting to the name. Nevertheless, the registrar will review its appropriateness and act accordingly," said the spokesman.

Acra added that "Auschwitz" has been added to the list of undesirable words.

vbarker@sph.com.sg

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