We speak to four bartenders on how they’ve wrestled the rank, dank, funky fruit into their drinks (and live to tell the tale). By Natasha Hong.

Trust bartenders to throw caution to the wind and combine two ingredients that together, form a deadly concoction. Durians and alcohol don’t mix, warn grannies in Singapore and Malaysia, but these four bars have taken on the challenge to turn them into killer (pun well intended) combinations.

Wrangling such a stridently rich and odorous ingredient into a cocktail that hints of the fruit, and still sings of its other components, is a feat in itself. These intrepid four have all found that rum’s vanilla and caramel notes work well with the durian’s dramatic oniony, cheesy, and some say almond-like flavours, and some have even perfumed milk or cream as a flavour medium for the fruit. Scroll through this slideshow to read how they cracked the prickly code to create a cocktail with bite.