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Hong Kong









The Return of the Prodigal Son


From New York to Singapore and Panama

Operation Dagger’s


Peru’s National Spirit



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For all the latest news, interviews, industry insights – we’ve got it covered from what’s happening across Australia, Asia and the Middle East! Sent direct to your email every Friday morning – be in the know about what’s trending in our industry. Join our world and the drinks community at WWW.DRINKS.WORLD

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Stay Social with Drinks World! drinks world


‘Drinks World, bringing the drinks industry community closer, from Sydney to Singapore, Auckland to Dubai, Hobart to Hong Kong’ Get the jump on your favourite industry competitions or you just want to be in the know of everything that happening in the industry? With our daily updates - We’re got it covered at Drinks World.

SHARE WITH US! Do you have industry information to share? Or just simply want to goss about all the wonderful things happening in our industry – well we want to hear from you. Share with us what you’ve got at

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Gateway to a World of Wines

Hong Kong 8 - 11 May 2017 Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC), Halls 5D-5E Learn more at As part of:

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Supported by:

Organised by:

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Credits CREDITS Publisher Ashley Pini Production Manager Sasha Falloon General Manager Melinda Virgona EDITORIAL Associate Editor Hannah Sparks Assistant Editor Lukas Raschilla Online Editor Rachel Tyler Editorial Assistant Mary Parbery DESIGN Art Director Evelyn Rueda Senior Designer Racs Salcedo SALES National Sales and Marketing Manager Chris Wheeler Sales Manager Nathan Field Market Manager Danny Yang DRINKS Drinks Curator Ben Davidson (Bespoke Drinks) PHOTOGRAPHY Photographer: Jana Yar (Ensof Photography) CONTRIBUTORS Writers: Ashley Pini, Ben Davidson, Phil Bayly, Jenna Hemsworth, Josie Healy, Lindsay Trivers

Welcome Every time we perch ourselves at the bar and plan the coming edition of Drinks World we are reminded what a great industry we work in, and what a wonderful opportunity we have in putting together a publication that crosses borders and speaks to bartenders and sommeliers not only across Asia Pacific, but as far afield as Dubai and now Ireland. We’re five years old and have made it halfway across the planet…so welcome to edition 28 of Drinks World and the first edition of 2017. Our calendar for the year is already looking busy with an exciting line-up of events across the region and further afield. We’ll be announcing our Top 25 bartenders in Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Dubai for the first time. After an overwhelming response to the list, we’ve decided to reach out to the talent in the Middle East, where quality bars are opening and the standards are being set for international bartenders to come to the Emirates and get amongst it. For the sommelier community, we’ll be getting the low-down on the hottest regions and best wines in the South Pacific when we attend ProWine Asia in Hong Kong (May 8 - 11); RPB in Singapore (July 18 – 20); and Melbourne International Wine Competition (June 11). But before we get too ahead of ourselves, we’ve got another great issue of the magazine right here. We recently held a mezcal tasting at Tio’s in Sydney with a number of industry experts, including Phil Bayly who was recently named as a mezcal global ambassador. In this edition, we also celebrate everything that is Pisco, page 26, IPA beers on page 35, and a look at stocking and serving red wine on page 41. On the eve (at time of writing) of International Women’s Day we’ve delved into the world of Ladies in Liquor and talked to some of the industry’s best about how they got ahead in the trade and what they love most about what we do. I hope you enjoy this edition, and look forward to your feedback – and votes – for the upcoming T25 in your country. Stay informed at and don’t forget to vote. Cheers,

Ash Pini

Produced and published by

Editorial Enquiries: If you, your bar, or your brand and company have news or events you would like to share with Drinks World please contact: and/or Although Hip Media Asia endeavours to ensure the accuracy and correctness of the information and Drinks World and, we do not accept any liability or responsibility for any inaccuracies or omissions. The views expressed by authors of publications or event presentations, published Drinks World, do not necessarily represent the views of Hip Media Asia. Decisions or actions based on the information and publications provided by Hip Media Asia are at your own risk. drinks world



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What’s Happening?



Campari Amari Range


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Beefeater MIXLDN


Mezcal Tasting

Pisco – Peru’s National Spirit Footwear – What Bartenders Wear


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Dubai Bars

Venue Profiles

Food & Drink

68 71


50 52 56 58

Faye Chen

Cocktail Club


35 38 41 44 74

IPA All The Way

Prowine Asia Wine and Spirits Trade Show Red Wine Storage and Serving Jenna Hemsworth – Opinion Confessions of a Bartender

13 15 18 47 48

Steve Schneider

JiaWei Bai

Luke Whearty

Sam Egerton

Ladies in Liquor

Leo Gutkowski

Larry Guevara

Lee Applbaum

T25 Hong Kong


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° NEWS °



The highly anticipated ATLAS bar in Parkview Square has opened, showcasing an impressive luxurious bar offering bespoke Art Deco inspired cocktails. The bar is helmed by Roman Foltan along with Maitre D Carla Davina Soares who both worked at London’s Artesian at The Langham, winner of World’s Best Bar four consecutive times. The bar houses its ATLAS Gin Collection, with one of the world’s most diverse compilation of the spirit, displayed in a ceiling high tower as the venues centerpiece.

The team behind 28 HongKong Street and Proof & Co has opened Crackerjack an all-day drinking and dining venue on Singapore’s Tanjong Pagar Road. Offering a relaxed and approachable vibe and serving up tea, coffee, cocktails, and feel-good food, Crackerjack aims to be your “Third Place” – a home and hangout spot away from the home and office, a place to relax, whether it’s morning, noon or night. Proof & Co Chairman, Spencer Forhart said, “Globally we are seeing F&B leadership coming as much from guests as from industry professionals. In the past, even great restaurants may not have treated coffee seriously and great cocktail bars may have seen food as an afterthought. Today’s patrons are sophisticated consumers of food and beverage. They are engaged in modern media in all its forms, they are educated and travel, and they expect excellence in everything they consume. It’s no longer sufficient for a venue to be great at only part of its menu. To compete, venues need to be great at everything they offer. We have built Crackerjack as an answer to this calling, and our chefs, bartenders, and baristas are expected to deliver excellence collaboratively.” The venue features large communal tables, art by Mojoko, fun items like shuffleboard and hip music along with free wifi and charging stations, complemented by ample natural light, making it a welcoming place. “We want this to be your Third Place, a home-away-from-home and an office-away-fromwork for friends and neighbours”, says Forhart.

600 North Bridge Rd, Parkview Square, Singapore

For more, head to



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CAMPARI KILLER IN RED Campari Red Diaries represents a multilayered campaign that brings to life the powerful ethos that “every cocktail tells a story” and showcases the influences that inspire bartenders and their craft. Killer in Red – the key piece of this project, is a short film written and directed by the Italian internationally crowned award winner, Paolo Sorrentino, and stars one of Hollywood’s finest, Clive Owen.

Killer in Red is set in a high-end bar, which sees Owen move from ordinary man to take on the guise of Floyd, a notorious bartender back in the 1980s. Owen’s character portrays the story behind the Killer in Red cocktail, as the film moves between two time periods, showing the high-energy of the time, using a cast of more than 170 and original period costumes. As the story unfolds, the film introduces French/Swiss actress, Caroline

Tillette as the “Lady in Red”. Killer in Red ignited the Campari Red Diaries campaign, a journey bringing to life the artistry of bartenders. In addition, 12 cocktail stories have been created by some of the leading bartenders from around the world, with each capturing the personality of the bartender and brought to life by young and emerging Italian director Ivan Olita. Now available at


NEW MONIN SYRUPS MONIN have added two new products to the range: Le Fruit de MONIN Pineapple and Le Fruit de MONIN Cherry. Le Fruit de MONIN Pineapple is sweet and tangy with a hint of acidity and perfectly captures this fruits tender flesh. The Le Fruit de MONIN Cherry brings you the just-picked flavour of ripe, succulent summer cherries. With its abundance of taste and colour, it is the perfect addition in any fruit forward cocktail. Both Le Fruit de MONIN Pineapple and Cherry are available in 1L PET bottles.

International food and drink event specialist, Fresh Montgomery and sister company Montgomery Asia are launching a new hospitality event, Restaurant, Pub & Bar Asia (RPB Asia), set to take place on July 18-20 at the Suntec Singapore Convention and Exhibition Centre. Restaurants, Pubs and Bars Asia will host tasting theatres, a start-up zone and skills workshops for the visitor experience. With four of the top ten bars across Asia located in Singapore, the region is fast becoming known as a place for excellence, design and creativity. Christopher McCuin, Montgomery’s Group Business Development Director said, “In recent years the ontrade sector has enjoyed significant growth throughout the region, with Singapore in particular catching the eye when it comes to fine dining experiences and award-winning bars”. RPB Asia will run in conjunction alongside Montgomery Asia’s Specialty and Fine Food Asia event, which showcases the best in premium and artisan fine food products to the trade. This gives those attending the option to explore both trade shows concurrently. McCuin also said, “The time is right to bring the entire trade community together for an event where owners, managers, sommeliers, baristas, mixologists, chefs, and their staff can explore the very best that a dedicated live event can offer”. Check out for more info.


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ampari’s Amari portfolio includes three of the finest names; Averna, Cynar, and Braulio. The exceptional Amari portfolio by Campari focuses on the warm and bonding habits made by enjoying an Amaro, whether you’re a newcomer to the category or a long time fan.

Italian Amari is a class of bitter liqueurs that are traditionally served after a meal. Greeks and Romans were the first to attempt to aid digestion using aromatic herbs and seeds steeped in liquid. Amari typically contain herbs and spices that are believed to facilitate digestion and have stomachsettling properties. The word Amari (plural) refers to the Italian word for bitter, Amaro.

CONSUMING AMARI Amari can be consumed around the table, directly after a meal, either at home or when out at venues. They are also commonly taken throughout the evening, whether it’s at a friend or family’s house or at a bar or restaurant.

AVERNA Averna is the point of reference for the Amari category. Known for its ‘Sicilian Vibrancy’, Averna is an authentic Italian after dinner liqueur, created according to a closely guarded secret recipe that originates in the Benedictine abbey of Caltanissetta, Sicily in 1868. It is made using all natural ingredients, giving it a smooth, rich, full-bodied taste accompanied by a delicate citrus fragrance. Averna is produced by combining herbs, roots and natural spices with perfumes and fragrances of Sicilian citrus. All ingredients, including essential oils from lemon and orange peels, pomegranate, herbs, and fruits are carefully mixed and infused with pure alcohol. After a lengthy infusion period, the liquid is mixed with water to bring it to the correct alcohol content. It is then filtered with additional natural ingredients, such as sugar, alcohol, and water. The liquid is then left inside vats in the cellar until all ingredients are thoroughly blended. Amaro Averna is then ready to be bottled and enjoyed worldwide.

TASTING NOTES Averna has a citrus aroma with scents of Mediterranean herbs such as myrtle, juniper, rosemary, sage and aromatic resins. It comes through with orange hints on the palate, balanced with licorice, herbs and a velvety well-rounded texture. This is finished with a softly bitter and smooth aftertaste. The perfect serve for Averna is neat or over ice.

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Braulio is one of Italy’s most illustrious Amari with a unique and delicate profile. Created in Bromio in 1875, Braulio captures the distinct aromas and flavours of the Valtellina valley in northern Italy. The name Braulio is taken from Mount Braulio that overlooks Valtellina valley. Braulio is all natural and rested in Slavonian oak barrels. The mountain is known for its aromatic herbs, roots, and berries that grow on its slopes. Braulio is still produced with the same care and passion as when it was first crafted. Braulio is an exceptional blend of herbs, roots, and berries and made from all natural ingredients. The recipe of Braulio has been handed down over 140 years, keeping it a closely guarded secret. A secret number of herb combinations are used in the production of Braulio, however, only four are known: gentian, juniper, wormwood, and yarrow. Herbs, plants, roots and berries are carefully cleaned and dried before being broken down and milled, in a similar fashion to what ancient pharmacists used to do. Once the milled herbs and plants have been combined, the ingredients are left to infuse in hydro-alcoholic solution for 30 days. During this time, the aromas and active ingredients of the plants are extracted. The mixture needs time to infuse so the individual scents can amalgamate and come together as one. Once extraction has taken place, the liquid is filtered, diluted, and mixed with sugar to give the liqueur a more delicate taste, and reduce the alcohol. Once each stage of the production process is complete, the amaro is transferred to rest in Slavonian oak barrels. This allows the natural aromas time to breathe and marry together.

TASTING NOTES Braulio has notes of wood and roots from which gentian root stands out. The flavour is rounded out with refreshing fragrances of juniper and aromatic herbs and wormwood on the finish. This amaro has a robust and intense taste of essential oils followed by notes of wood and roots, ending with a pleasant bitterness on the palate. Braulio has a full-bodied and persistent aftertaste with delicate bitter notes of gentian root and wormwood. This is followed by a full-bodied and persistent aftertaste with delicate bitter notes. Braulio is the perfect way to finish a meal or ideal for sipping in a relaxing moment with friends. It is traditionally taken straight but can also be enjoyed over ice.


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Cynar is an amaro produced from natural substances present in artichoke, including ‘cynarine’. Cynar is made using a two-stage process. Firstly, aromatic herbs are mixed according to the recipe and loaded with a suitably defined amount of mildly alcoholic mixture, into a battery of specially designed macerators. Once maceration is complete, the extract is collected in decanter tanks. Following the maceration, the infusion is transferred to the blending area to create Cynar. The blending stage sees the products including water, alcohol, Cynar infusion and sugar before being mixed and filtered for bottling. The secret recipe of Cynar has remained the same since it was first created in 1952. The infusion of 13 herbs and plants, including artichoke leaves, in a mildly alcoholic mixture. It has a refreshing and herbal bittersweet flavour, and is ideal for a pre or postdinner drink, and a favourite of bartenders when creating pungent and original drinks.

TASTING NOTES Cyna’s herbal nose is rounded out with bittersweet notes. The liquid carries herbal notes, including artichoke, along with hints of dried fruit and a caramel smoothness. It finishes with a pleasantly persistent woody and caramel bitter taste. Cyan can be consumed in a signature long drink, neat, or in cocktail creations, whether original or classic cocktail reinterpretations.

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° MEET °

STEVE SCHNEIDER S teve Schneider, bar manager of Employees Only Singapore was recently in Australia and caught up with Drinks World’s Lukas Raschilla to talk New York, Singapore, living life out of a suitcase and new ventures in Panama.

LUKAS RASCHILLA: What are the main differences between the New York and Singapore bar scenes? STEVE SCHNEIDER: As far as the menu goes, I’ve changed it more times in the first seven months of being open than I did in years of being bar manager in New York. In New York, you’re constantly getting new customers, here you have to keep switching things up because it’s a small market and when people come back they always want something new. Plus, I have a list of a lot of cocktails that I want to teach the apprentices before I move on, so if I constantly change the menu they have no choice but to keep learning the menu. People in New York, they grasp the concept and what we’re doing

a little easier, whereas in Singapore we’re new in terms of our style of service, being able to interact with strangers and being jam packed in a bar - not a nightclub - is unknown in a bar in Singapore. LR: What types of drinks and cocktails are you currently seeing a high demand for at Employees Only Singapore? SS: Well, because it’s such a young drinking culture, they’ve been accustomed to cocktail bars being a certain way. As for trends, local and regional native ingredients are things that have always happened, but people are getting into it more; people like to be sustainable and support their local producers. My drinks are tried

and tested recipes, either mine or from some of the guys back at EO in New York. People ask me all the time, “What’s your best drink man?” and I hate it, so I’m like “What are you talking about? There’s no such thing.” It’s so subjective, so I have a number of options. I’ll ask guests the usual - what do they like and what kind of flavours etc. Humour is another difference. We’re the craziest bar in town. We’re like that in New York, that kind of edgy sarcasm where sometimes we push the boundaries a little too far. And it can get lost in translation. The job is the same, but the crowd is different. LR: I’ve been reading about The Strangers


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Club in Panama City. Can you tell me about the space? SS: It’s a two-storey space; downstairs is going to be what you would expect from a neighbourhood restaurant in Latin America - natural lighting, light colours and pastels. Upstairs is going to be a bit darker, sexier with a lounge feel to it with couches and tables. Actually, it will be a little similar to the room with lounges at Lobo Plantation in Sydney. As for the timeline, we’re aiming for April if all things work out and all the paperwork is in place. We’re all going to be there for the opening; I’ll be there for around 10 days when we open and then I will work there in June and July. And if it’s not open by then, I’m still going to go down there! We’ve actually all chipped in to rent a two-bedroom apartment in Panama City right near the bar. Even when it’s not my shift I’ll head down there now and then. I want to see how we go with Strangers Club, obviously we want to expand, maybe buy a little boutique hotel in Panama. I don’t know sh*t about hotels, but I think it’d be fun. And, hey if it all fails, it’s like I bought a Honda Civic and drove it through a flood; it’s a bummer but a relatively low investment, lets move on. But I’m super confident in my partners. We’ve all travelled quite a lot so we’re going to take a bit of inspiration from all over. Strangers Club is going to embody what we are - travellers, and hopefully provide young Panamanian bartenders with an opportunity. LR: At Employees Only you hire your staff based on attitude and heart rather than experience. Any standout rookies we should keep an eye out for? SS: I do actually. My top guy, his name is JiaWei. He was my last hire. He’s really soft spoken and at the time, had just left the army; I think he got out of the army on a Monday and signed up with me on a Wednesday. Early on, I took the apprentices to my house to show them some free pouring drills. JiaWei was there and after he emailed me a ton of questions. He actually carries coloured pens and a label maker everywhere he goes, and is always taking notes; I told him, if we were the Ninja Turtles, he’d be Donatello – the smart one.

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iaWei Bai, apprentice bartender at Employees Only Singapore found a home back behind the bar after returning from serving in the Singapore Military. JiaWei wanted to go back to slinging cocktails behind the stick and has learnt from one of the best in the business, Steve Schneider. Drinks World’s Lukas Raschilla spoke to JiaWei about his experience thus far working at EO. LUKAS RASCHILLA: You have gone from being in the military to bartending. What made you want to become a bartender? JIAWEI BAI: I started as a part-time server at a bar to earn some extra pocket money while studying. One thing led to another and the art of bartending unwittingly charmed its way into my heart. Before I enlisted in the army, I was already a rookie bartender slinging bespoke cocktails at another local bar. That really provided me with a good training ground to learn about the different types of spirits and pairing ingredients. During the two years I was in the military, my interest in bartending never waned despite the hectic and physically demanding schedules. I continued increasing my knowledge by reading cocktail books and studying recipes in my free time. Needless to say, I also stepped up on speed, efficiency and discipline while serving my nation, which helped me a lot in my career. Bartending was never a profession associated with prestige and glamour, but I couldn’t wait to return to the bar and I never looked back. LR: How have you found Employees Only and working with Steve Schneider so far? JWB: I’m loving every minute of it! Every night is a different experience and I live for the adrenaline rush. The crowd here is loud and fun and I have served all kinds of people from all walks of life. I work with a high performing team, every single one of us is trained by Steve himself, and I wouldn’t have it any other way!

LR: Had you heard about EO before applying for a position there? JWB: In all honesty, I stumbled across a hiring advertisement on Facebook and looked up the company out of curiosity. I had absolutely no inkling of who they were, apart from a couple of quirky pictures of men with thick moustaches. I sent in my resume anyway and heard nothing back for two weeks, I actually thought it was a scam! LR: You performed a shift at EO in New York. Can you tell me about that experience? JWB: The trip to EONY last November was a real eyeopener for me. I had the opportunity to experience the perfect epitome of New York nightlife and work in one of the world-renowned speakeasies. The aesthetics of the bar were comfortingly familiar, yet the place owned an exclusive character and style found nowhere else. New York clearly has an unrivalled cocktail bar scene and people just love going out. By 5:30pm on a Sunday, people were already queuing for the 6pm opening time, and within minutes of the business opening the place was at full-house. I watched the bar team work flawlessly with an endless stream of energy, banging out cocktails at lightning speed. And then it was general madness for the rest of the night. Employees Only New York truly lives up to its name. The whole experience left me very inspired to keep up the tradition and spirit of Employees Only.


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Beefeater MIXLDN


imothy Ching from Hong Kong claimed the Beefeater MIXLDN 6 Global cocktail competition, beating out seven other finalists from all four corners of the globe to take home the title. Timothy faced three days of competition, with his “Please Sir I Want More” cocktail impressing judges and being awarded best in class at the Grand Finale, held at the Bike Shed in Shoreditch, East London.

Selecting the finalists to compete in the Grand Finale was no easy task. Bartenders from over 30 countries were invited to submit a Beefeater cocktail recipe to the Beefeater MIXLDN website and from that were chosen to compete in National Finals. A bartender from each market was then selected to compete in the Global Final, to form the top eight battled it out for the top honour. For the MIXLDN competition, bartenders were faced with a number of challenges including creating an innovative cocktail within the framework of the competition’s theme, “Inspired by London, Directed by You” – with each drink taking inspiration from the very best of British cinema. The esteemed judging panel featured Beefeater master distiller Desmond Payne, MIXLDN 2015 Global Champion, Evelyn Chick, editor of The Cocktail Lovers, Sandrae Lawrence, and Nathan O’Neill, head bartender at Nomad NY.

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In addition to the major prize, two other prizes were awarded; one for the Signature Drink round and the Secret Challenge. Emil Hed of Sweden took out the Signature Drink round, where bartenders were tasked with creating a drink inspired by a movie set in London. The winner of the Secret Challenge, which required finalists to create a drink in 30 minutes was Jin Hwan Kim of South Korea. Beefeater master distiller Desmond Payne was on hand to announce the winner and present the trophy to Timothy, who was ecstatic with the win saying, “I can’t believe I have won. It’s still not properly sunk in! The calibre of competition was exceptionally high – with each cocktail more innovative and creative than the last and each paying heed to the theme of the competition whilst ensuring the unique and distinctive flavours of the Beefeater Gin came through front and centre.” “My concoction, ‘Please Sir I Want Some More’, was inspired by Oliver Twist – taking inspiration from the iconic scene in the book in which Oliver asks the master of the work house for another helping with the iconic line ‘Please, sir, I want some more’. This take on one of my favourite moments of London cinema, taking inspiration from the silver screen when it comes

to a gin cocktail – one is never enough” The Beefeater MIXLDN competition has continued to grow among the industry’s elite, and saw bartenders push their creativity and presenting skills in the series of challenges. For the Grand Finale, bartenders were challenged to make their cocktail for those in attendance, with guests voting for their favourite cocktail. Desmond Payne, Beefeater’s master distiller said, “It has been a hard-fought competition to get here and now, having beat all in attendance at this year’s final, we are delighted to award Timothy Ching the title of Global Champion of MIXLDN 6. Bringing together an overwhelmingly talented and passionate group from the international on-trade community, it has been a privilege to watch these bartenders battle behind the bar.” Timothy Ching takes home not only the title of Beefeater MIXLDN Global Champion but also gets the chance, for the first time ever in the competition’s history, to craft his very own limited edition Beefeater gin with master distiller Desmond Payne at the Beefeater distillery in Kennington.


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ustralian ex-pat now calling Singapore home, Luke Whearty earned his bartending chops in Melbourne before taking his talents to Asia where he owns and operates Operation Dagger, one of Asia’s most progressive bars. Drinks World’s Lukas Raschilla sat down with Luke to find a little more about what he’s doing and how he ended up in Singapore.

LUKAS RASCHILLA: Can you tell me about how you got started in the industry? LUKE WHEARTY: I first started in hospitality washing dishes at the same restaurant by brother was a chef in my home town of Coffs Harbour in New South Wales, Australia. Back then it was just a job so I could earn money at night and then spend the days surfing with mates. Over time it turned into more than just a job for me and I eventually made it my career. LR: How did you end up in Singapore? LW: In 2010 I was lucky enough to work under Ryan Clift at The Tippling Club, which was my introduction to Singapore and was an amazing experience that taught me a lot. Then years later, it was actually Ryan who called me up and linked me with the people who would eventually become my business partners in Operation Dagger. LR: The back bar of Operation Dagger has been noted to look like an apothecary, with the non-branded bottles with labels and symbols. Can you tell me a little about the bottles and look of the back bar and how that décor/design came about? LW: It actually came about from a very simple idea of removing people from their comfort zones and getting people to think about their drinks in terms of flavour instead of the brand or spirit category. It also opened up so many different options for making drinks, as we were no longer restricted by particular categories or brands. Instead, if we wanted a particular flavour we would then distill or ferment it ourselves which then opens up so many more possibilities.

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LR: What inspires you when putting a cocktail menu together? LW: I get my inspiration from everywhere. Sometimes it’s a particular dish or flavour combination I have at a restaurant or sometimes it’s a memory from my childhood. Other times it could be a film or something I’ve read or even a painting or a photo. So short answer is simply the world around me I guess. Whatever is on the menu is what I am experiencing or being exposed to at that point in time so I guess you could say its quite personal. LR: Have you seen many changes in the Singapore bar scene since arriving? LW: So many! I remember back when I was at Tippling Club there was literally nowhere to go for a drink after work and more often than not we just ended up at a hawker centre drinking beer. Nowadays Singapore has turned into a legitimate city for bars and there are so many high quality bars to choose from that I haven’t even been to half of them. So yeah it’s definitely come a long way and bars like Tippling Club, 28 Hong Kong Street, The Cufflink Club have definitely paved the way for people like myself to come and open concepts like Operation Dagger. LR: What are some of your favourite places in Singapore to hang out? LW: Being from Melbourne I miss my coffee so for my coffee fix, Nylon coffee roasters in Everton Park is my go-to place. For food my favourite place recently is Cheek by Jowl, which is run by my good friend Rishi Naleendra and his wife Manuela Toniolo. And heading to the wave house at Sentosa to get my surfing fix. It’s not quite as good as the real thing, but its still super fun.


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n in-depth look at the what’s happening in the industry from trends to lifestyle, and everything in between.


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he agave family of spirits, in the recent past, has been dominated by the industrial spirit of tequila, produced from one single species of agave and using more technologically efficient methods of production to get the most yield per hectare. In the last few years, however, there has been a renaissance in the understanding of the origins of mezcal and the artisanal distilling traditions in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca, which produces an incredibly complex and delicious spirit to be respected, savoured and enjoyed sparingly, largely due to the rarity of the ‘wild harvested agaves’ and the very small batch production methods.

WORDS ° Ben Davidson & Phil Bayly

WHAT IS MEZCAL? The Mezcal category has been under review of redefining its original NOM 070 (Mexican Standard) of 2005 for a number of years. In July 2016, it was finally revised for the benefit of the category. The reason for this is that mezcal has undergone huge changes and popularity in recent years. What we originally understood mezcal to be - as a cheap and fiery spirit - is in most cases no longer relevant. Whereas Tequila is moving in to the future in the sense of how it can be refined and aged, mezcal, on the other hand, is moving back to its roots of a traditional artisanal spirit. The most prized examples are produced by the village in tiny copper or even claypot (Filipino style) stills in small batch productions, this tradition has been passed down by generation of Mezcaleros (the name given to the producers). The definition of mezcal in its simplest form is; the Mexican standard NOM-070-SCFI-1994 regulates the production of mezcal and implies the denomination of origin, which limits the production of agave spirits to be called mezcal to the following Mexican states: Oaxaca, Guerrero, Durango, San Luis Potosí, Zacatecas, Guanajuato, Tamaulipas, Michoacan and Puebla. All certified mezcal has a NOM on each label, similar to tequila and is certified by the CRM (Mezcal Regulatory Council). Mezcal must be bottled at its place of origin and may not be exported in bulk. The new changes that have come into effect

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state that mezcal is defined as, “A Mexican alcoholic beverage, 100 per cent maguey, obtained by means of the distillation of juices fermented with Mexican yeasts, whether spontaneous or cultivated, and juices that have been extracted from the mature cooked heads of magueys, harvested within the territory included in the Denomination of Origin, mezcal”. Traditionally, all alcoholic beverages made from Agave were called Vino de Mezcal, similar to how Cognac is a type of Brandy but not all Brandy can be called Cognac. Tequila was a Vino de mezcal but true mezcal was not tequila. Confused yet? In 1994, mezcal achieved its recognition as a Denomination of Origin, and can only be produced in eight states of Mexico.

• Mezcal can only be produced with 100 per cent agave.


• MADURADO (Matured): Aged in glass for a minimum of 12 months. The label can state the amount of time it has been aged.

• Mezcal is the largest DOA in the world covering approximately 500,000 square kilometers, and any species of agave can be used, as long as it is grown in the Denomination of Origin areas. • Mezcal must be between 35% to 55% ABV. • Export of mezcal in bulk form is prohibited. • The CRM (Consejo Regulador de Mezcal) regulates the production of Mezcal similar to the CRT (Consejo Regulador del Tequila)

• Mezcal means, “cooked maguey” and thus, according to its origins, traditions and even the meaning of its name, all maguey used to produce mezcal must be cooked prior to beginning the fermentation process. This means that diffusers, while still technically allowed, must be used only after oven or autoclave use. Any species of maguey can be used to produce mezcal but not all are suitable.

THERE ARE NOW SIX CLASSES OF MEZCAL • BLANCO: The Young, un-aged, formerly known as “Joven.”

• REPOSADO: Aged in barrels for between two and 12 months. The wood does not have to be oak. The label can state the amount of time it has been aged. • AÑEJO: Aged over 12 months, in any size or type of wood vessel. The label can state the amount of time it has been aged. • ABOCADO CON: Mezcal to which ingredients are used to add flavors, such


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as maguey worm, damiana, lemon, honey, orange, mango, among others, should be incorporated directly, provided they are authorized by the corresponding Agreement of the Ministry of Health • DISTILADO CON: Mezcal to be distilled with ingredients to incorporate flavors, such as turkey breast or chicken, rabbit, mole, plums, among others, in terms of the present Official Mexican Standard. Only the mixture of mezcal of the same category and class is allowed.

Mezcal, or should I say artisanal mezcal, could be defined as the single malt of agave spirits; complex, rich and full of flavour


THERE ARE THREE CATEGORIES OF MEZCAL: MEZCAL Its elaboration must comply with at least the following four stages and equipment: A) Cooking: cooking of heads or juices of maguey or agave in wells, masonry or autoclave. B) Grinding: tahona, Chilean or Egyptian mill, sugar mill, canker, mill train or diffuser. C) Fermentation: wooden containers, masonry basins or stainless steel tanks. D) Distillation: stills, continuous distillers or columns of copper or stainless steel.

MEZCAL ARTISENAL Its elaboration must comply with at least the following four stages and equipment: A) Cooking: cooking of heads of maguey or agave in wells or raised masonry. B) Grinding: with mallet, bakery, Chilean or Egyptian mill, mill or harrow. C) Fermentation: hollows in stone, soil or trunk, masonry basins, wooden or mud vessels, animal skins, which may include the fiber of maguey or agave (bagasse). D) Distillation: with direct fire in stills of copper boiler or pot of mud and montera of clay, wood, copper or stainless steel; Whose process may include the fiber of the maguey or agave (bagasse).


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MEZCAL ANCESTRAL Its elaboration must comply with at least the following four stages and equipment: A) Cooking: cooking of heads of maguey or agave in wells. B) Grinding: with mallet, bakery, Chilean or Egyptian mill. C) Fermentation: hollows in stone, soil or trunk, masonry basins, wooden or mud vessels, animal skins, which may include the fiber of maguey or agave (bagasse). D) Distillation: with direct fire in pot of mud and montera of mud or wood; whose process may include the fiber of the maguey or agave (bagasse). One of the most well known towns for producing mezcal is Santiago de Matatlan in the central Valley of Oaxaca, where some 100-plus brands are produced in small palenques or distilleries. Other villages and regions also in the central valley of Oaxaca include Teotitlan, San Baltazar Chichicapam, Sola de Vega, San Juan del Rio and San Luis del Rio. Each village has its own unique climate and in some cases style of production. So it would be wise to go and try them all!

TYPES OF AGAVES One of the factors that make mezcal so interesting is the variety of agaves or magueys that may be used and the different characteristics each one has. Somewhat confusingly there are often two or more different names for the same agave, depending on the traditional or scientific reference. Here is a list of the most well-known varieties: AGAVE ANGUSTIFOLIA OR ESPADÍN: The Agave Espadín is the most common variety of agave used in the production of mezcal in the state of Oaxaca. Espadín is most often farmed rather than wild, and it can take between eight to 10 years to mature. It is the predominant variety of agave used in mezcal production simply because of the time it takes to grow, and the volume of sugars it can produce. It is believed to be the genetic parent of blue agave, which is used

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Harvested agave for tequila, and makes the most approachable of mezcals. It can vary significantly from one village to another. This is because each village will have its own unique elevation and microclimate or terroir that affects the end result. Some mezcals from higher altitudes may have higher, lighter notes. Lower elevations may have deeper, richer notes. Flavour profiles will depend on the vegetation and surrounds of the Palenque (distillery) where the airborne yeast will inoculate the sugars of the agave in the open fermentation tanks. MEXICANO: This is a sub-variety of agave rhodacantha that prefers to grow in moist areas and at lower elevations and produces a mezcal that tends to be very complex and both sweet and savoury. The plant can take up to 10 years to mature. It’s worth it. TOBALÁ: Considered the rarest of the agavaceae family, tobalá is cherished by many mezcaleros. It is very small in comparison to other varieties and yields limited quantities of intensely aromatic mezcal. It tends to choose rocky soils, and grows wild in high altitudes, preferring the shade of trees. Tobalá propagates itself only through pollination, it does not send out rhizomes, unlike other varieties of agaves. It relies on bats and other insects to distribute its seeds and pollinate. MADRECUIXE: Another member of the Karwinskii family, is fast growing and can mature in less than six years, usually found in

the dry southern central valleys of Oaxaca. It grows tall and has a thick trunk, similar to a yucca plant; its piña is similar to a huge baseball bat. Madrecuixe mezcal has a green character, often with herbal and vegetal notes and subtle aromas. TOBAZICHE: It looks like a yucca plant with a thin wooden trunk that can reach two metres high and is a member of the Karwinskii family. It has no piña, as do other varieties of agaves, instead, the trunk is cooked in earth ovens. It produces very little juice but has very intense flavours. An average plant can take anywhere from 20 to 25 years to grow. TEPEXTATE: One of the larger agaves used in mezcal production, this plant can take up to 25 to 30 years to mature. It tends to grow in high altitudes above 2,000 metres and has huge, broad and twisted leaves. The mezcal produced from tepextate is intense in flavour and is often heavily perfumed, like the gewürztraminer grape. DOBADAÁN: More commonly known by its botanical name, rhodacantha, Dobadaán prefers to grow in pine and oak forests, and can be found from Oaxaca to as far north as Sonora. ARROQUEÑO: This very large agave may reach maturity in anywhere up to 20 years. The mezcal produced from this agave often has a candied aroma, can tend to be earthy, and often finishes with a bitter chocolate note.


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he variety and complexity of flavours found in different mezcals can be baffling to the senses, especially when the varietal characteristics of a mezcal can be altered significantly by the terroir and the methods of production. No two mezcals taste the same.

LEFT TO RIGHT: Manuel Terron, Alex Gilmour, Reece Griffiths, Phil Bayly, Jose Ponce, Ben Davidson Here at Drinks World, we thought it was fitting to get some of the most well-known mezcal and industry experts together for a tasting of this beautifully crafted agave spirit. Our friends over at Tio’s Cerveceria in Sydney’s Surry Hills were happy enough to host us for a tasting and education on mezcal. A selection of mezcals made from different varietals were chosen including Espadín, Madrecuixe, Tobala and Mexicano variants. Aiming for a diverse range of flavours, the panel tasted each mezcal and provided some insight on the characters and profiles. Let’s take a look at some of the finest mezcals and their flavour profiles and what the panel’s thoughts were. THE PANEL: • PHIL BAYLY - Global Mezcal Ambassador, Agave Love Founder • REECE GRIFFITHS - Agave Cartel Jefe & Operations Manager, East Village Hotel • ALEX ‘HAPPY’ GILMOUR - Agave Spirits Guru & General Manager, Tio’s Cerveceria • MANUEL TERRON - Spirits Guru at Large • JOSE PONCE – Mezcal Importer & Educator • BEN DAVIDSON - Drinks Curator, Drinks World Magazine


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ILEGAL JOVEN 40% ABV Ilegal Joven Mezcal is a beautifully balanced artisanal mezcal from Tlacolula, Oaxaca. It is made by a fourth generation mezcalero and his family using 500-year-old methods. Joven, meaning ‘un-aged’, is the purest expression of mezcal. Ilegal Joven is made from 100 per cent Espadín agave. It has deep agave aromas, with hints of green apple, citrus and white pepper. PANEL • Manuel Terron said the Ilegal Joven had characteristics of grilled pineapple, caramel, burnt sugar and light spices. With its subdued intensity, it can be enjoyed neat or on the rocks. • Jose Ponce felt this mezcal had a classic smokiness and is ideal for beginners as well as a benchmark. He said, “It gives a very uniform profile of mezcal.” • Phil Bayly said “It is salty, fruity and approachable. Fresh and sweet with a dry finish”. • Alex Gilmour suggested using Illegal Joven in cocktails and long drinks with its sweet orchard fruit and light vanilla character. Available through Vanguard Luxury Brands

VAGO ESPADÍN 50% ABV Vago Espadín is made from cultivated agaves in the hills above the border of Central Valley and Sierra Sur, Oaxaca. Espadín is the most prevalent agave type found in Oaxaca, with its ease of cultivation and high sugar content making it ideal for the production of mezcal. Espadín is the genetic mother of the Blue Weber Agave used in the production of tequila. Vago Espadín is an artisanal mezcal made in the lower elevations of the Yegolé valley, which contributes to the complexity of the mezcal with the terroir influence shining through. It has balanced notes of sweet potato, minerals, smokiness and bright citrus flavours.

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DEL MAGUEY MINERO 49% ABV Del Maguey produces artisanal mezcals in the original handcrafted way through deep cultural relationships with Zapotec Mexican Indian producers in remote villages of Oaxaca. The Del Maguey Minero from Santa Catarina Mina is produced in a still made of clay with bamboo tubing, rather than traditional copper stills. Made from the Espadin agave, the Minero has a nose of flower essence, vanilla and figs, with a burnt honey flavour and lemon. It has a deep, warm and sweet finish. It is also distilled to proof, so the ABV varies slightly between batches.

PANEL • Reece Griffiths found notes of menthol, green dried herbs, black tea and bitter chocolate. Ideal for sipping or citrus driven cocktails. • Phil Bayly noted bittersweet, intense, mint and butterscotch flavours with a buttery dry finish, suggesting that the “Terroir has probably given the main characteristics.” Bayly suggests the best way to enjoy this mezcal is to simply drink it straight, as does Jose Ponce.

PANEL • Jose Ponce has nothing but admiration for Del Maguey Minero, stating it is a “Wonderful geographical representation with a vivid profile. Full artisanal and can be enjoyed sipping with friends or for a special occasion.” • Alex Gilmour notes that the ceramic still has influenced the flavour, which he found to be brine like and sour with rockmelon notes. Ideally enjoyed neat. • Phil Bayly noted the influence of the terroir and clay pot still, citing “Huge intensity and complexity.” Bayly found the Minero to have smoke, bittersweet, fruity menthol and burnt orange liquorice characters, best enjoyed straight up. • Manuel Terron noted, “Such an approachable and character-driven product, mix in with a splash only”.

Available through Artisan Handcrafted

Available through Vanguard Luxury Brands


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DEL MAGUEY MADRECUIXE 47% ABV A limited edition from Del Maguey’s Vino De Mezcal series, made in lush, remote San Luis del Rio, Oaxaca where the Red Ant river flows. Madrecuixe is a wild, tall, cylindrical maguey like Tobasiche with leaves that grow from the ground up as opposed to Tobasiche that sheds its lower leaves as it grows, leaving a bare dry cylindrical piña. These mature Madrecuixe that are used are then earth-roasted, fermented with airborne microbes, twice distilled, unblended in the original, centuries-old Oaxaca handcrafted way. This is a rare, wild-harvested mezcal, medium-bodied with a long, clean, dry finish. PANEL • Phil Bayly was familiar with this, straight away letting us know that this is a mezcal “Too good to mix,” and should only be enjoyed straight. Bayly was able to find notes of pineapple, tropical fruits and butterscotch. • Reece Griffiths similarly suggested only sipping this liquid, noting the process of how

it’s produced giving it “Massive, intense green flavours.” • Manuel Terron found the Madrecuixe to have “Light citrus characteristics with candied notes. Quite dry, yet leaves a lovely lingering flavour”. • Jose Ponce said, “Everything that matters comes through; exceptional flavour profile from varietal hibiscus botanicals.” Ponce also noted that it is “An ideal mezcal to be used in an educational masterclass as a ‘wild harvested’ benchmark.” Available through Vanguard Luxury Brands

WAHAKA TOBALÁ 42% ABV Wahaka master distiller, Maestro Alberto ‘Beto’ Morales, calls the Tobalá one of the most difficult agaves to work with, noting that it “will treat you the same way that you treat it.” Found exclusively on high mountain cliffs and peaks, this wild agave is not only much smaller than other agaves, it’s also the most difficult to find and harvest. No other agave produces the variety of aromas and flavours as the Tobalá does, giving this mezcal an immediately distinguishable aroma and explosive taste enriched with sweet floral and herbaceous notes. The artisanal Wahaka Tobalá has a bright smoky cigar, smoked cherry, chive and herb cheese aromas with a silky, dryish, medium-tofull body and a wonderful cigar ash, grassy and sweet cream driven with a lengthy finish. PANEL • Reece Griffiths found the Wahaka Tobalá to have juniper, black pepper and citrus notes, best enjoyed when sipped. • Alex Gilmour noted mild smoke and spice flavours in the Tobalá that are best enjoyed neat. • Phil Bayly enjoyed the light, fresh, herbaceous, sweet, fruit character that is very approachable. “The varietal has huge influence,” he commented. • Manuel Terron noted that it was “Deep and intense with a persistent finish that goes on for minutes.”

EL JOLGORIO MEXICANO 47% ABV Traditional, artisanal mezcal forms an important part of rituals, ceremonies and festivities - known as ‘Jolgorios’ in villages in the native homeland of Oaxaca. Nine unique El Jolgorio Mezcals are made exclusively from different species and varieties of wild and semiwild harvested agave by Maestro Mezcaleros in local villages in Oaxaca and are twice distilled in copper pot stills. The El Jolgorio Mexicano is an artisanal mezcal made using Agave Mexicano, which is a relative of Agave Espadín and grows very large. The agaves are crushed by tahona, open fermented and doubledistilled. This mezcal is extremely complex and has a long finish. PANEL • Jose Ponce found this mezcal to be a great benchmark, calling it “A warming and complex mezcal with botanical notes.” • Alex Gilmour thought the El Jolgorio was more suited to being consumed neat or on ice, with its “Waxy, apple, fennel, salt and eucalyptus” notes coming though. • Reece Griffiths found notes of aniseed, fennel and cheese in the characters of this mezcal, suggesting it should be sipped. Conversely, Manuel Terron noted its spicy and briny taste would suit a cocktail like a Dirty Martini. Available through Mextrade

Available through Spark Group


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PISCO FEVER WORDS ° Ben Davidson & Josie Healy


isco has long been established in cocktail culture, namely with the Pisco Punch and Pisco Sour, which date back to as early as the 1870s for the former and 1920s for the latter and ended up taking Hollywood by storm thanks for fans John Wayne and Ernest Hemmingway. Pisco is produced in neighbouring Chile, but the spirit’s origins and history are synonymous with Peru.

WHAT EXACTLY IS PISCO? Pisco is a spirit distilled from the first pressing of fermented grape juice. While oak barrels feature prominently in the flavour profiles of whiskies, brandies and rums, one of the key differences and in fact one of a number of very strict regulations that govern the production of pisco is that it cannot have contact with wood at any stage of the production process. While technically classified as a brandy, pisco is a crystal–clear white spirit made without the addition of wood or any other flavouring. In essence, the final product is a unique pristine grape eau de vie expressing the original flavours of the grapes used to make it.

STYLES OF PISCO Under the Peruvian Denomination of Origin (DO), pisco can only be made from eight grape varieties, four of which are classified as non-aromatic and four as aromatic. The DO further stipulates that these grapes can only be grown in five coastal regions of Peru including Ica, Lima, Arequipa, Moquegua and Tacna. All eight grape varieties used to make pisco are variants of the original grapes brought by the Spanish conquistadors to make wine for the holy sacrament during the mid-16th century.

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THERE ARE THREE STYLES OF PISCO: PURO: Pisco puro is produced from a single grape variety. Any of the eight grape varietals can be used, however, the majority of pisco puro - around 80 per cent - is made using the non-aromatic grape variety quebranta. ACHOLADO: The acholado style of pisco is made from a blend of two or more grape varieties. An acholado can be made from a blend of pisco puro or mosto verde, but never from a mixture of both. MOSTO VERDE: This is a premium style of pisco distilled from partially fermented grape juice. With around 20 per cent residual sugar at the time of distillation, the mosto verde style has a sophisticated, smooth and velvety palate. It takes more grapes per litre, is more work and more expensive to produce, and as such is seen as the cream of the crop in the pisco category.


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PRODUCTION The DO states that pisco can only be made using wild, naturally occurring yeast present on the grapes at the time of harvest. Made only from the first pressing of the grape juice with all of the skins, seeds and stems being discarded. This practise sets pisco apart from grappa and other styles of brandy made from the pomace left-over from wine production. Produced from a single distillation in a small, copper alembic still, the final distilled product must be between 38-48% ABV, with no water – or anything else – added at any stage. After distillation, the pisco must rest or ripen for a minimum of three months stored only in vessels that will not influence the flavour or aroma.

PERUVIAN VS. CHILEAN PISCO Both the South American neighbouring countries of Peru and Chile make pisco today. Although it was the port city of Peru where pisco took its name, the production of Peruvian pisco went into decline in the early 20th century. At that time, Chilean pisco production continued to grow until more recently when Peruvian pisco has re-emerged to lay claim to be the original pisco. But how do they differ? Each country has their own Domination of Origin with different specifications, resulting in a final product that is completely different in flavour and style. Chilean pisco is produced in large batch continuous distilleries. Their pisco may be aged in wood, does not need to be distilled to proof, and can be made using a range of 14 different grape varieties as opposed to the eight Peruvian grape varieties.

In Australia, The Pisco People are the number one boutique importer, distributor and online retailer of premium Peruvian piscos. Sourcing the best piscos available from Peru and building relationships with the producers, all piscos imported by The Pisco People are sourced with a “grape to glass” ethos, meaning the producer controls every stage of the process. Some of the great piscos now available through The Pisco People include Cuatro G’S, Pisco Portón, De Carral and Viñas de Oro. Another fine range of pisco is from Campo de Encanto from the Ica Valley in Peru, available through Vanguard Luxury Brands. Drinks World’s drinks curator, Ben Davidson, says pisco has a fascinating history with its grape growing and winemaking origins, its simple alembic distillation retaining the vibrancy of the raw materials. Since its beginnings, soon after the Spanish arrival in South America, it has ridden a rise in popularity only to decline for a

while and then come back again. From its origins as a type of Peruvian brandy, it was given the name pisco from the area around where it was being produced, with the name pisco synonymous with the spirit and the place and soon became the most popular spirit in the region and other Spanish outposts during the early 1800s. From 1830, pisco and its related cocktails became incredibly fashionable in San Francisco, California and New York. By the mid-1870s, during the gold rush, pisco was by far the most popular drink in San Francisco even though it was sold for twenty-five cents a glass – a high price for those days! The most famous drink of the day was Pisco Punch, invented at the famous Bank Exchange in San Francisco. In 1889, Rudyard Kipling described the taste as “Shavings of cherub’s wings, the glory of a tropical dawn, red clouds of sunset and fragments of lost epics by dead poets”.

CONSUMPTION OF PISCO Pisco can be consumed in a large number of ways; sipped neat, as an aperitif or digestif, or in an array of cocktails. Pisco is most commonly consumed in the Pisco Sour, Pisco Punch and Chilcano, a favourite drink of Peruvian’s youth – two shots of pisco, lime juice, dry ginger ale, bitters and ice. Variations on classic cocktails with pisco as the lead spirit are also common, with drinks like El Capitan - a take on a Manhattan with pisco used in place of whisky. Similarly, the Pisco Negroni uses pisco in place of gin or the Pisco Mojito, where you guessed it, pisco is used instead of Cuban rum!


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he Pisco People is an Australian leading boutique distributor, wholesaler and online retailer of premium pisco from Peru.

Following extensive travels through South America (and many, many tastings), Josie Healy, founder and director of The Pisco People arrived at the conclusion that the very best piscos come from the process that adheres to the Peruvian Denomination of Origin. After 12 months living and working in South America, on her return to Australia Josie recognised the lack of premium pisco offerings as a business opportunity. Before launching The Pisco People in November 2015, Josie spent many months sourcing the best Peruvian pisco products available and building relationships with pisco producers who have been recognised nationally and internationally for the quality of their products. With exclusive distribution rights to five of the very best brands of Peruvian pisco, The Pisco People have a portfolio of 14 different piscos, which represents the most extensive range of pisco in Australia.

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“Each pisco expresses an incredible diversity of flavour based on the variety of grapes used, as well as the unique terroir and style of each bodega. As versatile as any spirit on earth, pisco can be used to create unique and flavourful mixed drinks and cocktails, and the best piscos can also be enjoyed neat or on the rocks”, says drinks expert Fred Siggins who worked with The Pisco People to develop their portfolio. For example, the oldest and most commonly produced style of pisco in Peru, the nonaromatic quebranta grape creates a pisco that is rich and earthy. The single varietal quebranta produced by Cuatro G’S is complex and flavourful, providing the perfect base for making traditional pisco sours, chilcanos and pisco tonics. In contrast, Viñas de Oro’s Quebranta is more fruit-driven, but still has a great earthy structure for a traditional Pisco Sour or an Apple Twist made with pisco and cloudy apple juice. Expressing a completely different flavour profile, Cuatro G’S Mosto Verde Italia, made from an aromatic Italian grape, produces a pisco with bright floral notes and a well-rounded, smooth mouthfeel. Used in the original Pisco Punch invented in San Francisco’s Bank Exchange Hotel during the California Gold Rush, Healy says, “We’re proud to say that The Pisco People is the only Australian importer of this delicious and historically significant pisco.” The De Carral products in The Pisco People’s portfolio are made by a fourth-generation family of pisqueros and represent the height of sophistication and quality for artisanal craft piscos. The Quebranta offers an intricate fruit nose and an expansive palate full of spices and earthy funk; the Italia is minty and dry with

a fine, elegant structure and beautiful green flavours, perfect in a Southside, while the Acholado is seductively light in flavour, showing excellent minerality, making it perfect for Martinis and other alcohol-forward cocktails. When it comes to premium brands of pisco, Portón ticks all the boxes. Handcrafted in Bodega Hacienda La Caravedo, the oldest working distillery in the Americas, Pisco Portón is one of the most awarded spirits in the world. The Mosto Verde Quebranta is a deluxe option for making a traditional Pisco Sour or for sipping while you enjoy your favourite cheese, chocolate or dessert. The luxury of the packaging backs up the quality of the product in the bottle. Presented in a heavy-footed square bottle that has a clear glass window with a reverse silkscreened graphic of Hacienda La Caravedo, the bottle is a definite attention grabber on the back bar. For more information, visit the website or contact us via email to book in for a tasting or staff training.


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Shoes to last the distance L

ike it or not, the hospitality industry involves being on your feet…a lot! Whether it’s bartending, bar backing, serving tables, bussing, or back of house, 12 to 14 hour shifts with little breaks are not uncommon. So, what shoes should you wear to get you through those long shifts and hours on your feet?


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Antonio Lai’s gold trainers

What is the best type of shoe to wear to work? We asked some of the industry’s finest what kicks they like to rock at work, be it the comfy runner or ever-reliable leather shoe with tough soles. Here’s what they said:

common denominator is definitely water resistance. I learned the hard way through many soggy soles that the usual bar environment is a wet one and considering a shoe’s water resistance is an absolute must behind the bar.

DRINKS WORLD: What type of shoes do you wear for your shift on a daily basis? ALEX ROSS (Operations Manager for Next Week Group): I’m a big fan of skater kicks. They have thick soles that wear well, they’re super comfy, and you can wear them for seriously long shifts. At the moment I’m wearing my beloved Palladium boots, however their soles wear quickly and can be slippery. But seeing as I’m spending more time sitting than standing, it doesn’t seem to matter that much.

DW: Do you prefer to wear runners or leather shoes to work? And why? RINNA: I believe that it depends on which venue I’m working at. If I am at a classic whisky bar, fine dining restaurant, or hotel bar I would definitely wear leather shoes. Whereas, I’d rather wear runners if I’m working at a high-volume venue, pub, or nightclub.

JACK SOTTI (Boilermaker House, Melbourne): Boots all the way, Doc Martens or Timberlands are a good go to. Need strong toes for doing things like lifting kegs etc., and solid arch support.

ANDREW: Generally leather, as I’ve found them more comfortable and easier to keep dry. You miss the comfort of sneakers but you can find some pretty good leather options that will go the distance and not look like nerdy school shoes.

DALE SCHOON (Earl’s Juke Joint, Sydney): Just some trusty Doc Marten 1461’s. JAY KHAN (Foxglove, Hong Kong): Ecco Leather Shoes (comfy and flexible) RINNA KATO (Bartender Consultant and Director of BARPORT Australia): When I was at Blackbird, I used to wear black runners. Blackbird is a high volume venue, so I rather wear something suitable and comfortable for lots of movement. ANDREW BENNETT (Lucky Chan’s, Perth): It varies depending on the venue’s uniform standard but the

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JACK: Leather finish, as they just look a little smarter. Runners are too casual. DALE: Leather. Bobby Carey once gave me a pair of New Balance shoes that didn’t fit him and I was scared it would be a gateway to sneaker collecting. Plus the Docs are waterproof, so no soggy feet when it comes to scrubbing the floor. JAY: Leather. Most of the time I need to walk out of the bar to ask for guests about their drink and service. It looks more professional to wear leather. DW: If you know you’re going to be working long hours, such as an event or double shift, do you change your footwear? ANDREW: Generally no. If I took my shoes off mid shift, the feeling would be too enjoyable to put them back on. Gotta tough it out for that feet-upand-beer-feeling at the end of the night.

JACK: Don’t change footwear but a change of socks is a godsend! DALE: Our shifts are always pretty long, but I tend to get away with wearing the same footwear. RINNA: Sometimes I still have to wear uncomfortable leather shoes for a double shift if I’m working at a venue like a hotel bar just to look more professional. But if the venue or event is more a music festival, I would prefer to wear runners. ALEX: A little hot tip is to buy those gel inner soles you can get from the supermarket and chemist. I swear by them. They are lifesavers, especially if you are working on super hard surfaces (or are ‘blessed’ with shitty flat feet like I am). If I had patience and endurance I’d break in a pair of Doc boots as they can last a lifetime. But I’m not really known for my patience...

Spring into some new kicks Have a work mate with the absolute worst pair of shoes? You know, the ones that are one thread away from falling apart, and look like a Rottweiler pup had a crack at destroying them. Thanks to our lovely friends over at Spring Court, Drinks World are providing one bartender with a brand new pair of kicks. To be in the running take a photo of your workmate’s most haggard and beaten up shoes – those in real need of replacing, and send it in. For bonus points, take a photo of your coworker’s face where we will name and shame them in the next edition of Drinks World! The winning entry will win a pair of Spring Court B2 canvas shoes, valued at $150. Send images and details to PRIZE: The winner will receive a pair of Spring Court B2 Canvas shoes, valued at AUD $150 TERMS AND CONDITIONS: Entry is open to Australian residents only. Prize is a pair of B2 Canvas shoes from Spring Court, and is not able to be traded, taken as cash or put towards store credit. DRINKS WORLD

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The voting for the 2017 edition of T25 Bartenders Hong Kong has now finished, with the Top 25 announced on

For those that weren’t aware, this year’s edition of T25 Hong Kong has slightly different criteria, aimed at showcasing the next generation of bartenders emerging in the country. To be eligible, bartenders must be currently working in a bar and cannot be a bar owner, bar manager or operator, as well as fulfilling a minimum of two shifts per week, and aged under 30. With so many talented bartenders in the city and a progressive and innovative bar scene, it was difficult arriving at the Top 25 to shortlist. Congratulations to all who made the list. As always, the T25 bartenders will be challenged to make a signature cocktail. This year, T25 Hong Kong welcomes Little Creatures as the official brewery sponsor. THANK YOU TO ALL OUR SPONSORS FOR BEING INVOLVED IN T25 HONG KONG FOR 2017


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WORDS ° Lukas Raschilla


ne of the older styles of beer, India Pale Ale (IPA) is a now a staple across bars. While places with limited taps may not go so far as to put an IPA on tap, having a couple of options in packaged form for the hop lover is a necessity. With origins linking to the British Empire, brewed in a fashion to withstand long voyages from the UK to distant parts of the Empire like India, IPAs have a higher alcohol content, IBU, and hoppy, bitter taste.

The category has come a long way, and now features variations on IPAs including citrus and fruits such as grapefruit, pineapple, and tangerine flavours, along with black and coffee IPAs. While it’s impossible for venues to stock endless varieties of beers to please every patron, here are a few that our panel chose as standouts. Having some canned and some bottled choices gives the customer choice if they have a preference. We got together with some of our favourite beer folk to taste some IPAs. These were some of our top choices. The panel featured some of the most knowledgeable beer industry people and included: • IAN KINGHAM, Sales Director - Institute of Beer • NEAL CAMERON, Director of Education - Institute of Beer • DANIELLE ALLEN, Co-Owner, Two Birds Brewing • RICHARD ADAMSON, Co-Owner, Young Henrys • CLINT ELVIN, Co-Owner, Bucket Boys Craft Beer Bottle Shop


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BrewCult Thanks Captain Obvious IPA, Melbourne, VIC Format: Bottle ABV – 5.8% IBU - 40 Thanks Captain Obvious is an American style IPA using simcoe, citra and centennial hops with pine, floral and tropical notes. Neal Cameron said, “You certainly know you’ve drunk an IPA. A real standout, great punchy hops and supportive malt.” Danielle Allen tasted “Big hop aromas, fruit salad and a fresh hop profile.” Clint Elvin commented, “Nice big hop aroma and dank, fresh, piney notes. Good fruity hop flavour with good length. Good, solid IPA.”

Oskar Blues IPA, Colorado, USA Format: Can ABV - 6.43% IBU - 70 Hailing from the Rocky Mountain state of Colorado, Oskar Blues IPA uses Australian hops along with malt barley and red wheat to create a clean malt backbone. Neal Cameron noted a “Well-structured and well-made IPA that is highly drinkable”.

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Batch Brewing Co. West Coast IPA, Sydney, NSW Format: Bottle ABV – 5.8% IBU 80 Batch Brewing Co.’s West Coast IPA is one of the permanent fixtures in its range and is dry on the palate and thirst quenching, made with centennial and chinook hops, which provide a fruit base, while mosaic hops come through with hints of pineapple and tropical stone fruit. Ian Kingham and Danielle Allen both noted that the West Coast IPA was spritzy, while Kingham called it “easy drinking.” Clint Elvin found this beer to be slightly citrusy with nice, well-rounded resin, a bit spicy with a light and slightly bitter aftertaste; “A nice, easy, well-done IPA, NZ style.” Rich Adamson noted that it has a huge NZ hop aroma, fruity and piney, with firm bitterness and balance; “Stands out for using different hops.”

Fixation IPA, Byron Bay, NSW Format: Bottle ABV – 6.4% IBU – 65 Fixation is a true representative of an American style IPA, made with breiss and weyermann malts, simcoe, amarillo, citra and mosaic hops. Ian Kingham enjoyed the light, good hop notes and hints of spice and clean fruit notes and mild finish. Danielle Allen noted “Honey and hop aromas. Tastes of melon and honeydew. Well-balanced.” Neal Cameron said, “A good, full-flavoured IPA. Great example”.

Pirate Life IPA, Adelaide, SA Format: Can ABV – 6.8% IBU – 60 Pirate Life IPA has a round, full-bodied malt character of pale malt, munich and crystal. Made with centennial, riwaka and simcoe hops, it is bright and fruity. Ian Kingham noted lychee, sublet toasty malt with orange, lime and lemon bitterness, and what he called an “Excellent example.” Richard Adamson agreed, noting aromas of pine and honeydew, “Full bitterness with an aftertaste of malt sweetness. An easy drinker.”


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PROWINE ASIA 2017 WORLD’S NO. 1 WINES AND SPIRITS TRADE SHOW COMES TO HONG KONG HONG KONG – PREMIER WINE HUB OF ASIA ProWine is the number one wine and spirits trade fair and largest industry meeting place in the world, and continues to engage and connect a global network of trade professionals. ProWine Asia, the newest addition to the ProWein World Platform, is set to take place in Hong Kong on May 8–11 2017. ProWein Düsseldorf’s size and industry reach

has it ranked as the most important trade show in the world of wines and spirits. The ProWein platform now encompasses the flourishing markets of the Asia-Pacific through a family of wine and spirits trade shows across Shanghai, Singapore and Hong Kong. The international wine industry has shown profound excitement as Hong Kong becomes the newest addition to ProWein’s global family excitement builds as exhibitors and buyers from

various continents hear the news of ProWein World’s pronouncement to incorporate Hong Kong in 2017. HKSAR’s infrastructure, location and free-trading benefits provide a tremendous opportunity for business expansion in Southeast Asia, sparking anticipation among ProWein network’s producers and suppliers who quickly confirm participation, duly keen to partake in the region’s most exciting wines and spirits trade event.

A GLIMPSE OF PROWEIN WORLD ProWein World’s expansion has sparked considerable interest from exhibitors and suppliers searching for new opportunities throughout Asia’s fast-growing markets. ProWein World has effectively abetted exhibitors to enter the fast-evolving wine and spirits marketplace of Mainland China through ProWine China, the annual trade-show taking place at SNIEC in Shanghai. Just as the markets of the surrounding regions continue to develop at break-neck speeds across the Asia-Pacific, the addition of ProWine Asia was a natural and welcoming addition to the list of high quality and

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professional trade shows in the industry. ProWine Asia’s enablement of trade development in the APAC region does so by spanning the affluent trading centre of Singapore and Hong Kong in biennial fashion. Producers and suppliers from around the world come with sourcing and business-growth mindsets, as well as China and Southeast Asia in their crosshairs; the prospect of connecting with the booming markets of China and Southeast Asia is too great to overlook. ProWein World’s expansion evolved quickly into the ProWine Asia biennial trade-shows, which bridge Singapore and Hong Kong – two Southeast Asian economic powerhouses that represent the most open and exuberant trading hubs in Asia for the past 50 years across a multitude of industries. As the pace of buying power, wine knowledge and appetite for wines and spirits consumption increases throughout the Asia-Pacific, the

thriving countries and regions quickly become golden eggs of industry development, climbing quickly to top-priority for producers and suppliers from all corners of the world. Producers and suppliers from the major wine regions of France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Portugal, Austria, Greece, Australia, Chile and Canada quickly confirmed participation.

SOURCING FROM A WORLD OF WINES IN HONG KONG Southeast Asia’s consumption power is coupled with a young generation of savvy wine connoisseurs, tremendously eager to learn, taste and experience the sophistication wrapped around the renewed culture. Trade visitors from China and other parts of Southeast Asia are eager to source from such an international selection of wines and spirits in the tax-free HKSAR, especially following the successful debut of ProWine Asia in Singapore last year.


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Hong Kong is recognised as the premier gateway to a wealth of markets across the Asia-Pacific. News of ProWine Asia 2017 taking place in HKSAR sparked swift confirmation for participation by a world of wine and spirits producers eager to present their products and solutions to a diverse audience of importers and power buyers from Southern China, Macau, Taiwan, South Korea and Japan.

PROGRAMME PACKED WITH AN ALL-STAR CAST ProWine Asia 2017 features an on-site programme filled with renowned opinion leaders, trade organisations and associations including Jancis Robinson’s seminars and hosted tastings, Asia Wine Industry summits by Debra Meiburg, trade forums and seminars by Hong Kong Wine Chamber of Commerce, CRU and Whisky Magazines, with other events and developments to come. The event schedule is an amalgamation of forums, masterclasses and tastings, which are designed to benefit both new and experienced trade professionals. These onsite events focus on a range of topics including under-appreciated

wine varieties and regions, ways in which we can judge certain wines and spirits and retail trends and e-commerce solutions which look forward to the future of an evolving industry. ProWine Asia 2017’s collocation with HOFEX, as the dedicated wine and spirits sector and region’s leading food and hospitality exhibition, promises enormous opportunities for business

connections between the wines, food and hospitality industries. The exciting collaboration is set to generate business synergies between suppliers and importers, while bringing highquality, professional buyers to ProWine Asia.

PROWINE ASIA 2017 VISITOR PRE-REGISTRATION IS ONLINE ProWine Asia 2017 Online Visitor Registration is now officially open and can be accessed through the Visitor Services Section of the ProWine Asia website. Trade visitors are encouraged to preregister for the show to streamline their trade show experience and avoid waiting to access the exhibition. Visitors who register online will receive a complimentary four-day show admission pass to ProWine Asia as well as HOFEX 2017 with one entry badge. A complimentary Buyers’ Guide will also be provided to pre-registered visitors, which contains a full preview of the exhibition and programme highlights. Complimentary Business Matching Services will also be provided. Save time and maximise your trade show experience: pre-register online before visiting ProWine Asia 2017. Further Information:

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RED Storage

and Serving


hether you’re a larger establishment with a dedicated sommelier on deck or a small bar with limited capacity, a tight but ample selection of red wine will be enough to please even the most discerning whiny (winey, sorry). Storage is key to longevity and getting the most out of your wines and serving them in optimum condition. Drinks World spoke to some of the finest sommeliers about red wines, what to stock, correct storage and serving techniques. Shiraz is often the go-to red or house red that will appeal to the majority of customers. Additionally, cabernet sauvignon and pinot noir will cover most bases. For those with more room, cabernet merlot and malbec are great to offer scope. For venues with smaller spaces and storage, stocking as little as three reds can suffice. When asked about which varieties venues should stock, Ian Urqhart, Sommelier at The Avoca Hotel in Victoria’s Pyrenees region said, “I have no particular preference as long as the wine is well made and representative of its origins. That said, our list is almost exclusively local-wine focused because of our position in the heart of a wine region.”

STORAGE Storage can be a difficult one, making sure you have enough to complement a menu and appeal to your market. DRINKS WORLD: What do you believe is the most efficient way to store red wine (particularly wines that are served by the glass)? WALLACE LO, Sommelier at The Park Lane Hotel, Hong Kong: For restaurants, I think it is always best to have a small wine fridge to keep wines by the glass standing in it and I am a strong believer in the Coravin system. For by the bottle wines, I will say the best conditions are to store in the storage of the vendor and I prefer to order more frequently than keep high stock;

I take less risk like damaging the label when pulling wine out in a super packed wine fridge. IAN URQHART, Sommelier at The Avoca Hotel, Pyrenees: We are extremely lucky being located no more than 20 minutes drive from any of our wine suppliers so we don’t need to carry large stock of any particular wine. The method we choose to store each wine depends upon the frequency of sale. High value and older vintage wines are either stored in their cases in a special storage area or racked on their sides in our general cellar room. Faster moving wines and wines that are available for off-premise sale are stored upright on shelving within the cellar room for easy identification and access. Wines that are sold by the glass are also stored in that


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way, but the stock is split so that some bottles are always available in under-bar shelves to be opened for pouring. Open bottles are kept on display on shelving at the back of the bar. ALAN SUN, Hotel Sommelier at the Mira, Hong Kong: I think the best way for wine storage is to keep it in the wine cellar. The most important thing is the ability to maintain a stable temperature, away from sunlight, making sure the wine is free from vibrations and keeping the humidity level stable. The ideal temperature is about 10 to 15 degrees Celsius. Thermal expansion and contraction can happen due to temperature change, accelerating the oxidation of wine. About 70 per cent is the best humidity for wine storage, because if it’s too wet the cork will easily rot and if it’s too dry the cork will lose its elasticity, which in turn means there’s not a tight seal on the bottle. Even wine served by the glass should be stored in a wine cellar.

42 °

DW: How can venue owners make the most of a small storage space? ALAN: For the smaller places, if the red wine is kept for just a few months in storage and there’s no wine cellar, there are ways to store red wine that won’t damage it. Hightemperature damages wine less than extreme temperature changes. To avoid this effect, switch the air conditioning or temperature difference between day and night so it remains stable. Red wine can be kept in a styrofoam box and can also be placed inside a cup of wet sand, keeping a stable humidity level. WALLACE: Have better bar stock management, make sure every item on the list is moving and rather than buying ten wine fridges, it’s better to build a walk-in fridge; it works much better, as the door doesn’t need to keep opening and closing during inventory day.

Wallace Lo, Sommelier at The Park Lane Hotel, Hong Kong

IAN: We don’t really have a storage space problem here but in our previous restaurant things were a bit tighter. We found that the best practise was to only carry as much stock on hand as we believed we would sell in two or three days even if this meant only having one or two bottles of any given wine.


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TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION IN WINE CORAVIN SYSTEM For those who have not seen nor heard of the Coravin system, it is the only tool in the world that allows access to wine from a bottle without pulling out the cork. This technology gives venue operators the ability to pour one glass at a time, while the remaining wine in the bottle is left unspoilt for months or even years to come. The Coravin system uses a medical grade needle and a capsule of argon gas to pour a bottle of wine through the cork. The cork is never removed. This helps prevent oxidation, increasing the longevity of the wine. It accomplishes this by first inserting a hollow needle through the cork. The user then presses a trigger to pressurise the bottle with argon gas. When the user releases the trigger, the wine pours into the glass. The needle is removed from the cork, a naturally elastic and porous material, which then reseals, protecting the wine from oxidation and leaving the remaining wine unaffected. HOW TO USE CORAVIN After selecting a bottle of wine to taste, quickly press the trigger to clear the needle of oxygen. Push the needle down through the cork to access the wine. To pour, tilt the bottle as you would pour wine normally. Press and release the trigger to pour the wine. Repeat when the flow slows or stops. Return bottle to an upright position.

For wines that are served by the glass, I think the best way is to use the Coravin for service. As the Coravin wine system allows you to pour your favourite wine by the glass, without pulling the cork. With no oxidation, this preserves your wine over weeks, months and longer.


Hotel Sommelier at The Mira, Hong Kong


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The death of the female bartender WORDS ° Jenna Hemsworth Being female doesn’t define who I am or what I do. In the bartending community, I’ve noticed massive leaps and bounds in the last five years or so toward vocalisation of gender equality. And, surprisingly, the men are taking the lead on this one. From simple acts such as calling out inappropriate behaviour in a bar when they see it, to actually penning articles on the importance of feminism in our industry, our male peers are making a concerted effort to make sure women are represented fairly and equally. By all means, I’m not saying that we need men to fight our battles here - I’m just saying that as a unified whole, the message is infinitely stronger than if we were to speak alone. We’ve all come across those who still insist on acting inappropriately, whose bigoted belief systems will seem impossible to challenge, but speaking up and speaking out is really the first step in the re-education and rehabilitation of these toxic and out-dated attitudes. Ask any of your female peers, I am positive they will have a litany of horror stories regarding sexism in the workplace. The fact is, we work with alcohol, we serve alcohol, and we deal with intoxicated people on a constant basis; and in an environment where inhibitions are lowered, a lot more problems are likely to surface. A problem such as consent is something we see a lot working behind bars. Keeping our guests safe and providing an environment in which they are able to enjoy themselves is our priority, so speaking up when we see something that’s not quite right is essential.

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Jenna Hemsworth


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Jenna Hemsworth at the Grey Goose Boulangerie Bleue event

In my career, I’ve been highlighted as a ‘female bartender’ more often than I can count. I’ve been outspoken against gender equality in the workplace and more than vocal with my experiences with sexism and discrimination in the workplace and online. I hope that we’re at a point now where my female peers and I don’t need to be referred to as ‘female’ anything, and we don’t have to keep hearing stories of bullying and intimidation, of being relegated to floor staff while the guys ‘man the bar’, or being groped or hit on seen as ‘part of our job’; our position merely nothing more than ‘eye candy’ for our male customers. The simple act of turning down a man’s advances can escalate to being verbally abused and belittled, as has happened to me on multiple occasions behind the bar. My job is to be friendly, conversational and an entertaining host to my guests. This does not automatically grant consent to be hit on or harassed in any situation. Yet somehow, when the girl behind the bar is giving you attention and making your drinks, it is seen as an invitation to make unwanted advances.

Rape culture in the bartending community is also something we really need to address. Who hasn’t heard of a peer complaining of how they were ‘raped last night’, when they really mean they had an incredibly busy service? Rape implies lack of consent. Doing your job and getting paid for it does not. I don’t like being referred to as a female bartender. It implies I’m doing a great job in my field despite my gender. My gender doesn’t affect my profession, how I serve people or how I make drinks. So by highlighting my gender in regards to my achievements, you’re insinuating that somehow makes me more or less worthy of praise for excelling in my field. I sometimes wonder if I would be as successful as I am if I were a male, or more so? Am I singled out because I am one of the minority females? Or am I being held back because of my gender? Honestly, I think it’s time we move on from focussing on this issue altogether and work towards a little bit more respect for everyone across the board.


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et to know industry legends and the faces and minds behind brands and venues, as DW chats to key players from across the region.


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° MEET °




n his role as head of operation at The Paddington in Sydney, Sam Egerton, along with Toby Marshall and the talented bar staff at Charlie Parker’s design the cocktail menu. Utilising technological innovations to create in-house infusions, along with native foraged ingredients, Charlie Parker’s put their own spin on classics as well as create signature bespoke small-batch drinks. Drinks World sat down with Sam to chat about his approach to cocktail innovation.

DRINKS WORLD: What does cocktail innovation mean to you? SAM EGERTON: One of the core beliefs of Charlie Parker’s is that ‘We Always Strive For Originality’ - this doesn’t mean that we want to create something that no one has ever done before, but rather that we constantly look for ways to improve on what we do at Charlie Parker’s - be that service, product or otherwise. I think that innovation in this sense is intrinsic to life at Charlie Parker’s, it keeps the team motivated and engaged as nothing is left to sit still. DW: One of the ways businesses can differentiate themselves is through innovation. Was that the plan for the new offering at Charlie Parker’s? SE: Charlie Parker’s drinks concept is a collaboration of ideas, with a lot of roots in the kitchen. Influenced in concept by the French botanical drawing to delineate flavour expectations (from lighter fruitier flavours down to dark and bitter), as well as representing a top to tail approach to using produce.

One of the in-house infusions at Charlie Parker’s The menu is constantly evolving and lead by the season with ingredients used when they are in their peak season. We utilise a technical approach to deconstructing ingredients and reassembling them into clean-lined and full flavoured drinks. DW: Do you mind mentioning some of the innovative elements and the approach you took in capturing the flavours of unique and unusual ingredients? SE: Due to the close proximity of some very talented chefs we have access to rotary evaporators, vacuum chambers, a blast chiller and variety of other pieces of equipment that help us execute flavour. This knowledge, technique and technical approach has allowed us to include beeswax, schist, sea succulents, old books and a variety of other left of center items to create a flavour experience. DW: Is there still room for innovation in cocktails in the future? SE: I think innovation in drinks should be more centred with the bartender themselves. It is time for us to challenge our industry and the way we treat it and ourselves. We have so much potential for positive change and effect on the industry and the broader community, I think we need to realise this.


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ee Applbaum, Global Chief Marketing Officer at Patrón Spirits International was recently in Hong Kong and caught up with Drinks World’s Danny Yang to chat about tequila, the market in South East Asia and the Patrón Perfectionists Cocktail Competition.

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DANNY YANG: What’s your target demographic and why is Hong Kong an important market for you? LEE APPLBAUM: It’s somewhat difficult to define our target demographic as Patrón tequila appeals to so many different people. Our consumer is one who appreciates high-quality, ultra-premium and artisanal spirits. We aren’t simply targeting tequila drinkers, but rather everyone who enjoys sophisticated, handcrafted spirits and cocktails. And for that reason, Hong Kong is a very important market for us because consumers here are on the leading edge of trends in fashion and food and in business and industry. Hong Kong is actually one of the first markets where Patrón invested in Asia, close to ten years ago when we first began marketing our products in the region. DY: Drinks World caught up with you while you were in Australia at the Patrón Perfectionists Cocktail Competition. Are you planning on launching the same or similar competition in Hong Kong and/or South East Asia? LA: Asia Pacific is a critically important region and so we’re delighted to expand the Perfectionists program into five focus markets including Hong Kong, Australia, South Korea, Japan and New Zealand. DY: Do you feel the Hong Kong trade (bartenders) and consumers have the foundational understanding of your core expressions – Silver, Reposado and Añejo? LA: In general, brown spirits dominate Asia as consumers and the trade are more familiar with whiskies and brandies. And for that reason, our aged marks – Patrón Reposado and Patrón Añejo – should be particularly appealing here. But of course, there is a need for further education on the tequila category and what makes Patrón so unique within the category. To help do that, we’ve developed an online education platform called Academia Patrón, which we gladly make available to the trade (who in turn can help educate their customers), and that has certainly proven to be effective. DY: Which expressions are you seeing real growth of in Hong Kong? LA: Patrón Silver continues to drive growth in Hong Kong because it is a great spirit base for cocktails and cocktails of course, are growing in popularity here. Patrón Añejo is doing well here too, with its appeal to brown spirit drinkers. DY: Do you see any market opportunities for the brand? LA: Absolutely. Hong Kong will always be a market for high-end products, and an ultra-premium brand like Patrón is a perfect fit in the market. DY: What’s next for Patrón in Hong Kong and globally? LA: We’re proud that Patrón has been so successful in Hong Kong; it’s popular among the trade and consumers here. And so, of course we’ll continue to invest and grow our brand here. Also, you’ll continue to see more globally aligned executions in the market and across the region, such as our Patrón Secret Dining Society program, our Art of Patrón event series, and other initiatives.


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aye Chen, bar manager at Speak Low in Shanghai caught up with Drinks World’s Danny Yang to talk about Patrón, bartending, mentors and the industry. Faye recently created a Patrón cocktail menu for Flint Grill & Bar and Bar Q88 at the JW Marriott in Hong Kong.

Faye 50 °



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Faye’s signature Crack of Dawn cocktail

DANNY YANG: Tell us a little about yourself? FAYE CHEN: I’m originally from Taiwan and I started in the industry around eight years ago. I used to work in a dive bar and there was a party where my boss hired a flair bartender to put a show on the stage. I was so impressed that I asked the flair bartender: “Where did you learn this?” He gave me a card so I found the teacher and that’s basically how I started in the industry. DY: Tell us a little bit about Speak Low? FC: Speak Low is a speakeasy style bar and we’ve been open for almost three years. It’s running quite well and we’ve made it into The World’s 50 Best Bars list. We focus on handcrafted cocktails and we have two different concept bars, one is what I would call American style and one is a more Japanese/British style of bar. DY: Tell us something about your job that inspires you day-to-day? FC: The luckiest thing with this industry is that it gives me the chance to meet a lot of people. I get the chance to talk to people, I get the chance to hear their stories and it makes me want to discover more and learn more. Customers, people around me and other bartenders inspire me.

DY: Have you had a great mentor in the industry? If so, what advice did they give you that you still work and live by today? FC: There are a lot of good bartenders and mentors in this industry. Shingo Gokan, my boss, stands out for me. He taught me a lot of skills and how to run a bar, but most importantly, he taught me how to be a decent bartender. Being a decent bartender is not just about making great cocktails, it’s about your attitude, for example how you talk to people, how you treat industry friends, and how you manage yourself, both mentally and physically. How you manage yourself when you’re under a lot of pressure and how you behave when you’ve got a super bad hangover. Those are the things he taught me. Even though I’m a champion in the competition, he once said that when people start looking up to you, you have to push yourself more and always keep improving. DY: You’re in Hong Kong creating your signature Patrón cocktails. Have you created the cocktail specifically to suit the local palate profile? FC: This time I prepared four cocktails for Patrón, all based on dishes I have tried before. I feel that it’s interesting to turn a dish into a drink. I’ve added some Asian concepts and flavours like Sichuan pepper, cilantro, chestnut and oolong

tea, so when the customer drinks it they can taste similar flavours to the dishes. Hong Kong is similar to Shanghai in that it is an international city with western influence, so with the drinks I added Asian ingredients. DY: From the Patrón portfolio do you have a favourite expression? FC: This is a really hard question! If I really have to choose one, I would say Patrón XO Café because this product, for me, is great and every time I serve it to a customer I can see they are easily satisfied. It’s also a good base that I can use in many different cocktails. DY: And finally, what’s your favourite Patrón cocktail after a long shift? FC: As bartenders we always like to keep it simple, especially after a long shift so a drink like Patrón Silver and soda is great. Personally, I like anything Old Fashioned, so I’d make a Patrón Añejo Old Fashioned. Faye’s signature Patrón cocktails are available at Flint Grill & Bar and Bar Q88 until March 23, 2017.


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s e i d a L in Liquor ° MEET °


he industry can be a fast paced environment, whether you’re behind the stick, bar backing, managing venues, brewing, winemaking or distilling (or a combination of these). Drinks World wanted to get some insight from some of the most talented ladies in the industry from Australia and South East Asia. From inspiration to mentoring and everything they love and don’t love about the drinks industry.

Symphony Loo, Bar Manager, Neon Pigeon, Singapore

DRINKS WORLD: Tell us something about your job that inspires you day-to-day. GEMMA DUFF: The everyday people who walk into the bar and sit with us. It sounds horribly clichéd and sick worthy, but having taken a few months off from serving and getting back into the swing of things now, I realised what a privilege it is to hear people’s story, to be the person at the end of someone’s day. In some ways, it’s the relationship we are all looking for, someone to take care of us, make us laugh and pour us a drink. Besides that, it’s the people who take huge strides and effort to create something – be that alcohol brands, creative marketing, bars that inspire us. It is unbelievably hard to put yourself out there, create and hope someone else will believe in the same dream. SYMPHONY LOO: I’m passionate about flavour, cooking and making cocktails. We have a great bar and kitchen team so we work together to make an exciting menu. This is our goal day-to-day, and I just want to learn more and implement it. I’m also passionate about hospitality, and making a cocktail that the customer loves is a huge reward. Gemma Duff – Marketing Manager, The West Winds Gin

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Cherry Lam, Brand Ambassador, Diageo Portfolio, Moët Hennessey Diageo Hong Kong

Jemima McDonald, Bar Manager at Earl’s Juke Joint

HARRIET LEIGH: I come into work with the smell of New Make wafting in the air. I get to taste, smell and talk about booze all day long. And now, after 18 years of late nights and weekend work I’m a day worker. And I love it. I get to go to weddings! Birthday parties! Bar Mitzvahs! And I get to harass people on the other side of the bar finally. My new career has seen me thrown out of some of Sydney’s finest establishments. DW: Have you ever had a mentor or been part of a group or program that has supported you in your career as a female bartender? CHERRY LAM: Tony Conigliaro – The key person of the Drink’s factory, a pioneering team of a drinks consultancy, which has collaborated with chefs, perfumers, chocolatiers and designers. It has been an honour to work for them in London, to see how to manage some trendy concept bars such as, 69 Colebrook Row, Bar Termini, the Zetter Townhouse and the new bar – Untitled. It was also a pleasure to work in Jason Atherton’s restaurant as a head bartender at Blind Pig. Last but not least, my first mentor who inspired me and gave me the chance to take the next step in my career – Antonio Lai from Tastings Group. I’ve always kept a little space in my heart for my home, Quinary! GEMMA DUFF: I helped Mitch Wilson put together the Academy of Bartenders and it’s been something I’m immensely proud to be involved in. It’s about being all inclusive and attracting everyone from bar-backs to bar

owners, to hear others’ stories and further their learning. I am also a huge advocate for Coleman’s Academy and everything Paige Aubort does for the industry. There was much hype and criticism at the start, and I sat on the fence for a long time about how I felt about having a female-based program. But at the end of the day everything Paige puts out is extremely positive and is helping to keep females in the industry for longer, it’s hard to be critical of anything that is projecting positivity, creativity and strength. KINO SOH: Hannah Waters created Bar Belles and I think things are going well. Within the industry itself, there’s all the support you need. And there is more and more shout out for women to enter competitions. As the industry grows, I’m sure more challenges will be encountered, so I think the only thing left to do is to create an environment where we can come together, share those challenges and look for ways to overcome them. KATE MCGRAW: I’ve been lucky in that every bar program I’ve been a part of has placed such a huge emphasis on ‘genderless’ training. At Lotus Group I’m lucky to have two amazing mentors in Tara Sullivan and Annette Lacey, both of whom have incredible industry pedigree and who really put the time into developing my colleagues and me. JEMIMA MCDONALD: I have attended Coleman’s Academy, and it was definitely uplifting to hear other established and

successful women tell their stories. I guess my personal mentors have been the guys that trained me up at Earl’s, namely Pasan Wijesena, Dale Schoon, Bede Sincalir etc., and before that, the Swillhouse team. I like the thought of your own colleagues mentoring, encouraging and teaching each other, and I’ve been lucky enough to always find work in super nurturing environments. SYMPHONY LOO: Yeah for sure. My former Bar Manager at Four Seasons taught me not only cocktail skills and techniques but the whole experience; the flavour, the appearance. And then after that when I came to Neon Pigeon, Rohit Roopchand, taught me all about the business. It’s not only about making cocktails, but how to run a business. The two of them have inspired me greatly. DW: With your expertise and years of experience in the industry, have you taken on a mentor role for any bartenders, either through the workplace or via other initiatives?


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LEFT: Harriet Leigh, Venue Manager, Archie Rose Distilling Co RIGHT: Kate McGraw, Bar Operations Manager, Lotus Dining Group

KATE MCGRAW: I think it’s strange to call oneself a mentor. With that said, in a lot of ways I’ve become ‘cool Aunty Kate’ for a lot of them – we’ll have a great time but I’ll throw in a wedge of wisdom here and there. My whole approach to training is empowerment; I see my job more as helping young bartenders figure out the way they want to bartend and then trying to help them carve their paths with not only my knowledge, but also the knowledge of the friends I have in the industry. I think the initiatives like Coleman’s Academy are great, and Paige Aubort is a force of nature. It’s so great for up and coming bartenders to have such accessibility to strong role models – it’s something that I wish had been around when I started out. SYMPHONY LOO: We always get together to support each other because we work for different bars. The schedule is very tough, but we try to meet on Sundays or after work. Hannah Waters also created a female bartender community called the Bar Belles. She organises masterclasses and events. And even though she is moving to New Zealand, we are going to try and keep Bar Belles going. HARRIET LEIGH: All managers are to some degree mentors. At Archie Rose, I have the least amount of time to train staff of any job

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I’ve had previously. I am in the office for a large amount of my week. But I like setting challenges for my staff. There is nothing more satisfying than watching my junior staff develop their skills. While I know Coleman’s Academy is a mentoring program, I taught people how to catch spiders, so I don’t think that counts. DW: What do you think are the current challenges facing female bartenders? KATE MCGRAW: I feel like there’s still a void in terms of information and support for young women who are looking to make a career behind the bar. There are some excellent bar managers working who treat their female bartenders exactly the same as their male counterparts, but there is an equal number of bar managers who still think that women can’t bar back because lifting cases of beer and moving kegs around is ‘dude work’. Our industry is lacking female creativity and knowledge because women still struggle to get their foot in the door at the ground level. JEMIMA MCDONALD: Recently I have had trouble finding somewhere to stash my bar blade when I don’t have a back pocket, and trying to not sweat my liquid eyeliner off. Also, it’d be nice if there were more of us! I guess it can be hard to be seen and heard when the industry is so male dominated, and sometimes

it really can feel like a man’s world. However, in saying that, it’s up to the individual to work hard, and hard work pays off. SYMPHONY LOO: When I started in Four Seasons as a bar back it was quite tough. I mean two years ago there were maybe 10 female bartenders working in Singapore. At the hotel, customers didn’t always take me seriously until I made a drink. But sometimes I didn’t even get the chance to make a drink. In this industry you have to prove yourself. For chefs, people look at the menu and order the food, there’s no face-to-face. For bartenders it’s different. You have to encourage and actually sell customers to drink your cocktails. That’s another challenge. I think nowadays it’s getting better and better. KINO SOH: When I first started, maybe once or twice when I was running the floor, customers would assume I was a waistress, not a bartender. And then I would have to explain that we are all bartenders. Some women have faced challenges though. One of the Highball girls told me last year when she finished school and started applying for bartending jobs, they told her that only boys can apply for the position and girls can be servers. So we still need to try and balance things out. GEMMA DUFF: I don’t believe there are so


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many challenges specific to female bartenders in the current city based environment I am in. I do acknowledge, however, that further out, and in certain groups, just getting to be a bartender and not a door girl is still a real fight. We do have lots of challenges facing the bartending community as a whole though, one’s I think are starting to be addressed which is great to see. Mental Health, physical health, creating a family and staying in the industry, relationships and how to forge a long-term career are the big topics at the moment. We have got to stop selfdestructing one of the best chances we’ve got of making the world a better place. DW: Do you think the male bartending community is supportive of female bartenders? SYMPHONY LOO: Customers start to accept female bartenders because people get lots of information about them winning competitions, and they start to take us more seriously. And male bartenders help us as well. They are more open to us entering the competitions and the events. And they encourage us to work together. The brands are getting behind us too. So, for example, me, Hannah Waters, Christyne Lee and Charmaine Thio are now members of the St Germain Sisters, which was organised by Bacardi. GEMMA DUFF: Absolutely. I think there is still some debate around the fact it is difficult for some men to see what we see, they simply haven’t had the same experiences and it isn’t obvious to them what is happening. I think it’s super important we speak up, put our hands up and start talking about all the little ways misogyny still exists. In saying that, all the men in my life are extremely supportive of everything I’ve ever wanted to do, but then again I don’t tend to surround myself with men that aren’t. We are kidding ourselves if we think we don’t still have a long way to go. Cue Trump election. JEMIMA MCDONALD: Personally, I have always felt supported. I also work with the most genuinely lovely guys in the world, so maybe I have been spoilt? Often we get people come into Earl’s and comment on me being the only female bartender, and my response to that is that we would hire more girls in a heartbeat if they came through the door asking for a job!

Kino Soh, Owner of Highball, Singapore Sadly that just doesn’t happen often enough. In my experience though, I haven’t had many situations in which I have been made to feel inferior or burdened by my gender. DW: Who are some of the up-and-coming female bartenders we should know about that are currently kicking ass behind the stick? CHERRY LAM: Amanda Wan of The Tastings Group has always been kicking ass. She was also the Malaysian Champion of World Class 2010. It is a great pleasure having her in Hong Kong to share her passion and knowledge to our community. Beckaly Franks, the owner of Pontiac, one of the most famous spots in Central, has trained some of the top female bartenders in town, her big personality has a big influence on the industry. KATE MCGRAW: I have to give a shout out to our guns behind the bar at Lotus Dumpling Bar – Sarah, Julia, Sandy and Rachel. It’s an all female team out there and they smash it out of the park every day of the week they are behind that bar! GEMMA DUFF: There are so many bartenders now who are putting everything they have into creating a career in hospitality. I watch Alissa

Gabriel make drinks and am inspired by her love for it every time, Mary White has been killing it forever. JEMIMA MCDONALD: I know a lot of amazing, talented girls in this industry! Back in my Frankie’s days we had a little gang of babes called Vagina Island, which we have managed to maintain to this day. Maria Hanley is killing it over at Bloodwood, and so Tara Bullard down at Dulcie’s in Merimbula. Phoebe McWhirter isn’t behind the stick anymore, but is an amazing big boss lady at Stanbuli. I am so proud of every girl that gets out there, puts their head down and grinds in this industry, it’s hard, but the venues we are in wouldn’t be the same without us. HARRIET LEIGH: Jemima from Earl’s is always a treat. All the good-time girls at Big Poppa’s, but especially Shay Chamberlain, Mary from Lobo Plantation, Thalita at Bulletin Place, Sabs from Frankie’s isn’t exactly up and coming but she kicks more ass than anyone else in town. And how lucky is Sydney and Hubert Restaurant and Bar that we managed to steal Jenna Hensworth from the Melbournians! I’ve also go three killer women working the bar at Archie Rose; Federica Thorn, Hayley Skeggs, and Cassie Field.


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Leo Gutkowski

Bartender and Owner of Mezcalito, Hong Kong

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eo, a British ex-pat who has been in Hong Kong for 12 years has opened Mezcalito, a bar dedicated to agave spirits. After managing the bar at dragon-i for eight years, Leo wanted to create a space that doesn’t resemble any other bars in the city, taking inspiration from Downtown Los Angeles and West Hollywood bars. While his spirit of choice has always been tequila, he is beginning to learn more about and appreciate mezcal.

DRINKS WORLD: Can you describe the venue to me, in terms of décor and set up? LEO GUTKOWSKI: Our venue is open-plan and spacious. We have huge floor-to-ceiling windows maximising the great views of the CBD and offer a partial harbour view. Inside we have a cool mixture of artwork on the walls and comfortable lounge seating areas. We took inspiration from bars in downtown Los Angeles, West Hollywood and Beverly Hills to create a relaxing, low-key, chilled spot. DW: At any one time, approximately how many tequila and mezcal bottles would you stock on the back bar? LG: We offer roughly 25 different mezcals and 25 tequilas. Approximately 50 per cent of our agave spirits are sourced locally from Hong Kong suppliers, while the rest we bring in from Los Angeles giving us a much wider selection than most places. DW: Is the focus of Mezcalito on mezcal and tequila based cocktails, or more towards enjoying the finer aspects of the agave spirits and serving them to sip on and savour? LG: We kind of have two goals. Tequila is already a well-known spirit in this town but most people only know about the lower quality or commercial brands, and we want to show that tequila is so much more than that. We offer a wide range of very fine tequilas that are ‘extra aged’ and even ‘extra, extra aged’ that are definitely not for shooting! The second part of our master plan is to promote and generate awareness for tequila’s lesser-known cousin, mezcal. We aim to show how mezcal is a versatile beverage and not only has a great flavour when consumed straight up, but demonstrates how well it mixes in cocktails.

DW: What are the most popular expressions of tequila and mezcal at your venue? LG: At Mezcalito, our preferred way of serving mezcal is straight up. We do offer it in various classic and house cocktails, but we really believe mezcal is best enjoyed as it comes. We brought over a whole bunch of copita glasses from Mexico to serve it in. We serve it the right way; mezcal in a copita and with a wedge of fresh orange sprinkled with agave worm salt. We also offer homemade Sangrita for tequila drinkers. Sangrita is a tomato and citrus drink with a spicy kick that accompanies good tequila and is used to balance your palate. DW: Do you have a personal favourite agave spirit you like to consume? LG: I’ve always been a tequila guy. It’s a great drink for all sorts of occasions and I like the different tastes between all the levels of ageing. My current go-to tequila is Clase Azul Reposado. I am very much a mezcal guy too and my current favourite is Bruxo No 3. DW: What type of demographic are you seeing in your venue? What is the demand like in Hong Kong for tequila and mezcal? LG: We’re seeing a really broad range of people come though our doors which is really encouraging because it’s good to see that tequila and mezcal is a drink enjoyed by people from all walks of life. Each week we do get pockets of people come in who love tequila and mezcal so much that they even know more than we do and it’s great sitting and drinking with them and learning new things.


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arry Guevara is a Mixologist at Liquid Concepts. Having worked in the industry for 13 years, and noticing the negative connotations attached to bartending in his home country, Larry founded a consultant and training firm. His mission is to make bartending known as a respectable profession in the Philippines, and he is well on his way to achieving that goal. Read on to find out more…

DRINKS WORLD: Tell us a little about yourself, how you got started in the industry? LARRY GUEVARA: I got into bartending by way of divine intervention. In 1999, I received my first college degree in Philosophy after eight years in the seminary (yes, I was supposed to be a Catholic Priest). However, I decided to take up another degree, which was Hotel and Restaurant Management with the dream of becoming a Chef. During our bar management subject, I saw one classmate flip a bottle and that completely blew my mind. I told myself that I needed to learn that too. From that point on I started practising some basic flair moves and studying the history of bartending in general. It felt like I was home. I later realised I found my true calling, not in the kitchen but behind the bar. DW: You do bar consulting for Liquid Concepts, what services do you provide? LG: Liquid Concepts started as a fun way of channelling our creative juices. Our tagline, “Our Ideas. Your Libations,” was actually inspired by Bruce Lee and the Oriental philosophy of “being water” and learning to adapt to all situations. Myself, along with my better half Sharleen manage our start-up company. I’m head consultant and she runs the marketing side and often acts as my guinea pig, drink stylist and barback! We consult for restaurants and bars that need assistance in all aspects of bar design and set-up, menu planning and beverage development, bartender and mixology training, small group and corporate events, product and launch activation. Simply put, anything and everything related to the beverage industry. DW: And how are you building the local bar scene in the Philippines? LG: During the last two decades, the bartending craft has been treated unfairly as an underrated job here in the Philippines. People have different,

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if not negative connotations that if you are a bartender, you are either a drunkard or a person who is too lazy to get a real job. Our travels and experiences abroad, however, made us look at the local bartending scene from an outsider’s perspective, and we thought ‘What more can we do to change people’s minds?’ So apart from being a consultant, we also advocate the Filipino style of bartending and hospitality. We help train a new breed of bartenders by encouraging them to take pride in their chosen craft, and enjoy what they are truly passionate about. We also create awareness among bartenders and consumers about the use of local products. We believe our country is a rich agricultural land that is abundant with a myriad of products that are often neglected. By encouraging bartenders to use more local products, we are also giving back to farmers and supporting their sense of pride. And finally, we channel our advocacy through seminars and workshops at different colleges and universities offering bar management subjects. In fact, I was a part-time teacher at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines for almost two years. This involved drink demonstrations and flair shows. DW: There are two Manila bars on Asia’s Top 50 Bar list for 2016, which is a great achievement. What’s the next venue to keep an eye on? LG: The owners and bartenders at ABV and the Curator are all good friends, and these guys have really placed Filipino bartending on the map. I mean the level of craftsmanship and hospitality they provide to their guests is top-notch. Truth be told, there are also lots of underrated cocktail bars that deliver exceptional drinks. I would look out for Bitters Bar, Raging Bull, and Buddha Bar.


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at, drink and be merry. DW brings you the slickest venues from around the region, both well known and off the beaten path.


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ove it or hate it, there’s nowhere quite like Dubai – exciting, brash, seemingly changing by the second. In fact, stand still long enough and someone will surely build a speciality restaurant or kick ass vegan juice bar around you, which is convenient, if a little confusing at times. However, more than anywhere else, it pays to know where you’re going, as local alcohol laws restrict the visibility and even the location of licensed premises, making it unlikely you’ll just stumble upon the next big thing.

AJÍ Set on the trunk of the iconic Palm Jumeirah with a slice of perfect golden sand right outside, Ají serves Nikkei cuisine – a heavenly blend of Japanese and Peruvian, which might well be your next foodie love affair. With an environment that’s best described as quirky, the awardwinning bartenders here blur the line between a mixologist and mad scientist, and they even have a Saké sommelier on hand should you need them. Address: Unit 6 & 7, Club Vista Mare, Palm Jumeirah, Dubai T: +971 (0)4 552 0244 W: Opening Hours: 12pm – 12am

COCKTAIL-KITCHEN With a bright, minimalist interior and staff that redefine great service, Cocktail-Kitchen is another independent gem, this time specialising in all things Vermouth - from refreshing Spritz to classic aperitivos, perhaps with a side order of Padron peppers or fig and blue cheese bruschetta thrown in for good measure. There’s even a special area where you can book a private cocktail lesson and a welcome non-smoking policy at the bar, as smoking indoors is still, unfortunately, commonplace in the Emirate. Address: Armada BlueBay Hotel, Cluster P, Jumeirah Lake Towers (JLT), Dubai T: +971 (0)56 828 0727 W: Opening Hours: 5pm – 2am

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WILD AND THE MOON One of Dubai’s most popular, and indeed most hipster café’s, Wild and the Moon specialises in all things healthy, in particular delicious, organic cold pressed juices and an unrepentant passion for all things matcha. Added to which there’s absolutely no chance of a body blow to your karma involved in a visit. Address: Alserkal Avenue. Street 8, Unit H77, Al Quoz 1, Dubai T: +971 (0)4 343 3392 W: Opening Hours: 8am – 7pm


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COMMON GROUNDS It might seem strange to go for coffee in a mall, but then most malls don’t offer an indoor ski field. Founded by two pioneers of the ever evolving Dubai coffee scene, Common Grounds is a Melbourne style café that’s almost supernaturally laid back, except where it comes to the dark gold on offer. True coffee lovers will adore ‘the magic’, a spin on the classic flat white, and if you’re hungry the food is hearty, healthy and appealing. If that’s not enough, you’ll also be supporting a small independent business thriving in this super competitive industry. Address: Level 2, Mall of the Emirates (near Vox Cinema), Al Barsha, Dubai T: +971 (0)50 497 1094 W: Opening Hours: 8am – 10pm

SIDDHARTA LOUNGE Located on the roof of the Grosvenor House Hotel with near endless views of the Arabian Gulf, Siddharta Lounge is the perfect spot for a cold sundowner at the end of the day. Managing to be both chilled and sophisticated at the same time, you can relax on a sofa, or at the bar, or on the super-popular terraced steps spread out amongst comfy cushions as you watch the sun slink away below the marina. Address: Grosvenor House, Al SufouhRoad, Dubai Marina T: +971 (0)4 317 6000 W: Opening Hours: 12:30pm – 12am

MAINE OYSTER BAR Tucked away in an underground car park, Maine Oyster Bar takes some finding, and even if you know it’s there it can be a test of your sanity to find the door. Once inside, however, you’re treated to classic cocktails made by staff that seem genuinely (almost worryingly) pleased to be there and a bar that looks like it’s escaped from a New Orleans hotel. If you’re hungry and naturally ambitious, try Neptune’s Folly – a three-tier tower of prawns, snow crab, scallop ceviche, and of course the freshest oysters. Address: Ground Floor, The DoubleTree by Hilton JBR, Dubai T: +971 (0)4 457 6719 W: Opening Hours: 12pm – 12am


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WESLODGE Serving modern Canadian cuisine (it turns out there really is such a thing) Weslodge’s décor could best be described as tastefully random – stag antlers, red leather furniture, monochrome photographs of craggy pioneers and more paintings than you’d ever think were plausible for a single wall. The drinks, however, are simply out of this world - a mix of classic cocktails and intricate house creations that will blow your mind, made by some of the best and most tattooed bartenders in the city. Plus on the 68th floor the whole experience comes with a side order of sweeping city views. Address: Tower B, 68th Floor, JW Marriott Marquis, Business Bay, Dubai T: +971 (0)4 560 1700 W: Opening Hours: 11:30am – 2am

% ARABICA With an interior that’s minimalist bordering on basic, this iconic, Japanese roaster has recently opened a branch at the Dubai Mall next to the aquarium (yes, this mall has an aquarium.) Practically bubbling with coffee obsession, in search of that perfect cup they grow their own beans, ship them, roast them and even solely export a precision espresso machine ominously called the Slayer. Both busy and friendly all day long, it smells irresistible and offers hands-down some of the best coffee in town. Address: Shop 167, Ground Floor, The Dubai Mall, Downtown, Dubai T: +971 (0)4 331 1071 W: Opening Hours: 9am–12am

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RÜYA A visit to Rüya is the perfect way to discover locally inspired flavours while enjoying the comforts of one of the city’s most talked about new restaurants. The Anatolian offerings highlight the best of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean ingredients. The wine list boasts ancient wine world treasures that are exclusively imported from Turkey. Flavours of rose, hibiscus, honey and spices set-off the signature cocktails. Their use of the Coravin system means they have extraordinary wines available by the

glass. Inside, painted ceramic walls and colourful cushions provide a rustic juxtaposition to the polished service, and the terrace that overlooks Dubai Marina is a great place to migrate to as the nightlife picks up late in the evening. Address: 1st Floor, Lobby Level, Grosvenor House, Al Sufouh Road, Dubai Marina, Dubai T: +971 (0)4 3999 123 W: Opening Hours: 6pm – 1am


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Mezcalito Mezacalito is Hong Kong’s lounge bar and agave spirits mecca, housing the city’s largest selection of tequila and mezcal. Located high above Central with jetliner views, Mezcalito provides a relaxed environment for after work drinks, or a casual tipple. House crafted cocktails on offer here feature fresh flavours and ingredients such as elderflower, lemongrass, citrus fruits, ginger and berries. A short but ample list of wines and beers (cerveza of course!) round out the drinks list. Check out Mezcalito for all your agave needs.

ADDRESS: 27/F 18 On Lan Street Central, Hong Kong T: +852 2668 8444 W: Opening Hours: Monday-Saturday: 12pm-late Closed Sunday

The Elysian Whisky Bar K

elvin Low and Yao Wong (both formerly of Whisky and Alement and Bar White Oak Melbourne) have opened a cosy neighbourhood whisk(e)y venue, The Elysian Whisky Bar in Melbourne’s trendy Fitzroy. The decor is based around Japanese bars with dark timber panels, a stunning Californian Redwood bartop, and a backbar with a selection that’s second to none.

Located on Brunswick Street, Elysian features a very modest but eclectic selection of whiskies from around the world. The primary focus here is independent bottlings of whiskies. Imagine drinking a Glenlivet, but from a single barrel, possibly finished in a red wine cask, and bottled at cask strength. The beauty of independent bottlings is they offer a whole new range of flavours and possibilities that do not exist within the official bottlings of a certain brand. Other than whiskies, there are seasonal fruit and herb focused cocktails, an ample wine list and a small constantly rotating beer list. The smaller capacity of the bar is specifically designed to enhance the personal interaction between patrons and the bartender. There are a small offering of snack items focusing on charcuterie and cheeses that will be on frequent rotation. ADDRESS: 113 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy VIC T: (03) 9417 7441 W: Opening Hours: Tuesday-Saturdays: 4:30pm-1am


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Long Chim Melbourne C

hef David Thompson has opened his first Melbourne restaurant on the Crown Riverwalk. This is the third Long Chim restaurant in Australia, hot on the heels of the successful openings in Perth and Sydney. Long Chim translates to “come and try”, and Thompson invites all to taste Long Chim’s food, which is true to the streets and markets of Bangkok. Featured dishes include charred rice noodles with beef and basil and Siracha sauce, prawn laksa, chive cakes, green papaya salads, grilled pork and banana roti – there’s something for everyone. On the drinks front, the man behind the drinks at the Perth and Sydney locations, Long Chim’s Head of Beverages, James Connolly has developed the drinks list, which includes signature

cocktails such as the rum-based Bangkok Painkiller and gin-based 555. Connolly’s unique Or Tor Kor Mule concoction is one for the ginger lovers, consisting of ginger beer, vodka infused with kaffir lime zest and Thai bitters. The addition of Long Chim to Crown Melbourne continues to take the premium dining offerings in the precinct to another level, and will join the list of acclaimed restaurants by the likes of Heston Blumenthal, Nobu Matsuhisa, Neil Perry and Guillaume Brahimi.

Address: Crown Melbourne, 8 Whiteman St, Southbank VIC T: (03) 8582 3082 W: au/restaurants/premium/long-chim/ info-booking Opening Hours: Monday - Sunday: 12pm - late

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Stomping Ground Brewing Co is the epitome of Melbourne culture, where you can find a freshly brewed beer in an authentic space with great food and pretty great people. The industrial and rustic space that once was a sawtooth roofed warehouse, Stomping Ground has re-established their venue as a local hub for all, pleasing to both young and old. Community is key to Stomping Grounds’ success; communal tables and a kids playhouse made from recycled materials exercises the venues ‘come one, come all’ theme. The venue is built around the brewery’s tanks whilst all communal areas are set around the central bar featuring custom tap fronts and hand pumps serving 26 unique Stomping Ground brews. The venue is bright and open with a retractable roof above the beer garden bringing natural light to the entire venue. The craft beer speaks for itself in taste and quality, and the food is simple and done extremely well, providing a mix of pub classics and new favourites in the menu. Address: 100 Gipps St Collingwood T: (03) 9415 1944 W: Opening Hours: Monday-Sunday: 11:30am till late


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White Rabbit Cocktail Room O

n Northbourne Avenue in the heart of the Canberra lies White Rabbit Cocktail Room. A world away from the norm, this Alice in Wonderland inspired cocktail bar has created quite a stir, breaking away from the flurry of whisky bars and modern pubs.

Owner Nick Tuckwell said he wanted the concept to be an alternative to what the current market had to offer. “Most of the local venues in Canberra are male-focused, whisky bars or speakeasies. These places are great, but I wanted to create a space that was designed for the female market,” Tuckwell said. “The other point of difference for White Rabbit is our menu. Specialising in cocktails and desserts is unique – we offer custom creations, that you can only get here.” Given the task of creating the amazing dessert menu was local pastry chef Adrian Peak, who has worked at other well known Canberra

establishments such as Water’s Edge and Pulp Kitchen. While you can still partake in some savoury snacks to wash those amazing cocktails down, the standouts are the desserts, which have been attentively designed around the Alice in Wonderland theme to create some delicious masterpieces. The atmosphere is also designed to make patrons feel like they have stumbled upon a secret garden in the middle of the CBD, complete with its own ‘rabbit’s hole’ in the ceiling (make sure you look up as you walk in or you might miss it!) Patrons are also treated to table service, and many of the cocktails are prepared for them at

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their table. This hidden delight welcomes all those who come with young hearts and curious minds, to feast upon the decadent whimsy and marvellous creations it has to offer. Address: 65 Northbourne Avenue, Canberra ACT T: (02) 6257 7779 W: Opening Hours: Tuesday-Thursday: 5pm-12am Friday: 4pm-2am Saturday: 2pm-2am Sunday-Monday: Closed Bar De Luxe is a Japanese cocktail bar in Hong Kong that has been brought to life by Ueno Hidetsugu, the legendary mixologist and owner of Tokyo’s internationally renowned cocktail mecca, BAR HIGH FIVE. Ueno san’s protégé, Yuriko Naganuma, has moved from Tokyo to spearhead the long anticipated launch of Bar De Luxe as head bartender. Her vast experience and mastery of bartending will be on display at Bar De Luxe with each cocktail that is served. With exceptionally high standards and her unique mixology flair, each exquisite cocktail will be prepared to perfection. Address: 29-30F, 8 Wyndham Street, Central, Hong Kong T: +852 3706-5716 W: Opening Hours: 10am-12am


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Tallboy & Moose T

allboy and Moose is the latest brewpub in the Melbourne suburb of Preston. This open concept space is housed in a former stripped back warehouse, where everyone including dogs and kids are welcome and beer enthusiasts can see the production process in action. Natural wood surrounds the venue, giving it a warm feel, in addition to a mural wall and Tallboy and Moose’s signature red and blue colour scheme accentuates the space. There are intimate “date night” tables for two, long beer hall communal seating, as well as a lounge area with couches and a beer garden space at the front to enjoy the warmer days.

Native N

ATIVE is a cocktail bar with a focus on regional products, which extends this philosophy not only to cocktails, but also to the artwork, music and furnishings. The first of its kind in Singapore, the venue uses small brands from Singapore and around the region, providing a platform to showcase the products. 66 °

There are eight taps here, with six dedicated Tallboy and Moose taps serving beers that are brewed in-house, one rotating local guest beer tap and one rotating local guest cider tap. The drinks list is complimented by a short handpicked wine list and a selection of spirits, as well soft drinks. In addition, Tallboy and Moose offer a “booze and juice” option of freshly squeezed apple juice and your choice of spirit. For those who have a favourite Tallboy and Moose beer they want to take home, the crew have brought in a manual and simple single can seaming machine, designed to work with 1litre cans. Cans are filled directly from the draught taps, allowing guests to take home their favourite brews. The beer is filled and staff write the beer name, ABV, standard drinks and packaging date on the side of the can in the info section. Bar snacks are offered and Friday to Sunday sees rotating food trucks parked out front. Address: 270 Raglan St. Preston, VIC 3072 Australia W: Opening hours: Wednesday: Friday: 4pm-11pm Saturday: 12pm-11pm Sunday: 12pm-9pm

NATIVE is founded and owned by Vijay Mudaliar, one of the city’s homegrown talents, who prefers to work with ingredients that he grew up with and has knowledge of, rather than looking outwards for inspiration. Using herbs and plants that grow within a three-metre radius of the venue, in addition to plants such as cinnamon, betel leaves, turmeric leaves, curry leaves, fresh star fruit and their flowers are all incorporated at NATIVE. The back bar at NATIVE holds spirits from around the region, for example ceylon arrack from Sri Lanka, rum for Chalong Bay, and amrut whiskey from India. In fact, each element of the bar has been sourced either locally or from the region. Handmade ceramics made by local ceramics maker Ummuramics has created unique vessels for select cocktails. The décor also has a local touch with graffiti artist Rajesh Kumar creating the graffiti artwork along the stairway wall. Address: 52A Amoy Street, Singapore T: +65 8869 6520 W: Opening Hours: Monday - Saturday: 6pm - midnight


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mpress your guests with these recipes, ideas, tips and hints. This edition of DW we focus on humble jerky as a bar snack and innovation in cocktails.


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erky – one of the oldest snacks in history has seen a revival in bars around the world. As a prepackaged, high-protein snack jerky is available in many different flavours. Jerky companies such as Tiger Buck, Bull Bar, and Darling Jerky have focused on the on-premise market, providing a highquality pre-packaged snack. WHAT IS JERKY?


Jerky is fresh meat that has been dried to prevent it from spoiling. Its name is derived from a South American tribe called the Quechua. They originally called jerky “ch’arki,” which means, “to burn (meat).” The Quechua used meat from alpaca and llamas that were boned, trimmed, cut into slices and pounded thin. It was then rubbed with salt and dried in the sun or smoked over a fire.

A number of jerky makers have begun to place an emphasis in the onpremise market, with brands such as Tiger Buck, Local Legends, Bull Bar, Dale’s Jerky and Darling Jerky all producing high-quality jerky. Benjamin Cairns of Tiger Buck said, “The idea behind Tiger Buck was to bring to life a premium snack brand targeted at the on-premise market. Most snack brands focus on big supermarkets and petrol and convenience channels (which is obviously where the big volume is)…but Tiger Buck’s true home is behind the bar, in the hands of consumers at their favourite watering hole, and paired with their favourite drink...We saw the opportunity to deliver a snack brand to the on-premise that was created for the on-premise.” Based in Western Australia, Bullbar beef jerky produces jerky with no added salt or sugar and is the perfect snack when you’re limited for time. Bullbar personally source and select the finest grade of ingredient to use in their jerky, including premium Australian beef, fresh spices and a unique blend of special seasonings. Currently, Bullbar only produces beef jerky but have been looking into experimenting with different proteins, so watch this space.

HISTORY OF JERKY Jerky can date back to the 1500s. A dense source of nutrition, it is flavourful, compact, and can be made from almost any meat. Jerky reached a height of popularity during the expansion into North America, where traders and explorers used it as an essential source of nutrition while travelling to new areas, unsure of terrain, and food or water sources. Following suit, the Spanish Conquistadors picked up on this and called it “Charqui”. Upon invasion, they saw the natives of North America drying meat from buffalo, elk and deer. This method enabled people to consume high protein food that was readily available when pickings were slim and food was scarce. It later became a staple for American pioneers and cowboys. Over the years, jerky has become more palatable thanks to various spices. It is now one of the world’s leading snacks. Contrary to popular belief, beef jerky is actually a healthy snack. It is an excellent source of protein, low in fat and calories, and has minimal carbohydrates per serving. It also has a long shelf life.

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PAIRINGS Benjamin Cairns said that while the obvious pairing for jerky is beer, dark spirits and cocktails are equally as good, “There are even some venues selling a ‘Nip & Buck’- a price-pointed spirit served with Tiger Buck Jerky”. While Tiger Buck only has one hero variety more is slated for 2017.


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WHY SHOULD VENUES STOCK JERKY? As consumers become more health conscious, they’re often looking to avoid unhealthy foods where they can. Jerky for instance, is high in protein, low in fat, and brands such as Tiger Buck and Bullbar contain nothing artificial. Jerky is also ready made, has a relatively long shelf life and is healthier than traditional savoury bar snacks like potato chips and pretzels. Jerky makes for a great consumer snack choice. On speaking about the benefits of jerky in on-premise venues, Bryan Cortese, Managing Director of Bullbar Jerky said, “We understand today’s consumer is highly discerning, applying greater knowledge and awareness of health and nutritional values to the food products they purchase. So we keep our jerky as natural and healthy as possible. It does not contain any artificial flavouring, colours or preservatives. Cairns points out that “Tiger Buck is one of the few Jerky brands that’s been certified by Coeliac Australia as an approved Gluten Free product.” So don’t jerk around when it comes to venue snacks, get onto jerky!


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he mojito is the classic Cuban cocktail revived during the Prohibition era. It became so popular during this time that a number of bars and clubs around the Caribbean island only served mojitos. One brand has also become synonymous with the mojito, as Cuba’s original white rum, BACARDÍ.

The mojito became the official cocktail of Cuba throughout the 1920s when Americans flocked to Cuba for parties away from Prohibition. Since then the popularity of the mojito has never faltered and remains one of the world’s most popular cocktails.

MIX A MOJITO (SINGLE SERVE) Ingredients: • 2 Parts BACARDÍ Carta Blanca • 1 Lime sliced into four wedges • 12 Fresh mint leaves • 2 x Tsp caster sugar • Soda water Method: Muddle a sliced lime into a tall glass. Add 2 teaspoons of caster sugar, stir in two parts of BACARDÍ Carta Blanca. Add 12 mint leaves with lots of ice. Top with soda. Enjoy! Garnish: Fresh mint to garnish Glass: Tall

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he art of making drinks has come a long way. Technology, techniques, and ingredients available have allowed bartenders to push the envelope with their creations.

Drinks World reached out to some of the bartenders pushing the boundaries and using their own innovative methods and techniques to bring a new appreciation to the world of drinks.



Group Bars Manager, Public House Management Group

Ingredients: • 40ml Yamazaki Single Malt 12 YO • 10ml Laphroaig 10 YO Whisky • 22.5ml Red beet & pink peppercorn shrub* • 5ml Amontillado Sherry • 1 x Bps Citrus Oleo-Saccharum • 2 x Dashes Black Walnut Bitters Method: Add all ingredients to a shaker. Add ice and shake hard. Double strain. Garnish: Red Vein Sorrel or Lavender Sprig or Elderflower (depending preference) Glassware: Vintage Wine Glass

ROCKMARY SPRITZ Ingredients: • 40ml House-made Rockmelon and Fruit Scraps Vermouth* • 10ml Four Pillars Rare Dry Gin • 15ml Fresh lemon juice • 60ml Fever -Tree soda water • 60ml Fever -Tree light tonic • 1 x Dash Grapefruit bitters Method: Build over ice and stir Garnish: Rosemary Sprig Glassware: Wine

*RED BEET & PEPPERCORN SHRUB RECIPE Ingredients: • 4 x Beets cut into chunks • 150ml Chardonnay vinegar • 150ml Distilled white vinegar • 1 x Cup sugar • 1 x Tsp Pink peppercorns • 1 x Pinch Kosher salt Method: Add beets and vinegars to blender. Purée. Strain the purée with a fine mesh strainer. Add the mixture to sugar, peppercorns and salt to a glass bowl. Cover, and allow to steep for one day. Taste. If the pepper hasn’t come through yet leave for another day. Fine mesh strain again, bottle and store.

*ROCKMELON & FRUIT SCRAPS VERMOUTH RECIPE Ingredients: • 1L White wine of your choice (Don’t waste fresh bottles, keep unused white wine over a few days for this ingredient) • Soak Rockmelon off cuts and skin in 100ml of Eau-de-Vie for two days • Lavender • Thyme • Sage • Citrus peel (dependent on what was leftover in the bar that night) • 70g White Sugar


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FREEZE DRIED NATIVE INGREDIENTS Native freeze dried ingredients offer consistency, longer shelf life and retain all the flavour. Of particular note are Australian native freeze dried finger lime and Davidson Plum. Australian Finger Lime Caviar, based on the north coast of NSW have been supplying freeze fried finger lime caviar and the native Davidson Plum to the hospitality industry, including collaborations with Byron Bay based Brookie’s Gin and Harvest Restaurant in Newrybar.


Beverage Manager, Harvest Restaurant, Newrybar

A WALK IN THE WOODS Ingredients: • 45ml Brookies Byron Dry Gin • 15ml Belgrove Distillery Apple Hatchet • 15ml Maidenii La Tonique Vermouth • 10ml Fingerlime syrup • 1/2 x Apple roughly chopped • 1 x Sprig rosemary • 1/2 x Fresh Fingerlime • 2 x Bps Brookfarm ‘Brothers Blend’ nuts

Method: Add apple, 3/4 of the rosemary leaves (leaving the top for garnish) and nuts to shaker and muddle. Add all other ingredients, shake hard and fine strain into coupe Garnish: Cut 5 thin slices apple. With a toothpick poke a hole through the middle of apple slices then thread rosemary sprig through the hole. Place in middle the of cocktail glass and squeeze fingerlime pieces on top of apple slices. Finish with fingerlime dust Glassware: Coupe

RED WINDS Ingredients: 45ml West Winds ‘The Sabre’ gin 15ml Applewood Distillery Red Okar 30ml Fingerlime syrup 15ml Fresh Newrybar lime juice 15ml Sweet Davidsons plum vinegar 1 x Whole egg white Method: Add all ingredients to shaker then add egg white at last minute. Shake with ice then fine strain back into tin without ice. Discard ice then shake mix without ice. Single strain into a coupe Garnish: Harvest garden flowers and Davidsons plum dust Glassware: Coupe

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TECHNOLOGY Charlie Parker’s in Sydney’s Paddington take a top-to-tail approach to drinks and produce inhouse infusions using a rotary evaporator. From frangipani to lillypilly and even sourdough bread, Charlie Parker’s are pushing the envelope.


INSPIRATION FOR THE CREATION: I originally came up with this drink as a riff on a blood and sand. I believe it’s got the makings of a modern classic because the specs are easy to remember, most good cocktail bars should have all the ingredients or be able to make them easily. It’s approachable but still interesting enough, and of course it’s just damn tasty!

MANGO x GREEN PEPPERCORN Ingredients: • 22ml Green Peppercorn infused neutral grain spirit • 44ml Dolin Blanc • 22ml Mango Verjus • 22ml Soda water Method: Pour ingredients into Champagne glass from charged iSi canister Garnish: Babies breath flowers Glassware: Champagne

THE BLOODTHORN SOURDOUGH GIBSON Ingredients: • 50ml Sourdough infused neutral grain spirit • 20ml Spring Onion Noilly Pratt • 1 Bsp Pickle brine Method: Build ingredients in mixing glass and stir Garnish: Olive oil drops Glassware: Nick & Nora

Ingredients: • 20ml Scotch Whisky • 20ml Sloe Gin • 20ml Dry Vermouth • 20ml Fresh lemon juice • 10ml Pineapple syrup (1:1 pineapple juice: sugar) • 2 x Dashes orange bitters Method: Shake all ingredients with ice and fine strain into a chilled coupette. Garnish with a grapefruit twist Garnish: Grapefruit twist Glassware: Coupette


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Confessions from behind the stick


artenders go through a lot and see a lot happen, for better or worse. Here, we delve into some of the confessions of a bartender. Totally anonymous, we take a peek behind the curtain of their pet peeves, gripes, hangovers and dating within the industry. DRINKS WORLD: You hate it when a customer orders a… BARTENDER: Multiple mojitos! F#&k those guys...

BARTENDER: Surprisingly in 16 years behind the bar probably only one or two days due to being hungover. Not really sure why that is?

DW: What are your biggest pet peeves in the industry? BARTENDER: Customers who are so cheap that when the change is a $1 they still take it.

DW: Have you ever dated a co-worker? BARTENDER: Yes, in my very early days as a bar back I was dating a bartender from my work. It didn’t last long and as a birthday present to myself, I broke up with her.

DW: How many shifts do you think you have missed or called in sick because you were hungover?

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DW: Your alter ego is? BARTENDER: Actually don’t really have one. I guess I’m not creative enough to come up with one. DW: Hangover remedy? BARTENDER: If I’m smart enough to remember then I’ll drink as much water as possible before I go to sleep and then the next day plenty of fruit juice.

Photo Credit: Aaron Donato

DW: What spirit or drink would you like to see make a comeback? BARTENDER: I guess I would say a classic Manhattan. I very rarely get asked for one but I think of it as a really classy cocktail. I think it says a lot about a person if they order a Manhattan.


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BEST SINGLE M A LT AGED 16–21 Y E A RS “It’s the best new offering from the motherland in a few years; a sensational return to form” JIM MURRAY

A Brilliant Cut Please drink responsibly.

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Drinks World Singapore Edition 28  

A drinks publication for the bartender, sommelier and industry professional. Sign up for the mailing list and learn more at

Drinks World Singapore Edition 28  

A drinks publication for the bartender, sommelier and industry professional. Sign up for the mailing list and learn more at

Profile for hipmedia9