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Drinks World Asia HongKong Issue 5

Drinks World Asia HongKong Issue 5






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    Drinks World Asia HongKong Issue 5 Drinks World Asia HongKong Issue 5 Document Transcript

    • DIAGEO® RESERVE WORLD CLASS HONG KONG & MACAU’S BARTENDER OF THE YEAR 2014 SAW THE FIRST FOUR WINNERS FROM WINTER ROUND On November 19th, twelve bartenders from selected bars in Hong Kong battled through the winter round of DIAGEO® RESERVE World Class Bartender of the Year 2014. From a blind tasting to a written examination in the morning, each bartender was rigorously tested on his/her knowledge in the art of mixology and the production and history of luxury spirits; bartenders then went through an intense presentation round, with drinks made under four different categories; “Winter Warmers” “A , Gentleman’s Tonic” “The Celebration” and “American Cocktail” The four winners are , . now one step closer to representing Hong Kong in the World Class Global Finals: WINNERS • Joe Villanueva, WOOBar • John Ng, Wyndham the 4th • Wallace Lau, Zafran • Cherry Lam, Origin Guests were invited to Zuma Bar on level six, the upper floor of London’s awardwinning Japanese restaurant at The Landmark, which recently introduced its bold new bar and cutting-edge nightspot. Following the announcement, the four winners stayed on and re-created their signature drinks for guests and VIPs. From now until January, the winning drinks will be available in their respective venues, customers are encouraged to sample these must-try cocktails to taste a flavour of World Class for themselves. DRINKS WORLD ASIA °3
    • Welcome Welcome to the fifth edition of Drinks World Asia - Hong Kong and the first of 2014. Kicking off the year warrants a couple of minutes to look back and reflect on what was 2013; because while it flew past plenty went on, not least being the first Hong Kong bar to make Drinks International’s list of the worlds best 50 bars. We were proud to be a part of the judging panel and put forward a number of fantastic bars across the region to sit alongside the worlds best Our congratulation goes to Antonio Lai and the team at The Quinary on making the list. Alongside this honour, Antonio was named among the top 25 bartenders in Hong Kong in our very own DWA T25, which has generated a lot of industry talk around the traps. In some small way we hope Drinks World Asia is contributing to the vibrant bar culture in Hong Kong, and look forward to seeing many more of our fantastic bars make it onto future ‘best bars’ lists for the leading magazines globally. Right now the Hong Kong bar scene is flying along; alive with competitions such as the recent launch of the Diageo World Class competition for 2014 and the influential Legacy (Bacardi) - also covered in this edition. So get stuck in and enjoy the next hundred pages or so of everything drinks…cheers! Drinks World Asia - Hong Kong is distributed to 3000+ bars, restaurants and hotels in Hong Kong. If you would like to have your brand represented or would like to contribute or comment please contact: marc@hipmedia.com.au DRINKS WORLD ASIA °7
    • Bartender 47 76 108 Contents Bacardi Legacy Cocktail Competition 2013 Sensology with James Tamang Macau Bartender of the year Meet 34 64 68 70 90 The Glenlivet 83 Unearthing Kim Crawford Dinner with Mrs Mondavi Didier Mariotti / G.H. Mumm Michael Callahan Drinks 96 110 Yawaragi-mizu by Perrier Cocktail Club Feature 20 22 24 32 36 58 72 78 8° 32 47 30 40 83 88 Careers after bartending Glenmorangi Ealanta Ben Canaider Chivas 18 “The Scene” Johnnie Walker Gold Profile 64 The Singleton of Glen Ord Dewar’s 125 years of Glenfiddich Berry Bros. & Rudd Visit Security Feel Better 103 Martell / Zhang Yu Regulars Japan Yamazaki DRINKS WORLD ASIA 96 103 114 China Rouge Coming up
    • Credits CREDITS Publisher Marc Rodrigues marc@hipmedia.com.au EDITORIAL Publishing Editor Ashley Pini Editor Nicole Mansour DESIGN Art Director Evelyn Rueda Senior Designer Ryan Andrew Salcedo ADVERTISING Advertising Manager Sasha Falloon SALES Sales Director Marc Rodrigues Sales Manager Sasha Falloon PHOTOGRAPHY Photographer Elden Cheung Writers: Ashley Pini, Andy Gaunt, John O’Toole, Beanie Espey, Mathew Bradford, Ben Canaider Sponsor Editor’s note Unsung heroes Hallelujah for the barback If you asked the average punter what they thought is the difference between a good bar and a well-oiled machine, they’d probably tell you it’s all about the drinks, the venue, the bartender or the management. Yet on most occasions it’s the painstaking job of the overlooked bar back. Without them, the night becomes a nightmare. As the bartender juggles customers, the barback runs back and forth to fetch stock, change the barrels, clean the lines, fill the ice buckets, cut fresh limes, wipe the bar, deal with the broken glass- and this is only naming a few. All jobs have their downsides, and this is no exception. Soggy clothes, injuries, long and anti-social hours, smelly ashtrays and pruney hands were all mentioned. Comments I regularly hear are; ‘A lot of the mess isn’t made by you - cleaning the ashtrays was the worst” . ‘As a barback I feel like the “bartender’s skivvy” . So what do the barbacks get out of such a painstaking job? One word. Experience. Many bar backs start with no experience, and of course “A knockoff beer is better than any other beer” . So what’s the difference between a good bar back and a great bar back, it appeared everyone I spoke to agreed: a good bar back will do everything they’re told, while a great bar back will, in practice, anticipate what’s happening, and not be afraid to get their hands dirty if it means getting the job done. Here’s to great bar backs. The unsung heroes of the bars around the world. Andy Gaunt Andy Gaunt has a deep-rooted and long standing passion for the drinks, food, travel and luxury sectors. With over 15 years of industry experience, beginning behind the bar, Andy was at the heart of the explosion of cocktail culture in London in the late 90s and early 2000’s. 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 Asia please contact: ashley@hipmedia.com.au Although Hip Media Asia endeavours to ensure the accuracy and correctness of the information and drinks trade and drinkstrade. com.au, we do not accept any liability or responsibility for any inaccuracies or missions. The views expressed by authors of publications or event presentations, published drinks trade, 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. 10 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA drinks-world-asia @drinksworldasia
    • ° FEATURE ° World’s 50 Best Bars WORDS ° Nicole Mansour T his autumn saw the return of the highly anticipated World’s 50 Best Bars awards. Chosen by some of the industry’s finest, the list has become an essential guide to the top bars around the world. The awards, announced amidst the vibrant celebration that is London Cocktail Week, are one of the most influential and respected surveys of their kind. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 11
    • Quinary owners Charlene Dawes and Antonio Lai, in London for the award celebrations, also took the opportunity to enjoy the various tastings, seminars, and parties, which made up London Cocktail Week. They also relished the chance to visit some of the city’s famed watering holes, such as the revered American Bar at the Savoy, and Milk & Honey, one of London’s original speakeasies. The diverse selection of trade seminars ranged from talks on gin botanicals to Italian aperitivo tastings; but when reflecting upon the many industry events the duo attended, what caught Dawes’ attention was that which discussed the art of roundbuilding. “Roundbuilding is one of the oldest techniques to be used behind the bar, and refers to the process of making perfect drinks in the fastest and most efficient way possible. It’s a great skill for a bartender to develop” , Charlene explains. At the roundbuilding demonstration, guests also sampled a round of classic cocktails, including daiquiris and Old Fashioneds, made by the enthusiastic Milk & Honey team. Other highlights of London Cocktail Week included a tour of Beefeater Distillery, guided by global brand ambassador Tim Stone, and a talk at the legendary Savoy hotel, where Dawes and Lai took in the fascinating history behind the American Bar’s classic cocktails and the seminal The World’s 50 Best Bars, 2013 1. Artesian, London – World’s Number 1 Bar / The Nikka Best Bar in the UK 2. Nightjar, London 3. High Five, Tokyo – The Polignac Best Bar in Asia 4. Connaught Bar, London 5. The Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog –Highest New Entry / The Perrier Best Bar in North America 6. Happiness Forgets, London 7 Black Pearl, Melbourne – . The Soyombo Best Bar in Australasia 8. The Baxter Inn, Sydney 9. Candelaria, Paris – Highest Climber / The Botran Best Bar in Europe 10. 28 Hong Kong Street, Singapore 11. Callooh Callay, London 2. Employees Only, New York 1 3. PDT, New York 1 4. Dry Martini, Barcelona 1 5. Door 74, Amsterdam 1 6. Le Lion, Hamburg 1 17 Buck & Break, Berlin . 8. The Parlour, Frankfurt 1 9. The Jerry Thomas Project, Rome 1 0. American Bar at The Savoy, London 2 21. Death & Co, New York 2. Ruby, Copenhagen 2 12 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA 3. Schumann’s, Munich 2 4. Everleigh Bar, Melbourne 2 5. Eau de Vie, Sydney 2 6. Bulletin Place, Sydney 2 27 69 Colebrooke Row, London . 8. Chainaya Bar, Moscow 2 9. Mutis, Barcelona 2 0. Smuggler’s Cove, San Francisco 3 31. Clover Club, New York 2. Bramble, Edinburgh 3 3. Le Forum, Paris 3 4. Zetter Townhouse, London 3 5. Floreria Atlantico, Buenos Aires – 3 The Caoruun Best Bar in Latin America 6. Lebensstern Bar, Berlin 3 37 La Capilla, Tepatitlan . 8. Quinary, Hong Kong 3 9. Little Red Door, Paris 3 0. Le Coq, Paris 4 41. Shady Pines, Sydney 42. Attaboy, New York 3. Sherry Butt, Paris 4 4. Pouring Ribbons, New York 4 5. Tippling Club, Singapore 4 6. Drink, Boston 4 47 Tommy’s Margarita, San Francisco . 8. Bada Au Rum, Athens 4 9. Nottingham Forest, Milan 4 0. Delicatessen, Moscowt 5
    • bartenders who created them. But for Dawes, an opportunity to meet industry legend Simon Difford at one of many industry seminars became the highlight of her trip. “I got to meet my idol Simon Difford, at a seminar hosted by the Gin Guild. I told him how it was reading his magazine that got me into cocktails, and started my conversation with Antonio about us opening our own place, Charlene says. ” The pair also took the opportunity to soak up the buzzing atmosphere of Seven Dials, the backdrop to London Cocktail Week. Boutiques and pop-ups abounded, all playing host to an array of tastings, collaborations, and cocktail parties. Fashion brand Sailor Jerry, one of several shops to take part in the collaborations, offered visitors the chance sip a Hendrick’s cocktail while having their boots polished. For industry visitors, however, the announcement of winners at London’s exclusive West End landmark, One Mayfair on October 10th, was unquestionably the moment everyone had been waiting for. Fortunate enough to attend this year’s award ceremony, Charlene and Antonio were happily surprised to see Quinary be listed at #38. “It’s a really great achievement, to be recognised in Hong Kong among such wonderful bars, in cities like London, and Paris, Dawes notes. ” Now in its fifth year, 2013’s World’s 50 Best Bars list included seventeen new entries, as well as some surprise moves among the top rankings. Speakeasies and luxury hotel bars were joined by saloons, clubs, and classic, drinking dens, all of them appearing on the coveted list. Despite newcomers and stiff competition, the multi-award winning Artesian bar in 14 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • RICH IN CHARACTER. RICH IN LIFE. Exceptional people enjoy with care. Joy Spence, Master Blender, Appleton Estate Exceptionally Crafted Since 1749 DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 15
    • London came first second-year running and was also voted Nikka Best Bar in the UK award for the second time. The bar, located on the ground floor of The Langham hotel, is also home to the city’s largest rum selection. Its appeal is certainly a combination of its elegant space and friendly service, all accentuated by its flawless cocktails. London’s darkly atmospheric Night Jar took second place, while two other bars in the city also made the top ten - The Connaught in Mayfair, and Hoxton’s Happiness Forgets. Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog in New York, Black Pearl in Melbourne, The Baxter Inn in Sydney, Candelaria in Paris, and 28 Hong Kong Street in Singapore, were a few of the other venues to round out the top 10. Charlene and Antonio’s stay in London certainly wouldn’t have been complete, without a visit to Artesian. Led by renowned bartender Alex Kratena, Artesian showcases an impressive menu of innovative and experimental cocktails, including the Forever Young, inspired by the portrait of Dorian Gray, and the Super Panda, a concoction served over a single ice ball in a tumbler which is placed on the top of an inflated 16 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA panda-head-lantern filled with a tangerine aroma. “The glass pushes the paper lantern down, releasing the tangerine aroma, and enhancing the sensory experience of the drink” Charlene , explains. Their visit to Artesian also gave Antonio the opportunity to present Alex with a congratulatory gift: a bottle of Origin’s own distilled guava gin. But as London Cocktail Week drew to a close, Charlene and Antonio couldn’t depart the city without a few last minute visits to some of the city’s acclaimed hotspots. “We ordered some nice cocktails at Night Jar, which demonstrated their innovative style of presentation, and unique use of garnishes. They also gave us a few packets of their signature Night Jar playing cards as souvenirs” says , Charlene. A visit to Hoxton’s White Lyan was also a highlight, with the Quinary duo sampling several signature cocktails, and chatting to owners Ryan Chetiyawardana and Iain Griffiths about their unique “no ice, no fruit” bar. With no branded spirits or mixers, only fridges and freezers containing the bar’s very own pre-batched drinks; White Lyan certainly impressed with its minimalism, execution, and innovation. Finally, they returned to the illustrious Savoy for the charity auction of a limited edition copy of the Savoy Cocktail Book, signed by five of the surviving head bartenders. As Charlene explains, “We were keen to participate in the auction, as Antonio likes to collect vintage cocktail books, and we ended up winning the bid! It’s such a classic recipe book for bartenders, definitely one to keep on the shelf. ” Money raised from the auction aided The Benevolent – a UK Drinks Industry charity, which seeks to improve the quality of living for members of the drinks community who find themselves in times of need. With this year’s announcement of yet another definitive list for 2013, the World’s 50 Best Bars provides an authoritative directory to the world’s respected and influential venues. Over the past few years, this list has become one of the most important international bar surveys of the global drinks scene, as well as one of the most anticipated releases for drinks professionals. With voters from almost 40 countries, it is now the biggest industry poll of its kind, and the awards ceremony one of the highlights of the bar industry calendar. The World’s 50 Best Bars is an important occasion, recognising the very best in the global bar business. And with the industry’s seemingly endless enthusiasm for quality and innovation, in both new and established venues, it is sure to continue its evolution in the years ahead.
    • ° FEATURE ° Careers “ after Bartending Event Bartenders, proclaimed the Doug Coughlin character in Cocktail, are the aristocrats of the working classes” This exclamation was the opening to the official blurb promoting one of the . fascinating seminars at Tales of the Cocktail earlier this year. The seminar, Stepping Out from Behind the Bar, was an examination of the career options for those in the spirits business, and got me thinking about the varied choices available to young, passionate bartenders today. WORDS ° Andy Gaunt When I reflect on how my career started, I never imagined the possibilities that the drinks industry could offer. Like many students in England, I passed the summer holidays serving pints of ale in the local pub, before delaying ‘real life’ by bartending in the Greek Islands, and somehow finding myself managing a cocktail bar in Sydney. It was here, in a bar that took training seriously, that I discovered my passion for the drinks industry. Like many bartenders today, I couldn’t see what long term career options there were, and on my return to London, stepped from one side of the bar to the other for an attempt to work less late nights but still enjoy the life of bars! I joined Diageo as a 18 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA sales rep, back in 1999, and my first surprise was that I was the only person in my entire team that had ever worked behind the bar… here we were selling spirits to bars, and to me it seemed obvious to have some idea of what it is really like to be on the other side! Over the next 10 years, I had the fortune to travel all over the world with Diageo, learn and hone sales, marketing and leadership skills, and found myself heading up Diageo Asia Pacific’s luxury business unit. Sitting in board rooms across Asia, I often thought back to those days mixing Golden Dreams to holiday makers in Greece, reflecting on how many directions you can go to make a life long career in the world of spirits! Audrey Fort, one of the panellists at Tales tells me “In preparation for the seminar, I conducted a poll among a panel of 100 international bartenders, asking them what would be their dream job after being a bartender. The top 2 most popular answers were owner of a bar and brand ambassador. Moving to the branding side is mostly forgotten, whereas it offers an array of very interesting jobs, whether on the importing or wholesale sides… and it’s a great business school for any further move into brand or bar ownership” Audrey, for those that don’t know, . was responsible for the marketing and brand creation of French luxury spirits, G’Vine Gin, Excellia Tequila and June Liqueur.
    • It is an exciting time for the bar industry in Asia, and bartenders are the new generation of tastemakers. Being part of the explosion of cocktail culture in the UK at the turn of the millennium, I have seen the opportunities for skilled young bartenders first hand. This was a time pre ‘Brand Ambassadors’, and the rush to make a name for yourself led many bartenders, who seemingly had pulled just a few shifts at famous bar x or cool bar y, to set up as a “consultant” A few of the best, who had the . necessary experience, have since made great careers, such as Sam Jevons and Pete Kendall, who were early pioneers in Asia and are still leading the industry today based in Hong Kong. Today, however, the perceived glamour of ‘brand ambassadorship’ seems in reach, with many highly skilled ex-bartenders roving the region, or the globe, not only bringing their brand message, but also truly adding value with years of experience being passed down to young bartenders. As much as it might seem an easy jump from the bar to ambassadorship, famous names like Angus Winchester or Jacob Briars, have cut their teeth over the last 15 years and have learnt their trade the hard way, before the 20 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • what is going on, is becoming more of a career opportunity. The influence of the internet and days of the internet and social media. Gary Regan, himself one of the greatest bartender mentors, points out, “The biggest mistake I see among young bartenders is that many people try to run before they can walk. It’s essential to put in a few years of learning how to make drinks, and how to interact with guests, before starting to create new cocktails, and before entering competitions etc. Fortunately, ” there has never been more training available to bartenders. Programmes like Diageo Bar Academy are investing serious dollars into providing a strong foundation of knowledge, as well as providing recognised qualifications, and spending the time to build this base, and to understand what you are most skilled at, will prove invaluable in the long run. The influence of bartenders over consumer choice, has led to a plethora of competitions for bartenders to enter. The promotion of the winners, and their subsequent success, seduces the next generation to enter with the dream of travel to distilleries, or being the next Tim Phillips or Antonio Lai. Of course creating a name for yourself through competitions helps with future jobs, but also can open new career direction. It was only 12 years ago that Claire Smith, then an enthusiastic bartender in the UK won a Belvedere competition. Today, she is responsible for creating Belvedere’s new vodka ranges in her role as Head of Spirit Creation. We are at a golden age of craft products, of course, and applying talents of flavour creation and liquid understanding is a natural course for bartenders as we are seeing around the world by the scale of bartender made bitters, liqueurs, spirits, beers and wines. Working as a bartender helps hone extensive spirit knowledge, but also gives you a working knowledge of the on-premise, its trends and business practices, as well as selling skills and people management, which is extremely valuable on the importing and distributing side. John O’Toole, who runs Universal Exports in Hong Kong, is testament of this, and there will be many opportunities as more companies like Proof and Co open up, specializing in premium crafted spirits, and the bigger companies look to take on people with a real understanding of the modern on-trade. With the ever-growing consumer interest for cocktails and spirits, writing and documenting the ease of writing a blog, or even producing an on-line TV show, looks like an easy way of doing business. As Audrey says, “There are only a handful of people who can make a decent salary out of writing. Don’t consider that because you know how to make a cocktail, you can actually write!” Having said that, if you have a flair for writing (or ranting on Facebook!), it is a great vehicle to share an opinion, promote yourself, and help change things, and publications like Drinks World Asia and others will always be looking for talented young writers with something to share. So, when you are reflecting on what you are going to do in the years ahead, take heart that there are more opportunities than ever before. Staying within operations and moving to management or ownership, flexing your presentation and coaching skills to move to training or ambassador roles, honing your sales and marketing skills in building drinks brands and seeing the world, creating a legacy by founding your own product, all the while commentating on the world of drinks in your own or others media platforms – the options are almost endless! The number one dream for bartenders, the dream of your own bar, comes with many challenges however; legal & accounting, attracting investors, getting the structure of the shareholder agreements in place, finding and retaining talent and marketing your venture. As a result a varied career path, and the experience to be gained on all sides of the bar will pay off in the long run when you come back to that dream of opening your own place as an older and wiser soul. Good luck! Andy is still building his knowledge and skills before opening his dream beach bar! DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 21
    • ° FEATURE ° Glenmorangie I Ealanta n 2013, Glenmorangie announced its release of Ealanta, the fourth annual issue in its award-winning Private Edition range Founded in 1843, Glenmorangie single malt scotch whisky originated in the Scottish highlands. The whisky is distilled at the tallest stills in Scotland, and matured in the finest oak casks. Recognised as a pioneer in the field, Glenmorangie is renown for uniting tradition and innovation, to create “unnecessarily well made whiskies. ” Glenmorangie’s Private Edition series provides a unique opportunity for the Glenmorangie Whisky Creation Team to share rare, limited samples of its rich and innovative experimentations with whisky connoisseurs and aficionados. Previous releases in the Private Edition range have included the Glenmorangie Sonnalta PX, a full bodied whisky, extra matured in Pedro Ximénez sherry casks; the Glenmorangie Finealta, an exquisite recreation of a 1900s recipe from the distiller’s archives with 22 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • subtle notes of peat; and last year’s release, the Glenmorangie Artein, extra matured in rare Tuscan wine casks. Scots Gaelic for “skilled and ingenious” Ealanta is a 19 year old , Glenmorangie, fully matured in virgin American white oak casks, with a provenance that stretches all the way to the mountains of Missouri, and the Mark Twain National Forest. Glenmorangie director of distilling and whisky creation, Dr Bill Lumsden, is well known for travelling the world in search of the best oak casks in which to mature his whisky. He comments on the choice of oak from the Mark Twain National Forest, saying, “The casks selected all those years ago, which came from the national forest, were absolutely top quality, and unusually, had not previously held any liquor such as bourbon. As a result, the interaction of our delicate floral spirit from our very tall stills directly with this “virgin” wood has created many intriguing flavours in the Ealanta. ” With aromas of toffee, butterscotch, vanilla, and a hint of stewed fruits, Glenmorangie’s classic mentholic top-note, interwoven with a slight nuttiness, reminiscent of Brazil nuts in coffee, is also present on the nose. On the palate, flavours of candied orange peel, sugar coated almonds, sweet vanilla, and marzipan can be detected, and while these aromas linger, they also eventually give way to some oak-derived spices, such as clove, ginger, and a hint of aniseed. Lumsden also noted, “that Mark Twain himself reputedly discovered and wrote about his liking for good scotch whisky on his trip to London in 1873 so it’s nice to think he might even have enjoyed a dram of Glenmorangie in the luxurious surroundings of the Langham Hotel where he is known to have stayed. ” Recently in Hong Kong promoting the Ealanta, and the Glenmorangie range, was distillery manager Andy MacDonald. “The Ealanta, and indeed the Private Edition range, are all very special in their own right. Each one is a limited release of about 3000 cases, of which about 2000 cases will come to the Asian region. ” About the Asian market, MacDonald says: “The audience in Asia is becoming more and more knowledgeable about whisky. Each year when I visit the region, I notice how the questions I’m being asked are becoming more sophisticated, which is great. So as well as getting valuable consumer feedback, I also have the opportunity to spread the word about what the Glenmorangie label is trying to achieve. ” As distillery manager, Andy leads the “Men of Tain” – the highly skilled craftsmen entrusted with producing the world’s most “delicious” single malt whisky. Responsible for the day-to-day production of the spirit at the distillery, located on the shores of Dornoch Firth in the Highlands of Scotland, he has also overseen the recent large-scale distillery expansion project where, amongst other additions, the number of stills has increased from eight to twelve. This expansion has provided an additional 50 per cent production capacity to meet the growing future demand for Glenmorangie single malt whiskies from existing and emerging markets in the USA, the Far East, and central Europe. MacDonald works alongside Dr Lumsden, and the whisky creation team at Glenmorangie, who together continue to reveal delicious expressions of Glenmorangie single malt scotch whisky, delighting and enticing more and more consumers globally every year. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 23
    • ° FEATURE ° Women, Whisky and a Viking or Two W hisky is really just distilled beer. I learnt this when I was little - in my twenties. And I learnt it in Scotland, on the isle of Skye, with three women for company and highland games for light relief. And I like to think of it all as being so typically emblematic of the spirit of whisky. Enduring, slightly blurred - and never regretted. That whisky is nothing more than distilled beer is, in fact, a great and natural recommendation. WORDS ° Ben Canaider The little renault came to an all too Gallic stop outside a pub near the centre of Portree – the small, harbour side village that is the capital of Skye, the largest and most northern island of the Inner Hebrides. I was out of the car and inside the pub before the motor had been cut. My desire to be among refreshments was motivated not so much by thirst but by the contents of the car: three ladies and one recording of The Phantom of the Opera. It had been on high-rotation in the car stereo since Edinburgh. I can’t say anymore because I subsequently consulted a psychotherapist and had all memories of that musical erased. The three ladies were (1) my inamorata, (2) her best friend, and (3) their mutual friend who was a lady who liked other ladies. That was handy for her as she certainly didn’t seem to like me. The pub was dark and very still inside. 24 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA There was no sound. If deep space were a bar this would be deep space. A barman polished a glass and two elderly men stared at half pints of stout and a small shot glass of whisky. They stared at the stout as if waiting for it to evaporate. No one was in any hurry. I approached the bar. The barman just looked at me, no trace of emotion. “A half pint of stout please. I asked. “And a… whisky…” I added, ” looking peripherally at the two old men and their whisky chasers. Doing what other people do can be a wise move when you find yourself in a strange land, particularly at 11.45am. Once the drinks had arrived, and with some confidence, I ordered a toasted sandwich. It was then my new-found vegetarianism hit me: all I’d had eaten that day was grain. Porridge for breakfast, and now stout, whisky and bread (with cheese in it). I began to feel that in
    • Previous page: Colourful shot of Portree Harbour. Right: Assorted images of the Isle of Skye and the Highlands. 26 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA Scotland, at least, one could survive on a diet as pure as that of the Kalahari Bushmen. Seeds. Grain. My traveling companions were principally here for the Highland Games – they were being held that year in Portree, and the lady with a preference for ladies was entered in them, as it were. The Canadian ladies’ tug-of-war team. Not being much of a sportsman, I took the car and drove out to Talisker, the island’s distillery. Little crofters’ villages Renaulted by: Hawkhill, Cnoc nan Speirag, and Carbost. Talisker sat on the Loch of Harport, which ran through to the Loch of Snizort. Judging by the names alone I got a feeling that maybe this is where Dr Seuss took summer holidays. One knew the Talisker distillery was the Talisker distillery as it had the name painted down one long whitewashed side wall – TALISKER. Built in 1830 by two brothers – Hugh and Kenneth MacAskill – it has over the following 150 years merged, expanded, burnt down and been partially demolished, about once a year, every year. Just like all Scottish whisky distilleries. The tour was led by a man with a name like Duncan McDuncan or Gordon McGordon. Whatever it was it may well have been his nom de stage, as he was, well, quite theatrical. He was attired for stalking (the deer kind, not the yuk kind) and many of his vowel sounds lasted about 30 seconds – longer if they trailed off any of his comments. “And then there was the GREEEEAT fire of eighteeen foooorty twoooooooooooooooooooo…” He also assumed that all four people on the tour were Scots, and that whisky’s greatest danger lay to the south with the English, or the Sassenach as he called them, and with a certain bloodthirstiness to boot. Amidst all the stories of the annual accidental fires, the annual hiding of the stills from the Sassenach, and the bravery of the distillery cat whenever one or both of these terrible annual events took place, our guide did brogue his way through some other interesting material. Talisker was Robert Loius Stevenson’s favourite single malt; and Boswell and Dr. Johnson got on the whisky here, at nearby Talisker House. According to Boswell’s record, Johnson thought Talisker whisky better than English Brandy. And the doctor, by bulk of experience, probably knew. Talisker itself is a word that came from the old Norse. McDuncan or McGordon’s eyes bulged and swiveled a little sideways when he told us of the Vikings that crashed so regularly into the inner and outer Hebrides. The stone and rubble cairns that dot the tiny promontories of the Isle of Skye remind anyone who cares to let their mind so wander as to that old Nordic threat. Indeed, eerie, long and thin runnels in the soft rock of some of the island’s loch shores hint at the powerful and deadly arrival of long ships – their metal-covered keel board cutting into the island as they landed. You can see the marks in the stone, and you can see the stone causeways the Vikings built to channel spring water from Thalas Gair. This is an old Norse name for the rock outcrop near Talisker. That Norse presence creeps through in long strands of DNA, too. Talsiker has been the seat of the MacLeod’s since the 13th century, and there are still a lot of them about the place. Some tallish,
    • Right: The water’s edge, Isle of Skye. 28 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA some with blue eyes. Some all too Viking in appearance. Thankfully, this deep-rooted martial quality within the MacLeods is tempered by a disarming, simple frankness. As one MacLeod told me when I tasted the whisky following the tour, and tried to say clever things about the drink: “It’s just distilled beer, don’t you know. ” Talk about a sales technique. I bought two bottles of the stuff, and a half, and a miniature. I don’t know why. I just did. Oh, and I bought a fridge magnet, too. But the MacLeod pouring the end-of-tour whisky was dead right. Whisky, whiskey, or Bourbon – it all starts out life as a kind of rough beer. Indeed, for the first day or two of its life, whisky is made by someone called a ‘brewer’. The basic ingredients – water, grain, and yeast – are the same basic ingredients used in life’s other staples. Beer and bread. It is whisky’s practiced distillation and then – as importantly – it’s long cask ageing, that makes for the miracle of its spirituous transubstantiation, wherein what might have been bread or beer becomes the water of life. With this sense of understanding, and the sense of place that comes with standing on a once-Viking trodden Loch’s edge, I felt a supernatural presence. For a moment I longed to be Scottish, and in fact, thought I was. I drove back to Portree, adjusting my imaginary sporran with every gear change. No sooner had I parked (and I use that term very loosely) than I met up with my womenfolk (yes, I’d become clannishly protective in the blink of a dram…). And no sooner had I laid eyes on them when they unbridled themselves – with something of whisky’s elucidative power – of the great unfairness of Portree. The lady who liked ladies and her tug-of-war team had won. As champions they had all received a half bottle of Talisker whisky, per woman. “The men’s’ team had all received FULL bottles!” they screamed, as if the application of woad and the bearing of weapons was but only a moment away. With a great clansman’s charisma – and a newly found Scottish accent – I assured them that whisky was nothing more than distilled beer, and that in these parts stout was regularly taken with small amounts of whisky for reasons of health and well-being, dietary balance, and peace to all men – excepting the Sassenach. With whisky, it wasn’t its volume, but its application. My short speech won over two-thirds of the audience, and we promptly headed to a pub where the Isle of Skye’s Ladies’ Life Boat Team was hosting a dinner for some of the international Highland Games competitors. We drank stout and Talisker chasers with some of the worst food I’ve ever eaten in my life, and notions of full or half bottles vanished in an immeasurable sea of mirth and more impossible accents – some native and natural, some new and absurd. Unsurprisingly, Talisker remains my favourite whisky; and when I don my whisky-geek hat I can talk about its innate smokiness and building spice; its maritime qualities of seaweed and salt; its sweet malt and great pungency. But my love of Talisker has nothing to do with the taste. How could it. Ben Canaider is a typist who drinks. www. bencanaider.com
    • ° PROFILE ° The Singleton of Glen Ord L ocated in the historic Scottish Highlands, Glen Ord remains the only single malt scotch whisky distillery on the Black Isle with many others falling away over the years. The land is rich with history, originally owned by the Celtic MacKenzies of Ord. Glen Ord has since adopted the MacKenzie motto “I shine not burn” which , the distillery believes refers to their valour, steadfast qualities and constant support for the independence of Scotland. Glen Ord’s water supply comes from the two mountain lochs, Nan Eun, ‘the loch of birds’ and Nam Bonnach, ‘the loch of smoke’, via All’t Fionnaidh, ‘the white burn’. Team this with barley that is malted onsite and locally sourced and you’ve got a distinctly Scottish dram with rich culture in every sip. The Singleton of Glen Ord is matured in a fusion of American bourbon oak and some European sherry casks that are then brought together to create The Singleton’s signature rich malted flavour. In 1961 when the distillery 30 ° had passed hands to Distillers Company Limited, Glen Ord distillery saw a few changes. Thenumber of stills were increased from four to six to keep up with demand and the floor maltings were replaced by a Saladin box, which was later supplemented with drum maltings. Today, these drum maltings produce roughly 36,000 tonnes per year. Visit the Glen Ord distillery and you’ll see the open-sided peat barns and pagoda roof designs entrenched in history dating back to the MacKenzie clan. The Singleton of Glen Ord 12 is deep amber in colour with a warming, deep nose that is rich and fruity. A light to medium body brings a soft and silky sweet smooth taste of plum, preserved ginger and hints of caramel before a medium to long finish with dark chocolate and biscuit notes. DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • ° FEATURE ° Chivas 18 “The Scene” 芝華士18「映・象」 I n October, Chivas 18 announced the next chapter in its film initiative, “The Scene” Yet another . example of the brand’s ongoing commitment to the film industry, Chivas 18 has embarked upon a unique collaboration with Hong Kong-based director, Heiward Mak, to produce a film that explores the making of dreams for the modern gentlemen of the city. Entitled “Dream City” the concept highlights , how men can succeed, not only by chasing their dreams but also by giving something back to society. Moreover, it embodies the brand’s values of style, charisma, and substance – all essential traits for today’s modern gentleman. As part of the initiative, Chivas 18 will hold a series of parties that highlight the “Dream City” theme, promising exceptional nights of glamour and indulgence. 32 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA The first party will take place at W Hotel’s Woo Bar, where guests will be able to enjoy whisky and take in a selection of tunes from dynamic duo, WordySoulSpeak. Created in 1997 Chivas 18 is a unique blend , of whiskies matured for a minimum of 18 years, and hand-selected for exceptional richness. The result is a sophisticated, luxurious Scotch whisky, one of the finest in the blended sector. Chivas regional mentoring manager for Asia, Darren Hosie said of both the brand’s philosophy, and its film initiative, “Chivas 18 is a brand that inspires men to demonstrate their style, charisma, and substance in their quest to succeed as modern gentlemen. We are excited to kick off this initiative in Hong Kong and look forward to expanding it to other markets. ” The project also offers the Hong Kong public the opportunity to participate in the production of “The Scene” by becoming a member of the ,
    • film crew. Interested parties have been invited to submit an application via the Chivas Hong Kong Facebook page, and will be chosen for their passion and specific skill set rather than their film experience. If recruited, they will witness the excitement and drama behind the silver screen. Also sharing his thoughts on the project was film director Heiward Mak who said, “Like Chivas, I hope to create a story that resonates with Hong Kong audiences. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to create something that will be meaningful to the people of Hong Kong. I want to tell a story that inspires people to pursue their dreams but also consider what they can give back to society. This is something that anyone can make the choice to do. ” To celebrate the making of the film, Chivas Global Brand Ambassador Max Warner has created an original Chivas 18 cocktail, inspired by the theme, “Dream City” It will be available, . along with two other classic cocktail recipes, at W Hotel’s Woo Bar until December 31st, 2013. Looking ahead, Chivas 18 hopes to continue to collaborate with local and international talents, aiming to produce a series of high quality films across a variety of different genres. With their heritage of luxury and exclusivity, Chivas 18 plans to set a precedent as the perfect drink to celebrate the pursuit of dreams, as well as toast the endurance, imagination and possibility of the silver screen. 芝華士18於今年十月宣佈接下來的新電影構 思——「映・象」。芝華士18為貫徹其支持電影 業的承諾,已展開與香港導演麥曦茵獨特的的合 作項目,製作一齣探討現今香港男士如何實現夢 想的電影。z 「夢想之城」的概念強調了男士取得成功的關 鍵不僅在於追逐夢想,亦在於回饋社會。這正體 現了芝華士18的品牌風格、魅力和價值觀,亦是 現代紳士應具備的基本條件。 作為項目的一部分,芝華士18將舉行一系列的 活動,來突出「夢想之城」的主題,當中不乏魅 力綻放和縱情的狂歡夜。 狂歡第一彈將設在W Hotel的Woo Bar,客人可 邊享用威士忌,邊享受二人姐合WordySoulSpeak 極具動感的現場表演。 DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 33
    • ° MEET ° The Glenlivet H ailing from the region of Scotland that laid the foundations for malt whisky as it is known today, The Glenlivet is famed as “the single malt that started it all. ” The story of this acclaimed whisky began in the early 1800s, in the remote, barely accessible glen of Livet in the north east of Scotland, when founder George Smith started distilling as a bootlegger. Smith’s single malt quickly became highly sought-after in several influential circles, and was granted a royal seal of approval from King George IV in 1822. In 1824, Smith became the first person to apply for and receive a license to legally produce spirits in Glenlivet. The company has operated there ever since, launching on a global scale after the American Prohibition era ended, and only closing its doors once during World War II. With the intention of continuing George Smith’s original vision, The Glenlivet’s master distiller and long term Speyside resident, Alan Winchester aims to produce elegant, pure, and unadulterated single malt whisky, with well-balanced but distinct characteristics. Essential to Winchester’s production process is the unique Speyside location of The Glenlivet distillery; its historic, mineral-rich spring water, its traditional tall, lantern-shaped copper stills, and the slow and careful maturation in the cold and pure mountain air of Speyside. The distillery also makes minimal use of Portuguese sherry casks, which sweeten the taste of the whisky, and avoids too much peaty, loch water, as this can overwhelm the natural, refined flavours of the dram. 34 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA As well as being a central part of the whisky making process, the distillery is also a landmark that embodies the legend of the first brand of whisky, the site attracting more than 45,000 visitors every year. Recently expanding in an effort to satisfy future demand, The Glenlivet Speyside distillery has increased its production capacity by 75 per cent, this substantial growth supporting the brand’s long-term ambition to become the world’s number one single malt. The brand has also released a core range of whisky available only in the Asia-Pacific region, which includes The Glenlivet Excellence 12 year old. The Excellence pairs the balanced, signature style of The Glenlivet with selective maturation in ex-sherry casks (compared to the traditional 12 year, which is matured substantially in American oak casks) for a distinctive richness and complexity. Abundant with aromas of pear, vanilla and honeycomb on the nose, it marries vibrant fruit, dark chocolate, ginger, cinnamon and hints of liquorice on the palate. In addition to The Glenlivet Excellence 12 year old is the opulent and spicy 15 year old and the 16 year old “Nadurra” Gaelic for “natural” the . , “Nadurra” is distinct for its cask strength maturation in new, first-sill American oak casks, and its notes of vanilla.
    • The Glenlivet Guardians In September, the Hong Kong Guardians of Scotland’s iconic whisky, The Glenlivet, had the rare privilege of participating in the brand’s first global road show. This series of tastings and evaluations will help determine the brand’s next flag-bearing limited edition whisky. Created by enthusiasts for enthusiasts, and open to The Glenlivet devotees worldwide, the Guardian programme gives its members access to private tastings, limited edition releases, exclusive downloads, and invitations to unique events. Guardian affiliates also have the opportunity to meet fellow aficionados with whom they can share their knowledge and passion for The Glenlivet label. This event, hosted by Ian Logan, The Glenlivet’s international brand ambassador, took place at Hullett House in Tsim Sha Tsui. It gave Hong Kong Guardians an opportunity to taste, debate, and finally vote on the three unreleased expressions of The Glenlivet. “Hong Kong is a significant market for The Glenlivet, and our Guardian community here has demonstrated unusually knowledgeable connoisseurship, so we highly value their opinions. The event here was also a perfect moment for The Glenlivet to meet our Hong Kong Guardians, discover their tastes and engage with them” says Logan. , Also participating in the tasting were two of Hong Kong’s “Guardian Ambassadors” Francis , Au, the Managing Director of Linen House Hong Kong and the President of the Rotary Club of Tai Po, along with Michael Au, General Manager of Hullett House. Launched in Hong Kong in 2012, The Glenlivet Guardians gives whisky lovers the opportunity to share their passion for the brand, and its unique heritage. Ian Logan After spending the past three decades travelling across the UK and US as a Scotch whisky sales executive, Ian Logan settled in Speyside in 2004 to take up the position of Glenlivet’s brand ambassador, promoting the famous dram at the Ballindalloch distillery, and overseas. Renowned as an entertaining guide on distillery tours, and a knowledgeable aficionado at in-depth tastings and presentations, he is also the curator at The Glenlivet Whisky School, which covers all aspects of whiskey production, in addition to tutored tastings. With a distinct passion for The Glenlivet label, Ian is proud to carry the mantle of brand ambassador on his shoulders. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 35
    • ° FEATURE ° Gold Rush at Johnnie Walker Circuit Lounge O n September 21st, Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands hosted 1,500 guests for Johnnie Walker’s signature F1 Circuit Lounge party. Set within a dazzling golden enclave, Johnnie Walker guests and Singapore’s glitterati gathered at the post-race event in style, and were even treated to a visit from former F1 World Drivers’ Champion Mika Hakkinen. The evening was a celebration for the senses, with stunning aerialists, musicians, and DJs coming together to create an incredible visual and audio experience. The privileged party crowd was also the first to view a selection of fashion creations from designer Daniel Ngoo, inspired by Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve. 36 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • On the decks for the evening were US-based DJ’s Mel DeBarge and duo POSSO, but it was Grammy award-winner, The Mad Violinist who stole the show with his high energy, impromptu performance. 
 The ever-popular Johnnie Walker Flavour Lab also returned with an incredible array of experimental cocktails, which included Gold Berry Rock, a raspberry cocktail solidified in liquid nitrogen; Johnnie’s Toddy, a classic warm cocktail simmered at 60 degrees celsius and torched before serving; and Honeybee, an edible concoction created with ice molds. The cocktails were crafted and served by Diageo Reserve World Class alumni bartenders, Jeremy Chua, Zachary de Git, and Kae Yin. Tim Phillips, Diageo Reserve World Class Bartender of the Year for 2012, also treated a select crowd to his world-famous cocktails at the exclusive VVIP lounge. 
 As part of the Join the Pact campaign, Circuit Lounge guests who made their pledge to never drink and drive using the hash tag #imnotdriving received free rides home in SMRT Chryslers at the end of the evening. One lucky partygoer also won the once-in-a-lifetime chance of being driven home by Mika Hakkinen himself as part of Johnnie Walker’s Ultimate Chauffeur Service. 38 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • ° PROFILE ° Dewar’s I n 1846 the world wasn’t much enamoured with Scotch whisky. At the time this spirit from the North of England was only drunk in those far-flung regions in which it was made. For many the single-malt varieties were an acquired taste and outside Scotland they were considered harsh, aggressive and raw. At the same time John Dewar’s was growing tired of his life as a joiner, he packed up and headed off to find a new life. He arrived in Perth, in central Scotland, where his entrepreneurial spirit saw him establish a wine and spirit company that refined a method for blending a range of single-malt Scotch Whisky. It’s difficult to say whether John had any inkling at the impact his tinkering would have, but his efforts to make the local single-malt Scotch more palatable, would transform the way the world drinks Scotch whisky. In the late 1800s there were two varieties of Scotch available, single-malts that are fullbodied, robust and very rich, and Scottish grain Whisky that are far more delicate. John Dewar took examples of both and through experimenting with different blending combinations he developed the first ever blended Scotch whisky. It was a softer and more refined Scotch and it proved to be far more popular than the single-malt. Its popularity grew rapidly and markets f or blended Scotch Whisky began to spring upin London, Europe and America. At the same time John Dewar’s son, Tommy, was showing an aptitude for the Scotch trade. The young man shared his father’s entrepreneurial spirit and in a bid to further expand the company’s market Tommy setoff on a whirlwind tour that would see him visit 26 countries in two years. Tommy was a charismatic young man and his passion for Scotch was infectious. So much so that he befriended the Scottish steel magnate Andrew Carnegie, of Carnegie Hall fame, who was highly influential in America at the time. Andrew Carnegie took it upon himself to spread the good word on his nation’s unique spirit and so ordered a keg of Dewar’s as a gift for one of his own friends, the President of the USA. Well, the newspapers reeled when the President took delivery, it was scandalous that he be drinking Scotch whisky rather than bourbon. Nonetheless, the President’s example did the trick and soon Dewar’s couldn’t keep up with demand. They became Americas largest selling Scotch and they remain as such today. There is no doubting the strength of the conviction that this family gained from their Scotch. John was refining his blends and Tommy, in his determination to spread the word on Dewar’s Scotch, was breaking new ground in the burgeoning field of marketing. Having travelled far and wide Tommy had signed up dozens of new distributors, but as is common with those that strive for perfection, he wasn’t content. He knew that his families DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 41
    • Left: Aberfeldy Distillery 1899 Above: 1920’s blending room. Scotch was something special and he wanted to tell the world and what better way to do that than through a commercial. In 1898 Dewar’s commissioned the world’s first ever film commercial for a beverage, they beat even Coca-Cola to take that accolade when they projected a film of dancing Scotsman onto the roof of a building in New York’s Herald Square. Meanwhile back in Scotland, as John Dewar was perfecting his blends, he and Tommy were becoming acutely aware of the need to find a reliable supply of highland malt whisky if they were going to satisfy the ever-growing demand for their blends. The answer; they would build their own distillery and as such the Aberfeldy Distillery was founded in 1898. Its design followed Scottish tradition and it sourced its water from the Pitilie Burn spring. This spring had been used for producing whisky for many years and in using the name Aberfeldy (which in the old Scotch language means Pool of the 42 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA Water Gods) the family was ensuring that every ingredient was doing its part to make the whisky something special. The explosion in popularity of the Dewar’s blended Scotch can be explained in large part by Tommy’s effusive manner and charisma as a salesman, but praise must also fall to his father who was the one responsible for ensuring the particular blend of the Scotch was balanced just right to ensure the smoothness the world was coming to love. John was closely involved with the blending process, so much so that he further pioneered an integral part of the process, namely the nosing of Scotch. He explained that it is not how it tastes in the mouth but how it tastes to the nose. The smells and aromas of the Scotch are of vital importance and John Dewar insisted that the correct blend could only be achieved by observing the balance through its smells. The Dewar’s blend is taken from all 40 of their Scotches, which are all matured for at least 12 years. The blend is developed to maximise smoothness while maintaining the rich flavour of the malt, at this stage it is undoubtedly a fine concoction, but Dewar’s takes it a step further. By returning the blend to vintage the flavours are allowed to rest and mingle in the oak. This final stage in the barrel is called ‘double ageing’ and it is vital for the harmonisation of the Scotch before the final product is bottled and given the Dewar’s label. The process has been developed over a hundred years ago and it is still employed today. This premium Scotch Whisky from the Aberfeldy Distillery has something for everyone in Australia. Dewar’s White Label a complex blend of up to 40 of the finest malt and grain Scotch whiskies. The result is a medium and smooth taste, medium finish, slightly dry with lingering heather honey overtones, and the faintest touch of smoke. Dewar’s 12 Year Old
    • Special Reserve is hand crafted by carefully blending selected quality malt and grain whiskies, all of which are at least 12 years old. After blending, Dewar’s 12 is returned to oak casks for a further period of ‘marrying’. This allows the whiskies in the blend to harmonise, creating a superbly balanced and silky smooth Scotch whisky. Finally, Dewar’s Signature is an ultra-premium blend of the very finest and rarest malt and grain whiskies, from each distilling region of Scotland. Dewar’s Signature is the connoisseurs’ whisky, the ultimate expression of Scotch whisky from a house that is rich in tradition. Today Dewar’s is the fifth largest Blended whisky brand in the world, and the top selling Scotch Whisky in the USA. The Dewar’s Clink app can be downloaded from the app store and is compatible with both android and iphones. Consumers simply bump their phones with six other consumers with the same app and they will be entitled to a complimentary sample of Dewar’s, redeemable at various participating outlets. Why six times? The number six stems from a Dewar’s product-truth - the double-ageing process that takes up to six months, following initial maturation and blending. On top of the Dewar’s Clink app, visit the Dewar’s Facebook page, www. facebook.com/ Dewars to participate in the Dewar’s Clink Draw and stand a chance to receive a complimentary bottle of Dewar’s 12 Year Old. THE DEWAR’S DOER THE WORLD’S MOST AWARDED SCOTCH Dewar’s Scotch Whisky, one of the most awarded scotches in the world, is reaching out to all “Doers” with their new Dewar’s Doer campaign. Doers are people, who embrace the spirit of Dewar’s, embodying an individual attitude. They live by their beliefs and realise their dreams. Dewar’s Doers follow their hearts no matter how far they have to go, pushing beyond good for the great, and remaining steadfast and true under overwhelming odds. With this new campaign for the premium range of Dewar’s, consumers stand a chance to receive complimentary samples of Dewar’s whiskies by partaking in the new communications platforms – the Dewar’s Clink app and the Dewar’s Facebook page. There are over 160 years’ blending tradition in every bottle of Dewar’s Signature. Stephanie Macleod, Dewar’s seventh Master Blender, carefully layers only the rarest of rare whiskies from each of Scotland’s whisky regions. The blend is aged for a second time to bring out the whisky’s complex flavors and smooth, velvety taste. Dewar’s has to its name over 350 awards and medals since the first Edinburgh Silver awarded in 1886, including several gold awards at Paris, Greece and the prestigious Monde Selection - Grand Gold, to name a few. Applauding a distinct taste, the Royal Warrants issued by every British Monarch since Queen Victoria appreciate the superior quality in every drop of Dewar’s. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 45
    • Tasting notes DEWAR’S 18 YEAR OLD DEWAR’S 12 YEAR OLD DEWAR’S SIGNATURE The Dewar’s 18 Year Old is an exceptional whisky. Only Scotland’s finest 18-year-old malt and grain whiskies are used to create the full, smooth and creamy blend of Dewar’s 18. With a long finish, the blend is returned to the vintage oak casks, so that it can mature a little more. This extra step is called double ageing and it gives the blends a long, velvety finish. 46 ° DEWAR’S WHITE LABEL A blend of up to 40 of the finest malt and grain Scotch whiskies, Dewar’s White Label has a delightful, medium bodied and smooth taste profile, handcrafted since its creation in 1899. The Aberfeldy single Highland malt whisky lies at the heart of Dewar’s blends, and gives the whisky its signature heather-honey character. Light and sweet on the nose, this whisky exhibits some roast malt lurking in the background and holds a decent presence in the mouth, bigger bodied than the nose might suggest. A surprisingly lengthy soft vanilla finish, with a final hint of peat. This whisky is elegant, subtley complex and well balanced. Launched globally in early 2000 the Dewar’s Premium range is very proud of its unique ‘marrying’ production process. After blending, the range is returned to oak casks for a further period of ‘marrying’ (approximately 6 months), allowing the whiskies in the blend to harmonise, creating a superbly balanced and silky smooth whisky. Each bottle is individually numbered to guarantee the best quality. Dewar’s 12YO has a rich and fruity, medium to full body flavour for a well-balanced and smooth Scotch whisky. It is full and rich in the mouth, with elegant honey and caramel tones. The finish is medium to long, with liquorice notes emerging, plus a hint of smoke and oak. A lovely, sophisticated dram. Dewar’s Signature is the ultra premium blended Scotch whisky, a tasty well-rounded whisky with peaty tones and mild sweetness. Sweet and balanced on the nose with rich, fruity mellow tones of sultanas, raisins, apples and honey with vanilla and toffee overtones. The palate is sweet and smooth with a full-bodied creamy texture and mouth warming effect exhibiting notes of apple, bitter chocolate and layered honey. The finish is long and pleasant with a subtle dryness. DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • Bacardí Legacy Cocktail Competition T he Bacardí Legacy is one of the world’s most prestigious cocktail competitions, established with the aim of challenging the best contemporary bartenders to create a drink that will endure within the industry, like the classic cocktails of a bygone era. For over 150 years, Bacardí Superior rum has inspired cocktail pioneers. Drinks such as the Daiquirí and the Mojito, now revered as classics, are as much a part of the legacy of Don Facundo Bacardí Massó as the rum itself. This year, The Bacardí Legacy Hong Kong and Macau training session took place at Honi Honi Tiki Lounge in Central. Participants were welcomed with a Cuban Oak and Coke, before the informative but casual afternoon of training officially commenced. The session began with a brief history of Bacardí, from DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 49
    • the company’s founding in Cuba in the 1860s to the rum’s exclusive aging process and distinct flavour profile. The account of the brand certified why this “untamable” spirit has remained a favourite in the industry for more than 150 years – essential knowledge for eligible bartenders. This was followed with a description of Bacardí’s production process, along with the chance to sample the original distiller liquors, Aguardiente and Redestilado. Later, there was a cocktail demonstration, where participants had the opportunity to try several Legacy cocktails, including Knight Cup, the winning cocktail for 2013 created by Elizaveta Evdokimova. The session ended with a look at some of 2013’s national winners from around the globe. By recognizing the high standard set by The Bacardí Legacy, bartenders who participated in the training session left inspired, and ready to compete at the Global Final’s week, set to take place in Moscow in 2014. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 51
    • Bacardí Legacy Finalists The ten winners of Bacardí Legacy Cocktail Competition 2013 52 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • Alexandre Chatte SIGNATURE COCKTAIL Kimuchi COCKTAIL RECIPE • 45mls Cinnamon infused Bacardi rum • (Leave the cinnamon in the rum for 12 hours, at room temperature.) • 45mls Campari • 45mls Unsweetened shiso plum wine • Grapefruit zest METHOD Stir GLASSWARE Old fahion glass In creating this cocktail, I was influenced by a mix of different cultures. As a Frenchman growing up in Asia, I wanted to create a drink that represented both places – something that would have the spices and fragrance of Asia, combined with the complexity and elegance of Europe. Alexander Ko SIGNATURE COCKTAIL The Lost Generation COCKTAIL RECIPE • 45mls Bacardi Superior rum • 10mls Yellow Chartreuse • 45mls Grapefruit juice • 25mls Simple syrup (2:1) • 10mls Lime juice • Small pinch of mint leaves GARNISH Mint, Grapefruit peel METHOD Shaken, Double Strain GLASSWARE Coupe / Martini glass “The Lost Generation” takes its name from a phrase used in many of Ernest Hemingway’s novels, and refers to the generation of people who became adults during, and immediately after, WWI. Although there was much criticism of this so-called “lost generation” for many years, it was this same group of people who would go on to become some of the greatest literary and artistic minds of the twentieth century. Ernest Hemingway was himself a member of that generation, having served in Italy as a Red Cross Medic, before living in Europe after the war, and then eventually moving to Havana in 1939. In Cuba, he lived in close proximity to Bacardi’s distillery, and would go on to feature several rumbased drinks in his subsequent works. For me, this cocktail symbolizes that the strength of a legacy is not determined by its passage through good times, but how it endures hardship. The Bacardi family itself endured many trials throughout its long history, from the Cuban War of Independence, to the shutting of its distilleries during the American Prohibition era. In this cocktail, the Chartreuse symbolizes the bitterness of hard times but it also invokes a reference to France, where Hemingway spent a many years of his life. The flavour of mint is initially overshadowed on the palate by the Chartreuse, but it appears on the finish. The light acidity of the grapefruit juice is always present, making the complete experience of the drink never just sweet or sour. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 53
    • Austen Lendrum SIGNATURE COCKTAIL Supreme COCKTAIL RECIPE • 50mls Bacardi Superior rum • 5mls Heering cherry liqueur • 5mls Luxardo Marachino cherry liqueur • 10mls Pierre Ferrand dry curacao • Zest of 2 lemons GARNISH Lemon Zest METHOD Stir, and double strain GLASSWARE Coupette This cocktail was inspired by the classic “rum Negroni” but created with a unique cherry , twist. Chung Chi Kwan SIGNATURE COCKTAIL Mitigation COCKTAIL RECIPE • 55mls Bacardi Superior rum • 20mls Homemade wolfberry and jujube sugar syrup (Homemade wolfberry and jujube sugar syrup uses 15 pieces of jujube and 30 pieces of wolfberry. Put both ingredients into the pot with 900mls of sugar syrup and cook, letting the mixture evaporate until its 750mls. Let the mixture cool, then strain into a bottle.) • 20mls Infused Martini chrysanthemum (Infuse 30 pieces of chrysanthemum in Martini bianco. Next, put the bottle into hot water – around 75˚C – and slow cook the Martini bianco for around15 minutes. Lastly, strain the Martini bianco into a new bottle.) • 10mls Lemon juice • 10mls Lime juice GARNISH Daisy Petals METHOD Hard Shake, Double Strain GLASSWARE Rock Glass The history of chinese medicine in China accounted for an important position as well as a long history, just like Bacardí rum in the world, accounting for an important position, so I want to use these two things to make a cocktail, also have Chinese medicine efficacy. 54 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • John Ng SIGNATURE COCKTAIL The Wilson COCKTAIL RECIPE • 45mls Bacardi Superior rum • 20mls Lime juice • 45mls Coconut water • 15mls Pomegranate syrup • (1part 100% pomegranate juice, 2 parts pure sugar. Warm up the juice, and mix it with the sugar.) GARNISH Coconut Shell METHOD Mix and Shake GLASSWARE Cocktail Coupe I was inspired by the movie “Cast Away” and decided , to use the classic ingredients you’d find on a tropical island to enhance the flavours of the Bacardi Superior rum.Cuban culture. James Tamang SIGNATURE COCKTAIL Caribbean Dream COCKTAIL RECIPE • 50mls Bacardi Superior white rum • 15mls Tawny port • 30mls Orange juice • 20mls Lemon juice • 10mls Homemade cinnamon syrup • (Let half a litre of water simmer with 2 long cinnamon sticks. After 5 minutes, add equal amounts of sugar.) GARNISH Dry orange wheel METHOD Pour all the ingredients to shaker and hard shake. GLASSWARE Coupe I am a huge fan of rum, and especially the high quality rums that come from Caribbean. In creating this cocktail, I also wanted to use traditional, Caribbean ingredients, in order to enhance the aromas and the flavour of the rum. The drink is also based on the idea of the Daisy cocktail, which is essentially made by adding chilled seltzer to something both sweet and sour. Jerry Thomas usually served Daisy cocktails with shaved ice, but over time, people have started using cracked ice, or left the ice out of the drink entirely. I see my cocktail as something between a classic and modern style of Daisy. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 55
    • Wallace Lau SIGNATURE COCKTAIL The Drunken Beauty COCKTAIL RECIPE • 30mls Bacardi Superior rum • 30mls Bacardi Gold rum • 10mls Pineapple juice • 10mls Lime juice • 15mls Egg whites • 15mls Homemade mint roselle syrup GARNISH Mint Leaves, Dry Roselle, Lemon peel METHOD Put all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker, dry shake and then shake with all ingredients Strain over ice GLASSWARE Old Fashioned Glass This cocktail was inspired by a traditional Chinese opera, called “The Drunken Beauty” which tells the story of the legendary beauty, “Yang , Guifei” Bacardi rum is a great product that can work with various kinds of ingredients. I like to think of this rum as a great actress, who can . play many different roles, but who can still express her own character. I chose Bacardi rum so that I could create a drink, full of Eastern style, but which is also elegant and beautiful. Nokoy Mak SIGNATURE COCKTAIL The Cure COCKTAIL RECIPE • 50mls Bacardi Superior rum • 10mls Yellow Chartreuse • 20mls Lime juice • 15mls Egg whites • 10ml St. Germain elderflower liqueur GARNISH Star anise, with ground, dried orange peel on top METHOD Shake GLASSWARE Coupe A little inspiration came from one of my favourite, classic cocktails, “The Last Word” I decided to use yellow Chartreuse instead of green, as I wanted to create a . different flavour to that of the traditional drink. The combination of Bacardi Superior rum, star anise, and the other ingredients give the cocktail a nice balance of flavours. 56 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • Ryan Chan SIGNATURE COCKTAIL Cuban Bishop COCKTAIL RECIPE • 45mls Bacardi superior rum • 25mls Bacardi black rum • 25mls Mancino Rosso Amaranto vermouth • 3 Drops Angostura bitters • 1 Bar spoon ginger flavoured dark brown sugar • 1 Orange with cloves GARNISH Orange peel, and cloves METHOD Heat a blazer mug first. Then, in the blazer mug, combine the Bacardi superior rum, Bacardi black rum, Mancino sweet vermouth, Angostura bitters, and ginger flavoured dark brown sugar. Stir the mixture, and add the orange peel with cloves. Use a cigar torch to light up the liquid in the blazer mug, letting the liquid burn a while. Remove the orange peel with cloves then pour the liquid into a goblet glass. Add ice. GLASSWARE Tea Cup My inspiration for this drink came from a classic cocktail called Bishop. I found the recipe in Jerry Thomas’ classic cocktail book, “How to Mix Drinks” which gave details of the original recipe. Thomas stuck whole cloves into an orange then boiled it with port wine and , sugar. Along with this recipe, there were several others incorporating lemons, all spice, cinnamon, and ginger chunks, as well as rum and red Burgundy. Joao Balzani SIGNATURE COCKTAIL Essence of Heritage COCKTAIL RECIPE • 60mls Bacardi superior rum • 30mls Lime juice • 20mls Homemade agave cinnamon syrup • 6 Drops of Angostura bitters • 4 Mint leaves GARNISH Orange peel, and mint METHOD Shake and double strain GLASSWARE Coupe To create this cocktail, I dug into my childhood memories. I wanted to use simple ingredients that I remember my mother putting in a cake she used to bake. I recall the delicious aromas coming out of the oven, and the balanced flavours of citrus fruits, and spices. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 57
    • ° FEATURE ° Security Feel Better S ecurity Feel Better is a non-alcoholic digestive drink that enables the body to more effectively digest the over-consumption of alcohol and food. The result of six years research, the natural formula of Security Feel Better has remained unchanged since it was first created in the 1980s. The drink’s unique composition harnesses the beneficial properties of plants, making it a natural alternative to medicinal chemical products. Security Feel Better’s key active ingredients: Angelica archangelica – cultivated around monasteries since the 10th century, the angelica plant is well known as an antispasmodic and gastric tonic, especially effective for the treatment of indigestion and blood circulation problems. Yunnan tea – recognised in China since antiquity, the name of this distinctive tea derives from the mountainous province where it is cultivated. Its natural benefits aid the dispersal of fats in the body, help intestinal functions, and provide a general feeling of wellbeing. Artichoke – the positive health effects of this plant are numerous, particularly its antioxidant qualities, which regenerate the hepatic cells, protect the liver, and aid digestion. Lemon – with its powerful antioxidants, and antispasmodic properties, this antiseptic fruit is a natural diuretic, in addition to being an excellent source of vitamin C. Unlike other natural products made from plant extracts, which can be bitter and unpleasant on the palate, Security Feel Better’s distinctive pear flavour gives it a sweet, sophisticated taste, making it enjoyable to drink, as well as beneficial for the digestive system. This innovative blend of natural ingredients offers effective relief from the overconsumption of alcohol and food, and a natural, safe alternative to chemical medicinal remedies. 58 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • The history of the hangover Alcohol was first discovered in the tenth century by Persian alchemist al-Razi, and has since remained an important beverage, impacting the course of human history in many ways. Originally a fine powder used for both antiseptic and cosmetic purposes, the natural properties of alcohol were later distilled into the liquid form we have come to know – and drink – today. As fresh water was for a long time unsafe to drink due to its high risk of carrying potentially dangerous diseases, the development of the alcoholic beverage – from fermenting fruit to brewing beer – provided a safe way of consuming liquid, as the ethanol in the alcohol killed any unwanted bacteria. But aside from these medicinal qualities, and the pleasures it can offer during consumption, there is one universal pitfall of alcohol – the hangover. For as long as people have drunk liquor, they have also experienced the after effects, from headaches and nausea, to drowsiness and dizziness. Although the specific causes of a hangover remain poorly understood, hundreds of remedies – from ancient Roman cures, such as crushed snail’s heads smeared on the forehead, and eating a whole, fried bird, to modern day antidotes of rehydration and starchy, greasy food – have been professed worldwide. And while one may not want to test out those more antiquated treatments, there are still plenty of options on offer for surviving the after-effects of a big night of booze. In Europe, many hangover treatments are linked with a country’s typical cuisine. While Italians swear by large, strong quantities of espresso, the traditional German rollmop – cured herring wrapped in pickles or onions – or a weisswurst frühstück – white sausage with a pretzel, and a beer – are the go-to fare for those suffering a hangover. In neighbouring Poland, the over-indulgence of alcohol is remedied by a glass of juice from either sour pickles or sauerkraut, while elsewhere in Eastern Europe, tripe soup, in addition to being highly nutritious, and full of fatty acids and protein, also provides the necessary salt and liquids the body requires to rehydrate. Of course, the classic full English breakfast remains a steadfast antidote to a heavy night’s drinking. And while the greasy bacon, sausage, baked beans, and hash browns help soak up the alcohol, it’s the eggs that are particularly beneficial. Scrambled, fried, or boiled, eggs contain an amino acid called cysteine, which helps counter the effects of acetaldehyde, the organic compound that causes hangovers. Across the Atlantic, Americans also turn to eggs to alleviate the symptoms of alcohol over-consumption. The prairie oyster is a rather hearty cocktail of raw egg, Worcestershire sauce, a dash of vinegar, salt and pepper, and an optional shot of spirit. Concocted in a glass, and sometimes served with tomato juice as well, the yolk of the egg remains intact, giving the appearance of an oyster. In China, recent studies have suggested that Sprite – tested alongside more than forty other varieties of tea and soft drinks – is the most effective at breaking down the chemicals that induce the symptoms of a hangover. More traditionally, though, the Chinese prescribe strong green tea, or water with lemon. Not far away in Japan, miso soup, along with umeboshi – pickled and dried plums and apricots – are both popular cures. Although the effectiveness of umeboshi on hangovers has yet to be ascertained, the dried fruits are also believed to slow the ageing process – another favourable reason for testing out this cure. In contrast to these more conventional remedies, Mongolians opt for some rather unusual hangover treatments. Kumis – fermented mare’s milk – is a popular recovery drink, as are pickled sheep’s eyes in tomato juice… though one may be inclined not to over-indulge if faced with the prospect of swallowing sheep’s eyes the following morning! Nevertheless, if a hangover is simply unavoidable, and the hundreds of optional remedies impossible to choose from, why not try “the hair of the dog”? Although the prospect of drinking more alcohol may not be all that appealing to someone suffering from a hangover, there may be some truth to the theory. Certainly, liquor has a numbing effect on the body, and might therefore lessen the pain of a headache. It should also be remembered, though, that drinking more puts even greater strain on the body, and by exercising the “hair of the dog” option, one may actually make their eventual recovery even more excruciating. But aside from this global array of remedies, there are plenty of other recommendations for curing hangovers – from coconut water, to exercise and a session in the steam room, to the more traditional treatments of drinking gallons of water, plenty of fresh juice, and taking vitamins. Today, it seems, everyone has some sort of hangover remedy advice. Some even suggest abstaining from alcohol completely…but what’s the fun in that? DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 59
    • Security Stories & Testimonials Andy Young General Manager – The Pawn James Tamang Mixologist – The Mira Hotel Joe Villanueva Mixologist – Woo Bar Being in the drinks industry hangovers comes with the territory. Tell us an infamous hangover story that you have come across or experienced? Andy Young: Waking up underneath a hedge at my parent’s house after the first party I threw as a sixteen year old. Things have gotten much better since then! Cherry Lam: All of my hangover experiences after a big night have been awful so now I always try to avoid them. When I first started bartending, my tolerance for alcohol was much higher, but even then, after a few shots on top of everything else, I was pretty much done. I always woke up with a nasty hangover the next day, and would just try and chill out in order to recover. It was worse, though, if I had to go to work – it’s such a horrible feeling, working with a hangover! And every time, I would say to myself “I won’t let that happen again” But of course, it did. . James Tamang: I was out one night with “the boys” It started in Lan . 60 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA Cherry Lam Mixologist – Origin Will De La Praudiere Bar Manager – Boujis Kwai Fong, at the usual hot spots. Then we went to two or three clubs, before taking the ferry to Macau at about 3am. There, we hit the casinos and started on a serious session of vodka and Red Bull, followed by beer chasers. Now, I’m not blaming the alcohol, but turns out we didn’t fair so well at the casino! At around 10am we returned to Hong Kong. I went home, showered and shaved, and then made my way back to work, with a bottle of Pocari Sweat, and a pack of chewing gum. It was a very long day! Joe Villanueva: I slept over at a friend’s flat one night, after a heavy session of drinking. When I woke up the next morning my face was covered with toothpaste. I hadn’t realized when I brushed my teeth that I had actually used face wash instead of toothpaste. Will De La Praudiere: With one eye open, I started to wake up. My brain was pounding, as if a horse was repeatedly kicking me in the head. I
    • thought if I put my head in a vice it would have felt much better. Stroh rum, Jack Daniels, and many a beer had made a substantial appearance the night before and had done a good job of giving me a hangover. Later… We got to the sky dive centre. The instructor went through the motions. It was all a blur. Then, the next minute it was my turn. “Time to jump bro” , the instructor boomed. I held on, but to no avail. The next minute we were falling, wind blasting passed my dizzy, pale, flapping face. The parachute opened, and the churning and convulsing started in my stomach. I was sure the people below were going to witness me spewing all over them whilst in mid air. To my relief, I landed, stomach intact. Tell us about your traditional prevention for the hangover and remedies? Andy: I don’t have a way to prevent a hangover, but I do have a few cures – for example, nothing beats a bottle (glass preferably) of Irn-Bru, the classic Scottish soft drink, or a shot of tequila to get you back on the horse the next day. Cherry: I used to try and ignore my hangovers, but it never worked! If I remembered, I would drink a lot of water before I passed out, or I would drink several cups of hot tea the next morning. However, I still believe the best way to prevent a hangover, is not to do shots! James: Before I go out, I like to eat a hamburger, or something similarly substantial. After a big meal, and a bottle of water, I am good to go all night. If I wake up with a hangover, I usually drink ginger ale with bitters, and eat a nice, steaming bowl of Vietnamese Pho noodle soup. Joe: I always eat something before a big night of alcohol. It will definitely lessen the effects of a hangover, because food helps reduce the formation of acetaldehyde in your stomach, and it this substance that is thought to be the main cause of hangovers. I also recommend taking a tablespoon of olive oil, as it’s believed to work on the same principle as eating fatty food. The fat in the olive oil will limit your body’s absorption of alcohol. Mediterranean cultures swear by this hangover prevention technique. Finally, the more water you drink to rehydrate before, during, and after drinking, the less severe your hangover is likely to be the next morning. And of course know your limit! But if a hangover does strikes the next day, make sure you keep drinking water, and eat something substantial. If you are able to go back to bed for a nap, that will help too. My favorite hangover remedy of all, though, is “the hair of the dog” method, followed by shots of espresso. Will: Prevention for a hangover would obviously be, in an ideal world, to drink less. 1. That’s never going to happen. 2. Drink a large amount of water before passing out for the night then have another litre bottle of water close by, so when you wake up, you can rehydrate quickly without too much effort. 3. Get back on it! Grab yourself a few pints over lunch and you’ll be back on track in no time! You were asked to trial Security Feel Better, firstly tell us about the night before? Andy: I went to the Clockenflap festival with fellow bartender, Will De La Praudiere – the night was a heavy mixture of cider, beer, vodka, and gin. I don’t really have to say more. Cherry: We – my bartender friends and I – were all pretty excited and curious to try Security Feel Better, and see how effective it was. It also seemed like a good excuse for us to drink more! Along with Joe Villanueava, and a few other industry people, we headed out to a several bars in Lan Kwai Fong, had a few cocktails, and a couple of shots each. James: I’ve had for awhile. That evening myself, and my fellow bartenders, Joe Villanueva and Bryson Rivera, had been helping raise money for the Philippines typhoon Haiyan relief fund. We finished at the fundraiser about 10pm, and headed to Lan Kwai Fong. We had already had a couple of drinks at the charity event. Soon, we joined Cherry Lam at Lily & Bloom where we continued drinking. We all started with gin and tonics, later moving onto shots of rum, bourbon, and a few others. Later, we left Lily & Bloom, and went to Origin. There, we switched back to gin and tonics, along with a few more shots. We finally ended up at Wyndham the 4th, where we finished the night with a very large shot of tequila. As I was riding in the cab on my way home, I drank a Security Feel Better. Joe: I attended a charity event, bartending to help raise money for the recent typhoon disaster in the Philippines. After that, I headed to Lan Kwai Fong with some friends…it was shot after shot, followed by cocktails, and then more shots… Well, that’s all I can remember… Will: The Clockenflap festival offered a vast array of places to quench our never-ending thirsts. Many a tipple were consumed over the day and night, and I eventually lost count how many. I arrived back home very late, and after finally managing to open the front door, fumbled around in the fridge. I grabbed one the Security Feel Better bottles, poured it down my throat, and then proceeded to pass out. After sampling Security Feel Better tell us your thoughts and any recommendations? Andy: Honestly, I don’t think it had much effect, but it was hard to tell because if I didn’t take Security the night before, I might have woken up feeling even worse than I already did! I would recommend you store Security in the fridge, though, as the taste is vastly improved when chilled… just like beer. Cherry: After what turned out to be a very big night, I was surprised to wake up without a too much of a headache. It didn’t cure my black outs – I still had no clue what I’d done the night before, which is a typical symptom for me – but I definitely didn’t experience that horrible feeling of nausea and headaches, which I used to suffer after a heavy night of drinking. I wouldn’t say I felt fresh as a lily, but I definitely felt much better than I have other mornings I’ve been hung over. So yes, I would have to say Security Feel Better did work for me. James: When I did finally get to bed that night, after such a crazy evening, I definitely slept soundly! I woke up around two the following afternoon, feeling perfectly fine. Although I must admit, I don’t have much experience with hangovers, but when I do have them, they’re always pretty nasty. All I can say about Security Feel Better is that it would be great if they could make an extra strength version for those extra rough nights! Joe: Security Feel Better seemed to work for some of my friends, but not so well for me. Admittedly, it probably didn’t help that I drank all my samples while I was out drinking, so I didn’t have any left to take before I went to bed. My recommendation? Read the instructions on the label: “drink before bedtime” . Will: When I woke up, it felt as if someone had turned on a hot floodlight directly in my face. A shard of sunlight had crept through an opening in the curtains, and pierced my eyelids. Every noise seemed to be amplified – the bathroom door slammed, and it was like my head was at the end of a jackhammer. I’m not sure it is cut out for helping drinkers after an all day session at a festival, but I do think it would be beneficial after a few drinks one night. Just remember: don’t over-indulge when trialing the product. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 61
    • A bright, refreshing take on Sauvignon Blanc PLEASE ENJOY OUR WINES RESPONSIBLY. © 2013 CONSTELLATION IMPORTS, RUTHERFORD, CA USA EXPERIENCEKIMCRAWFORD.COM No.1 of 3, A S OIREE IN FULL SWING Photographed by MILES ALDRIDGE. Award-Winning Kim Crawford Wines facebook.com/kimcrawfordwines 64 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • ° MEET ° Title L orem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec id viverra purus. Phasellus et egestas dolor, sed rhoncus enim. Mauris tincidunt scelerisque bibendum. Nullam ut mattis purus, et dignissim nisl. Nunc sagittis lacus ac ligula tincidunt consectetur. Proin nec justo sagittis, rutrum urna et, vulputate nisl. Praesent placerat nibh mauris, lacinia condimentum tellus pellentesque eu. Unearthing Kim Crawford K im and Erica Crawford created this leading NZ luxury wine label in 1996 from humble beginnings. Constellation Wines New Zealand carries on the brand spirit of these unique wines through the world’s top restaurants and bars. WORDS ° Ashley Pini & Maurizio Corda DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 65
    • Some of the best ideas have been borne over a few glasses of wine – but it’s not often these ideas come to fruition. Founded in 1996 by husband and wife team Kim and Erica Crawford, the original aim for the Kim Crawford brand was to create a clean, top quality, fruit driven chardonnay, free of the heavy oak that was popular at the time. The idea that looked like a pipe dream in the very beginning would go on to pave the way for Kim Crawford to become known as a forward-thinking winery, not afraid to buck industry trends. Erica and Kim met at a wine convention in Erica’s native South Africa. She had no idea the chance meeting would take her out of her stable job as a marketing executive and drop her in the deep end of wine marketing – but she fell in love with the new role straight away. Kim, a farmer from Waikato, had no intentions on becoming a winemaker originally – until one of his lecturers at university suggested he take a closer look at New Zealand’s then budding wine industry. And as they say, the rest is history. The early years were a struggle but through adversity, character is born and it paid off. New Zealand took the brand to heart and in less a decade, Kim Crawford Wines achieved the title of ‘tenth largest New Zealand brand’ in terms of global sales. As Erica states: “We started with very little and have had wonderful support from all corners of the world. Like in those early years, we still believe that having fun while working is very important” . This high-speed success was assisted by Constellation Wines New Zealand’s (then Nobilo Wine Group) purchase of Vincor in 2006 (Vincor bought KC in 2003) to support the increasing domestic and international sales demands of the extremely popular wines. The winemaker’s direction was consistent from the beginning and obviously effective – “when the grape is at its peak, preserve that moment in the bottle and have it come alive in the taste” Kim Crawford . Wines was also the first New Zealand producer to use screw caps. To celebrate the event, a Bucking the trends: Kim Crawford Co-founder of Kim Crawford Wines: Erica Crawford 66 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • The first office for sales, marketing and shipping was at Kim and Erica’s home The urge to do things unconventionally, take risks, initiate new trends and welcome the different will always be part of the Kim Crawford philosophy. And crafting wines specifically designed for consumers – if the experts love it, then that’s a bonus. quirky midnight tasting was held at Auckland’s Spy Bar – and the initiative was welcomed by representatives from the local wine industry. At the beginning of 2000, a new state-of-the-art winery was opened in Marlborough which meant that grapes could be picked at optimum ripeness without the restriction of contract processing facilities. Today, the market is quite different from the one in which Kim and Erica entered in 1996. In New Zealand, there were just 100 wineries in the mid-90s and now there are almost 600. During the past 19 years, innovation and creativity have helped Kim Crawford capture special niche markets and a perfect example is the rather daring launch of the Pansy Rosé in 2001. A rosé dedicated to Auckland’s gay community…and the launch caused quite a stir. With the brand’s mantle handed over to Constellation Wines New Zealand, the Kim Crawford brand continues to look to the future. With an exceptional ability to discover new niche markets, the brand is enjoying continuous success overseas and the staff work to ensure only original, top-quality wines are produced and distributed. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 67
    • ° MEET ° Dinner with Mrs Mondavi A t the age of 53, with little money but plenty of energy and a unique vision, Robert Mondavi changed the course of the US wine industry. He would realize his long-held dream of creating excellent Napa Valley wines that could stand in the company of the great wines of the world. In 1966, he founded the Robert Mondavi Winery, and in doing so, opened the door to the future of American wine. WORDS ° Nicole Mansour 68 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • Dedicated to fostering a wine culture in the US, Robert also began holding tours and wine tastings. For more than four decades, the winery has celebrated the pleasures of wine and food, in addition to providing a creative setting for music concerts, art exhibits, and various cultural and culinary programs. Impressed by the fine white wines of the Loire, Robert Mondavi first made history when he coined the term “Fumé Blanc” – a dry style of sauvignon blanc, and a variety that had generally been used in California to make sweet, rather ordinary table wines. “The Fumé Blanc became a signature of the winery, but because of the terroir, the cabernet is also very important” explains Magrit Biever , Mondavi. The winery’s cabernet sauvignon would also garner worldwide acclaim, and soon became recognized for exuding the classic features of a great Napa Valley cabernet – full bodied, and with flavours of blackcurrants and cherries. Mondavi also pioneered many innovative winemaking techniques, including the introduction of natural farming practices, which increased the quality of wines produced in the Napa Valley region as well as protecting people and the environment. Using progressive natural farming techniques and extensive high-density plantings, Robert Mondavi winery invested more than US$50 million over the past several decades in replanting the Napa Valley vineyards to ideal rootstocks, varieties, clones, and trellising systems. Recently in Hong Kong to attend a Robert Mondavi wine dinner, which celebrated the founder of this remarkable vineyard, was Margrit Biever Mondavi, Robert Mondavi’s widow and the current Vice President of Cultural Affairs at Robert Mondavi Winery. Margrit joined the winery in 1967 and, in her pursuit of uniting wine with fine arts, music, and culinary artistry, would become one of the pioneering women of the modern-day California wine industry. Initially working at the winery part time, her position soon became permanent, and her relationship with Robert Mondavi more intimate. The couple would marry in 1980. As she reminisced about some of her favourite wine stories over the years, one in particular came to mind: “I remember we were having a picnic, up under a tree on this one particular hill in the valley. Bob bought a 1966 bottle of cabernet… and after we had drunk the wine, we buried the bottle. I’m not sure if it’s still there. ” When Margrit had first begun working for Robert, very few visitors frequented the Napa Valley. “I had a dream to show wine with art, music, and food” explains Mrs. , Mondavi. “We began modestly, with a Sunday art show under the arches, accompanied by wine and food. ” In 1969, Magrit established the winery’s popular Summer Music Festival, as a benefit for the Napa Valley Symphony. Over the following decades, this concert series would go on to host some of the world’s most recognized jazz, R&B, and pop artists from all around the world. “I am very proud we could contribute to the success of the Napa Valley Symphony through our annual donation, she says. “Now our beautiful ” valley has a beautiful symphony. ” Later, in 1984, the Winter Classical Concert series was created, with the proceeds benefiting local musical organizations such as the Napa Valley Opera. Together with a small group of other dedicated Napa Valley art lovers, Margrit formed a board of directors, with the goal of rebuilding the original 19th century opera house in the city of Napa. Mrs. Mondavi also introduced a program of cooking classes, so that guests’ could develop an appreciation of great food paired with fine wine. “Like painting and music, wine and food speak to the heart. By honoring the world of the senses, of memory and emotions, the rites of the table express our humanity” says Mrs. Mondavi. , The respect for California wines that resulted from this program, from such globally recognized chefs such as Thomas Keller and Paul Bocuse, gave Margrit a great sense of pride. Today, as an ambassador for the winery to a wide range of international audiences, Margrit remains certain as to what has made, and continues to make, the Robert Mondavi Winery so successful. “I believe the wine is very connected to the man who created it. Robert’s quest for excellence in producing wine, and his incredible generosity, is what I hope sommeliers will pass on to their customers across Asia, and around the world. ” DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 69
    • ° MEET ° Didier Mariotti / G.H. Mumm 70 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • B y entrusting Didier Mariotti, then aged 35, with the responsibility for vinification in 2006, the house of G.H. Mumm was both placing its faith in the younger generation and recognizing the talent of its current Cellar Master. In keeping with the legacy of other charismatic G.H. Mumm personalities such as Georges Hermann Mumm and René Lalou, Didier Mariotti has the task of reproducing the house style in each of its cuvées. As the latest in a line of passionate men responsible for crafting the house style, Mariotti can call on the expertise handed down by several generations of Cellar Master who have created it before him, including his predecessor, Dominique Demarville, the company’s Cellar Master from 1998 to 2006. Didier is both the guardian and the beneficiary of this heritage, to which he’ll no doubt add his own winemaking contribution. In doing so, he will continue to perfect the balance of tradition and innovation that aims to bring out the exceptional character of this unique terroir. By tasting almost 2,000 wine samples a year, Didier Mariotti and his winemaking team bring to the blending process their own fusion of experience and savoir-faire, passed on by their predecessors. G.H. MUMM BRUT SELECTION The Brut Selection Cuvee is a unique blend created from five of the house’s best terroirs, and a tribute to Georges Herman Mumm’s motto: “Only the best” . Composed exclusively of champagnes’ two most noble grape varieties, G.H. Mumm Brut Selection showcases the distinctive personality of the pinot noir and chardonnay grapes, from Bouzy, Ay, and Cramant. TASTINGS The G.H. Mumm Brut Selection Cuvee has a lively, golden-yellow colour, and fine bubbles. Initially, the nose reveals a range of fresh, tangy aromas, reminiscent of candied citrus fruit, and underscored by considerable mineral content. The rich bouquet then evolves into a scent of fine white blossoms, such as wild hawthorn and acacia, and a hint of vanilla. As the wine warms up, it releases a subtle fragrance of toasted nuts, evidence of its slow ageing process. On the palate, freshness combines with a delicate sweetness, giving this wine an opulent, dynamic feel and a regular effervescence. Interview Tell me about some of the joys of you role, which you have been able to pass on? What are your personal achievements and success stories? Prior to working with G.H. Mumm, I had been employed by Moet, a very successful brand, where I learned a lot as a young wine maker. When I joined G.H. Mumm in 2003, it was a difficult time for the company. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, the quality of their wine had deteriorated, and their reputation suffered as a result. Sommeliers during the 1990s generally thought Mumm was a poor quality product, so it was a challenge for me to both improve the wine and help change that perception. I wanted to bring back the Mumm of twenty or thirty years ago – before the brand declined. Although it took several vintages to better the quality of the wine, it has been very enjoyable for me to watch sommeliers at tastings in recent years – sommeliers that obviously had this rather negative idea of Mumm in their mind – and to have them agree that the wine has definitely improved. love with a wine. It’s important to find the balance between storytelling and fact, no matter which country you’re in. How do you find the sommeliers in Asia? Sommeliers in Asia are asking some very interesting – and some quite technical – questions. Their knowledge is definitely increasing, and they are incredibly focused on the details, which is great. What’s on your to do list? What are your objectives? What would you like to achieve for G.H. Mumm? I hope that every young wine maker I work with will have a great experience, and feel free to experiment in a precise and skillful way. Ninety per cent of a wine maker’s job is to always be aiming to improve both the quality of the wine, and the process by which it’s created. For me, I want to keep producing great wine, enjoy my life, and have fun! Was there an individual person you mentored, trained, or developed who you are particularly proud of? One of my deputies who I work very closely with – Magalie – she is in charge of the winery and production. What do you consider innovation for champagne? I think that new cork is definitely an innovation, especially one that is good for the wine. I also believe that creating a high quality non-vintage wine is important, and I hope to achieve this in the wines I produce for G.H. Mumm. How do you see the sommeliers here – are they different in Asia to the rest of the world? I’ve always believed that passion is more important than knowledge, when it comes to wine. Of course, being knowledgeable is a significant part of a sommelier’s job, but without passion, it’s just not enough. When sommeliers talk to people, it’s their passion that makes customers fall in On Monday you spoke with forty sommeliers. If you wanted to give them one message, what would it be? To always remember that wine is about enjoyment, and sharing great moments with friends and family. I would also tell them to enjoy your occupation – they have a truly great job! DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 71
    • ° FEATURE ° Martell / Zhang Yu 馬爹利/張羽 O nly a few years shy of celebrating its 300th anniversary, world-renowned cognac house Martell has a long history of collaborating with artists. Established in 1715 and acclaimed as the largest estate in the Cognac region of France, the brand’s uncompromising pursuit of fine arts has led to several innovative and unique creations over the years. This year was no exception. Martell’s latest collaboration with Chinese contemporary artist, Zhang Yu, whose 2013.10.3 Fingerprint – Blue and White Porcelain and Martell was unveiled at Hong Kong’ s Fine Art Asia fair in October, is a perfect example of the cognac house’s avantgarde, creative philosophy. Considered a master of contemporary ink art, Zhang Yu’s celebrated series of works, entitled “Fingerprints” have taken traditional Chinese 72 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA art to a new level since their first appearance in the 1990s. With thirty years experience engaging in experimental ink exploration, Zhang Yu is constantly trying to re-define this tradition, through new forms, different mediums, and diverse expressions. This latest piece is the artist’s first attempt with the colour blue, drawing him away from his customary palette of red, grey, black, and white. “As an artist, I believe it is no coincidence that ‘Blue and White Porcelain’ and Martell share the same kind of blue; I would rather believe it is the validation of our shared pursuit towards an advanced quality of our classics, “ comments Zhang Yu on his collaboration of the project. Also enthusiastic about the collaboration is Martell brand ambassador, Jeremy Oakes, who believes the association of Zhang Yu and Martell will further enrich and elevate the culture of cognac and ink art.
    • “It is truly our honour to work with Mr Zhang Yu on this collaboration, joining together to create such a magnificent project. The fingerprint represents charisma, quality, character, individuality and identity. By symbolising both individuality and identity, they signify the most recognized core value of both Martell and Zhang Yu, says Oakes. ” In addition to his collaboration with the esteemed cognac house at the art fair, Zhang Yu was also invited to stage a traditional “ink ceremony” at the historic Chateau de Chanteloup, the residence of company founder, Jean Martell. Zhang Yu presented two phases of the ceremony, one in the chateau, and one in the Martell cellar. As part of the first phase, hundreds of delicate cognac glasses were placed on the floor in a precise pattern – a remarkable sight, set against the backdrop of the chateau’s stunning, vintage interiors. Then, instead of cognac, Zhang Yu gently filled the glasses with Chinese ink, symbolising the exchange, and unification of French cognac with Chinese ink culture. Normally closed to visitors, the Martell cellar took the stage to host the second phase of Yu’s installation. Here, the glasses were replaced with porcelain bowls, and filled with Martell cognac rather than Chinese ink. Zhang Yu mixed cognac with water, in order to resemble the making of the ink, then poured this liquid into the bowls, leaving it to eventually vaporise. On the shared origin between ink and cognac, Zhang Yu comments, “This is a collaboration with an in-depth exploration and presentation that we never reached in terms of the meaning of cross culture; it is a dialogue between the spirits of Chinese ink and Martell cognac. This time I go even further beyond the traditional edge in terms of the use of medium. Water being the soul of ink and the source of wine is literally the origin of all kinds. It pulls a string between ink and cognac, of East and West. It forges the core of their culture. ” While the pervading atmosphere of the chateau, and the aromas of cognac added to the event’s rare ambiance, it was undoubtedly the tradition-breaking collaboration and shared attitude of Martell and Zhang Yu that made the occasion unique. Although Martell’s long established connection with the arts spans over three centuries, this collaboration was significant, as it was the first between the revered cognac house and a Chinese artist. Hopefully, it represents the beginning of a long future of many, unique collaborations between east and west and for art and culture. 74 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA 世界聞名的馬爹利干邑,長久以來樂於與藝術家 合作,其300週年紀念慶祝活動亦不乏藝術味。馬 爹利干邑成立於1715年,座擁法國干邑地區最大 的莊園。隨著品牌對藝術的不懈追求,使其多年 來不斷尋求突破和締造出不同的獨特創作。 馬爹利每年皆會邀請不同的知名藝術家跨界合 作,今年有幸亦邀得中國當代藝術家——張羽參 與。今年10月於香港舉行的典亞藝博展覽會上, 更首次展出其《2013.10.3指印——“青花瓷” 與“馬爹利”》的大型水墨藝術裝置,馬爹利的 前衛和創意哲學實屬可見一斑。 張羽被譽為當代水墨藝術界大師,其90年代首 次發佈的著名作品系列——《指印》,引領中國 傳統藝術踏上新的領域。在過去30多年的實驗性 水墨創作探索中,張羽通過新的形式、不同的媒 介、多樣化的表現手法,不斷嘗試為傳統重新定 義。對於一直以來只用紅、白、灰和黑的張羽來 說,利用代表馬爹利的藍色創作《指印》作品是 他多年來實驗水墨旅程的一大突破。 「作為一個藝術家,我相信,青花瓷之藍色 跟馬爹利的藍不是一次巧合,而是我們對藝術和 經典質量共同追求的審美。」張羽對合作項目的 闡釋。 馬爹利的品牌大使Jeremy Oakes對於是次的跨界 交流甚為雀躍,他相信張羽和馬爹利的結合,將 令干邑和水墨藝術文化提昇至更高層次和地位。 Oakes表示︰「馬爹利感到非常榮幸能與張羽 先生達成這次的合作,攜手帶來這宏偉而別具意 義的藝術作品。指印本身代表著魅力、素質、品 味、個性和身份等完素。但對於馬爹利和張羽來 說,指印所代表著的獨立性和身份像征更是我們 共同追求的核心價值。」 張羽除了在典亞藝博上發佈他與干邑的合作項 目外,還獲邀出席公司創辦人Jean Martell 在其歷 史悠久的宅第Chateau de Chanteloup舉行傳統的「 水墨儀式」。 張羽分別出席了在城堡和馬爹利酒窖舉行的兩 個不同階段的儀式。 在第一階段,數百個精緻的干邑酒杯精確地 放在地上,與城堡的裝置和典雅的格調溶為一 體。張羽把代表中國的水墨輕輕倒滿代表法國的 酒杯,象徵中法交流,合併法國干邑和中國水墨
    • 文化。 第二階段,莊主更破例開放平日對外關閉的馬 爹利酒窖,讓張羽進行藝術裝置。而在酒窖裡他 則以中國白瓷碗代替酒杯;碗內盛載的並不是中 國水墨,而是馬爹利干邑。張羽以製作水墨的方 法,把水混入干邑,再倒入白瓷碗內,並待它慢 慢蒸發。 有關水墨和干邑的共通點,張羽表示:「這 樣的協同效應帶來了前所未見的深層次跨文化探 索——正是中國水墨畫和馬爹利干邑的心靈對 話。這一次,我跨越了傳統媒介的界限,水既是 墨水又是酒的靈魂,更是萬物之源。其中‘水’ 更將兩種中西同樣悠久的歷史文化聯系起來,皆 因水是成就它們(水墨和酒)的核心。」 在藝術色彩洋溢和瀰漫着干邑香氣的莊園內, 馬爹利和張羽打破傳統的合作,毫無疑問地為莊 園精心打造了令人耳目一新的體驗。 縱使馬爹利有逾三百年與藝術家合作的歷史, 但這卻是干邑和中國藝術家的首次合作,且意義 重大。希望這是東西交流的里程碑,為長遠的東 西美術和文化交流發展奠定鞏固的基石。 DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 75
    • ° BARTENDER ° Bacardí Sensology with James Tamang at the Mira Hotel What is your bar background, where have you worked, and for whom did you work? JAMES: I honestly never imagined that I would end up working behind a bar, as I wasn’t particularly fond of alcohol. But as I started to learn more about spirits, flavour combinations, and cocktail recipes, I discovered a real passion for mixing drinks. I also started reading food and beverage magazines, as well as everything I could find on the internet, which further inspired me to develop my skills as a bartender. My first bartending job was at Prive nightclub, where I worked as a bar-back. It was 2007 so the cocktail scene wasn’t what it is today, and , looking back on this experience, I realize that I didn’t actually make that many cocktails! After a year, I took up a position at Solas, where I eventually became assistant beverage manager. Later, as a bar team leader at Aqua Armani, I had the chance to work alongside several experienced mixologists from the UK, and it was during this time that I was introduced to a more diverse range of spirits, and flavours. I continued to develop my cocktail knowledge while working at MO Bar, at the Landmark Mandarin Oriental, and am currently working at The Mira Hong Kong, where I have been since last November. Tell us about the liquor used for this interview, and your thoughts on the drink you made with it? JAMES: Dewar’s 12-year-old is the base spirit for this particular cocktail. Other ingredients include Aperol, Boddington beer syrup and chocolate bitters. When I make a cocktail I always think about the flavour combinations and about enhancing the characteristics of the base spirits. I chose to use beer syrup in this drink in order to enhance the basic grain flavour of the whisky. Dewar’s 12-year has sweet, floral aromas, with flavours of toffee, honey, and chocolate on the palate. There are also hints of smoke, and oak on the finish. In order to match Dewar’s with the right beer, I experimented with several brands, but ultimately decided to use Boddingtons. The hint of 76 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA hop, and the essence of malt, along with the bright golden colour, caught my eyes and my palate! Once I had matched the base spirit to the beer, I decided to add Aperol liqueur, as the orange bitters would enhance the spices and oak characteristics of the drink, along with a dash of Fee Brothers chocolate bitters for a final hint of sweetness. What’s the best advice you have been given and who gave you that advice? JAMES: I think almost every day I do something that’s related to bartending, even when I’m on vacation! Recently, I had a conversation with a group of bartender friends, and we started talking about the Hong Kong bar industry, and how comparable it is to cities such as London and New York. The question of what truly defines a bartender came up, and, not surprisingly, we all talked about passion, enthusiasm, and hard work. Then, Joe Villanueva, who was one of the bartenders in our group, said that he believed bartending was all about dedication. He went on to say that despite working hard, and
    • THE COCKTAIL John Dewar founded the Dewar’s brand of whisky in 1846. Over the next fifty years, and with the help of his two sons, Dewar expanded the business into a worldwide operation. The brand has an extensive range of whisky, though it is Dewar’s 12yo, which is my personal favourite. The 12yo has medium sweet and floral aromas, with flavours of toffee, honey, and chocolate on the palate. The finish is medium long, with hints of smoke and oak. being passionate and enthusiastic, less successful bartenders were often those who simply lack real dedication to the job. I think this is an accurate perception of many bartenders, not only in Hong Kong but also of people in the industry worldwide. Do you consider yourself a bartender or a mixologist? What’s the difference? JAMES: I consider myself a bartender, although I don’t believe there is much difference between these two words. It reminds me of the difference between a cook and a chef in a restaurant. For me, mixologist is simply a new term, adopted by the industry during its rapid expansion over the past several years. What makes a cocktail good, as compared with an average one? JAMES: By using high quality products, fresh ingredients, and perfectly solid ice, in addition to the correct techniques, you are more likely to create a good cocktail as opposed to an average one. But mixing a drink with genuine dedication and passion, that’s the real key to a great cocktail! Antidote Antidote was inspired by the classic definition of the word cocktail – “stimulating liquor composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water, and bitters. ” I like to think of this cocktail as an “antidote” to the busy lifestyles people experience in Hong Kong – something to help relax and unwind! To make the cocktail Antidote, first pour 50ml of Dewar’s 12yo, followed by 15ml of Aperol – the orange bitters of this Italian aperitif add sweet, citrus aromas to the drink. Then, add 10ml of homemade beer syrup. I chose Boddingtons, the base beer for this syrup, because it has a full, creamy texture, which pairs well with the chocolate aromas of Dewar’s 12yo. Finally, add 2 dashes of Fee Brothers chocolate bitters. As well as the chocolate flavour, this brand of bitters also has distinct aromas of Christmas spices, in addition to hints of oak on the palate. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 77
    • ° FEATURE ° Yamazaki A rich vein of harmony exists between Japan’s unique landscape and its people. The country’s culture, art and attention to detail are all born of this bond. It is no surprise then, that when the history and the deft touch of Japan’s artisans were turned to the making of whisky that the result would be at once classic, but also unabashedly unique. WORDS ° John Treadgold 2° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • Yamazaki was Japan’s first whisky distillery and in every facet of its production there is a fastidious drive for perfection. Even its serving style demands exacting standards – Yamazaki is traditionally served over hand chipped crystal clear ice that is carved into a diamond or sphere. When Shinjiro Torii founded the Yamazaki distillery in 1923 it was always his intention to create a whisky that represented the hearts and minds of the Japanese people. At the time whisky was little known to the Japanese, the only labels available were imported and prohibitively expensive to everyone but a wealthy elite. Yamazaki was the first distillery of its kind outside of Scotland and it was modelled on the benchmark style of Scotch whisky; it inherited a method, it echoed a refined and meticulous attention to detail but it was not an imitation. The distillery was built at the head of three rivers, the Katsura, Kizu and Uji. These waters are some of the most sacred in all the country as they were the waters which inspired Senno Rikyu and the origins of the Japanese tea ceremony. This hallowed region, in the shadow of Mt Tenozan just outside of Kyoto, is known as Mizu Seichi or ‘pure water soul place’. Water from snow and rain filters through thousand year old granite rock to form mineral springs, they produce the crystal clear water that gives Yamazaki its unique aromas. The Japanese Ministry of the Environment has named the spring as one of the best in the country and as any whisky connoisseur understands, pure water forms the foundations of any fine whisky. The climate is humid and thick fog blankets the area for much of the year, not unlike Scotland. And, like most Scotch whisky producers, the Yamazaki master distillers import their barley from a Scottish maltster. Sourcing barley and malting locally in Japan would be far too expensive. They import a two-row barley, malted to their particular specifications with both peated and un-peated malt being used. A grist is made from the milled barley which is mixed with pure, untreated spring water. The sweet malty water that has been separated from the spent solids is known as the wort, this product is transferred to two American pine washbacks, then a combination of distiller’s yeast and ale yeast is added for fermentation which brings out the distinct complexity of a Yamazaki whisky. By the time Keizo Saji took over in 1961, Yamazaki whisky was well regarded all over the world. Shinjiro Torii had developed a range of blended whiskies that had given Suntory a solid footing in the Japanese market. But times were changing and the 1970’s saw an economic boom that re-shaped Japan, it allowed its people to expand their tastes and indulge in increasingly exotic flavours. Keizo Saji went against the trends of the time that favoured blended whiskies, he took a gamble, he was convinced that once the market had a chance to experience a richly-layered single-malt, that they would embrace the elegance and unique flavours of the Japanese incarnation. The Yamazaki single-malt was released in 1984 and Keizo Saji’s foresight was rewarded as DRINKS WORLD ASIA °3
    • the 1990’s brought a golden-age for premium whiskies. A refurbishment in 1989 had added both wooden and stainless steel washbacks with directly and indirectly heated stills, this allowed them to produce a much wider range of single-malt whiskies. 12 years on and the Yamazaki brand was heralded for their modernisation efforts when their vintage hit the market to rapturous praise, it helped to position Japanese whisky as a serious international player. They released the 18 year-old in 1992 and in 1995 they released the ten year-old. In 1998 the distillery would celebrate its centennial anniversary and to commemorate they released their 25 year-old single malt. This was then topped in 2005 when they released the 50 year-old Yamazaki single-malt whisky. It had a price tag of one million yen which made it the most expensive bottle of whisky in Japan. But the true master distiller is never satisfied. Shingo Torii was determined to expand the depth and richness of his whisky and so, in 2006, he decided to switch to small pot stills. He wanted to produce a variety of high quality straight malts that would thrive with extended ageing. He employed 12 pot stills, six of which vary in shape and size which afford him a range of subtly nuanced flavours. Yamazaki distillers have their own cooperage facilities, they are modest but it allows them a far greater level of control in the all important 4° DRINKS WORLD ASIA ageing process. They boast the use of rare timbers such as the Mizunara oak from the North of Hokkaido, these trees must be given 200 years before they can be felled. They also use North American white oak and Spanish oak. The white oak offers notes of vanilla and coconut while the Spanish oak cask contain tannins and other polyphenols which imbue a deeper hue. The Japanese oak cask adds a distinctively eastern touch with sweet fragrances of fruit and citrus. A range of reclaimed casks are also used including 180-litre American bourbon barrels, 230-litre hogsheads made from disassembled American white-oak barrels and the more slender 480-litre sherry or Japanese oak butts. This variety of washbacks, stills and oaks means there are over 60 possible combinations available from a single batch. The Yamazaki master distiller, Shingo Torii, displays his deft touch throughout the entire process as he strives for harmony between the many varied elements - the result is the particular, mellow profile that is unique to Yamazaki. 近年日本威士忌揚威海外,更在國際比賽中贏得 「最佳威士忌」的殊榮,足以證明日本出產的麥 芽及其釀製的威士忌質量與進程均屬國際水平。 由於在日本國內廣受歡迎,因此在澳洲亦愈來愈 難找到。 日本威士忌產業起始於20世紀初期,至1970年 代,三得利(Suntory) 推出日本國內首次自行調製 的威士忌,與此同時日本威士忌產業開始蓬勃發 展。三得利的歷史可追溯至日本的首間麥芽威 士忌釀造廠——山崎。山崎酒廠建於1923年,於 1973年成為世界上最大的麥芽釀酒廠,擁有24座 蒸餾鍋,蒸餾鍋的形狀和大小應有盡有。年產700 萬公升的紀錄,還是最近才被酒品公司帝亞吉歐 (Diageo)其位於蘇格蘭Roseisle的新酒廠所生產的 1000萬公升所打破。 到了1980年代中期,日本威士忌銷量為3500萬 箱,幾乎全屬國內銷售,後來由於日本的經濟泡 沫爆破,銷售情況才日漸下滑,生產量亦因此而 跌了三分之一,日本的經濟不景使威士忌產業進 入了低潮期 。隨著經濟慢慢復甦,威士忌雞尾 酒“高球”(highball)也於近年開始流行起來;日 本人以本土獨有的風格,將威士忌、梳打水和冰 塊調合,令高球這威士忌雞尾酒於日本年輕市場 大賣。
    • Tasting notes YAMAZAKI 12 YEAR OLD Yamazaki 12 Year Old exhibits delicate aromas of peach, ripe persimmon, orange marmalade, butter, custard cream, toffee, coconut, vanilla, incense, and cloves. On the palate a full-bodied sweetness is apparent alongside a rich flavour with sweet dried stone fruit, toffee, honeyed toast, maple syrup and cardamom. To finish you are left with the sweet sensations of vanilla and oak with a pleasant lingering aftertaste. DRINKS WORLD ASIA °5
    • 125 years ° PROFILE ° of Glenfiddich 格蘭菲迪 T his year, Glenfiddich celebrates 125 years of whisky making. With an extensive range of whiskies – from the ever-popular Glenfiddich 12yo to the rare 50yo – Glenfiddich is proud to continue the pioneering legacy of its founder, William Grant, always aiming to produce the “best dram in the valley. ” A part of William Grant & Sons, a family-owned distiller headquartered in the UK, today Glenfiddich is run by fifth-generation family members. By remaining a family operated business, Glenfiddich have the privilege of retaining their specific, often time-consuming production techniques, thereby ensuring the consistent and exceptional quality of there whiskies. Just as it has always been made, Glenfiddich is produced at the company’s distiller in Dufftown, just over fifty miles from both Aberdeen and Inverness, in the Speyside region of Scotland. At the Glenfiddich Distillery, time and experience are the core values of the brand’s operation, which is overseen by Malt Master, Brian Kinsman. Accumulated and passed down over five generations, the rich whisky making knowledge of its craftsmen ensures that each variant in the Glenfiddich single malt scotch whisky range matures properly – balancing a rich complexity with unmistakable character. Glenfiddich is the only Highland single malt distilled, matured, and bottled on site, using a single source of spring water throughout the process. It was also the first whisky DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 83
    • label to establish the single malt scotch whisky category, and in 2011 and 2012 the brand was the first single malt scotch whisky to sell over one million cases a year. Of the label’s core range, their most popular whisky is undoubtedly the Glenfiddich 12yo, although the 15yo and the 18yo are also much admired. Each year, Glenfiddich produce more rare variants, such as their 21yo, 30yo, 40yo, and 50yo whiskies. As the age of the whisky increases the production numbers decrease – as a result, only fifty bottles of the 50yo are released each year, from an original batch of just 450 bottles, making them an exclusive example of the Glenfiddich range. Glenfiddich 12yo Glenfiddich 12yo is considered a pioneer of the single malt scotch whisky category. Aged for 12 years in American and Spanish oak casks, this multi award-winning whisky celebrates the sense of adventure that underpins the Glenfiddich brand. The nose of Glenfiddich 12yo has a delicately balanced fragrance, with distinctively fresh and fruity notes as well as hints of pear. The palate is characteristically sweet and fruity, developing into flavours of butterscotch, cream, malt, and subtle oak. The finish is long, and smooth. Glenfiddich 15yo Made using an innovative distillation process, Glenfiddich 15yo is the true expression of the brand’s original approach to whisky making. Matured in three types of oak cask – sherry, bourbon, and new oak – the whisky is left to marry in a handcrafted solera vat. This process results in distinctive notes of rich fruit, spice, and honey. The nose of Glenfiddich 15yo is complex with sweet heather honey and vanilla fudge aromas combined with rich dark fruits. The palate is smooth, revealing layers of sherry oak, marzipan, cinnamon, and ginger – reminiscent of Christmas cake. Full bodied and bursting with flavour, the Glenfiddich 15yo has a rich and lingeringly sweet finish. Glenfiddich 18yo Glenfiddich 18yo bears testament to the skill of the distillery’s craftsmen. Produced in small, individually numbered batches, Glenfiddich 18yo combines fruity sweetness from the Spanish Oloroso wood, and oak characteristics from the traditional American casks. After being married in wooden tuns for at least three months, its rich yet mellow flavours come together to create a smooth and distinctive single malt scotch whisky. The nose of Glenfiddich 18yo is rich, with ripe orchard fruit, spiced apple, and oak. The palate delivers rich dried fruit, and candy peel, and leaves a warm finish. Glenfiddich 21yo Glenfiddich 21yo is testament to Glenfiddich’s inspired approach to whisky making. Finished for up to four months in hand-selected bourbon barrels that once contained rum from the Caribbean, the whisky is infused with a rich, toffee sweetness. The nose of Glenfiddich 21yo is intense and sweet, with floral hints of banana, and figs. The palate is initially soft, but becomes peppery, with a touch of smoke, vanilla, ginger, lime, spices, and new leather. It has a long, warm, and spicy finish. Glenfiddich 30yo Crafted with care and precision, Glenfiddich 30yo is the ultimate expression of Glenfiddich’s exacting standards and adventurous philosophy. Aged in Oloroso sherry and bourbon casks – all of which are hand selected by Glenfiddich Malt Master, Brian Kinsman, to ensure they 84 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA possess a complex blend of fragrance and flavour – Glenfiddich 30yo is the perfect dram for delighting in life’s most rewarding moments. The nose of Glenfiddich 30yo is finely balanced with substantial aromas of oak, matched with fruit and luscious sherry notes. The palate is complex and woody, with dark chocolate flavours emphasised by a floral sweetness. It has a long, honeyed finish. Glenfiddich 40yo Glenfiddich 40yo is created using the innovative, “remnant vatting system” – a technique for making whisky pioneered by Glenfiddich. Each year, the company’s Malt Master, Brian Kinsman, hand selects a range of exceptional casks and marries them with the remnants of previous 40-year-old vattings. First produced in 2000, the process of remnant vatting is similar to the solera style of spirit bottling. This unique process results in a distinctly flavoured single malt scotch whisky, both rich and well balanced. The nose of the Glenfiddich 40yo has layers of dried fruits, dark chocolate, coffee, and ripe black cherries, as well as occasional notes of smoke, leather, and cloves. The palate is smooth, with initial flavours of intense dried fruits, Christmas cake, dates, raisins, and stewed apples, which are later taken over by dry oak and bitter chocolate as well as a hint of peat. The finish is incredibly long and complex. Glenfiddich 50yo Glenfiddich 50yo is one of the most rare and unique expressions of authentic single malt whisky ever released by one of Scotland’s renowned distilleries. It is a true product of time, and craftsmanship, having spent fifty years maturing in oak casks, allowing for its intense and complex flavours to mellow and smooth over the years. Glenfiddich 50yo is imbued with distinct flavours notes that only time can bring yet it remains remarkably light and elegant on the palate. On the nose, it is vibrant and complex, while on the palate, the initially sweet flavours of zesty orange marmalade and vanilla toffee, later become a wonderful series of layers: aromatic herbs, floral and soft fruits, oak tannin, and hints of gentle smoke. The finish is exceptionally long with a touch of dry oak and a slight trace of peat.
    • 今年是格蘭菲迪慶祝其釀製威士忌125年的週年 紀念。在其眾多的威士忌中,不乏廣受歡迎的格 蘭菲迪12年,及至罕有的格蘭菲迪50年的陳年佳 釀。格蘭菲迪不遺餘力地保存其始創人威廉•格 蘭(William Grant)的傳統,旨在努力出產 「莊之 佳釀」。 格蘭父子的蒸餾廠總部設於英國,屬於家族擁 有,至今為止格蘭菲迪已由第五代繼承人營運。 為守護家族長年經營下來的事業,格蘭菲迪必須 要確切維持其詳細而精確且耗時的生產技術,使 其威士忌保持一貫的卓越品質。 格蘭菲迪創立至今皆於蘇格蘭德夫鎮(Dufftown) 的公司酒廠內生產蒸餾威士忌。德夫鎮(Dufftown) 位處蘇格蘭的斯佩塞區(Speyside),離亞伯丁 (Aberdeen)和印威內斯(Inverness)約50英里。 對於格蘭菲迪酒廠而言,時間和經驗是該品牌 的運作核心和價值,生產監督全由麥芽專家—— 拜恩・健士文(Brian Kinsman)主理。累積和傳承了 五代的豐富威士忌製作知識,確立了成功釀製格 蘭菲迪單一純麥芽蘇格蘭威士忌的工藝,他們會 確保不同批次的威士忌均能妥善發酵,打造既複 雜又準確無誤的平衡感。格蘭菲迪產自蘇格蘭高 地,亦是唯一一種由蒸餾、發酵,至裝瓶均在當 地進行的單一純麥芽威士忌。釀製的過程中,他 們更貫徹採用高地的泉水。格蘭菲迪不僅是首個 被列入單一純麥芽蘇格蘭威士忌類別的品牌,更 連續2011年及2012年成為首個榮獲年銷逾百萬瓶 美譽的單一麥芽蘇格蘭威士忌品牌。 在品牌云云眾多的威士忌當中,雖然格蘭菲迪 15年和18年都令人讚嘆不已,但無疑12年是最受 歡迎的。每年,格蘭菲迪均推出不同年期的威士 忌,如21年、 30年、 40年和50年的威士忌。產量 多寡是根據威士忌年期的長短而定,愈是悠久, 愈是稀有;因此50年的就每年只有50瓶。而由於 原始批次的產量僅有450瓶,所以它們便順理成章 地成為格蘭菲迪系列的極品。 DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 85
    • A Day in the Life of Malt Master Brian Kinsman The process of making whisky is both slow and complex. At the Glenfiddich distillery, Malt Master Brian Kinsman is in charge of this time-honoured tradition. Only the sixth Malt Master Glenfiddich has had in its 125year history, Brian’s role requires dedication, expertise and skill, as well as an adventurous outlook. From careful cask selection and overseeing the marrying process – a Glenfiddich speciality that ensures consistency in the quality of the dram – to the maturation process within the Dufftown warehouses, where each new year imparts different characteristics to the spirit, Brian’s expert knowledge is integral in ensuring that Glenfiddich retains its title as the world’s most awarded single malt scotch whisky. Brian’s day begins in the lab, alongside his technical team who are responsible for running tests on the existing whiskies, and investigating which properties of casks will make the best whisky in the future. By examining the exact composition of each cask, Brian and his team are able to identify new ways of producing whisky. This scientific part of the production process reminds Brian why he was inspired to work for Glenfiddich in the first place: “I joined Glenfiddich as a chemist 15 years ago, because I wanted to embrace Scotland’s most famous industry. It was at that time that I became fascinated by the sensory experience of whisky, as opposed to the chemical elements I was schooled in. ” In the course of his time with Glenfiddich, Kinsman had the opportunity to work alongside legendary Malt Master, David Stewart, which he recognises as an important part of his whisky making education. “During our time working together, David passed on his knowledge and expertise to me, much like master to apprentice. By the time David retired as Malt Master, I had become his 86 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA natural successor. Although there is no formal qualification to become a Malt Master, the main board and family members must have confidence in my ability and knowledge in order for me to be granted such a prestigious title. This recognition really was the biggest achievement of my career. ” Brian also spends a portion of his day at the Glenfiddich warehouse, tasting various whiskies currently in storage, or that are close to reaching their maturation point. On average, Brian samples around fifty whiskies each day, although some days he can try up to 200 different expressions. He explains: “Like wine, nosing or smelling a whisky is vital. This is partially to check on the maturation process, but also to see if any casks are doing something unusual. If so, I will record their properties and characteristics and ensure that they are monitored. I might also earmark these casks for a special edition whisky, such as the 19yo Age of Discovery, or maybe hold it back in the hope that it will make a beautiful 50yo. Finding a cask doing something unusual or unexpected is a real gem, and definitely my favourite aspect of my job. ” In the afternoon, Brian can be found at the Glenfiddich visitor centre, explaining the whisky making process to both consumers and the media. With so many people fascinated by the production of whisky, Brian says he enjoys his role as a company spokesperson, and helping customers dispel misconceptions about the spirit. “To really enjoy whisky it should be consumed slowly. I would suggest that a whisky novice adds equal part water, or some ice to their dram. This will not only weaken the spirit but also allows the flavours to develop more, which often brings out the sweeter notes. Like food, everyone has flavours they prefer, so I recommend, when trying to find a new whisky, that people keep in mind their personal preferences. ” Finally, Brian’s day ends with a visit to the distillery’s coopers, who are responsible for caring for and repairing the casks in which Glenfiddich whisky is stored. “Part of their role is to look for pioneering ways to finish and store the whisky. I will spend time with them testing the wood in the casks to see what effects it has on the whisky and investigating any interesting variations as a result. ” In keeping with founder William Grant’s legacy of creating “the best dram in the valley” Brian Kinsman ensures that Glenfiddich produces the finest whisky possible.
    • Berry Bros. & Rudd W ith over three hundred years of history, Berry Bros. & Rudd is justly proud of its past. In 1698, the Widow Bourne established a shop at No. 3 St James’s Street. Since then, the company’s colourful history encompasses wines on board the Titanic, supplying smugglers running alcohol into Prohibition-era America, and sheltering Napoleon III in cellars beneath the shop. Three centuries later, with two Royal Warrants, and eight Masters of Wine, the family business continues to flourish, with its heart still very much at No. 3. Today, Berry Bros. & Rudd continue to supply wines and spirits to royalty, have a successful presence in Asia, and lead the world of wine with a philosophy of constant innovation. In addition to distribution, the company also offers a variety of services to its customers, including the Wine Club, an investment scheme, expertly tutored tastings, and a wine school. While Berry Bros. & Rudd embrace progress, they also value tradition. Still run today by members of the Berry and Rudd families, the company continues to supply the British Royal Family, as they have done since the reign of King George III. Most importantly, Berry Bros. & Rudd believe that everything you should look for in a wine or spirit comes down to one simple question: “Is it good to drink? Berry Bros. & Rudd Own Selection of Spirits Long before Berry Bros. & Rudd’s famous Cutty Sark blend was created in 1923, the company sourced and bottled single malt whiskies from Scotland, as well as cognac and other premium spirits, including rum, Armagnac, and gin. Today Berry Bros. & Rudd continue to seek out exceptional casks and spirits, offering a diverse range to suit every palate and every occasion. Berry Bros. & Rudd only selects the best spirits from the most renowned distilleries around the world, and those that have been recognized through various accolades, including Independent bottler of the year 2010, 2011, and Speyside Independent bottler of the year 2012. Berry Bros. & Rudd’s spirits buyer Doug McIvor explains the philosophy behind the company’s own selection of liquors: “They must display the highest quality, so that I relish drinking them myself and am proud to share with colleagues, friends and, of course, Berrys’ customers. To achieve this, I look for balance and complexity, maturity and texture. ” Berrys’ Speyside Reserve NV Recognized as the heartland of whisky distilling in Scotland, the Speyside region’s whiskies are renowned for their elegant, floral aromas, and fruity, heather-honey style. The Berrys’ Speyside Reserve NV has been created by the company’s own blenders, with the intention of capturing the essence of the Speyside style. The fruity nose boasts citrus, toasted oak, honey, and nuts. The palate broadens with flavours of creamy malt, and sustained rich fruitiness that lead to an elegant finish. With time, hay, lime juice and caramelized apple aromas are also apparent. The Berrys’ Clove Club Cocktail, was created using Berrys’ Speyside Reserve NV, and is exclusively available at 001. Nose: Floral, meadow flowers, lemon grass, orange blossom honey, and white pepper. Palate: Satin smooth, with hints of aniseed, licorice, ripe banana and juicy pineapple – very balanced. Finish: Slightly nutty. Berrys’ Own Selection Bunnahabhain, single malt Scotch whisky, Islay 1990 Translated from the Gaelic, Bunnahabhain means the “mouth of the river” . In this case, the river in question is the Margadale, which flows into the Sound of Islay, near to the distillery. Bunnahabhain is sometimes referred to as “the Islay whisky without the Islay character. ” Although it is less peaty than other Islay malts, its light colour, especially for an Islay, is attributable to the fact that the spring water is drawn before it runs “over and through” the well-known Islay malt. This quality is further enhanced by the distillery practice of taking only a very narrow cut from the second distillation. The distinctive oiliness of the Bunnahabhain malt is due to the short-necked stills utilized in the production process. This expression was produced from a batch of stock using barley at a higher level of peatsmoke exposure. Bunnahabhain single malt Scotch whisky is available at China Tang. Age: 17yo Strength: 46% Cask: Sherry Butt Nose: Coffee, nuts, and fruits. Palate: Rich marzipan, and dried fruits. Finish: Long and lingering. Berrys’ Own Selection Guadaloupe rum The Caribbean boasts a long history of rum distilling, born of the sugar plantations that begun to develop in the 17th century. While each country has its own unique style, the intense fruit, spice, and often molasses flavours of Caribbean rum, may all be present on the palate once the spirit has fully matured. Produced at Bellevue, the oldest rum distillery on the island of Marie-Galante, the trademark vegetal notes of Guadaloupe confirm the agricole character of this complex rum. Layered with cinnamon, this spirit offers hints of coffee, cream, brittle toffee, wood, and exotic fruit. Beyond the fruit, the palate has a dry edge augmented by the complex influence from the wood. The fruit takes a back seat as the spicy layer comes into play on the finish. Berrys’ Own Selection Guadaloupe rum is available at Otto e Mezzo. Age: 12yo Distillery: Bellevue Distillery Single Cask Raw Product: Sugar cane juice (Rum Agricole) Distillation: Continuous For inquiries: BB&R (HK) Limited | +852 2511 2811 | hkenquiries@bbr.com | www.bbr.com DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 89
    • ° MEET ° Interview with Michael Callahan from 28 HK Street Singapore WORDS ° Andy Gaunt T rained in New York and San Francisco, Michael Callahan is now considered one of the leading bartenders in Asia, and one of the few from the USA. An expert in high-volume craft cocktail programs, he is currently the founding bartender of 28 Hong Kong Street. Previously, Michael was the Vice President of the United States Bartenders’ Guild for Northern California and a lecturer on spirits and mixology at the City College of San Francisco. How did you get started in this industry? Michael: In the late 90’s I was working as a barista in the World Trade Center. A regular guest was the manager of a restaurant in the complex. She liked my hospitality style and offered me my first bar job. My first shift I made $60, 4 new friends from across the bar top, and I laughed more than in any position I ever held. I never looked back. What did you love about it then... and what do you still love about it now? Michael: This sounds cliché but really it’s the people you meet day in and day out. You get to converse with all sorts of interesting people and getting paid to do it. Our job is interactive people watching at its best! 90 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • Before coming to Singapore what was your perception of its barculture? Michael: I did not have one. Of the many stories coming back from the East, few were from the perspective of an American bartender. Having always been interested in the road less travelled I decided to give it a shot when the opportunity arose. Now I’m hooked! I am glad I decided to challenge myself. How would you describe the Singapore bar scene now? Michael: Dynamic. The scene is evolving and catching up with the West so fast. The guests are becoming more educated, bartenders are getting better and better, F&B media is improving and a real community has developed. Any advice you’d give to young bartenders? Michael: Don’t feel as if you have to learn and master every trend, old or new, at once. Master the basics of spirits, cocktail history and technique, all the while developing your own unique style. Oh, and travel. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 91
    • ° DRINKS ° Yawaragi-mizu “ by Perrier Yawaragi-mizu is drunk between cups or glasses of sake as a water chaser in much the same way as when drinking other kinds of liquor. Yawaragi means “soften” and Mizu means “water” . Drinking water between glasses or cups of sake will refresh the palate. One’s taste buds are revived and the next cup, as well as the taste of food, becomes crisp and clear. Both the sake and the side dishes become tastier. Also, drinking water lowers the alcohol level in the bloodstream, slows the pace of becoming drunk, and relieves thirst. It prevents one from getting very drunk, so as a way of drinking sake it is gentle on the body. Sake is gaining attention for its health and cosmetic benefits. When you relax and enjoy sake, those benefits are further enhanced. Yawaragi-mizu is another way to enjoy the world of sake. ” - Japan Sake Makers Association 96 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • Drinks World Asia sits down with two of Hong Kong’s leading Japanese restaurant and sake bar operators to learn more about why they prefer Perrier for yawaragi-mizu. Ayuchi Momose Director Sake Bar Ginn, LKF Tell me about your background I opened my shop in Lan Kwai Fong about two years ago, in December 2011. Before that, I worked in the food and beverage industry in the US for ten years. In New York City, I was employed by T.I.C., a restaurant group run by Mr. Bon Yagi. I moved to Hong Kong in late 2010. I am a certified sake sommelier and an instructor, and also a sake samurai. Sake samurai is an honorable title given by the sake association in Japan to people who have contributed to sake industry. So far, only about forty-five people in the world have this title. I want my bar to educate people about sake, as well as give them the best possible experience of the drink. Tell us about Perrier and Sake The main reason why I like to serve Perrier at my bar is that because sake is a lot less acidic compared to wines, Perrier cleans the palate, especially if you are eating oily food. Also, if a customer comes into my shop after drinking a strong flavoured drink, such as red wine or whisky, I suggest they drink Perrier. Since sake is made out of rice and is a bit sweeter than wine or beer, cleansing the palate in between will enhance the flavour of the sake. Perrier is also good as a “water chaser” or Yawaragi-mizu (和らぎ水). In Japan, we always serve , Yawaragi-mizu along with sake. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 97
    • Jun Yoshikawa General Manager & Executive Chef Mizuki Japanese Restaurant , WanChai Tell me about your Background Originally, I’m from Osaka. I moved to Hong Kong in 2008 to take up a position at the Nikko Hotel. In 2011 I moved to Masu, a Japanese sushi restaurant and sake bar located in Central. Masu actually refers to a square wooden box used to measure rice in Japan during the feudal period. Today, masu are largely used for drinking sake. In June this year I started working at Mizuki. I can also be regularly found on a stool at Bar Butler drinking Laphroaig with my good friend, Uchida San. Tell us about Perrier, Sake & Japanese food. With natural gas tapped separately from a spring, and then added to the water at the bottling stage, Perrier delivers a unique taste, which is due both to the strength of its sparkling bubbles and its very low sodium and bicarbonate content. This means its perfect to compliment Japanese food and sake. I offer my guests both the lightly sparking and the regular Perrier products, and recommend they sample my food, sip sake, and then cleanse the palate with Perrier before re-tasting my dishes. 98 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • ° VISIT ° CHINA ROUGE MACAU C hina Rouge is an exclusive private members club located in Macau, and established for the entertainment and enjoyment of the South China elite. Seamlessly blending elements of East and West with both modern and classic style, the venue offers a variety of live entertainment, from contemporary cabaret to music and dance performances from around the world. Members can also enjoy an extensive range of champagnes, wines, spirits, and signature cocktails, as well as a selection of internationally inspired cuisine. What is particularly striking about the venue, however, is China Rouge’s lavish performance lounge, which is a feast for the eyes, thanks to the vision of an entrepreneur, and the work of a top Hong Kong designer. The space has been designed to recall Shanghai’s golden era of the 1930s, a time when the city was recognized as the economic and cultural capital of Asia, and also known as the “Paris of the East” It was during this period that Shanghai . was home to dance halls, teahouses, and underground cocktail bars, where the wealthy and powerful mingled against a backdrop of swinging, sultry, jazz tunes. Chinese stars such as singer Zhou Xuan and actress Ruan Lingyu flourished in this age of decadence. But the China Rouge design also draws from the European culture of Paris. The French capital is credited with inventing the world’s first cabaret, Le Chat Noir, in 1881. The establishment – part artist salon, part rowdy music hall – attracted great painters such as Toulouse-Lautrec as well as the leading philosophers and aristocrats of the day. It staged DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 103
    • extravagant and often risqué nightly revues, with men and women immaculately styled, both on and off the stage. To project a fresh, contemporary take on these themes would not be an easy task for any designer. Galaxy Entertainment Group ViceChairman Francis Lui, the man behind the vision for Galaxy Macau, is passionate about bringing unique, luxurious new experiences to the resort; to create China Rouge, someone was needed who could understand the sophisticated complexities, beauty, and allure of the “Paris of the East” . 104 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA The brief went to multi-award-winning Hong Kong product and interior designer, Alan Chan, whose work has often incorporated motifs of old Shanghai and its provocative belles. Some of his signature imagery of the mid-1990s drew on the elegant yet coy women depicted in Shanghai’s collectable “smoking posters” immaculately , illustrated advertisements produced in the first half of the twentieth century. Chan says China Rouge took a full year to create, from his first drafts to completion. “After consideration, I decided to take the Art Deco style of 1930s Shanghai as the main theme, ” he explains. “Not only because of my personal preference, but also because the artistic style of that era is vivid – making strong visual statements, with beautiful details and colours. That period in China had a profound impact on designs that followed across Asia. ” He goes on: “Women in 1930s Shanghai were impressive to look at. In their honour, the China Rouge interior design contains many feminine elements that make the whole concept more attractive. The club takes its name from females of that time, as the colour red relates to women. ”
    • The overall design mood also makes more than a passing nod toward the style of Russianborn painter and designer Romain de Tirtoff – better known by his nickname, Erté – whose bold, bright, figurative creations are iconic of the 1930s Art Deco movement. Fused within China Rouge’s interior is Erté’s signature period style, effortlessly married with twenty-first century cool. With its unique design and lavish décor, China Rouge is sure to offer its members an exceptional entertainment experience. Nightlife will never be the same. DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 105
    • Jerry Li ° MEET ° Drinks World Asia sits down with What do you think about the JWC IBA Elite Bartenders Course? How was your experience in Singapore? I think the course gives people in the industry an opportunity to exchange ideas and reflect on their experiences, as well as demonstrate their skills and techniques. In Singapore, there were plenty of brainstorming sessions, which gave everyone the chance to “think outside the box” , discuss new tastes and trends, or present a particular type of cocktail in a new and unusual way. There was also an important session on leadership training, giving each individual the chance to lead and manage a team. Overall, I considered the course very motivational for all its participants, teaching people not only “how” to do something, but also “why” we do things certain ways. How does this experience make you see the bar industry today? By listening to participants share their experiences with each other, it gives us all a better understanding of the bar scene, and its changing tastes and trends, all over the world. The industry is constantly growing and evolving in a very dynamic way. Originally, I’m from Hong Kong, so working in Macau has had its challenges, especially at first. But looking back, I have also realized that Hong Kong is definitely one of the world’s most cosmopolitan cities, on par with New York, London, and Tokyo. Yet despite the similarities, it is also extremely different, particularly in terms of operations, and culture. I think there are plenty of opportunities in Asia to develop the ideas of other leading venues around the world, and adapt these qualities for the local market. Macau’s bar scene has potential to grow and become more attractive to non-gambling tourists? What’s missing? Macau’s non-gaming tourist scene is definitely growing. 106 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA Hopefully this trend will continue, and people will visit not just for the casinos, but also for all the leisure and entertainment options Macau has to offer. At present, I would say the nightlife scene is still limited, but venues such as Galaxy Macau do offer guests a variety of places to relax and enjoy a few drinks. Visitors can have a whisky at the Macallan Bar and Lounge, or listen to live music at the Crystal Piano. China Rouge also offers contemporary cabaret performances, as well as some of the most innovative cocktails in town. In many ways, I think the supply is close to meeting the demand in terms of bars and lounges in Macau. But having said that, I believe the hospitality scene could certainly develop into something more distinct and interesting. It would be great to see a “Happy Hour” culture, (or something similar) evolve in Macau – but at the moment, a large number of locals work irregular shifts, so this custom is a little slower to establish. I also believe there is room for a variety of sports-related bars – for example, one bar that screens all the European football league games, or all the major golf tournaments. Macau could also use a few venues especially dedicated to cocktails, where bartenders can show off their skills and techniques, and provide guests with a variety of both classic and innovative drinks, as well as a place they can experience new flavours and ingredients. Where do you work and what do you like about your job? Currently, I am working at the Galaxy Macau. My experience here has been both fascinating and challenging, and I have certainly relished the opportunity to work at one of Asia’s leading gaming and entertainment venues. For me, the best part of my job is having the chance to create my own style of cocktails, and to build relationships with my guests. It is always a pleasure to get to know new customers, learn their flavour preferences, and create a drink for them that they will enjoy and remember.
    • ° BARTENDER ° Macau Bartender of the Year Competition WORDS ° Bruno Santos, President of the UBCM F or the second year straight Macau Bartender of the Year Competition was held on the 12th of December, this day also celebrates the anniversary of the UBCM official government registration. 108 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • It was a day full of happiness and great bartending both from our competitors as well from our exhibitors that entertained our guests with amazing cocktails by using sponsored Absolut Vodka, Chivas Whisky, Ron Barceló, Rodanov Vodka, Les Verges Boiron Purees, Mad Croc Energy. As well this competition wasn’t possible without the help from all our other contributors Sky 21 Restaurant & Bar, Laxino Technology, Macau Government Tourism Office, Cheers Restaurant & Bar, BNU Bank, Tribuna de Macau, Macau Bar Concept and last but not least the WooNow Team. Also a big thank you for our international judges and observers, Marc Rodrigues Drinks World Asia, Mac Lee Honorary President Association of Bartenders and Sommeliers of Singapore, Laki Gwang Vice-President Korean Bartenders Guild, Mutley Matilla President Philippine Bartenders League, Alex Ng Chairman of the Supervisory Board of UBCM, Derrick Lee President of IBA, Tom Kuo Vice-President of IBA Asia and finally all our members that showed up to spice our event. The major objective of this gathering was to promote and develop the bar scene in Macau. The winner is also entitled to represent Macau in next year’s Asia Pacific Cocktail Championship, which is held in Singapore every year. Winners: 1st place Fufu Wong - China Rouge Galaxy 2nd place Kenneth D. Abaricia - Whisky Bar Starworld 3rd place Eduardo Zamora Portofino Venetian DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 109
    • ° DRINKS ° Cocktail Club 110 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • Take it Easy Ingredients 20ml Black Grouse 20ml Lillet blanc 20ml Lillet rouge 10ml Fresh lime juice Top with soda water Method Shake all ingredients and put in tumbler with ice and top with soda water Glassware 12oz Tumbler Garnish Orange slice, lemon slice, lemon peel DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 111
    • Arsenic Ingredients 45ml Fireball whisky 1 tea bag Chamomile tea 2 bar spoon Acacia honey 2 dashes Aromatic bitters 5ml Fresh ginger juice 3 Lemon wheel slices 180ml Hot water Method Add fireball whisky, aromatic bitters, honey, and ginger juice into the ceramic cup and stir gently until honey is dissolved. Place the chamomile tea and lemon wheel into the tea filter. Add boiling water and let it steep for 3-5 minutes *Squeeze the lemon wheels if citrus flavour is desired Glassware Ceramic Chinese teacup, with dragon design Garnish Cloves and star anise 112 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA
    • Naked Shower Ingredients 50ml Naked Grouse 25ml Bitter Truth elderflower liqueur 25ml Fresh lemon juice 20ml Homemade cardamom & fennel syrup 20ml Raw egg white Top up with Fee Brothers Aged Whiskey Barrel Bitters Method Muddle a few pieces of dry cardamom and fennel, then simply measure out all the ingredients and give a dry shake. Add ice, then hard shake. Glassware Coupé Garnish Purple orchid flower, with chopped lemon and orange zest DRINKS WORLD ASIA ° 113
    • Coming up 接下來的內容 GIN We go into the home of Sacred Gin. The Origin of Gin with Hendricks. VODKA The Kettle One Fraternity and Justin Smyth. COMPETITION Bacardi Legacy “The Big Final for HK. “ HONG KONG BAR LIFE Our Feature “ the week in the life of a HK bar “ by John O’Toole. SUBSCRIBE If you or your business requires more copies of Drinks World Asia HK because one is just not enough! Then you can subscribe! 4 Editions delivered for $125 HKD. Simply email: Sasha@hipmedia.com.au 114 ° DRINKS WORLD ASIA