Central City’s newly-released gin pays homage to its B.C. roots
It’s not often the new kid on the block walks away with a major international award the very week of its launch, but that’s exactly what Surrey-based Central City Brewers and Distillers’ newest offering accomplished earlier this year; their Queensborough Gin garnered a gold medal at the Spirits International Prestige (SIP) Awards.
Our man at the bar, John Burns, on the seductive power of nomenclature
Names are my downfall. I’m just a sucker for them. For fanciful origin stories and tales of whimsy. The music of language spellbinds me, which is why I fall so often and so hard for the poetry of the label.
Take Bénédictine, that herbal liqueur purportedly invented by Norman monks. A cabal of French brothers whose order was founded by a Merovingian count in 658 AD created a secret recipe 500 years ago, then mislaid it when they fled the French Revolution. Come 1863, the industrialist Alexandre Le Grand — whose granddaughter Simone Beck would go on to co-author Mastering the Art of French Cooking — rediscovered (or made up) this proprietary mix of 27 botanicals and bottled it, sealing it with the gilded letters DOM: Deo Optimo Maximo, or “To God Most Good, Most Great.” Who could hear such an improbable yarn and stand unmoved?
Whether you prefer your cocktails classic or bespoke, The Cascade Room’s Rob Scope has a drink for you
Rob Scope knows his way around a bar. After being introduced to the trade in England, Scope has had a hand in creating some of Vancouver’s most sought-after cocktails at establishments such as Campagnolo, ReFuel, Calabash, Cassis Bistro and now, as bar manager, at The Cascade Room on Main.
“Our cocktail list is pretty aggressive,” he says of the 60-drink strong menu of classics he oversees. “Working with this back bar is a dream come true.”
At Royal Dinette, Kaitlyn Stewart makes drinks that dance
It’s immediately obvious that Kaitlyn Stewart, bar manager at Vancouver’s Royal Dinette, likes to bartend to a strong beat: all of her cocktails have names inspired by music — from lyrics and songs to musicians and festivals (Upside Down; Smoke on the Walters).
Her proudest pop moniker? The Cream Sh-Boogie Bop. “It’s an ode to Prince,” she laughs, breaking into song. “Cream, don’t you stop. Cream, sh-boogie bop!”
Heering’s classic liqueur continues to inspire the world’s top mixologists
For close to 200 years, Heering Cherry Liqueur has been a staple behind the bar in any respectable drinking establishment. The original Cherry Brandy, created in 1818 by Danish purveyor Peter F. Heering, the liqueur has gained a global reputation for its delicious, refined taste. The backbone of classic cocktails such as the Singapore Sling, the Copenhagen, and the Blood and Sand, Cherry Heering is sold in more than 100 countries worldwide.
Earlier this year, the iconic brand launched the 2016 Heering Classic Challenge, seeking to inspire the world’s greatest bartenders to take classic cocktails and reimagine them with Cherry Heering.
When the Hôtel Ritz Paris’s legendary barman Colin Field introduced the $1,700 Ritz Sidecar in 2001, it was considered the most expensive cocktail in the world. Since then, a multitude of bartenders have created their own lavishly priced drinks made with everything from truffles, gold dust and precious gems, to vintage spirits recovered from famous shipwrecks.
But are these ultra-premium cocktails worth their ultra-premium prices? Well, it depends — and not just on how much credit you have left on your flexible friend.