Vancouver’s winning cocktail

Another day, another competition under the belts of Vancouver’s extraordinary bartenders.

Chris Enns. Fairmont Pacific Rim photo

To chants of “Back to back!” on Thanksgiving weekend, Chris Enns of the Lobby Bar at the Fairmont Pacific Rim made it into the top-20 round at the Diageo Reserve World Class competition in Berlin. Australia’s Orlando Marzo took home the overall title this year, but Enns made it all the way to number eight in the world, with a trio of Vancouverites cheering him on—last year’s global winner, Kaitlyn Stewart of Royal Dinette, as well as previous World Class Canada winners Lauren Mote and Grant Sceney. “Until next time, friends,” Enns said on Facebook. “May your hearts be filled with love and your glasses filled with World Class cocktails.”

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Being on brand

Brand ambassadors have a huge influence on what and how we drink. But who are they, and what do they really do?

“There’s a pretty big spectrum of roles that are called ambassadors,” says Ryan Cheverie, the territory sales manager for Brown-Forman. Supplied photo

On any given day, Kevin Brownlee drops in at local bars and restaurants to visit with his bartender colleagues. In the evening, he’ll hit a nightclub or two, or hang out at an event like Dish ’n Dazzle. Or he’ll jet off to some exotic locale, Puerto Rico, say, or maybe Miami.

And he’s actually paid to do all this.

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From vermouth to high volume: Cocktail trends for 2018

Some of Vancouver’s top bartenders give their thoughts on what’ll be hot next year

Glass straws will be seen more widely as bars strive toward more sustainable practices. The Last Straw Co. photo
Glass straws will be seen more widely as bars strive toward more sustainable practices. The Last Straw Co. photo

Raise your glass to the end of 2017, a year that brought us one disaster after another, from raging wildfires to the near-daily perp walk of sexual predators. Between all that and the inescapability of frosé, it’s a year we’re mostly happy to forget.

And so we look forward to 2018. We checked in with some of the city’s top bartenders to discover what’s shaking for the New Year.

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It’s better with bitters

Ms. Better’s Bitters Miraculous Foamer is a vegan substitute for egg whites in frothy drinks such as the Hotel Georgia cocktail. Tarquin Melnyk photo

It’s right there in the original description of a cocktail, dating back to 1806: “a stimulating liquor, composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water and bitters – it is vulgarly called a bittered sling.”

In other words, bitters are what make a cocktail a cocktail. And that makes bitters an essential part of any home or professional bar.

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Duke of Kidalton

Lauren Mote’s Duke of Kildalton cocktail. Dan Toulgoet photo

This cocktail, created by Lauren Mote, celebrates the region of Kildalton, on the Scottish isle of Islay, home to the elegant but powerfully smoky Lagavulin 16-year single-malt whisky.

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Loup-Garou

Lauren Mote’s Loup-Garou. Issha Marie photo

French for ‘werewolf’ or ‘moondog’

INGREDIENTS:
• 1.5 oz Johnnie Walker Platinum Label Blended Scotch Whisky
• 0.5 oz Lagavulin 16-Year-Old Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky
• 0.75 oz Punt E Mes
• 0.25 oz Jagermeister Herbal Liqueur
• 2 dashes Bittered Sling Cascade Celery Bitters
• 2 dashes Bittered Sling Moondog Bitters
• 2 dashes Vancouver Island Smoked Sea Salt Water

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Smoke on the water

Experience the magic of Islay, one Scotch at a time

Islay is known for its dramatic scenery and changeable weather. Istockphoto.com photo

The romantic Isle of Islay in Scotland’s southern Hebrides is best known for its moors, treacherous weather, high seas, early Viking settlements—and, yes, its whisky. For, buried within that dramatic landscape, exists rich soil redolent with peat, and a water supply heavy with briny minerals. No wonder, then, that Islay is home to some of the finest and most distinctive single malts in the world, among them, Ardbeg, Laphroaig and Lagavulin.

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