16 October 2014: Tim Pryde of The Voodoo Rooms in Edinburgh is the winner of Maxxium UK’s Maker’s Mark Bartender Trove. His prize is an all-expenses paid trip to Loretto, Ky., the home of Maker’s Mark, to experience the intricacies of this coveted bourbon first-hand.
The Maker’s Mark Bartender Trove launched last year and inspired a first-of-its-kind collection of bar wares and prized treasures from across the UK bartending scene. The campaign is a reflection of the craftsmanship that goes into the production of Maker’s Mark, from the hands-on 19 barrel production process to the inclusion of red winter wheat, which results in a smoother bourbon.
Four finalists were chosen1 following a live exhibition held at The Goldsmiths’ Centre in the creative quarter of Clerkenwell in June. On display was an impressive array of vintage and antique gems and unusual and precious possessions used by bartenders when creating the unique Maker’s Mark serves submitted as part of their entry into the Trove.
Earlier this month, the final four—Tim Pryde of The Voodoo Rooms in Edinburgh, Chris Lacey of Rules in London, Rusty Cerven of The Connaught in London and Michal Buben, formerly of NinetyEight Bar and Lounge—competed at MASH (Modern American Steak House) in Soho where they were tasked with using their precious object to create a new Maker’s Mark cocktail. Upon arrival, they were given an £80 budget to scour Soho on the hunt for extraordinary ingredients that would complement the bourbon in their drink.
Tim proceeded to Chinatown searching for Umeshu, a Japanese liqueur made from steeping ume fruits in alcohol and sugar, to create a Japanese-inspired cocktail that he could serve in his ceramic Shisa cup from Okinawa, Japan.
Rusty returned with an array of objects including a dozen quail eggs and a bag of giant cinnamon sticks, which he used to create a twist on a Tom and Jerry served warm and made in his ornamental samovar bought in Moscow.
Chris headed to Gerry’s to pick up a bottle of Byrrh Grand Quinquina, a wine-based aperitif, with no added sugar, to create a smoky Maker’s Mark cocktail using his Gorham Sterling 1950s Martini Spike (vermouth dispenser).
Michal sourced ingredients including cumquats, yuzu and Lapsang Souchong tea for the creation of his cocktail that was garnished with green tea cookies and incorporated the use of his Reed & Barton sterling silver jigger.
Of all the cocktails presented to the four-strong judging panel, it was Tim’s Hanakotoba Punch made with a hibiscus blossom cordial that prevailed. Maxxium UK’s Mixxit Manager, Amanda Humphrey, Maxxium UK’s Rebecca Tinson, BarLifeUK’s Simon Webster and Imbibe’s Clinton Cawood agreed that this was the cocktail that best showcased Maker’s Mark.
Maxxium UK’s Mixxit Manager, Amanda Humphrey says: “The Maker’s Mark Bartender Trove provided the perfect platform to inspire bartenders to get creative with this iconic and coveted bourbon. The competition challenged our finalists to think on their feet, incorporating unusual and precious ingredients while keeping Maker’s Mark at the heart of their creations.
“Each cocktail captivated the judges and demonstrated a unique and creative take on the brief, making the final decision a very difficult one. In the end it was Tim’s collection of ingredients and story behind his Shisa cup that won us over. We are delighted to reward his efforts and craft for bartending with a trip to the Maker’s Mark distillery.”
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