This years brand ambassadors will be announced soon. Sign up for the Art of the Cocktail newsletter HERE for updates.
The Art Of The Cocktail attracts amazing brand ambassadors from around the world. Here are last years participants:
Daniela Cubelic's love for tea and tea culture is steeped in her veins. A Tea Master, who was trained by Chinese and Taiwanese herbalists and tea masters, she is one of North America's foremost tea experts. Hailed as Canada's "Queen of Tea" (Globe & Mail) she has received many accolades over the course of her twenty years in the tea industry. She also recently co-designed a revolutionary new teacup, which received a coveted Red Dot Design Award. Silk Road is located in Victoria's Historic Chinatown and has been in business since 1992. It has received local, national and international acclaim for its locally made, organic, exceptional quality teas and exquisite tea blends.
He founded Europe's largest bar school and Holland's best bar, has been deported from a country which no longer exists and once got a driving ban for driving too fast in Germany, a land with no speed limits. Oh, and he's been in every bar in the world and can remember some of them as well. Ladies and gentlemen, it's Philip Duff! After more than a decade bartending in his native Dublin, followed by London, New York, the Cayman Islands, Rotterdam and the Hague, Duff said “Screw this for a game of soldiers” and chose the soft, easy, seductive life of a jet-set brand-ambassador cocktail-consultant type chap. He and his firm, Liquid Solutions have trained about 17,000 people in 60-odd countries across every continent except Antarctica, because those bloody penguins think they know it all. Philip has presented at every even halfway-decent barshow in the world and is much in demand by the better sort of drinks brands. They hire him to train their staff, for new product development, to design and execute on-trade communications and bartender-targetted initiatives and because he delivers on deadline and turns up for meetings sober. Despite his chiselled good looks, muscular calves and razor-sharp abs, Philip is more than just a pretty* face. His presentations on bars, bartending, spirits and cocktails actually contain quite a bit of information, much of it plausible, some of it even true. An in-demand writer, Philip's writing includes columns in Australian Bartender and regular articles in Mixology (Germany). His columns and recipes have also appeared in Food & Wine (USA), Playboy, FHM, CLASS magazine, Bar & Beverage (Canada) and others too numerous to mention.
Audrey Fort, Marketing & Business Development Director, EWG Spirits & Wine.
After a master in international trade and Russian language, Audrey started her career in the luxury goods in Moscow where she developed her "fighting spirit" (well, 1997 was certainly still a wild period ...). Upon her return to Paris, she was recruited by a major perfume company where during 7 years she took care of the export in Europe, then set up the marketing department for Europe, Middle east and Africa. Audrey's willingness to take up new challenges led her to EWG Spirits & Wine, a dynamic and innovative company based in Cognac, creator of grape-based groundbreaking spirits. There she found the perfect field to express her entrepreneurial mindset and enthusiasm for the inspiring spirits industry. For 4 years now, she has been raising proudly her children - namely G'Vine gins, June liqueur and Excellia tequila - and distilling her passion all over the world
Rodney Goodchild, from Okanagan Spirits.
Trevor Kallies is the Bar & Beverage Director for the Donnelly Group, currently running the cocktail program for 16 venues. He hosts seminars and cocktail culture events for staff and consumers on a weekly basis.
Regarded as one of Vancouver’s premier barmen, Shaun Layton has refined his palate in some of the world’s most renowned bars and lounges. His adventures on the cocktail trail have seen him competing in the U.K. and France, touring distilleries and cellars throughout Europe and the United States, and participating in internationally recognized seminars and bar education programs.
With a resume that spans some of Vancouver’s most notable restaurants and cocktail lounges, Layton has a decade of experience developing bar and staff education programs. His philosophy is grounded in a passion for the history and culture of cocktails, proper techniques and barware, and being able to turn out drinks with a touch of creativity and personal flare. Layton was recognized at the 21st Annual Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards as “Bartender of the Year.”
Oron Lerner, a bartender for the last 8 years and currently the manager of a small cocktail bar in Haifa, Israel called Mapal. Lerner is also an a MA student of Organizational Psychology specializing in Subconscious Decision Making. Mapal is a personal project aimed at bringing to the local drinking culture a combination that while is natural to the middle eastern spirit is yet very scarce, combining the wonderful fresh produce of the area, specially made ingredients and a Tiki culture to give the guest a whole and new drinking experience.
Carol Maa is a seasoned luxury brand and marketing strategist with over ten years of experience building some of the world’s most prestigious brands. All the while, after cutting her teeth behind the bar of Manhattan's legendary society haunt, Nicholson, she discovered a passion for fine wine and spirits that has grown into a whole-hearted obsession. Today, she partners with industry-leaders and clients in the prestige beauty category to forecast the global olfactive trends to drive creativity in both perfumery and flavors for 2014 and beyond. Born abroad and currently based in Brooklyn, New York, Carol’s curiosity and perpetual wanderlust has led her to nearly all corners of the world as a nomadic food/cocktail fetishist always on the prowl for the next delicious bite (and sip!).
Jeffrey Morgenthaler has been tending bar since 1996, in everything from neighbourhood taverns and college nightclubs to fine restaurants and upscale lounges. He can currently be found behind the bar at Clyde Common in Portland, Oregon. Jeffrey has been writing about bartending and mixology for several years at his website, jeffreymorgenthaler.com. The website features original cocktail recipes, product reviews, and discussions of bartending technique.
His recipes and wisdom have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Wine Enthusiast, Playboy, Wired, and Imbibe magazines.
Nick Nemeth gained his appreciation for fine spirits and cocktails while working in fine dining within one of Canada’s affluent tourist destinations: Niagara on the Lake, Ontario. From there, casual service restaurants opened doors for bigger and better cocktails, and paired with extended positions within beverage education and journalism in Toronto, the world of quality cocktails was quick to reel him in. Most recently working towards graduation from the Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers, Nick’s experience in nosing and tasting puts him among the head of the class when it comes to the palates of Canada’s professional bartenders, and has taken him from Niagara halfway around the world, seeking out the finest spirits the world can provide.
Nick is a published author in various Canadian hospitality trade magazines, and remains one of the industry’s youngest passionate speakers on topics ranging from bar and beverage marketing, to gin-focused cocktails and histories of the world, and beyond.
Simon Ogden is the Bar Manager at Veneto in the Hotel Rialto and Vice President of the Canadian Professional Bartenders Association. He has been a professional bartender and mentor in BC for the past 23 years, and loves nerding out about all things booze.
Solomon Seigel, a Victoria BC native, grew up working in his Father Howie's and Uncle David's famous pasta joint, Pagalicci's. This led him to study coffee at Caffe Fantastico and Discovery Coffee, Beer, Wine, Spirits and Cocktails. In 2008 he opened Victoria's first cocktail bar, Solomon's, and from there Solomon lead the food and beverage team at Hotel Rialto, winning awards for the wine and cocktail programs. He has appeared regularly on Island 30 Mixology 101 on Check TV and is a frequent contributor about cocktails for Eat Magazine. Solomon was a finalist at the G'Vine Connoisseur program 2011, Winner of the 2010 Eat Magazine's "Knowledgeable Service," award and 2009 Western Living's "Top 40 Foodies Under 40" Solomon is currently working at Fire & Water in the Victoria Marriott.
Christine Sismondo is the first person to attempt to chronicle the entire history of the American bar (a foolhardy task if she's ever heard one). Her new book, “America Walks Into a Bar: A Spirited History of Taverns and Saloons, Speakeasies and Grog Shops” (Oxford University Press) is now available.
In addition, she is a writer, teacher and barfly. When not teaching literature at Ryerson University, she's tracking down the city’s best drinks and the bars in which they’re served for her columns in ROB Magazine, The Grid and Winefox.She did her time behind bars, too - tending bar for a decade or so. In an attempt to escape the industry, She wrote “Mondo Cocktail: A Shaken and Stirred History” which, ironically, only got her more deeply entrenched.
Shawn Soole exported himself from Australia to Canada about 3 and a half years ago in search of new, greener pastures. His career started just over a decade ago in Brisbane, beginning as a waiter and then finding his passion for bartending. He bartended and managed some of the city’s most upscale and contemporary cocktail bars, restaurants, and resorts, including Jorge, Vino’s, and the only five-star resort in the Whitsundays – Hayman Island. In the few years leading up to leaving for Canada, he organized, judged, and competed in numerous mixology and flair tending competitions. He won his first Australian Bartenders Guild State Title at the age of 21, was named one of Australia’s “Best Bartenders,” and had recipes published in various publications across the country.
Donnie Wheeler is the mastermind behind The Beachbum Project, a weekly exploration of Jeff “Beachbum” Berry’s Tiki Anthology - Beachbum Re-Mixed.