Danny Whelan Of Kelvingrove Café Wins ‘Sprint to the Finish’ Cocktail Competition

Chairmans Reserve

Danny Whelan, a rising star of Glasgow bartending, working at the Kelvingrove Café is the winner of the “Sprint to the Finish” cocktail competition and will receive tickets to a private box at the Commonwealth Games today when the 100m finals take place. In a closely contested competition Danny’s cocktail “Comerette Cooler” attracted the most ‘Likes’ on the Chairman’s Reserve Rum Facebook page possibly because his recipe was very well conceived, given the unusually hot and dry weather over the last few days.

A delicious long drink made with Chairman’s Reserve Spiced Rum, served long with a side of ice cream, “Comerette Cooler”, attracted plenty of attention from the start and managed to hold onto the lead throughout the week.

‘Comerette Cooler’ by Danny Whelan at Kelvingrove Café (Glasgow) – Named after the white-sand St Lucia beach ‘Anse Comerette’

45 ml Chairman’s Reserve Spiced
25 ml Orange Sherbet
20 ml Coconut Syrup
dash Chocolate Bitters
Topped with a float of Root Beer

Add all ingredients except Root Beer to a mixing tin, shake and pour into a hi-ball glass over cracked ice. Float root beer over the top. Garnish with an Orange Twist, with Vanilla ice cream and Coconut Chocolate on the side.

Runners up in the ‘Sprint to the Finish’ competition were Mike McGinty (Treacle, Edinburgh) and Matt Ronald (Blue Dog, Glasgow) crossing the line in what was almost a photo finish taking Silver and Bronze respectively. Mike McGinty having learnt his trade in Aberdeen moved to join the Edinburgh bar scene a couple of years ago and is now managing Treacle on Broughton Street in Edinburgh . Mike’s drink ‘Chairman’s Re-Served’ had a nice balance of simplicity and theatre, revisiting a classic rum serve.

‘Chairman’s Re-Served’ by Mike McGinty at Treacle (Edinburgh)

50 ml Chairman’s Reserve
20 ml Homemade Falernum
5 Dashes of Angostura Bitters
2 Dash Chocolate Bitters

All put into a metal cup, with a lime cut into a square, covered in Demerara sugar, coffee, chocolate and cinnamon. A light on fire which caramelises the lime and it drips into the drink. Then extinguish the flame with 60 ml water.

This is a twist on the perfect rum serve; coffee, lime and sugar, hence the name.

Bronze medal winner, Matt Ronald, another Glasgow bartender, has been the manager at Blue Dog for a number of years and a fan of Chairman’s Reserve ever since he visited the distillery in St Lucia on a trip organised by Emporia Brands a few years ago. Also electing to make a drink based on Chairman’s Spiced, his cocktail was about balancing the different sweet, sour and spicy elements to make a refreshing summer serve.

‘Bolt from the Blue’ by Matt Ronald at Blue Dog (Glasgow)

25 ml Chairman’s Spiced
12.5 ml Domine de Canton
12.5 ml Gabriel Boudier Blueberry
Fresh Blueberries
25 ml Lemon juice
Lemon syrup
37.5 ml apple juice

Ten contestants made it to the Chairman’s Reserve ‘Sprint to the Finish’ finals, all of whom are established UK bartenders or are rising stars in Scotland .
The final finishing order was as follows; –
– Danny Whelan – Kelvingrove Café ( Glasgow ) GOLD
– Mike McGinty – Treacle ( Edinburgh ) SILVER
– Matthew Ronald – Blue Dog ( Glasgow ) BRONZE

– Lewis Thomson – Clouds & Soil (Edinburgh)
– Alex Muir – Amicus Apple ( Aberdeen )
– Rosie Paterson – The Voodoo Rooms ( Edinburgh )
– Panda & Sons – Phil Jones ( Edinburgh )
– Jon Hughes – Bramble Bar ( Edinburgh )
– James Grant – Bond 9 ( Edinburgh )
– Adrian Gomes – The Tippling House ( Aberdeen )

Chairman’s Reserve ‘Sprint to the Finish’ Cocktail Competition Announced

Chairman's Sprint Header July 2014

St Lucia Distillers, as a member of a Commonwealth Country, has organised a cocktail competition with a difference in Scotland.  In conjunction with their UK distributors, Emporia Brands Ltd, they have invited a number of leading bartenders from Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen to take part, competing for a chance to go to the 100m finals session at Hampden Park on Monday 28th July.

The bartenders have been asked to come up with an original Chairman’s Reserve cocktail, using any of the four expressions available, which have all been posted on the Chairman’s Reserve UK Facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Chairmans-Reserve-UK/228828170498199?fref=photo.

The challenge is for these bartenders to market their drinks through their bars and social networks for a one week & ‘Sprint to the Finish’.  The cocktail creation that has manages to attract the largest number of likes at the end of a week, on Thursday 24th July, will be the winner and we will accompanied to the Blue Ribbon event (men’s 100m finals) by the Chairman of Emporia Brands, James Rackham to enjoy prime seats for the event in a corporate box at Hampden Park.

The runners and bartenders in this race to the Games include; –

  • Danny Whelan – Kelvingrove Cafe (Glasgow)
  • Alex – Amicus Apple (Aberdeen)
  • Mike McGinty – Treacle (Edinburgh)
  • Matthew Ronald – Blue Dog (Glasgow)
  • Jon Hughes – Bramble Bar (Edinburgh)
  • Adrian Gomes – The Tippling House (Aberdeen)
  • James Grant – Bond 9 (Edinburgh)
  • Lewis Thomson – Clouds & Soil (Edinburgh)
  • Rosie Paterson – The Voodoo Rooms (Edinburgh)

The only requirement regarding the drinks they have been asked to make, is that the base spirit must be one of the four Chairman’s Reserve expressions (Chairman’s Reserve Finest, Chairman’s Reserve White Label, Chairman’s Reserve Spiced or Chairman’s Reserve ‘Forgotten Casks’).  The nature and style of their creations was left entirely to the participants and as a part of their marketing exercise, to decide whether to appeal to bartenders, consumers, St. Lucians or lovers of the Commonwealth Games.