‘Who is this Tim Judge?’ – is the question that kept ringing in my head after i saw my e-invite to the media immersion session for the Diageo reserve brands. Held recently at the Mercury Lounge at ABC Place, i soon met this rather smartly dressed man behind the bar, gingerly preparing for what would be an eventful afternoon. Quite interestingly, his twitter handle is @Gingerbitters. And no, it’s not my attempt at being cheesy.
Considered the creme of Diageo’s brands, Ciroc, Johnnie Walker Blue Label, Platinum, Gold label, Tanqueray No. Ten, Ketel One Vodka, DonJulio tequila, were all lined up on the counter signaling the agenda for the day.
We were learning to make cocktails with these reserve brands courtesy of a small but very informative session with Tim.
Cocktail making with some of the finest brands in the market might be considered a waste, probably because many think that fine brands should be slowly sipped and savored over intelligent conversations.
Tim, who blatantly slapped off that notion, was happy to show us how it is truly done, and the small crowd of media in attendance eagerly set their cameras up to capture this moment.
It was truly a great opportunity, and i had to snap a few photos for Instagram myself -as well as stock some in my phone gallery. *Wink*
Tim Judge, as I later found out, is Diageo’s Reserve Brand Ambassador for Africa. Catchy title.
He loves Nairobi, our food as well, but can’t seem to understand why on earth we are such terrible time keepers.
Anyway, as he well put it in the small animated conversation we had, ‘he gets paid to have fun with alcohol’. Pretty neat huh?
But mixing and measuring behind the bar is not as easy as anyone would think.
In fact more than anything it requires practice, patience, skill, versatility and grace- all of which Tim has managed to acquire in almost 8 years he has been in the industry.
Originally from New Zealand, he developed his mixology talent from…nowhere…Yes, Tim was born to mix drinks,and he loves it.
Learning to work with his gifted hands and unique knowledge of drinks, i can personally deduce that it is nothing but sheer passion that has led him to where he is now.
After winning a few mixology competitions and even crowned as the best mixologist in his home town, he was picked up by Diageo all the way from India where he was working for a well-known hotel.
One of the Directors noticed his talent and couldn’t pass up the chance to snap him up.
It’s great because i finally had the opportunity to experience his expertise in cocktail making right here on the counters of our Mercury Lounge in Nairobi.
Enough about Tim now, lets talk about his cocktails.
Check out the pictures. Because words cannot simply describe the vibrant cocktails we had.
My best mix had to be the Talisker Single Malt whisky with which Tim used to make a Mojito. Spicy, with a hint of wood and mint.
Try and picture that combination in your mouth. It was Divine!
Would it be also fit to say that i love my job?