I’ve got some juicy gossip to share with my readers first thing Monday morning: Today, one of the Philippines’ best bartenders, Cedric Cello, is competing for the regional finals of the Bartenders Battle Royale in Thailand. He was chosen during an invitation-only competition sponsored by La Maison Cointreau Manila.
Cedric decided to be a bartender because of his “love of creating things while using (his) hands and crafting a piece of art for others to experience.” He further elaborated, “Early on, I didn’t really consciously decide to become a bartender. It was more of a ‘gut-feel’ that this profession will lead me to greater experiences.”
Currently, he is the bartender of Smith Butcher and Grill Room in Salcedo Village. He believes that “Filipino bartenders are creative, passionate, and dedicated in what (we) do… At the same time, (we can) easily relate to other people.”
This creativity and passion translated into his winning cocktail: Gossip. He said that his muse was the French actress Marion Cotillard, whose many “layers” of acting made him think of incorporating many layers in his drink. Cedric also mentioned that he liked the wordplay for “Gossip” because people can derive the sentence “Go Sip” from the word.
GOSSIP by Cedric Cello
30ml Grey Goose L’Orange
30ml green mango juice
20ml Giffard watermelon syrup
3 sprigs basil leaves
dash of Angostura bitters
Basil, green mango, and watermelon
Assemble the mix in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously. Muddle 1 slice of fresh watermelon in a double rock glass. Add in the mix, and then add ice. Garnish.
Cedric is the perfect person to represent the brand because Cointreau aims to be the ultimate Parisian spirit, inspiring countless bartenders and mixologists alike with a sense of unlimited exploration. Cointreau started about 165 years ago in Angers, in Loire Valley, France. This strong liqueur is the “perfect balance between sweet and bitter oranges”. One of the most iconic Cointreau cocktails is the Cointreau Fizz, but the liqueur is also used in many classic cocktails, such as the Margarita, Cosmopolitan, White Lady, and the Sidecar… Some of which were served during Cedric’s sendoff party in Hooch.
When asked about how he would be able to win in the competition in Thailand, he said, “It would all be a matter of the right employment of the craft, reading the room and properly gauging the mood (at that) moment… Hopefully, the right mix of spirits and flavours would hit the right (spots).”
Excuse me while I mix my own Cointreau cocktail today to wish Cedric luck. Cheers!
*Special thanks to Jun Regalado and Sunny Ku of Masterminds Asia