Posts Tagged ‘Caorunn Gin’

Winners of the Caorunn Gin 10-Year-Switch Competition Announced!

Saturday, June 8th, 2019



In celebration of their 10-year-anniversary, Caorunn Gin has revealed the five U.S.A finalists that will compete in NYC to showcase their cocktail creativity to the world

Following a countrywide hunt to find some of the nation’s most talented bartenders, five leading mixologists from across the U.S.A have been named as the regional finalists in an international cocktail competition curated by Caorunn Gin, the 10-year-switch, and are now set to compete in the competition’s final in New York City this July.

The following five bartenders were selected from all entries:

  • Jacee Coelho from Travelle at The Langham in Chicago created the ‘Pure Berry’
  • Scott Jenkins from Hide Bar in Dallas TX created the ‘Bog Standard’
  • Caitlyn Moorhead from The Winslow in New York created ‘Gincident Report’
  • Chris Olivier from The Tasting Room at Rock Brothers in Tampa Florisa created ‘Caorunn Calling’
  • Chris Bidmead from Blue Quarter in New York created the ‘5 from home’

Gaz Regan, acclaimed author, also known as the Godfather of Cocktails, judged all entries against four distinct categories: the fusion of Scottish heritage and American influence, accentuation of the character of Caorunn Gin by taking inspiration from at least one of five of its Celtic botanicals, its well-balanced and crafted taste profile and finally, the distinctiveness of serve through its visual appeal and creative presentation. On the regional finals he noted:

“While judging the cocktails in this Caorunn gin cocktail competition I was blown away by the way in which bartenders throughout the USA took on this challenge—specifically to create new drinks that showed off the many different directions while being guided by the various botanicals used to make this fabulous, and unique, gin. Picking the five finalists was, in itself, a challenge for me, but I’m extremely happy with the drinks that we’ve picked, and excited to see the finalists when they compete here in New York.”

Marking their official 10-year-anniversary this year, Caorunn Gin created the 10-year-switch, an international cocktail competition, to give bartenders across the United States and the United Kingdom a once in a lifetime work opportunity to build their personal profile on an international platform by showcasing their cocktail creativity to the world.

Five finalists from the U.K and the U.S.A will compete for the winning UK title in New York City on 31 July. One winner will be chosen from the U.K and the U.S.A with both receiving an international prize – the opportunity to switch countries and to in one of the coolest bars in their respective countries to experience American and British culture at their finest.

The U.S.A winner will also receive the honor of seeing their 10 Year Switch cocktail named as Caorunn’s signature serve in bars across the United States. 

Ryan Chetiyawardana (also known as ‘My Lyan’), Founder of Dandelyan and Cub, and one of the world’s most influential bartenders, has been named as the Head Judge of the 10 Year Switch and is set to judge the international final in New York City on 31 July, 2019.

Ryan will be joined by Caorunn Gin Master, Simon Buley on the judging panel in NYC as well as U.S.A head judge, Gaz Regan.

More about the finalists:

  • Jacee Coelho from Travelle at The Langham commented “My inspiration for this cocktail comes from the mass amount of beautiful green fields in Scotland and the natural fruits that grow in them. The name Pure Berry comes from the saying Pure Barry. In an attempt to nod at all things good in life.”
  • Scott Jenkins from Hide Bar commented “I was inspired most by the spice of bog myrtle, which to me was very akin to allspice dram. I wanted soft heather notes, taken from the stroma, and a bit of apple borrowed from applejack. This drink is lush, soft, highlighting and enhancing the components of Caorunn Gin. Stirred to perfection and poured over a single cube, for slow sipping, and good times.  I lived in England for over 3 years, and visited Scotland many times, the lush scenery reminds me a lot of this cocktail.
  • Caitlyn Moorhead from The Winslow commented “I wanted a drink that both complemented the botanical notes in Caorunn Gin without being redundant in its flavor profile. It’s a very booze forward cocktail in the style of classic martinis with a couple more twists. It’s herbaceous with subtle hints of bitter and fruitiness. It’s deliciously clean, yet complicated on the palate.” 
  • Chris Olivier from The Tasting Room commented “The cocktail is based off of an old fashioned  build.  Bitters, extract  and lavender  syrup are muddled with orange and grapefruit zest. Next Caorunn is added then ice and stirred.”
  • Chris Bidmead from Blue Quarter commented “Dedication to hand foraging and sourcing ingredients shows a true love of craft. Taking inspiration from Caorunn Gin I wanted to use ingredients that also highlight both the foraged botanicals in the gin as well as local ingredients from NY. The apple brandy brings in apples from NY/NJ where the tea syrup brings up the dandelion highlighted in Caorunn.”

About the 10 Year Switch:

To celebrate their 10-year-anniversary, earlier this year Caorunn Gin invited participants across the UK and the US to share a personally curated cocktail online that celebrates the Scottish heritage of Caorunn Gin and embraces the creative influence of American Culture.

Cocktails submitted online were judged against four distinct categories: Fusion of Scottish heritage and American influence, accentuating the character of Caorunn Gin, well-balanced and crafted taste profile and finally, distinctiveness of serve.

The five hand-picked finalists from the U.S.A will travel to New York City on an all-expenses paid trip to compete in the international final on 31 July, 2019.

One overall winner from each country will be selected.  Both will be awarded the honour of seeing their 10 Year Switch cocktail named as Caorunn’s signature serve in their respective countries and will receive a once in a lifetime opportunity to switch countries, working in one of the coolest bars in NYC and London and the chance to experience American and British culture at their finest.

For more information about the Caorunn 10 Year Switch competition, please visit:

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The Curious Case of the Missing Bottle of Caorunn Gin

Tuesday, August 7th, 2018

“Carefully handcrafted in the Scottish Highlands, Caorunn expertly infuses five locally foraged gin botanicals. Artisanal and small batch, beautifully mixing the rugged charm of Speyside with the urban sophistication of modern Scotland.” So sayeth the Caorunn Gin web site, and I’m not going to argue with them. This gin rocks. Seriously.

And yes, Caorunn is a sponsor of Cocktails in the Country, but as anyone who has ever taken my workshop will attest, I don’t take no shabby spirits, so let’s just say that Caorunn has my official seal of approval. But what happened to the bottle of this Scottish nectar that was missing in action recently? We may never know, but the tale runs thusly . . .

Before the Cocktails in the Country season begins we stock up on all of our sponsors products, and although I say it myself, we’re pretty good at judging how much of each product we’ll need, but I screwed up big-time this year when it came to the Caorunn gin, and I didn’t even realize it until the penultimate class at the beginning of July when I saw that we were down to the last bottle.

“How can we have gone through all of that gin?” I asked Kathy, my friend and helper at CitC.

“You’ve been making finger-stirred Negronis for everyone in the class this year,” she reminded me.

“Oh, er, right, I guess that could have something to do with it . . .”

We had just one more workshop to go, and I had a secret weapon: a case of Caorunn miniatures that we could use if push came to shove. We would never dream of topping up the bottle with the minis, of course, but, well, perhaps I could say that we left our options open . . .

When the final CitC 2018 came around, then, I threw the minis into my car and set off to the Gallery Bar at Painters where CitC takes place.  Guess what?  The last bottle of Caorunn had left the building. Where did it go? We have no idea, but obviously some gin aficionado had stopped by and availed him- or herself of this great spirit.

Result?  Here’s how we worked with Caorunn during that last workshop

Where there’s a will, there’s a way!

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