It’s midnight on a Saturday and the soaring, impeccably scented Fairmont Pacific Rim has yet again turned into the most improbable hot spot in Vancouver. The revellers spill out of the lounge into the lobby and it seems every single one of them wants a cocktail more complicated than the next—this isn’t a pint-of-Kokanee crowd—and Aussie Grant Sceney and his team are busy shaking up all wonder of concoctions with abandon. In a city where any number of mixologists can fret over a great-tasting drink, Sceney sets himself apart by the scale on which he delivers his professionalism. And in his spare time he slays them at cocktail competitions—most recently being named the fourth-best bartender in the world at last year’s Diageo World Class Bartenders Competition in the U.K.
What is the easiest drink to make that sounds hard?
A Ramos Gin Fizz. It’s very easy to make; it just requires a lot of shaking.
What is your current fave ingredient to use in drinks?
Bee pollen. A lot of drinks call for honey, agave or some kind of similar sweetening agent. Using a spiced bee pollen syrup easily elevates the complexity and character of some simple classics.
It’s last call for the entire planet: what would your order be?
A punch bowl of Negroni. If it’s last call for the planet, I want my last drink to last.
If you’re in a foreign town and want to see if a bartender knows what they’re doing, what do you order?
A Sazerac. It’s one of my favourites that’s a little less common that still requires skill to execute properly. If the bartender looks at me blankly, then I’ll change my order.
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