The ultimate Martini from the ultimate bar

28 February, 2020 by Andy Young

Earlier this week, Bars and Clubs talked to Ago Perrone of The Connaught Bar in London about the ultimate Martini experience and what it takes to consistently be voted as one of the best bars in the world. Here’s what he had to say…

London’s The Connaught Bar is one of the best and most prestigious bars in the world: the list of awards include World’s Best Cocktail Bar and World’s Best Hotel Bar from Tales of the Cocktail’s Spirited Awards, Best Bar in Europe and second place overall at the World’s 50 Best Bars.

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Add to those, that the bar’s Director of Mixology Ago Perrone has been named as the International Bartender of the Year and European Mixologist of the Year and you begin to understand the credentials of the bar and the people working there.

One of the things that The Connaught Bar is famous for is its signature Martini trolley, which brings the expertise, showmanship and experience of the bar directly to the table.

Perrone works alongside Giorgio Bargiani at The Connaught Bar and the pair have come to Australia and reproduced their exclusive style and panache at Australasia’s best bar of 2020, Maybe Sammy.

In bringing this ultimate Martini experience to Australia, Perrone was sure to tell Bars and Clubs, that “there is no absolutely perfect Martini”.

He adds: “Each and every Martini is only perfect according to our guests’ preferences: from the spirit base, to the aromatic bitter and the garnish.

“To ensure the entire drinking experience is perfect at The Connaught though, we give our guests an active role in making the martini to offer them a memorable experience. This involves our Martini trolley that we use to approach guests and establish a two-way conversation that lasts throughout the cocktail making.”

THE MARTINI TROLLEY

Perrone told Bars and Clubs that the Martini trolley is “the representation of how we involve our guests in the process of the martini making.

“The trolley allows us to establish a direct contact and conversation with the guests, to understand their mood, feelings, taste and create a bespoke drinking experience. While approaching and presenting them with the variations they can use for their drink – the spirit, the in-house vermouth blend, the choice between the five bespoke aromatic bitters and the garnish – we also have the opportunity to explain the essence and the philosophy of The Connaught Bar which is what makes the entire journey unique.

By personalising their Martini together, we also personalise their moment with us at the bar. The entire process culminates in the theatrical pour of the drink and with our motto ‘Straight up with style and don’t forget the smile’ because no cocktail should be sipped without a smile.”

MAINTAINING HIGH STANDARDS

As mentioned earlier, The Connaught Bar has a number of awards to its name and has been winning awards for over 10 years. So what does it take to be consistently named as one of the best bars in the world?

Perrone says: “Since the beginning, at The Connaught we have worked to maintain the highest standards of hospitality and cocktail making while always injecting innovation and surprise for our guests.

“We pride ourselves on being extremely dedicated to our guests and delivering memorable experiences to them. This goes through an impeccable service, meticulous attention to detail, a warm and personalised approach, as well as the use of classic ingredients, stories and drinks infused with a nod to the future.

“Our service and our cocktail style have always remained true to the identity of our bar and this consistency is the reason of the continuous international acclaim.”

To find out more from Perrone including what he thinks will be the next big thing, and the most valuable bartending lesson he has learnt, head to Bars and Clubs.

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