Chairman’s Reserve Spice Lab reveals 10 UK finalists

Chairman’s Reserve Rum of Saint Lucia has announced the 10 UK finalists of ‘The Chairman’s Spice Lab’, a program designed to showcase the abilities and understanding of the spiced rum category by bartenders around the world.

The 10 finalists have been chosen from across the UK who have demonstrated, in their initial online submission, what they believe will be the next Chairman’s Reserve Spiced rum. 

Each has been chosen for their unique ideas and understanding of the spiced rum culture, courtesy of Saint Lucia Distillers master blender, Deny Duplessis.

The UK finalists are: 

  • Drew Fleming, Kiki Lounge in Douglas 
  • Salem James, Science and Industry in Manchester 
  • Johnny Morrison, Moskito in Glasgow 
  • Abigail Conner, Be at One in Norwich 
  • Michael Yishak, Blues Kitchen in Manchester 
  • Andy Stewart, The Albyn in Aberdeen 
  • Will Edmondson, The Cove in Brighouse 
  • Myles Cunliffe, Mixology in Brighton 
  • Jack Nazir, Kuckoo Rocks in Sheffield 
  • Luca Giangolini, sketch in London

Each now moves onto the next phase of the competition.

Each bartender will receive a Chairman’s Reserve spice kit containing four spices to be used to create the rum, (vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and dried orange peels) and one bottle of Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum for their spiced rum base. 

They will be able to add a maximum of four additional spices from their submission and will return their original recipe in the spare Chairman’s Reserve bottle provided for judging. 

This creation phase will conclude on 31 July, giving bartenders nearly six weeks to perfect their Spiced Rum recipe and promote it among their community as they would if it was to be produced internationally. 

During the first weeks of August, a panel of industry professionals in Saint Lucia, the US and Europe/UK will select the finalists to move on to phase three.

The Chairman’s Spice Lab has been open to bartenders in nine countries (UK, France, Italy, Belgium, Germany, Denmark, Greece, US, and Saint Lucia), and challenges them to draw inspiration from their own cultures to create a recipe for their own, personalised spiced rum.

The competition offers an opportunity to three international bartenders to create together, in Saint Lucia, their own limited edition of Chairman’s Spiced Rum, which will then be marketed internationally.