Ballantine’s unveils winning night market bar concept

Abderrahim ‘Absou’ El Asfar’s bar concept – winner of the Ballantine’s entrepreneurial competition with more than 50% of the vote – opened at Le Chacha, Paris last night. 

Customers will be able to join various sessions that will ‘explore the characteristics of Ballantine’s’, including the opportunity to sample some of the mixologists’ drinks.

The bar – inspired by a traditional night market, in which customers are able to browse the market shelves to form the base of their cocktail – triumphed over more than 100 entries.

El Asfar was shortlisted by a jury including Simon Baldeyrou, CEO of Deezer in France and renowned interior designer, Laura Leonard. The public vote determined the overall winner.

Peter Moore, global brand director for Ballantine’s, said: “Given that our founder, George Ballantine is known to have created his first whisky in an ‘épicerie’ or delicatessen, it seems very fitting that it is this concept which we have been able to bring to life for the first time.

“The project has been so well received that it is to be repeated again in France next year and we have a number of other key markets who are also planning to run the competition. This means that more entrepreneurs around the world will have the chance to bring their own dream bar concept to life.”