Grey Goose Cocktail Pop Up at Custom Lane Launch

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For those of you who haven't been to Custom Lane it's a hidden gem in the heart of the city. Attached to the  Grand Mercure Hotel, Customs Street during the day this sleepy little laneway serves coffee and doughnuts however at night for the next two weeks it is being transformed into a cool inner city pop-up cocktail bar hosted by none other than luxury French vodka brand Grey Goose.

Each night of the week Grey Goose cocktails are being served with delicious French inspired food pairings available as well as a cool crepe station where you can get a deliciously decadent crepe made to order.

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This pop-up couldn't be better timed as the days are warmer & the nights are longer and sitting in this cool alleyway while the breeze blows through while enjoying a Grey Goose cocktail isn't to shabby a way to spend an Auckland evening! Combine that with the fact that DJ Karn Hall will be manning the decks on Thursday & Friday evenings and the real question is why wouldn't you check it out?

We tried a range of cocktails on the night but the two biggest crowd pleasers on the night were the iconic Grey Goose Le Grand Fizz  and the Grey Goose Espresso Martini.

The Pop-Up at Custom Lane runs from Friday 24th November to Saturday 9th December every night from 3pm.

Go check it out.

The Bombay Botanicals Bazaar Launch

Photo: Norrie Montgomery

Photo: Norrie Montgomery

Back for a third successful year the now well established Bombay Sapphire event has evolved once again. This year sees the Fresh Factory transformed into a hub of 5 international food stalls each matched with a Bombay Sapphire gin cocktail.

The event is held over 5 nights only from November 1st - 5th inclusive &it is an event not to be missed. Take a tour around each of the stalls sampling culinary delights from Spain, Italy, Germany, China & Morocco each matched with a absolutely delicious & well matched gin cocktail.

My favourite cocktail of the night was the cocktail from China, but my favourite food pick of the night came from Spain....coz who wants to play by the rules and put the suggested matches together? :) This is an event where there really is something for everyone to enjoy & did I mention they also have a "make your own" gin cocktail stall with G&T on tap.....now that's my kinda party!

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This awesome event is the brainchild of cocktail guru & Bombay Sapphire Ambassador Chase Bickerton and Jamie Johnston who brought us the pop-up restaurant Judge Bao and it is flawlessly executed with each cocktail stall manned by some of Auckland's finest hospitality staff serving cocktails that are truly next level (spoiler alert - there's dry ice involved & if that isn't an Instagram moment then I don't know what is)

The Bombay Botanicals Bazaar is at the Fresh Factory, Nikau Street, Auckland now until Sunday & tickets available on iTicket now. Tickets include two dish and cocktail matches with additional meal/cocktail tickets available to buy either online or at the event. Do not miss this event!

Wine Launch: SOHO Pink Sheep Rosé at SPQR

Image by Norrie Montgomery

Image by Norrie Montgomery

On a particularly miserable Auckland evening, we gathered at SPQR on Ponsonby Road to celebrate the launch of SOHO Wine Co's newest wine - Pink Sheep. A Rosé whose name is inspired by the extraordinarily talented designer Alexander McQueen who tragically took his own life after a battle with depression & anxiety at the age of only 40. 

In a fitting tribute, this Pink Sheep (a nickname McQueen gave himself) is helping New Zealanders battle the stigma attached to mental health issues & also hoping to help turn the tide on suicide in this country, which sadly sits as one of the highest in the OECD by giving 50c from each bottle sold to the Key To Life Charitable Trust 

To understand just why this charity is so important to the team at Soho - give my interview with Rachael Carter from Soho Wine Co a look, as she outlines just why this cause is so dear to her heart & why she - and the rest of the team at Soho want to make a real difference.

As for the launch - a great night was had by all - the Rosé was flowing, the food was delicious & the speeches were the perfect combination of inspirational & short :)

How can you be unhappy when you have a perfect glass of pink Rosé in your hand? Let the wind howl (and it did!) we certainly didn't care. 

Rachael Carter - the MD of Soho Wines also announced that non-other than Raymond Chan had given Pink Sheep a 5 Star rating - this is not a rating that Raymond Chan (or any respected wine expert) gives away lightly, so yet another reason to get your hands on a bottle of this delicious Rosé. 

Pink Sheep 2017 Rosé is available at all good liquor retailers from October 2nd (ie now!) 

 

SOHO Wine Co - Pink Sheep Rosé 2017

SOHO Wine have done something pretty cool, they have made an amazing wine (nothing new there for the team at SOHO) but this is a wine that is giving back & helping people. 

In our beautiful New Zealand we excel at many things, unfortunately, some of those things are less than great. NZ has one the highest suicide rate in the OECD and even worse this number is on the rise. This can't continue & one remarkable woman is doing something about it. 

Rachael Carter - MD for SOHO wines has seen first-hand the effect that depression can have on a family. Loosing an uncle to suicide  & seeing "waterfall effect" that came as a result of that she is putting her money where her mouth is with regards to being part of the solution. 

Rachael is donating 50c from the sale of every bottle of SOHO Pink Sheep - the name by the way which is inspired by the late, great Alexander McQueen who himself struggled with depression & ultimately took his own life - to The Key To Life Charitable Trust run by Mike King - a man who is leading the way in keeping the conversation going, lifting the lid & changing (and I believe saving) lives. 

I sat down for a chat with Rachael & I was so inspired & moved by what she had to say. 

We need to value our worth on earth
— Rachael Carter

Having had my own journey with depression I am so proud of what Rachael & the team at SOHO wines are doing & I'm throwing 100% of my support behind them. 

Call round to see a friend with a bottle of SOHO Pink Sheep & ask them if they're ok...start a conversation with the person next to you in the liquor shop to ask if they're ok, or maybe just reach out and tell someone you're not ok. 

Let's turn the tide on suicide & stem the loss of suicide. 

Two Rivers Marlborough "Isle Of Beauty" Rosé 2017 Launch

What's the quickest way to make a wine loving mermaid happy? Stick her on the ocean wave with a glass (and a few) of Rosé and some awesome fellow wine lovers. BLISS! 

I absolutely adore the "Isle Of Beauty' Rosé - it's bone dry and deliciously fruity. A very European style of Rosé with the lightest pink colour imaginable. 

Check out the highlights of the launch party below