Matterhorn man mixing up a winning drink

COCKTAIL KING: Riki Carter with the trophy he secured after winning a cocktail-making competition.
REBECCA THOMSON/The Wellingtonian
COCKTAIL KING: Riki Carter with the trophy he secured after winning a cocktail-making competition.

Matterhorn bartender Riki Carter is on his way to the Glenfiddich whisky distillery in Scotland after mixing up a winning cocktail.

Mr Carter won the Glenfiddich Untouchables competition, in which nine bartenders from around the country strove to make the best original cocktail using whisky.

"It's a pretty good prize actually. It will be really good to get more of a heads-up on what they do in distilleries, rather than reading about it in books," he said.

Mr Carter's cocktail, 1886 Blaze, was inspired by the 1850s Blue Blazer cocktail in which whisky and water are heated, the whisky is set alight and then both are poured between two cups.

His interpretation featured 18- and 30-year-old single malt Scotch whiskies, spiced apple vermouth and distillery "tea" made from steeped woodshavings from an 18-year-old whisky barrel.

"My cocktail is for those people who don't normally drink whisky, but should try it," he said.

"Whisky gets a hard rap. People are used to drinking quite bad whisky, but there is some very good stuff out there."

It is the second year Mr Carter has won the competition.

Another Wellingtonian, Motel bartender Benedict Simpson, came second with his concoction Highland Mist.

Mr Simpson's cocktail was made from 12-year-old Scotch and rosemary-infused foam.