Kiwi to sip world's priciest cocktail

STEVE COLQUHOUN
Last updated 11:26 07/02/2013
Fairfax Australia

Working with everything but the 150-year-old cognac, Club 23 executive barman Joel Heffernan shows off how to make his expensive cocktail.

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"That'll be $12,500, sir" - words you might hear when buying a used car or a kitchen, but definitely not a drink.

However, New Zealand businessman, James Manning, will tonight write a cheque for NZ$15,360 in a Melbourne bar. At the same time he will pen his name into the history books as the purchaser of what is believed to be the most expensive cocktail ever made.

It will include two nips of Croizet - at NZ$7,370 per shot

The basis for the cocktail, which will be claimed as a Guinness world record, is a bottle of Croizet cognac dating back to 1858. It is itself already a world-record holder, having previously been valued at NZ$192,800.

The bottle has been purchased from Croizet by Crown Melbourne's Club 23 bar, whose barman Joel Heffernan will put two days' preparation into the exotic cocktail.

It will include two nips of Croizet - at $7370 per shot - along with Grand Marnier Quintessence, Chartreuse Vieillissement Exceptionnellement Prolonge, and a dash of Angostura Bitters.

Heffernan's concoction will be presented with chocolate nutmeg dust, essence of poppy seed and rose, and hints of coconut, passionflower and oranges.

It will be named the "Winston" in tribute to former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who is said to have shared a treasured bottle of 1858 Croizet with Allies commander General Dwight Eisenhower on the eve of D-Day in 1944.

The current world record for a single cocktail is held by "Salvatore's Legacy", a concoction developed by renowned barman Salvatore Calabrese using Clos de Griffier Vieux cognac that dates back to 1778. It sold for £5500 (NZ$10,270) in October last year in a London bar.

Crown spokeswoman Tara Bishop said although the world record will belong solely to Mr Manning and tonight's cocktail, anyone else with the inclination - and finance - to try the concoction will still be able to indulge."

An additional 11 cocktails will be available for purchase from Club 23. But because it takes two days to make, you have to give a bit of notice," she said.

- Executive Style

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