Bar manager David Wolowidnyk has resided at West for eight years now, racking up awards from magazines like Urban Diner and GQ, festivals like Art of the Cocktail, and world-wide spirit competitions from national brands. Most recently, David represented Canada in Morocco for the "World's Most Imaginative Bartender" competition presented by Bombay Sapphire, where his original cocktail, "Beldi," won him the competition. Thousands of competitors contributed from all over the world, but it was David's combination of flavours inspired by his experience in Marrakech that proved to be the best.
Combining botanical flavours from the Bombay gin with others from the region, "Beldi" brings strong and complex spice elements to a very basic cocktail structure (essentially a Martini), creating a light and refreshing drink that piques curiosity with each sip. An ingredient list will give an idea of this drink's depth: saffron, ginseng, mint and mint tea, cinnamon, cassia, coriander, almond, lemon, liquorice, juniper, orris root, angelica, cubeb, grains of paradise, plus the wealth of herbs and spices in the Bittered Sling Lem-Marrakech bitters.
45ml Bombay Sapphire Gin infused with Moroccan Saffron and Ginseng
20ml Martini Bianco infused with Moroccan Mint Tea and mint leaves
15ml Cinnamon & Cassia Syrup
2 dashes Bittered Sling Lem-Marrakech Extract
Toasted Moroccan coriander tincture
Combine gin, vermouth, syrup, and extract with ice and stir in a mixing glass.
Mist a chilled cocktail glass with the toasted coriander tincture.
Strain the mixture into the glass and garnish with a lemon zest.
Mist the tincture again over the surface of the drink.
(Instructions for making the infusions, syrup, and tincture are at the bottom of this page)
West's cocktail menu is equally filled with well-chosen classics and some fantastic originals. The mix of both classic bartending and modern "mixology" hits a perfect balance here. A dealer's choice is always an exciting choice as well, so make your way down soon and supplement your "Beldi" with another of David's creations. Stay for dinner too.
See the Bittered Sling introduction here
See Dani Tatarin from The Keefer mix something up in her Chinese apothecary-style here
See Justin Taylor from Yew mix up some infused and barrel-aged spirits here
See Evelyn Chick from Uva Wine Bar make some fresh-fruit seasonal cocktails here
See Jay Jones from Market by JG in the Shangri-La Hotel mix a spirit-forward classic-stye drink here
See Grant Sceney use his barrel-aged Cointreau here
Cold-steep 1tsp of Moroccan Mint Tea with
6-8 mint leaves
in one bottle of Martini Bianco vermouth
strain off solids and keep refrigerated.