Singleton & Schmutzig

In Berlin hat vor einigen Wochen ein Lokal eröffnet, dass so heiß ersehnt wurde, wie er Weltmeistertitel der deutschen Nationalmannschaft. Die Welt berichtet schon vor der Eröffnung, die Süddeutsche Zeitung nimmt die Zutaten des Richtfests in die 10 Punkte für die Eröffnung eines hipster Lokals mit auf. Die Zutaten sind Persönlichkeit, ein Sinn für die kulinarischen Fragen der Zeit, Lokalität und Authentizität. So nobel, so hart, so schmutzig.

The Singleton of Dufftown ist ein Whisky aus der Speyside, der in Deutschland in drei Ausführungen erhältlich ist, lud mich mit anderen (Social) Media Vertretern vor einigen Wochen zu einem Streetfood-Markt in München ein. Die Idee: Interpretation der drei Editionen mittels Essensinstallationen, Essen und Drinks. Für die Installationen waren die beiden Food-Designer Ines Lauber aus Berlin und Josefin Vargö aus Stockholm zuständig. Die Drinks kamen von Lukas Motejzik aus der Münchner Zephyr Bar. Es wurden spannende Ideen und Gedankengänge serviert: Austern mit einem Spritzer Whisky, Whiskymayonnaise, Tannennadelparfait mit frischen Blüten, ein Wein imitierender Cocktail auf Singleton Basis.

Nun aber schnell wieder zurück zum Hipsterlokal aus Berlin. Singleton ist ein No-Age-Statement Whisky. Ein Produkt, das wohl den Whiskyfreak nicht hinter dem Tumbler hervorholt, aber einen Einstieg in die Materie sehr gut gelingen lässt. Singleton sucht also die Aufmerksamkeit in der magischen, jungen Zielgruppe und setzt mit Persönlichkeiten, Ideen, und Authentizität Anreize. Dies vor allem auch dadurch, dass das Erlebe in dargereichter Form auch beim Bite Club in Berlin für alle zugänglich ist. So nobel, so hart, so schmutzig.

Schafft Singleton mit seiner Aktion aber den Hype des Berliner Lokals? Wohl nicht, aber der Ansatz ist fein. Die Protagonisten sind kein Billy Wagner, bauen aber einen feinen Spannungsbogen auf und lassen vor allem einen positiven Gedanken für Whisky auf der Zunge zurück: Thank you! Enjoy!

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Und so lasse ich die fantastische Josefin Vargö ihre Inspiration und Herangehensweise erklären:

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You describe yourself as Experience designer. What’s your background?

I have a background in Ceramic Design and took my BA at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London. Ceramics was a great material to work with, but I wanted to develop an interdisciplinary practice and therefore took my masters in Experience Design at Konstfack University of Art, Crafts and Design Stockholm.

What’s your approach on food?

I’ve become fascinated in eating rituals and how the act of eating is something we all share and have in common, often triggering conversation and connections between people. This is why I love working with food. I often find food to be the best material to work with, acting as an icebreaker and initiating conversation. A great communication tool. I design the food and setting to trigger certain senses, behavior and feelings providing an interactive meeting where the experience is both planned and open for interaction, making the people involved a part of the piece.

And when it comes to whisky like Singleton?

It was great working for Singleton, both challenging and inspiring. For my three food designs I tried to incorporate Singleton’s creative and innovative approach on whisky by making them playful, surprising while highlighting the key flavors notes.

What’s your idea behind your Singleton Streetfood concept?

My main concept: I wanted to highlight the notion that the taste of the whisky is carefully crafted by selecting different barrels by working with the concept of the food designs being ’Handpicked’, both in terms of ingredients but also the interaction with the designs. Also highlighting the uniqueness of the flavour. I choose to work with the key flavour notes that are present in each whisky, and to incorporate the whisky into all of the food designs.

Oyster: I wanted to create a surprising, sophisticated and fun food combination, oyster & whisky, that would highlight the complexity of the Spey Cascade Whisky. Besides adding lemon, I choose to use only the whisky to highlight it’s complexity in flavour notes. A whisky that can stand on it’s own. Eating oysters has a unique way of engaging people with each other, something one usually does with a friend i.e. an experience you want to share with someone. A bigger chance that people will share and talk about your experience, what they thought about the combination and whisky, and creates an fun and engaging atmosphere.

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Lollipop: Personally I love working with lollipops as they almost become like small art pieces. I choose white chocolate becomes it has the possibility of acting like a blank canvas, but also because it’s very sweet which has a nice contrast with the whisky. It also goes great with the key flavours, red berries (raspberry). I’ve made a lollipop that people can paint on with berry paint and dust berry powder on to create their own personal flavour and creation. Besides, working very well taste-wise I decided to add blueberry and sea buckthorn for its colour. The painting makes the design interactive and gives people the feeling that they handpick and make their own creation. It also highlights the individuality and complexity of ones palate.

Sorbet: I’ve made a lemon, mint and whisky sorbet that brings out the taste of honey in the Sunray Whisky. Guest can handpick edible flowers to garnish the sorbet with to emphasize the source of the honey, the nectar from flowers. This also highlights the diversity in taste. I decided to add a fir (spruce) syrup that people can pour on top of the sorbet, to give a unique flavour and relate back to the source of nature.

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How do you create your ideas?

I always start by researching about the company, setting and context for what/who I am designing for, along with any other requirements that are determined. Then I try to brainstorm ideas and this I do in different ways, I could be by reading texts about certain topics relevant to the concept, looking at random visuals/images and just coming up with random thoughts/ideas that pop-up. Once I got a good selection of ideas I have another look at them and start choosing ones that work the best and then develop them. Sometimes, the best ideas come when relaxing or doing something else.

As a private person – how can I start my own food experience and social interaction on a private scale?

I would say to just start doing lots of small projects. Try them with your friends and then see what works. It depends on what your aim is?

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