Just before Christmas, the annual Bartender’s Choice Awards took place, with awards handed out in several categories. Stockholm institution Tjoget ran away with both the best bar award and the people’s choice awards, to the surprise of no-one. And among a string of fantastic barmen and women nominated as the best bartender, Alex Skärlén, of Bar Hommage on Södermalm, got to take the prize home.
To celebrate the ever-improving bar scene in Stockholm, we rounded up some of the best bartenders we know and asked them a few well-worded questions. To get to know them, their workplaces and their preferences a bit better, read on.
Robin Ogestadh, Asian Post Office, Stockholm
Tell me about your bar.
Asian Post Office. We opened almost a year ago at Regeringsgatan 66. We work with Asia as our district of taste and ingredients. We take the guest on a voyage through all the various Asian countries. We collect some obvious ingredients from one country and create a cocktail from that, like our Thai Basil where we have thai basil and coconuts, both linked to Thailand. The drinks menu becomes like a flight map.
What do you usually order when visiting another bar?
I usually go through their menu and try some of their signature cocktails. Otherwise it would be a Daiquiri and perhaps a lager on the side. Red Hook is also a favourite. With rye whiskey Punt e Mes and Maraschino liqueur, a bit like a sweeter version of a Manhattan.
Any upcoming bar trends on the horizon?
One trend has been an environmental focus, and sustainability is really important as we need to take care of our beautiful world. But also finding new ingredients to work with. In the cocktail bars of today you find everything, which is fun and the guests are learning new tastes. I think the next trend will be to put all of these things together. The looks of the cocktails will also be important. Stylistically pure and colourful cocktails, everyone knows that when a good-looking cocktails travels on a tray through a restaurant, people ask what it is and they want one just the same.
Asian Post Office, Regeringsgatan 66
Photo courtesy of Robin Ogestadh