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Cocktail City Saddle to the West!

Time:2019-04-12 22:23wine - Red wine life health Click:

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Recently, I journeyed to our second city Montego Bay and to one of my all-time faves, The Half Moon Hotel. There is a magical feeling you get once you enter the chequered-tile lobby of this beautiful property. Very attentive team members ensure that you feel you are home away from home. My stop was a quick one; well, so I thought, having driven from Kingston with the intention of making an about-turn. That was the plan until I met Donnine Wilson, Half Moon Hotel's lead bartender. Wilson blew me away (this does not happen often) with her sense of purpose, organisation, captivating conversational skills, and of course her mixology prowess. Wilson is the winner of Half Moon's Internal Bartender Competition, having developed several cocktails including the festive libation dubbed 'Legacy 65' in celebration of the property's 65th anniversary.

Wilson beamed with pride when she shared her ideation behind the development of this cocktail. She wanted to make a connection with Half Moon's past and its present, using natural herbs and spices. The Legacy 65 cocktail is comprised of pimento liqueur, fresh ginger, lemongrass-infused syrup (lemongrass is used across the property, especially in the spa), fresh lime, pineapple juice (the pineapple is the symbol of hospitality) and Blackwell Rum. Wilson highlighted the connection with Blackwell rum and the Half Moon Hotel. Half Moon's Marketing & Communications Manager Danille Gordon confirmed that in 1958 Chris Blackwell, who had been teaching water-skiing at the Half Moon Hotel, decided to record the in-house jazz band led by Bermudian, Lance Hayward, a young, blind jazz pianist. Blackwell's first recording, an LP of jazz standards released in 1959, was the genesis of his independent record label — Island Records. In 2016, Half Moon paid homage to the band members and Chris Blackwell by hosting a historical retrospective celebration for the band and its work and exhibited the original copies of the album.

Wilson then led the cocktail journey which I can only describe as first class!

As is customary, we sought to know a little more about our newly discovered bartending talent.


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