June 2012 Bartender of the Month: Charlotte Voisey
Name: Charlotte Voisey
Establishment Name: W New York Downtown
Recent Gigs: A veteran of the industry, British-born Charlotte Voisey is a decorated and highly regarded mixologist. A keen student of the craft of the cocktail, Voisey’s mixology style is ever evolving and exciting to follow. And it’s no wonder why. With her impressive accomplishments, including Best American Brand Ambassador, two-time Golden Spirit Award winner at Tales of the Cocktail, James Beard recognition and TV appearances on "Iron Chef America," "Next Iron Chef America," "Top Chef Masters" and most recently a trip to London to cover the royal wedding with CBS News, Voisey continues to take her passion for mixology to new levels.
Her experience and enthusiasm for all things cocktails has put her drinks on menus across the world, including New York’s famed PDT and the iconic Dorchester Hotel in London. Additionally, Voisey manages the cocktail programs at some impressive venues, such as the Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas; FIG and Fairmont, Santa Monica; the Gramercy Park Hotel, Manhattan; and at W Hotels across the country.
Voisey has run bars in Barcelona, Buenos Aires and London; with the Gorgeous Group, she opened classic cocktail bar Apartment 195 in London and soon after was named UK Bartender of the Year. Voisey also has been invited to guest bartend at the Aspen Food & Wine Classic and consequently fell in love with the U.S. cocktail community.
Charlotte Voisey, W New York Downtown
Voisey’s passion for spirits and cocktails keeps her actively engaged in the industry and speaking at all major industry events, including Spirits of Mexico, Aspen Food & Wine, the Manhattan Cocktail Classic, N.Y. Times Travel Show, Tales of the Cocktail and, of course, the Nightclub & Bar Convention and Trade Show.
Voisey currently looks after the coveted spirits portfolio and Brand Ambassador team of William Grant & Sons USA. Most recently, she participated in the Manhattan Cocktail Classic and took a trip to Sicily to see how Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur is made!
What’s in the Shaker: Voisey is working on new spring/summer cocktails for the W Hotel menu, “like the White Whiskey Smash with Hudson Corn and lychees or the Sasparilla Swizzle with Root and Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum.”
What You’re Sipping & Why: “A classic Bee’s Knees made with Stoli Sticki. Fifty years ago, Stoli came out with the very first flavored vodka, Honey & Herb. Now, 50 years later, they are celebrating with the release of Stoli Sticki, which is a very pretty, floral honey vodka that mixes great!”
What You are Dancing to While Mixing: “That all depends on the spirit, a little upbeat jazz for gin, something more soulful for whiskey and, if it’s rum, it can only be Bob Marley.”
Quirks & Quotable: “One of my favorite moments came while serving the stars at Sundance, when Robert De Niro asked me to put a slice of cucumber in his Hendrick’s & Tonic, I looked him in the eye and asked, 'You talking to me?'"
“Single easiest way to make a cocktail better: I love to garnish almost every cocktail with the oils from a fat cut citrus twist, then discard the peel so the aroma mysteriously delights the drinker.”
“My favorite quote comes from a foreword to a later edition of the 'Savoy Cocktail Book': ‘Excellent cocktails can be made from nothing but excellent ingredients’ and that includes the care of the bartender.”