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Cocktail Week: Eastern Eden

Japan’s Takayuki Suzuki demonstrated the zen art of cocktails at The Manifest

Posted February 22, 2013 by Melissa Chang

Last week, when I interviewed Colin Field, he said he asks bartenders to consider the message they are trying to convey with the drinks they make, as one would with a traditional work of art. His creations were beautiful and straightforward, and good introductions to the art found in Hawaii Cocktail Week.

Earlier this week, Japanese bartender — or bar master, as some have referred to him — Takayuki Suzuki led a seminar on Japanese bartending and took that art to a new level. After educating us on Japanese whisky, he made four drinks, each with precision and purpose.

Hawaii Cocktail Week: Eastern Eden (1 of 23)

Hawaii Cocktail Week: Eastern Eden

The workshop started off with Japanese whisky.

Bonus: If you want to re-create these cocktails at home (as if you could really do it), the recipes are below. Watch the video, below, to see his technique.

Cocktail 1: Imagined between the end of winter and the beginning of spring.
Make a martini style cocktail with a bamboo leaf
Hakusyu, 12 years – 20 ml
Natural water – 30 ml
White mint liqueur – 5ml
Bamboo leaf syrup – 2 tsp
Yuzu twist
Bamboo leaf

Cocktail 2: Imagined a forest breeze in the beginning of summer.
Make a long drink cocktail that is piled up with a taste with “Ice ball”
Hakusyu, 12 years – 30 ml
Tonic water – 30 ml
Club soda – 90 ml
White mint liqueur – 5 ml
Fresh spearmint
Ice Ball

Cocktail 3: Imagined rainy season in Japan.
Hibiki 12yrs – 30ml
Pickled Japanese plum “ume”
Fresh grapefruit juice
Homemade syrup
High quality crushed ice
All ingredients put into a bar blender

Cocktail 4: Sunlight pours to Japanese style room in late autumn.
Make a short cocktail expressed the scent of “Tatami” by lemongrass.
Yamazaki 12 yrs – 20 ml
Dark Cacao Liqueur – 10 ml
Apricot brandy – 5 ml
Pineapple juice – 20 ml
Fresh lemon juice – 5 ml
Lemon Twist

For more information on Cocktail Week, click here.


You can read all of Melissa’s blogs at Follow Melissa on Twitter @Melissa808, on Foursquare as Melissa808, or email at

About Melissa Chang

Melissa has been blogging regularly since 2007 and has more than 25 years’ experience in marketing and public relations. She is currently an independent marketing consultant, specializing in social media. 

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