Life’s a cock­tail

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Indulgence -

ANDYGrif­fiths, cock­tail bar man­ager at Mel­bourne’s Cookie, re­cently won­the An­gos­tura Global Cock­tail Chal­lenge in Trinidad. Best re­cent din­ing ex­pe­ri­ence: Street food in Trinidad and Tobago. Dou­bles (slightly sweet bread pat­ties with cur­ried chick­peas and a va­ri­ety of hot sauces) at 4amwere amaz­ing. Must-buy in­gre­di­ent: Cheese. Most em­bar­rass­ing pantry item: Aldi frozen chicken nuggets and two-minute noo­dles. Can’t live with­out: Salt, pep­per and a sharp knife. WhatI’m cook­ing at home: Ex­per­i­men­tal dishes with An­gos­tura bit­ters; ev­ery­thing from bizarre ice creams and desserts to bit­ters-glazed black pud­ding with fried co­conut bread and pineap­ple chut­ney. Next big thing: Match­ing food to al­co­hol, not the other way around. I hate: Mush­rooms and liver. Mush­rooms for the tex­ture, and liver be­cause my­mu­musedto mash it up with ba­nanas and feed it to meas a child. In­cred­i­bly nu­tri­tious, I know, but I haven’t touched it since. Favourite cui­sine: It would be a fight be­tween Ja­panese, Mex­i­can and Ital­ian. Worst meal I ever ate: Wew­erein an amaz­ing Ar­gen­tinian steak­house in Lon­don with a group of about 50. The restau­rant was so busy that most din­ers had fin­ished their food by the time ours ar­rived. Mys­teak was per­fectly cooked, but we were on such a strict timetable, I ended up hav­ing to push my­full plate aside and leave. Big­gest culi­nary in­flu­ence: My chef tu­tors in Wan­ganui, New Zealand, for open­ing myeyes to the world of cook­ing. And noth­ing beats travel to in­spire creativ­ity. Favourite cook­book: We­just got Saraban by Greg and Lucy Malouf, which is stun­ning and has so much food we can’t wait to try. Andyou’re not a true Kiwi if you don’t have The Ed­monds Cook­ery Book. My­last sup­per: Aw­hole leg of ja­mon iberico de bel­lota; hu­mane foie gras par­fait and crusty bread; fresh Mex­i­can food with a bot­tle of Ile­gal Mez­cal; creme brulee with An­gos­tura 1824 fudge and An­gos­tura 1824 rum, fol­lowed by queso de valdeon, ro­que­fort and stil­ton cheese with a bot­tle of Chartreuse Jaune 1940.

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