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The Amazon inspires bartenders to reimagine liqueur category

Published:  20 February, 2019

There are few in the international drinks trade that wouldn’t know the names of bartenders Alex Kratena, Monica Berg and Simone Caporale, so anticipation has been high for their new range of liqueurs, Muyu.

The trio have each created one liqueur for the range, drawing on inspiration from a trip to the Amazon, although ingredients are sourced responsibly via experts in spirits and perfume in France and The Netherlands.

“We first visited the Amazon in 2016 to explore the potential of Amazonian produce in cocktails, and we were so inspired by what we saw, but also realised we would contribute to the rainforest’s destruction if we sourced directly from there,” Berg explained.

Kratena’s Muyu Vetiver Gris combines the headline ingredient with timur, patchouli, petit grains and cedarwood, while Berg’s Muyu Jasmine Verte includes neroli, patchouli, yuzu and iris. Caporale’s Muyu Chinotto Nero adds cinchona, oak moss, curacao orange and cacao to chinotto. All three liqueurs have been produced with De Kuyper Royal Distillers, using techniques such as steam distillation, CO2 extraction and enfleurage. The liqueurs are presented in 50cl bottles with design reinforcing the brand’s link to the Amazon.

In addition, Kratena told Harpers at the Covent Garden launch of the range that 5% of proceeds from sales of the liqueurs will go towards protecting the Amazon rainforests.

Berg and Kratena also recently announced that they will be launching their first venue, Tayēr + Elementary, on London’s Old Street in spring this year. It’s Kratena’s first bar since leaving Artesian at The Langham in 2015. Plans are for a venue with three separate spaces, with an innovative approach to both drinks and service.