Co-owner | Lauren Mote
Co-owner | Jonathan Chovancek
Bittered Sling celebrates the unique life and business partnership of celebrated chef Jonathan Chovancek and award-winning mixologist/sommelier Lauren Mote, who together have contributed more than 30 years of professional experience, knowledge and innovation to the Canadian and International food and beverage community.
In 2012, Mote and Chovancek launched Bittered Sling — a retail line of high-quality, small-batch bitters using homegrown and artisanal products that provides palate, plate and potion with a subtle yet exciting fusion of flavours — and quickly built a reputation both in Vancouver and across the globe.
Originally marketed as a medicinal tonic, bitters are a concentration of select natural herbs, fruits and spices now used primarily as a flavouring agent for cocktail and culinary creations ranging from savoury to sweet. A common and indispensable tool of any bartender, bitters have increased in popularity thanks to the recent renaissance of classic cocktails.
The name Bittered Sling derives from the May 13, 1806 edition of The Balance, and Columbian Repository (Hudson, NY) that defines a cocktail as:
“A stimulating liquor composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water and bitters. It is vulgarly called a bittered sling and is supposed to be an excellent electioneering potion inasmuch as it renders the heart stout and bold, at the same time that it fuddles the head.”
By the dash or the drop, each creation offers an intricate range of complex flavours that perfectly accentuates food, spirits and even sparkling water.
Since its inception, Bittered Sling has garnered local and international acclaim with aromatic labels such as Cascade Celery, Malagasy Chocolate and Kensington Dry Bitters — all of which were bestowed with gold medals at the Beverage Testing Institute’s 2014 International Review of Spirits. In 2013, the company was singled out as Producer/Supplier of the Year at the 24th annual Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards. Since 2011, both Chovancek and Mote have also both been event partners and keynote speakers with Tales of the Cocktail, the world’s premier cocktail festival, in New Orleans, Mexico, Vancouver and Argentina.
Apart from their collaboration in Bittered Sling, Chovancek is the Corporate Consultant at Cook Culture, while Mote is Bar & Beverage Consultant at the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver, and Canadian Ambassador for World Class.
Bittered Sling strongly believes in setting a new standard in customer service, and remains committed to providing quality, respect and integrity in each ingredient it sources, and every product it creates.
Beverage Testing Institute International Review of Spirits Awards (2014)
Kensington Dry Aromatic Bitters – Gold Medal
Cascade Celery Bitters – Gold Medal
Malagasy Chocolate Bitters – Gold Medal
Plum & Rootbeer Bitters – Silver Medal
Grapefruit & Hops Bitters – Silver Medal
Producer/Supplier of the Year, 24th Annual Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards (2013)
“In the heart of Vancouver, there is a husband-wife team dedicated to new, ground-breaking bitters like I’ve never seen. Fortunately, I had a chance to taste some of their hard work, as a sort of preview of what Chicago drinkers can expect this year.” – Steve Dolinsky, The Hungry Hound
“I’m always impressed with the array of flavors and the innovation taking place at Bittered Sling Extracts.” – Paul G. Tuennerman, Co-Owner, Tales of the Cocktail
“Their Grapefruit & Hops extract lends itself wonderfully in a seasonal cocktail combination of clementine, cranberry, spiked with silver tequila in my Bitter Red Head.” – Kathy Casey, Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen
“Bittered Sling is an uncommon name for a most profoundly concentrated and friendly spirit augmentation from one of my favorite places on the globe, Vancouver, BC. And the owners are really cool too.” – Warren Bobrow, Apothecary Cocktails
“My favourite Canadian bitter of all, meanwhile, is the Denman flavour, which is a clovey, super-spicy answer to Angostura bitters.” – Adam MacDowell, The National Post
“This new line of bitters from Vancouver’s Kale & Nori Culinary Arts has quickly become a favourite among craft bartenders (and me). Infused with wild botanicals and blended like fine Bordeaux, the concentrated potions are designed for both cocktails and cooking. I love using a few drops to kick up plain old orange juice.” – Alexandra Gill, The Globe and Mail