Where I’ll Be Talking Drinks (And Slinging ‘Em, Too) At Whistler’s Cornucopia


by Shaun Layton | Next weekend I’ll be hosting some seminars at the annual Cornucopia festival in Whistler – five, to be exact – split between Saturday Nov.16th and Sunday Nov. 17th. I’ll be covering a lot of ground, from The World’s Best Bars to The Kingdom of Vermouth. Details below

Sat. Nov.16 – Whistler Convention Center

Taste the Spirit: BC Craft Distilleries | Time: 11am – 12:30pm | Tickets $40

Description – A host of new distilleries is shaking up the BC drinks scene with a range of well-crafted spirits including whisky, gin, and vodka as well as more exotic tipples like absinthe and aquavit. Join Joanne Sasvari and Shaun Layton in this exploration of the key players in this exciting new market. Guests will sample a variety of locally made spirits that prove the commitment to innovation and excellence are alive and well right here at home.

My two cents: This is great value, as you’ll be tasting a ton of really cool stuff out of BC, plus cocktails of course!

The World’s Best Bars | Time: 2pm – 3:30pm | Tickets $40

Description – Joanne Sasvari and Shaun Layton host this whirlwind tour of the top bars – and their famous cocktails – in London, Paris, New York, and other cosmopolitan destinations. Get the inside scoop on the best places to go for cocktails while on your holidays or that upcoming business trip, from people who have personal experience in the field. And learn how to make some of those legendary cocktails at home.

My two cents: If you travel lots and like bars, this is a must. Come get all the tips on where and how to hit the cocktail bars like a pro.

Discover the Heart of Cognac with Rémy Martin | Time: 430pm – 6pm | Tickets $50

Description – Cognac is synonymous with sophistication. In the popular imagination it evokes crusty old detectives, sexy spies, and mysterious strangers. France’s Rémy Martin is one of the world’s foremost cognac producers.  Hosted by Rémy Martin Ambassador, Louis-Jérôme Doise, Shaun Layton and Joanne Sasvari, this seminar explores the range of Rémy Martin cognacs, their illustrious place of origin, and the future of the prestigious brandy. In addition to sampling a range of Remy Martin Cognacs, guests will sample two cognac-inspired cocktails prepared by Shaun Layton.

My two cents: If you like finer, aged spirits, then this is a no brainer. Great value, too.

Sun. Nov.17 – Whistler Convention Center

Futurist Mixology | Time: 11am – 12:30pm | Tickets $40

Description – In the world of mixed drinks there is currently an exciting revival of many vintage cocktail recipes. Roberto Bava, principal of Italy’s Guilio Cocchi winery, has recently published a book dedicated to presenting 18 recipes for mixed drinks developed between 1925 and 1935. Termed “polibibite” drinks, they are meant to be enjoyed with an appreciation of the historical, cultural, and aesthetic context in which they were created. The seminar will be hosted by Bava himself, supported by local mixologist Shaun Layton.

My two cents: This was one of the most fascinating presentations at Tales of the Cocktail last year. I’m just excited to be in the room!

The Kingdom of Vermouth | Time: 2pm – 3:30pm | Tickets $40

Description – In Italy, the word “aperitivo” is used to denote both a casual pre-dinner social gathering, and the drinks served on such an occasion. Vermouth is always a favourite, as its versatility in cocktails and range of flavours invariably makes it mix it a crowd-pleaser. This seminar focuses on the culture of the aperitivo, with particular attention to the role vermouth can play in priming one’s tastebuds for dinner. The event will be hosted by Roberto Bava, principal of the Giulio Cocchi winery from Italy’s illustrious Piemonte region. Attendees will taste vermouths and cocktails prepared at the seminar by Shaun Layton.

My two cents: Come meet Mr. Roberto Bava! His products speak for themselves, and he is amazing to listen to. See you up there!

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