Vancouver’s Fairmont Pacific Rim hotel, whose restaurant, Botanist, is a perennial contender for Canada’s best restaurant and bar, and winner of the Michelin Guide Vancouver Exceptional Cocktails award, will once again play host to acclaimed dining establishments from around the world for multinight in-residence events throughout 2023. Kicking things off on February 7 and 8, Botanist welcomed Singapore’s Manhattan cocktail bar, currently ranked 33rd on the World’s 50 Best Bars list. The two evenings saw executive chef Hector Laguna pair six dishes with three cocktails by Botanist’s head bartender, Jeff Savage, and three by Manhattan’s beverage director, Rusty Cerven, and bartender, Yahan Chung.
Most of the ingredients that went into Laguna’s dishes were sourced locally, with almost all produce from a single farm in Chilliwack. Taking a more esoteric approach, the bartenders honoured prominent Vancouverites and Singaporeans with cocktails like Savage’s The Empress of Canada, a gin-and-Chartreuse-based drink inspired by LGBTQ-rights advocate ted northe, and the Manhattan team’s Virtuoso: named for Vanessa Mae, the Singaporean violinist and Olympian, it combines gin and vermouth with delightfully savoury kumquat, dill, and milk oolong.
On the third evening, the Manhattan team moved downstairs to the hotel’s Lobby Lounge & RawBar to collaborate with creative beverage director Grant Sceney on a menu of signature Manhattan cocktails and creative new Lobby Lounge drinks. There will be at least three more chances to experience an in-residence collaboration at Botanist later this year, with the next event expected to take place in early summer.