Dre Masso and Kamil Foltan launch a new platform to celebrate the industry and cultures of the region.

Bartender super-groups are the coolest new industry trend (see P(our)  by Alex Kratena and co, or the Nordic Spirits Lab led by Tony Conigliaro) and we’re proud to witness the sparks of a collaboration between Dre Masso and Kamil Foltan out here in Asia. The Potato Head colleagues, together with project manager Zurina Bryant and “Jill of all trades” Ri Chang, have just launched their Indigenous Bartender website as a platform to share knowledge with the keen-eyed reader.

“We decided to pay homage to the cultures, flavours, traditions and people we work with,” explained Foltan. “We work in Singapore, Bali, Jakarta and Hong Kong and we thought it would be great to share the things we’re learning from industry people who introduce things to us.” The website plans to interview industry folks including chefs, sommeliers, bar backs, kitchen porters and more to tell their stories and hopefully inspire improvements in the industry, and raise awareness around the f&b trade in the region. A travel section detailing underground and lesser-known bars and restaurants also hopes to get people visiting the cooler destinations run by folks the pair approve of. “Dre is all about the culture and sustainability – that’s his personal interest, and I’m all about flavours. Together, that’s what we’ll support,” says Foltan.

To kick things off for now, Masso and Foltan are going geeky, elaborating on the uses of coconuts and chocolates. They’ll eventually go deep on 25 more ingredients they’ve encountered and share cocktail recipes celebrating them. Says Foltan: “At the end of the day, we’re both expats in this part of the world. We’re exposed to local flavours that people overseas have never heard of, so we want to support local produce and producers.”


See www.indigenousbartender.com for more.