Belvedere Vodka has teamed up with Ryan Chetiyawardana (White Lyan, Dandelyan) and Tristan Stephenson (Fluid Movement) as part of a new training programme.
The trainings kicked off today, with Belvedere's Claire Warner and Ali Dedianko joining the two at Dandelyan, in front of an expected 50 bartenders. The training forms part of Belvedere's new 'Be Natural' campaign.
'What does the word mean? You can put "natural" on anything,' Dedianko told Imbibe. 'For us, it's about being transparent. We're an open book.'
The brand has created a 'Be Natural' manifesto containing 10 points such as 'Drinking responsibly means sweetening responsibly too', and 'We support our agricultural partners'.
Edinburgh gets the 'Be Natural' treatment tomorrow, after which the roadshow goes further afield, heading to more than a dozen cities around the world before the year is out, taking in some trade shows and events too. 'It's the first year that we're doing a roadshow of this calibre,' said Dedianko.
The launch is accompanied by a new signature drink, the Belvedere Spritz (pictured top), which combines 30ml Belvedere, 30ml Lillet Blanc, two grapefruit slices and one sprig of thyme, topped with equal parts soda water and Fever Tree tonic. It's a drink that lends itself to a lot of customisation – there's a whole Spritz Collection, in fac, containing 12 cocktails – and some branded glassware is available too.
'As we keep our vodka simple and naturally full of flavour, our drinks should follow a similar recipe,' said Warner. 'The Belvedere Spritz Collection is the best embodiment of this philosophy, all low in sugar, all refreshing and delicious.'