It drinks like a natural wine, only better: get the recipe for the Bartender of the Year’s winning drink

Daniel Gregory during his winning performance at the 2017 Bartender of the Year.Photo: Christopher Pearce
The Bartender of the Year competition sponsored by BACARDÍ & De Kuyper is over and done for another year, and we’ve got a new champion: Daniel Gregory (you can read his interview here).

Gregory has been in the final round of the competition a few times in the past, so he knew what to expect – he finished in second place in 2016 so this year was committed to going one step further and taking out the title.

The competition this year was tough, as it always is, but coming into the final Top 8 round on stage at the Bartender Magazine Australian Bar Awards — in front of 600 of the industry’s best and brightest — the field was separated by just a few points.

There were great drinks and presentations on display throughout the night — the presentation by Tom Loosli being just one of the highlights — but it was this drink from Daniel Gregory which we think clinched him the trophy.

The Dream Catcher presents and pours just like a natural wine, and it blew away the judges (and the competitors, too). Indeed, after Gregory’s presentation had concluded and the competition ended for the night, you could see more than a few of the bartending industry’s big names clamouring for a swig from the bottle.


So, below, we’ve got the recipe from the Bartender of the Year himself. It’s quite an involved recipe, and it takes time to prepare, but it offers a great opportunity to adapt the specs and use them for experimenting with your own recipes.

Take a look at the drink and specs below.

Daniel Gregory’s Dream Catcher.Photo: Rachel Baird

Dream Catcher

Makes 5-6 750ml bottles

  1. 500ml De Kuyper Triple Sec
  2. 2L Apple & Vanilla Kombucha (based on white jasmine tea, low sugar, 10 days with Scoby)
  3. 700ml Calvados
  4. 700ml Old Simon Rutte Genever
  5. 30-40g Malic Acid (Almost to taste)
  6. 500g Clarified Butter
  7. 10-15 Dried Slices of lightly toasted Brioche
  8. Bottled water if needed

Add the first 4 ingredients together and add the malic acid, you will have to balance to taste as the kombucha will change from batch to batch.

Melt the clarified butter and add this to the mix, sit at room temp for a few hours stirring every 15 minutes.

Place the mix in the fridge overnight if possible to let the butter set on top, and the next day take the butter off the top (it’s still good to cook with) and strain though a coffee filter.

Using five layers of brioche that are placed between fine wire mesh for each layer, slowly start and filter the liquid though. Replace the brioche when needed, you will have to repeat this a few times and finally strain though a coffee filter again to take out the fine sediment.

Chill the mix down for a few hours, it is important to taste it now before adding to the bottle. If the mix is too sweet or gummy on the lips add water to taste, each batch that I’ve done has been different amounts all based on the Kombucha. By doing this you won’t lose any flavour but it will balance out the drink over all.

Bottle in 750ml wine bottles that have been sterilised, cork, label and serve slightly chilled as you would a chardonnay and in the correct glass.

No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.