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Paris Christofides

Paris Christofides

Paris Christofides is a World traveler, a connoisseur of lifestyle and a perceiver of situations. He has the charisma of seeing through things but seeing things coming in the future as trends although often creating trends! He is an extremely creative person capable of putting things together in a unique manner and has a way to present simple things in a stunning way. He is highly communicative and a people’s person thus a good trainer. He is flexible and adaptable coming from being a gypsy and an aristocrat the same time. His trade is being a consultant on food/drink and music, design and atmosphere, organization and management, personality coaching and…concepts, concepts, concepts!

Website URL: http://www.parischristofides.com Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Here is an idea for warm home food, things one cannot find at a linen table restaurant but probably like me, reminiscing of Asian street food experiences while on travels. So get your earthy bowls and wooden spoons and spin around this idea.

Chop some carrots, onions, celery, potatoes and garlic and sweat in an oily deep pan with fresh thyme, a couple of sage leaves and bay leaves. Add some water the lentils and some tea bags of Lapsang Souchong to boil till cooked at low heat for about 50 minutes. Remove the tea bags and add some finely chopped red tomatoes, coriander and parsley leaves and simmer for another few minutes.

Enjoy it with warm fresh bread and a good spread of anchovy butter or horseradish cream and perhaps a malt whisky! 

 

Vasilis Koukias

in Faces
on: 11 April 2017

It’s often intriguing as to what happens to people we meet professionally and what becomes out of them as the years go by. This is the case of Bartender Mixologist Vasilis Koukias who crossed paths with me in Cyprus quite some years ago! Vasilis now with 25 years of experience in the bar industry has a lot to say through maturity and bar wisdom. He worked at Jackson Hall in Kolonaki (1996-2000), in Cyprus at Cream bar, Guru Bar and Pralina (2001-2003), then back to Jackson Hall from Bar manager to General manager. Since 2012 till today he is the mixologist at Kripti bar, Trikala/Greece.

 

 

He has studied various courses and followed an impressive number of seminars and master classes for mixology, barista, art of blending, art of distilling while he has taken part in a number of professional competitions often receiving the first position or respectably a distinguished rank. 

Vasilis, being trained classically and evolving through times to be a modern technique’s bartender has kept the professional ethos to a respectable frame and enjoys a good dedicated audience at Kripti bar. It’s that feeling of being treated when you have such amount of experience and talent behind the bar! It is expressed with respectful service, perfect wording, cool moves and just right drinks.

 

He mixed a few signature cocktails for us

Your love is King’ - Martin Millers gin, ginger water, ginger liqueur, fresh lime juice, cherry bitters (Fee brothers), Peychaud’s bitters.

 

Blue Black - Beluga vodka, North, fresh blueberries, kiwi, caramel Marie Brizard, fresh lime juice.

 

Viper - Woodford reserve, ruby red porto, ammarena syrup, Peter Heering, Angostura bitters, cherry bitters (Fee brothers).



Diamond & Gold Liquids

in Booze
on: 02 April 2017

Mark an event, an occasion, honor a personality, a cause or just find an excuse to attract the few who can afford millions to spend on an ornate bottle to boast self esteem of some sort, there are spirits around the world that are produced for the above reasons usually sold at airports but often, not always, the money goes to special funds for good causes or environmental studies or else.

Here is a collection from my research and info exchange which will make your eyebrows grow.

1. In September 2012, 12 Bowmore bottles were unveiled at 100,000 English pounds.  A 54-year-old Scotch whisky – the oldest Islay malt Bowmore 1957 spent 43 years in a second-fill sherry cask, and aged additionally for a further 11 years in a bourbon cask. Sold mainly at the distillery.

 

2. The Remy Martin Black Pearl Louis XIII Cognac! Made with carefully grapes from Grande Champagne was auctioned for 100,000 English pounds in 2012. Made from a blend of 1200 eaux de vie that are between 40 and 100 years old. The bottle added to the price as it was designed by Baccarat and hand-blown from black crystal.

 

3. Mendis Coconut brandy, 2007 was the world’s first clear brandy distilled from coconut and matured in wood casks. Distributed by Luxe Coterie, it was sold for 1 million dollars. Every bottle was signed by the House of Mendis’ founder, WM Mendis.

 

4. Johnnie Walker whisky, 2012.  just 60 bottles of this 60-year-old Scotch whisky released for the Queens Jubilee Birthday.  Finished in a cask made of English oak from the Queen’s Sandringham Estate, was bottled in diamond-shaped Baccarat decanters. One of the 60 decanters was given to the Queen while the remaining were sold for 100,000 English pounds each in aid to the Queen Elizabeth Scholarship fund – a charity which pays to train UK residents in traditional skills.

 

5. The most expensive vodka in the world, Scottish Diva. Its value comes from the décor of the bottle being ornate with precious stones and Swarovski crystals, retailing for 1 million dollars. The vodka is a triple filtered expression ice filtered through Nordic birch charcoal and then filtered again through sand peppered with precious and semi-precious stones.  Made by Scotland-based Blackwood Distillers.

 

6. Dalmore 62 Year Old (released in 2012) on sale at Singapore’s Changai airport for 125,000 English pounds, most expensive whisky. Its title has been since been taken by the 64-year-old Macallan. Only 12 bottles of this expression, featuring a stag’s head, were released making it extremely rare.

 

7. A six- ltr decanter of the Macallan became the new world record holder for most expensive whisky sold. The Macallan ‘M’ was sold for 381,620 English pounds. 

 

8. Released in 2011, 21 bottles of Royal Salute’s, The Honors of Scotland. This 125,000 English pounds whisky was blended from some of Royal Salute’s oldest whiskies – all age 45 years and up – and comes presented in a bejeweled bottle crafted by the world’s oldest jeweler to royalty, Garrard. It features 413 white and black diamonds. with 22 carats of gemstones set in gold and silver.

 

9. 100-year-old heritage Grande Champagne Cognac is one of the rarest and most expensive drinks on the planet carrying a price at 2 million dollars. It comes in a 24-carat gold and sterling platinum bottle with 6,500 diamonds made by jeweler Jose Davalos. It was first produced in 1776 and was named to honor King Henri IV. It is aged in barrels for more than 100 years and just 100cl is decanted into the 8kg diamond studded bottle!

 

10. Tequila from Tequila Ley, 2010, at 3.5 million dollars with much of its value carried by its white gold and platinum bottle encrusted with 6,400 diamonds designed by Mexican artist Alejandro Gomez Oropeza. The similarity between this design and the Henry IV Heritage Cognac is explained by the fact that both were created by Ley 925.

 

11. Chateaux d’Yquem 1811, at 130,000 dollars, a rare and vintage wine from the reputable Chateau since 1711.

 

12. Bombay Sapphire Revelation, 5 unique bottles created by Karim Rashid and the bottles feature diamonds, Baccarat crystals and sapphires. Sold at 200,000 dollars.

 

13.  64 year old Macallan single Malt in a Lalique crystal decanter at 464,000 dollars sold at an auction in 2010, probably the most expensive whisky in the world. This rare Scotch was vatted from three sherry-seasoned Spanish oak casks — the first was filled in 1942, the second in 1945, and the third in 1946.

 

Trends today

in Eats
on: 26 March 2017

The sum up is just like marketing clothes and cosmetics nowadays.

I know some clever people gather around the table and decide how to create trends in the world to suit countries’ economics. I know how they are thinking, I’m a hacker! I have watched their articles and what they do to us through their clever marketing. So, I suppose I went behind the scenes of our internet pages, it’s a paradise of small words flying in all directions! I researched back and forward, read slogans, politics, economic reports, listened to music videos and felt the attitudes towards branding Food and beverages. I came up with these on trends of today.  

 

Demand for foods from exotic regions will keep growing, while ‘free from’ products will have the same pattern. Regions like Cuba, Indonesia and Korea seems to be the trends coming in, while pulses i.e chick peas, odd lentils and the introduction of pulses flour will contribute to recipie diversions. Although ethnic cooking at home will remain a trend, there is a growing interest in age groups 16- 25 to cook with new approaches to experimental taste, convenience, and more choice.

Do not waste a thing! Scraps are saved to become stock, peels and trims are oven dried to become a snack, recycle, re spice and re invent, the common words in a kitchen today. Hand made foods are back to culture roots, remixed and fused with anything exotic.

‘Wasted education’ restaurants are popping up in trendy cities across Europe and the U.S. catching the interest of the various groups, catering also for religious sensitive, vegans, gtutten free, and other ‘free from’. 

Know your body and your food alongside the keep well and spiritual activities are on the grow too and appear on the services of bars and restaurants and hotels too.

Inevitably all these trend diversions affect the beverages across the bar scenes. Cocktail menus are taking advantage of the trend for marketing reasons too, recycling all, not wasting, marinating, infusing etc Calories are taken into consideration too. Drinks have no names but atmospheres ! They project an image to go with your mood , your status, your fitness and they tend to make you feel an atmosphere about it. Self esteem is taken into consideration.

 

Fresh juice companies will have a ball with mixing ingredients as the world market is getting used to ethnic foods and accustomed to more taste challenges. We went through the aloe vera and the green tea versions and their packaging, now its more on atmospheres packaging and lots of waters – juices such as ginger, coconut, yuzu and more coming from Asia. Alcohol free drinks are also on the high in certain hemispheres due to religious groups.

 

Alcohol companies will carry on the madness of re inventing the brands with a new label and diversifying products to compete to the loosing sipping sales drink share to cocktail drinking share. This borrowing the qualities of each other by quick barell ageing will continue. More brands will bombard the already saturated market with more overrated spirits. Gin had a good stand for a few years and will remain in the hearts of it’s drinkers, rum increased it’s audience and still will be explored, whisky increased it’s  market share winning a female appreciation worldwide but feel the vermouth coming in…, being a very diversified and versatile ingredient and marying with most spirits although standing grand on its own too, for those that know it. It will have a fair chance to market growth as recent generations had no chance to explore it yet. Wine companies worldwide will start experimenting producing it with their local elements, since they have explored all possible grapes varieties imported and mixed with local origin grapes.  

Finally coffee! Woh! Still increasing consumtion while the market awakens to new tastes from around world.More expertise, new production methods on retail but home too, more gadgets and although getting info on the origin of the coffee it will be all about the atmosphere that will project in relevance to well being just like cocktails, just like marketing clothes and cosmetics nowdays! 

 

Antonis Kourkoutas

in Faces
on: 26 March 2017
‘I haven't worked at a Michelin starred restaurants or next to a famous chef so I would say I'm self taught chef’
Antonis Kourkoutas, Executive chef

 

 


A dish is a proposal, a composition. How is the idea born?

Usually I choose 1 seasonal ingredient that I want to make something with it. Then step by step I add flavors and textures that work well together to create something interesting.

 

When you compile a dish what is your aim?

 My aim is to create something tasty, balanced, unique and beautiful of course. It must be interesting, must have texture, shape, movement….

 

Lightly seared tuna belly | almond gaspacho foam | truffle | nitsume pickled yellow mustard seeds | olive oil

 

What are you hobbies?

My hobby is martial arts but I like watching movies and travel when I have the opportunity.

 

Where are eating trends heading, you reckon?

Globally we see a mix of cultures and cuisines where there are no limits. The base is to choose local and traditional ingredients and use modern techniques. Some food trends that are going on are sophisticated street food, fermentation, zero waste, healthy snacks and also we have a huge rise in vegan and vegetable cooking.

 

Gin tonic oyster | onion-cucumber-ginger relish | tosaka nori | tobiko yuzu

 

Lots of male chefs are inspired also by women. What about you?

Yes indeed, many times when I create a new dish I have in mind some ladies that maybe going for this, so it has to be light, healthy, elegant and like this way a new dish is born inspired by women

I also get inspired by the season, something that  I ate or smelled, a book that I read, a restaurant that I visited, tableware, weather, photos

 

Colour and food?

Colour is very important in a dish since it's the thing you see before you taste it. It has to be vibrant and natural and it has to match the atmosphere of the plate that is going to be served in.

 

Pomegranate mackerel ceviche | hummus | green apple | lime | jalapeno

 

Idols?

David Kinch/Heston Blumenthal/Daniel Humm/Pascal Barbot/David Chang/Grant Achatz/Dominique Crenn

 

What are new ingredient marriages you think?

There is no certain marriage but we see that chefs tend to use Japanese cuisine often in their dishes mixed with their county's cuisines and products

 

Yellowtail tartare | cherry tomatoes confit | basil | tapioca cracker | horseradish aioli | nori powder

 

What is the future for Antonis?

As every chef I would like to open my own restaurant...until then I continue to experiment with my personal cooking style and become better as time goes by.

 


Quick bio

Antonis literally grew up in a Greek restaurant and didn't believe that he would become a chef.

He started as a pastry chef and although loved desserts he quitted that to eventually become a Head chef, now with 14 years experience in the kitchen.

He graduated a private cooking school “chef Doéuvre’ but he also has a food and beverage management degree.

He has been working mostly at restaurants and caterings and at the moment he is the Executive sushi chef at Ithaki restaurant in Vouliagmeni –Greece. He is a food consultant, responsible for developing many menus and organizing food theme events.

 

‘I haven't worked at a Michelin starred restaurants or next to a famous chef so I would say I'm self taught chef. I spend a lot of time researching into books and I am deeply interested about taste, techniques, quality and the presentation of a dish. Everything I post online is not only to show something beautiful but something that tastes good as well.’ 

 

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