Refined Vices

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Marble Bar

To kick off the annual Sydney BarShow Week, the Puerto Rican rum giant Bacardí hosted the official launch party for the BarShow at the Marble Bar in Sydney in the spirit of the early 1900s.

The event also marked the 100th Anniversary of the legendary cocktail, the Daiquiri.

The invite only event was due to kick off on Sunday evening; when I arrived people were already queued up waiting to enter the bar, most of them wearing fashionable and glamorous 1920s-1950s attire as suggested by the dress code.

The best dressed would win a bottle of Bacardí's new Superior Heritage Limited Edition rum, which has the same alcohol strength as it did 100 years ago.

Marble BarThe venue is situated underground at the Hilton Hotel and is a fantastic piece of art influenced by Italian Renaissance, featuring varicoloured marble inlaid fireplaces, ornate mahogany bars and Corinthian columns handcrafted from 35 different varieties of marble from Italian, Belgian and African quarries.

The walls are adorned by paintings worth nearly 2 million dollars, while the ceilings have interesting plaster panelling combined with stained glass windows.

As the queue started moving downstairs, I felt like I was walking into a speakeasy and it only intensified the feeling when the people around me were wearing costumes of the era.

Inside was Cuba reborn as a live band played salsa on the stage and a waiter, also dressed in period clothing, greeted me with a tray full of Daiquiris, the drink of the night.

I don't think I saw anyone without a Daiquiri that night and the bars fully stocked with Bacardi Superior, lime and sugar ensured the bartenders (who did a dashing job by the way) didn't run out of ingredients.

Among other invited guests and journalists were brand ambassadors representing not only Bacardí but also brands such as Inner Circle, Holey Dollar and El Dorado just to mention a few.

Ian Burrell, the UK Rum Ambassador and organiser of the world's biggest rum festival, was also at the party as an honorary guest and was introduced to the crowd by Bacardí's global brand ambassador, David Cordoba, who also worked hard behind the bar with the rest of the crew producing the finest Daiquiris I've tasted.

The party was a huge success in all aspects; great Daiquiris, great music and atmosphere, fantastic networking opportunities, some very interesting people and an outstanding beginning to a week I won't soon forget.

Tatu Kaarlas
Refined Vices

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