Between history and culture, from Prohibition to exotic mixtures of avant-garde, emerges Mixology, the art of mixing where nothing is left to chance. Luigi Bormioli embarked upon this new adventure with a collection of luxury barware and cocktail making equipment, created in collaboration with Yuri Gelmini, head barman of the Surfer’s Den in Milan and futurist mixologist. The study and the search for new elements, expert hands which know how to mix and fine-tune new flavours, everything is left to the taste and the imagination of Futurist Mixologist Yuri Gelmini, and leads to forms of creativity and aesthetic expression thanks to both technical means and his ability deriving from study and experience in this field.
"How do I approach work? Put simply: I listen."
- Yuri Gelmini
I listen to my own curiosity and the curiosity of my customers.
Every day I ask myself what I can do to render each thing special and more interesting.
I am fascinated by historic products which have not yet found use in cocktails, such as vino cotto (literally "cooked wine," a type of wine originating in certain regions of Italy) obtained from winemaking cooperatives, or gocce Imperiali (an alcoholic drink distilled from herbs and produced by certain Italian monasteries), available in many monasteries.
I also find it highly stimulating to work with new products, and above all with those which bring to the world of drinks perfumes and flavours which are traditionally not found there, such as flavoured sodas or liqueurs with extracts and spices more usually used in cooking. My interest in many historic and “individualist”—as well as often regional—products, led me to futurist mixing, which has reached a peak again in recent years thanks to the writings and seminars of Fulvio Piccinino.
One aspect of “polydrinks” (in Italian polibibite) that especially fascinates me is their designation not so much for a particular moment during the day, the classic pre-dinner/after- dinner, but rather for the occasion of their use. Try entering a quisibeve (literally a “here- one-drinks”) with a doubt that torments you and order a snebbiante (literally a “mind clearer”), or, with an idea in your head for how to pass the night and order a guerrainletto (literally a “war-in-bed”), and you will understand what I’m talking about.
In mixology, attention must be given to many different aspects, of which the drink is only one part—even if this is where it all starts. The preparation of the cocktail is carried out before the eyes of the customer, so the instruments are just as important as the ability of the barman to create a moment of magic. Serving the cocktail in an attractive glass which lends prestige completes the job.
This is precisely where and I meet. Every time that I serve a drink in a Luigi Bormili glass, both my customer and I are able to enjoy its brilliance and superior design. What was missing was a line of equipment that would also embellish the work of the barman. For this reason the “Mixology” line was launched by Luigi Bormioli, a company for whom “innovation is a state of mind which you live day by day: we want to learn, change, surpass our limits. This is actually a precondition for guaranteeing the long life of a company: to stay young and be reborn every day."
The energy of these words won me over, and I am proud to embark on this new adventure with such an important company, which is "open to all initiatives that can bring improvements in knowledge, behaviour, technology, growth and better value" for all those who frequent it, as professional or as customer—this world in continual evolution.
Five cocktail recipes made by Yuri Gelmini with the Mixology collection by Luigi Bormioli.
Nick & NoRA
Classic version 3-to-1 of the Martini cocktail. It takes its name from the Hollywood duo Nick and Nora Charles played by William Powell and Myrna Loy.
In the various movies, in addition to very hilarious scenes, there are recurring moments when the couple drinks this type of cocktail.
The Gardener’s Tonic is the herbaceous and floral version of a gin and tonic. The use of chamomile liqueur and tonic water with grassy notes enhance the aromas of the gin, creating a perfect tonic to sip after a day in the garden.
This drink immediately brings to mind the rising of the sun. The idea of penetrating the famous bamboo forest of Kyoto is evoked by the ingredients of which it is composed.
THE GREAT BALON
This twist on the classic Italian aperitif from the mid-eighteenth century meets a French classic: Dry Vermouth. The Angostura and Orange Bitters give aromatic complexity. This drink is rendered fizzy by a touch of Soda.
This neo-polydrink was born of the fascinations of futurist mixing and my own love for Italian products, which I find are excellent not only when consumed straight but also when used as cocktail ingredients.
MY MYSTERY GARDENIA
The freshness of a Daiquiri meets the perfume of an ancient crème anglaise made from lemon, butter and egg. A few drops of Angostura give a final touch of pleasant bitterness.
After having tasted this drink, a friend exclaimed: This is the coffee that I would like to drink before a meeting with the director! A dry, perfumed, herbal and toasted gin and tonic.
The earthy and red marks of the Roiboos transform a classic Pimm's into a journey to distant lands.
The perfect refreshing drink to drink under the shadow of a baobab in full sun!
Saffron gives this Martini Cocktail an elegant dress with a touch of golden light that reminds of the evenings of the great Gala.
The brine gives a touch of effervescence that makes everything tastier.