Choni Song

Choni Song image 1

Choni Song

Choni Song
Wild Card Winner (China)

Choni grew up with his grandmother in a small village in Huai'An, Jiangsu Province. He didn't succumb to fate as his grandmother used to tell him, "if you want to succeed, you must learn to stand on your own feet". He went to Shanghai to pursue his dream.

Choni was fascinated by the sound of shaking and stirring produced when bartending and by bartenders' hospitality, welcoming their customers with smiles and passion. This is how he started his journey to become a bartender, a profession he said he will always be passionate about.

He progressed through the Bacardí Global Cocktail Competition in 2016, making China the only country making it to the top eight for three consecutive years. Following Legacy, he went on over 100 guest shifts across various regions of China.

After working in the F&B industry in Shanghai for 11 years, Choni went back to Nanjing, his hometown, to open his own bar. Sadly, it closed down due to Covid, but he never gave up. He thinks every moment in life has some meaning, and in Patrón Perfectionists 2022-3, his cocktail 'Himno' won the competition's first-time Wild Card. He hopes that people can have positive cognitions for life through his cocktail. He said, "being a perfectionist is an attitude of life, but accepting your imperfections of yourself is the final destination." Choni hopes that 'Himno' can make more people realise that the process is far more important than the result, and he wishes more people can find their own Himno of life.

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Hometown Hero challenge cocktail: Himno

Glass: Coupe
Garnish: Rice Paper
Method: Shake & Fine Strain
45ml Patrón Silver Tequila
20ml Lime cordial
10ml Crème de violette
1 bar spoon Absinthe
20ml Homemade fermented coconut rice wine*
Inspiration: The inspiration of Himno comes from Choni's own understanding of Patrón. Wanting to approach cocktail creation from a different angle, Choni designed a cocktail that not only has a unique flavour but also touches different aspects of life with a vision to make the drink spread out positive energy and resonate with people. Every ingredient of Himno encompasses an important learning in life:
1. life has many aspects (like absinthe)
2. the ordinary is the foundation of all greatness (lime cordial)
3. the importance of human rights (crème de violette)
4. the importance of gratitude (homemade fermented coconut rice wine)
5. commitment to social responsibilities (Patrón).
These five learnings are like the five-line spectrum, and Himno is the song Choni has written in honour of life, wishing more people can find a personal Himno for sustainable development.

*Homemade fermented coconut rice wine
Soak 500g sticky rice in coconut water for 8 hours. Blend the coconut water after soaking with coconut flesh together and put in the bottom of the pot, then put soaked sticky rice above it. Use low heat to steam the rice for 30 minutes. Let cool down to about 35 degrees. Put 3g of yeast and mixture of coconut with sticky rice together and stir, leaving a hole in the middle. Ferment for 48 hours. Add another 500g of mixture of coconut and ferment for 24 hours. Boil the fermented liquid in order to sterilise. Keep in the fridge for two weeks. You can serve a small bowl of fermented sticky rice to your guest while awaiting the cocktail.

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