Iain Griffiths has been involved in the hospitality industry for over ten years. He has extensive knowledge of all aspects of the business from his experience in his native Australia having worked at both Black Pearl in Melbourne and Eau de Vie in Sydney. Iain is now to be found as New Business Development Manager for Mr Lyan Ltd where, alongside Ryan Chetiyawardana, he’s led the company to a string of success in the last three years with their internationally awarded bars White Lyan and Dandelyan.
Dave Mitton is the Pernod Ricard Global Canadian Whisky Ambassador and has been working behind bars for almost 20 years. As the co-owner of The Harbord Room in Toronto and inaugural President of The Canadian Professional Bartenders Association, Ontario Chapter for its first three years, Dave is an international authority on all things whisky and bartending. He spends his time travelling throughout Canada, America, Europe, and Australia educating bartenders and consumers alike about the history, the process and production and, of course, the making of cocktails with Canadian Whisky.
Caroline Childerley is the founder and editor of The Gin Queen, a website devoted to gin. She tastes, reviews, shares recipes and interviews industry movers and shakers. Since the launch in 2013 she has hosted sell-out gin tastings and was published in Alquimie magazine. She loves to share her passion for the juniper juice and the best ways to drink it.
Kirrily Waldhorn, Australia’s very own Beer Diva is a beer presenter, educator, consultant, writer and judge. With over 15 years of beery experience, she will certainly “knock your hops off” with her beer knowledge and expertise. Kirrily has an enormous passion for beer and is on a mission to educate Australians about the benefits of pouring a fine brew at the dinner table.
Phillip A Jones
Phillip A Jones lives and breathes Martinis. As the Martini Whisperer he reviews and shares information about premium spirits from around the world, especially Australian, on his website, and last year spoke at TEDx Canberra for the first ever TED talk on the Martini. In this interactive session he’ll share how to craft the perfect Martini using the award winning craft gins from the Nip of Courage range including McHenry Distillery, Stone Pine Distillery, Loch Distillery and Young Henrys. Plus two lucky participants will have the chance to craft their own Martinis under his expert guidance. This is the perfect opportunity to learn how to master the most iconic of cocktails at home.
Mike Symons commenced his wine career at Petaluma Winery in late 1989 after completing a Bachelor of Agricultural Science from Adelaide University. Mike has worked extensively overseas, completing two vintages in France and in 1996 he ventured to Italy for nearly three years where he worked for the famous Antinori family, overseeing winemaking in their Tuscan Estates. Through work and study he has travelled widely through the wine regions of the US, France and Italy; something which he continues through annual trips to Europe. Commencing with Stonier in 2008, Mike is now focused on taking the legacy of Stonier on its next evolutionary journey.
Darin Kinzie grew up in Modesto on a vineyard but it wasn’t until 2001 when a deeper curiosity led him to his first harvest in the lab at Gallo of Sonoma. An explorer and adventurer at heart, Darin moved to Adelaide, Australia in 2003 where he chose to study enology and viticulture under the Roseworthy Program at the University of Adelaide. Darin spent the next nine years in Australia, joining St. Hallett in the Barossa Valley in 2006 where he started in the cellar. He took a couple of trips home to California to work harvests in 2007 and in 2009. Working with cool climate varieties at Williams Selyem and Peay reinforced for him his belief in terroir and his love for cool climate California wines. Darin moved back to Australia in 2012 where he took up the role of Assistant winemaker at St. Hallett.
Details of more key speakers presenting at this year’s Australian Drinks Festival will be added here soon.