David Berube, Bar Boulud Boston, Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Head Sommelier
Tell us a little about yourself
In the hotel industry for more then 10 years now. The goal was to find a job where I will be able to match my passion for wines and spirits to management responsibilities. Being now the Head Sommelier at Bar Boulud is definitively the perfect combination as I am in charge of the whole program while I am sharing my people what I know. Previously: head sommelier for Jean-Georges Dubai. I really like to push myself and all limits for everything in life and this why the goal is sit for the master for the first time before I turn 30.
What is your favorite recipe you have come up with using an AJC product? What was the inspiration behind it?
I am doing a Madame Rose cocktails which is: El Tesoro Silver Tequila, Lady Lychee, Lime Juice and Rose petal. As we have a good demand for tequila-based cocktail, I thought finding the perfect juice blend to pair with agave without being a too over alcoholic drink.
When you are coming up with new drinks, do you have a source(s) for inspiration?
I like changes so for me everything can be inspiring: seasons, bartender's ideas, guest's comments, etc...boutique spirits and good looking drink is where my focus is mainly. The rest comes more naturally in trying and trying again different recipes. To respect the market where you work is also extremely important for me.
What is your favorite bar, what day of the week do you recommend it, and what kind of experience can a visitor expect?
Barcelona, reasonable and interesting cocktails but more important: in my opinion the best Spanish wines selection in town. They really have wines from every region of Spain (the ones you only see in the book) and a great selection of back vintages as well.
What info about cocktails do most people making drinks at home not know that would be helpful to them?
Sometimes only few ingredients can make you an outstanding drink. Only a good base spirit, herb and liquor can be sufficient. Also, look for flavored spirits (like honey-infused gin or ) to enhance the quality and complexity for your cocktails.
Favorite AJC flavor?
Anything else you would like to share?
We are hosting a different wine dinner every month at Bar Boulud with sometimes the producer himself or herself being part of the dinner. Then, we also have those on-going projects:
- Big format by glass during weekend (3L by glass)
- Great selection of Coravin by glass, between $30-90/glass
- Back vintage of Bordeaux
- Exclusivity in the whole city on certain craft spirit
- Vega Sicilia collection
- Brooker's Rye : we have one bottle....so rare
- I am competing at the somm slam next month in NY against 11 other candidates from the country.
- Aged Manhattan in barrel