Bittered Sling Bitters | About
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About

WHO WE ARE

Bittered Sling Bitters celebrates the unique life and business partnership of celebrated chef Jonathan Chovancek and award-winning mixologist/sommelier Lauren Mote, who together have contributed more than 30 years of professional experience, knowledge and innovation to the Canadian food and beverage industry.

Mote has been making bitters since 2008 — over half her career. The sweetest partnership would launch in February 12, 2012 — where Mote and Chovancek unveiled their Bittered Sling line up to the world — a retail line of high-quality, cocktail bitters and culinary extracts using exceptional ingredients providing the palate, plate and potion with a powerful and exciting fusion of flavours. Since that day — Bittered Sling quickly built a reputation in the international cocktail and culinary community as a premium, high quality cocktail bitters, celebrating stories of travel and terroir, utilizing the finest quality ingredients, stories of heritage and craftsmanship from domestic and international purveyors, with an expertise in blending botanicals and flavours right here in British Columbia, Canada. Bittered Sling continues to inspire creativity within the global drinks community, providing a sustainable, diverse and delicious product for excited cocktail enthusiasts, backed by a quality stamp of approval — Canada Brand. The world needs more Canada.

Originally marketed as a medicinal tonic, bitters are a concentration of select natural herbs, fruits and spices now used primarily as a flavouring agent for cocktail and culinary creations ranging from savoury to sweet. A common and indispensable tool of any bartender, bitters have increased in popularity thanks to the recent renaissance of classic cocktails.

 

The name Bittered Sling derives from the May 13, 1806 edition of The Balance, and Columbian Repository (Hudson, NY) that defines a cocktail as“A stimulating liquor composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water and bitters. It is vulgarly called a bittered sling and is supposed to be an excellent electioneering potion inasmuch as it renders the heart stout and bold, at the same time that it fuddles the head.” By the dash or the drop, each creation offers an intricate range of complex flavours that perfectly accentuates food, spirits and even sparkling water.

 

Since its inception, Bittered Sling has garnered local and international acclaim with aromatic labels such as Cascade Celery, Malagasy Chocolate and Kensington Dry Bitters — all of which were bestowed with gold medals at the Beverage Testing Institute’s 2014 International Review of Spirits. In 2013, the company was singled out as Producer/Supplier of the Year at the 24th annual Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards. Since 2011, both Chovancek and Mote have also both been event partners and keynote speakers with Tales of the Cocktail, the world’s premier cocktail festival, in New Orleans, Vancouver and Argentina.

 

Apart from their collaboration in Bittered Sling, Chovancek is a Chef Consultant in Vancouver and abroad, while Mote is the Global Cocktailian for Diageo Reserve and the World Class Global Program.

 

Bittered Sling strongly believes in setting a new standard in customer service, and remains committed to providing quality, respect and integrity in each ingredient it sources, and every product it creates.

FAQ

What differentiates us most?

Our production process, mindful ingredients, base spirit and experience with flavours and how to work with them.

 

The base spirit is 100% British Columbia grown fruit spirit, distilled at Okanagan Spirits in Vernon, BC. All of the botanicals, fruits, barks and herbs are ethically sourced. The citrus is peeled by hand using the best seasonal expressions. The product is macerated, naturally filtered, bottled and labeled at a government regulated facility in the Okanagan before being shipped to our global distributors. We do not use extracts or essences, only whole botanicals,. We do not use sugar or artificial colouring and manufactured in an allergen-free facility.

Flavour choices & selection process –
how you decide which flavours to put forth?

The 12 retail flavours in our portfolio are a distillation of both Jonathan’s palate as a chef, and Lauren’s experience as a bartender to provide a line of of bitters which are designed to work with a multitude of spirits and give the bartender unlimited creative freedom with products that are truly bitter.

 

We are currently distributed in Canada, USA, UK, Cayman Islands, Australia and New Zealand.
Cocktail with Dropper
Lauren

LAUREN MOTE

Mixologist. Sommelier. Architect of potions, tonics and elixirs. Accomplished emcee, writer and cocktail judge. International spirits diplomat.

She’s a mixologist; a sommelier; an architect of potions, tonics and elixirs; an accomplished emcee, writer, spirit and cocktail judge; an international spirits diplomat and accredited instructor; award-winning bartender Lauren Mote wears many hats, but she’s perhaps best known as the DIAGEO Reserve & World Class Global Cocktailian, and the co-proprietor of Bittered Sling Bitters — an internationally successful portfolio of award-winning cocktail bitters and culinary extracts.

Named the 2015 ‘Bartender of the Year’ by both the Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards and DIAGEO World Class Canada, Lauren is a well-respected speaker, educator, mentor and industry advocate, whose reach extends well beyond the bar. She has served as an Associate Director for the Canadian Professional Bartenders Association, has been an event partner and keynote speaker with Tales of the Cocktail® since 2011, and in 2016 Lauren was the first Canadian woman inducted into the “Dames Hall of Fame”, and nominated for “Best Bar Mentor” at the 10th annual Spirited Awards Ceremony.

Lauren is an in demand hospitality consultant, and in the past 5 years has launched and redesigned bar programs at The Nash Restaurant & Off Cut Bar in Calgary, Vancouver’s Café Medina and Burdock & Co., and most recently collaborating as the Beverage Consultant for the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver and their restaurant, YEW seafood + bar. Lauren is also a Development Consultant for the World Class Bartending Program, in addition to her marketing, social media and PR strategies for spirit and hospitality brands under the “Bittered Sling” umbrella of companies.

Jonathan

JONATHAN CHOVANCEK

For 20 years, celebrated chef Jonathan Chovancek has been a virtuoso of preparation, presentation and crafting the finest local, sustainably sourced fare for some of Canada’s most acclaimed establishments.

For more than 20 years, chef Jonathan Chovancek’s abundant enthusiasm, inspired creativity and commitment to healthy eating has provided a winning recipe for some of British Columbia’s most celebrated restaurants. A firm believer in the Slow Food movement, Chovancek’s culinary philosophy of sourcing the best fresh, local and sustainable ingredients has driven his menus from the time he anchored back-of-house teams at Vancouver Island’s Relais & Chateaux property “The Aerie Resort”, Sooke Harbour House and Zambri’s as well as Culinary Capers in Vancouver. He has cooked in China, Mexico, Italy, United States and Canada and consults on culinary programming and menu development throughout North America.

 

Jonathan, who was the chef/host of CBC TV’s groundbreaking documentary Village on a Diet in 2011, is also an in-demand speaker and instructor as well as a dedicated coach and mentor to up-and-coming kitchen talent. Jonathan is the co-founder of Canada’s Bittered Sling company – a pop-up restaurant that’s been in operation since 2010 – Bittered Sling Bistro – and Bittered Sling Bitters, a retail line of high-quality, small-batch cocktail and culinary bitters currently available in over 6 international markets. Chovancek is also the former Opening/Executive Chef for the new Café Medina (780 Richards St) and most recently a culinary instructor for Cook Culture in Vancouver.