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Super-lavish liqueurs and the world’s most expensive cocktails

If the end of the year calls for celebratory drinks, make it a luxe cocktail. Here’s our pick from the bar to help you celebrate the start of a new decade.

Mr Black Single Origin Cocktails

Mr Black Single Origin Coffee Liqueur

For the genuine coffee lover who can’t get enough of a caffeine fix during the day, Mr Black Single Origin Coffee Liqueur takes your coffee hit into the evening – handy if you’re partying into the early hours.

This single origin sourced from a small producer in Colombia has fruity hints of citrus, which coffee aficionados know comes from beans that aren’t overly roasted. It’s smooth-textured and less sweet than other coffee liqueurs on the market, with heady notes of dried fig, burnt caramel and dark chocolate. World Coffee Tasting Champion Daniel Horbat calls it “hands-down the world’s best” of coffee liqueurs.

Mr Black Single Origin Columbia

Delicious as it is over ice to enjoy like a (spiked) cold brew, it’s also a top ingredient for creative cocktail mixology. The obvious route is an espresso martini (just add ice and freshly brewed espresso) or try stirring it with a nip or two of sweet vermouth and dark rum to savour slowly over a chunk of ice like an Old Fashioned.

Serve it as a refreshing highball layered with a hint of cherry liqueur and topped with Indian tonic and a slice of orange. Or go straight to dessert with a boozy affogato; just pour your Mr Black over a scoop of gelato. Easy to do after a couple of cocktails.

Caturra Fashioned

30mL Mr Black Single Origin Coffee Liqueur
20mL sweet vermouth
15mL dark rum
Stir and pour into a highball over a block of ice and garnish with half a date or dried fig.

Cascara Fizz

30mL Mr Black Single Origin Coffee Liqueur
15mL cherry liqueur
Top with Indian tonic
Slice of orange
Build in highball with ice and top with Indian tonic, adding a refreshing garnish of sliced orange.

Mr Black Single Origin Coffee Liqueur Colombia is priced at A$75 for a 700mL bottle.

‘The Winston’, once labelled the most expensive cocktail in the world, and one-time Guinness World Record Holder, will set you back A$12,500 from exclusive nightclub Club 23 in Melbourne, Australia. Named after Winston Churchill, the cocktail contains two shots of 1858 Croizet cognac (US$157,000 a bottle), Grand Marnier Quintessence and Chartreuse VEP. Be sure to call ahead if you want to order this cocktail; two days’ notice is required.

The Macallan Double Cask Macallan 12 Years Old

For a cut above, the Double Cask Macallan 12 Years Old is a perfectly balanced, fully rounded single malt Scotch whisky. It has warm hints of honey, citrus and ginger and the unmissable sweetness of American oak. Notes of creamy butterscotch, toffee apple, candied orange, vanilla custard, raisins, caramel and the scent of fresh oak will certainly put you in the mood for the festive season.


40mL Double Cask Macallan 12 Years Old
15mL Amontillado sherry
5mL maple syrup
Pinch of smoked salt
Stir as you would an Old Fashioned and savour over a slow-melting ice ball.

The Macallan Double Cask Macallan 12 Years Old Special Edition, which is gift-boxed, is priced at A$115.

A nip of the Macallan Lalique 55 Year Old Single Malt Whisky in the form of an Old Fashioned comes complete with a view at Dubai’s Skyview Bar for US$4,000 (A$5,800). Served over ice made of the very water that flows through the Macallan distillery, it’s poured into an 18-karat gold goblet (which you get to keep). This take on the Old Fashioned is combined with dried fruit bitters and a house-made passionfruit sugar, mixed with a custom stirrer carved from a Macallan oak cask.

While you’re there at the Skyview Bar in Dubai, you could also order ‘The Birth of an Icon’. Made with St Lucia Distillers Nine Cask rum, fresh lime juice and sprinkled with gold dust made of dehydrated Cointreau, it’s a daiquiri-like cocktail that goes for a cool AED15,000 (A$6,000) a glass.

Disaronno wears Diesel

With a recipe that’s remained unchanged since 1523 – which surprisingly doesn’t contain a single almond – this favourite Italian amaretto-style liqueur has been released as a limited edition with streetwear brand Diesel as part of the Disaronno Icon project.

Disaronno wears Diesel supports the OTB Foundation, Diesel’s parent company’s philanthropic arm. It’s collaborated with other leading Italian designer labels in 2019 including Trussardi, Missoni, ETRO, Cavalli, Versace and Moschino, with the motto “Brave Actions for a Better World” and is involved in social initiatives around sustainability, innovation and social impact.

Centred around a sweet almond flavour, Disaronno is a perfect base for mixing into an easy-drinking party cocktail. It’s refreshing with soda water and fresh lemon juice or satisfying over ice with whisky and orange.

Disaronno wears Diesel Cocktail

50mL Disaronno
20mL Jamaican rum
30mL lime juice
20mL passionfruit syrup
Crushed mint leaves
Crushed ice
Shake and pour over crushed ice in a highball, and garnish with a mint sprig and a fresh raspberry.

A 700mL bottle of Disaronno is priced at A$40.

In Mayfair in London, Gigi’s serves up what is claimed to be “the world’s most expensive cocktail” at EUR8,888 (around A$14,400). It may not be the most expensive in the world, but it’s certainly up there. The restaurant originally created the cocktail for Jamaican–American model, singer, songwriter and actress Grace Jones. It contains 1990 vintage Cristal and 1888 Samalens Vieille Relique Vintage Bas Armagnac and is laced with edible gold leaf.

Bruichladdich The Classic Laddie

“Smooth as pebbles in a pool” and “clean, fresh and lively” – so say the makers of Bruichladdich The Classic Laddie, an unpeated single malt Scotch whisky grown, distilled, matured and bottled on the isle of Islay.

Made using 100% Scottish barley, it’s matured along the shores of Loch Indaal in premium American oak. All-natural and free from colouring, it’s slowly trickle-distilled using original Victorian machinery. It’s not chill-filtered either, so as not to strip the natural oils and esters that give Bruichladdich its rich mouthfeel.

Floral, complex and clean, the oak and the grain are in perfect harmony. With hints of barley sugar and mint, and notes of freshly cut wildflowers, it offers a clean and relaxed palate that will transport you to the Scottish Highlands – an ideal tipple for kicking back on lazy holidays.

Enjoy it neat in a dram glass or try mixed into a refreshing cocktail with soda, lemon and maple.

Bruichladdich Laddie Collins

50mL Bruichladdich The Classic Laddie Whisky
20mL lemon juice
15mL maple syrup
120mL soda water
Slice of lemon
Shake ingredients (except soda water) in a cocktail shaker with ice. Pour into a highball, top with soda water and garnish with a slice of lemon.

A Bruichladdich The Classic Laddie giftbox with two dram glasses is priced at A$105.

The Dorsey inside the Venetian in Las Vegas serves up ‘Forbidden Love’ with rare 21-year-old Japanese Suntory Hibiki whisky. It’s US$2,000 a pop for this luxe whisky concoction mixed with plum liqueur, manzanilla sherry and a matcha green tea tincture. It’s served with gold flakes and a side of caviar, naturally.

At XS Nightclub in Las Vegas, there’s the US$10,000 (A$14,600) ‘Ono’ cocktail, made with Rémy Martin Louis XVIII Black Pearl and Charles Heidsieck Champagne. It comes with an 18-karat white gold, diamond and Tahitian black pearl necklace, a set of 18-karat gold Mont Blanc cufflinks and 20 sparkler-carrying servers to bring your drink to the table. Excess? Only in Vegas.

House of Suntory’s HAKU Vodka

In Japanese, the name HAKU means ‘white’, which is fitting since Suntory’s vodka is made from 100% Japanese white rice. It’s crystal-clear and smooth, filtered through bamboo charcoal, which leaves a lightly sweet flavour. Clean, soft and rounded, Suntory’s HAKU Vodka is best enjoyed neat or on the rocks, or simply with soda and lemon or lime, if not in a martini.


30mL HAKU vodka
120mL soda water
Lime or lemon peel
Add HAKU vodka to a chilled highball glass, top with soda and garnish with a twist of lime or lemon peel.

A bottle of House of Suntory’s HAKU Vodka is A$55.

If you really want to splash out, the Ritz-Carlton in Tokyo is where you can order a ‘Diamond Is Forever’ martini, with a live band playing Diamond Is Forever as the drink is served. Priced at JPY1.8 million (about A$24,000) it’s not for an everyday occasion, but possibly perfect for popping the question. Just don’t swallow the diamond.

Or, if you’re in New York, the Blue Bar at the Algonquin Hotel has a ‘Martini on the Rock’ on the menu, boasting the most expensive cocktail in all of New York City. Starting at US$10,000 (about A$14,600), it comes with a prior consultation with a jeweller to pick the perfect jewel to add to the drink. You can even get the bar to organise a secret photographer to capture the special moment as the cocktail is served, and they’ll play your favourite song.

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