Hospitality Business Magazine

Winning combination at Augustus


Dr Bill Lumsden

Augustus, the elegantly regal and demure new French restaurant residing in Auckland’s 100 year old Ponsonby Post Office, played host to the official New Zealand launch of a new offering from the Scottish Glenmorangie whisky empire – Bacalta.

In Auckland for just 48 hours, Glenmorangie’s Director of Distilling, Whisky Creation and Whisky Stocks, Dr Bill Lumsden discussed the virtues and challenges associated with distilling Single Malt Whisky.  Holding a PhD in Biochemistry, he combines his talent for both art and science and is renowned for his ground-breaking wood management techniques, experimentation with exceptional casks at various ages, and utilisation of extra maturation to deliver outstanding whiskies.

He is the only person to have been honoured three times with The Malt Advocate ‘Industry Leader of the Year’ Award in 2001, 2006 and 2008. More recently he was named Master Distiller/Master Blender of the Year at Whisky Magazine’s Icons of Whisky 2016 awards and also 2016 Master Distiller of the Year award by the International Whisky Competition.

Matching these qualifications with an equally fine array of delicious food was the challenge of Augustus Chef, Des Harris who rose to the occasion. Attendees were treated to an entre of Sea Run Salmon, nectarine, vanilla and lemon emulsion, followed by a main course of Duck Comfit a l’Orange with mint, almond & date, and rounded off with a Vairhona souflee Tart, stem ginger, cinnamon & malt ice cream.

The ambiance of Augustus, the result of the vision of restaurateur Chris Rupe, combined with the skills of the chef, and the visiting professor with the knack of knowing what makes a good whisky, provided a stella launch for the Bacalta in New Zealand before Dr Lumsden headed for Sydney.