Hello and welcome to my website.
After successful careers in Optometry, Human Resource Management and IT Project Management, I founded Gourmantic in 2009, Cocktails & Bars in 2015 and The Gourmantic Garden in 2020.
I created this website in February 2023 to showcase highlights of my career since I started online publishing in 2009. On these pages, you’ll find key information and achievements that span all my websites and beyond which include my appearances in the media (television, radio, print), speaking engagements, awards and bar industry accomplishments.
During the early years, I wrote extensively about travel, food, drink, the Sydney dining scene and bars. In 2010, I was first prize winner in the global Grantourismo Travel Writing Competition. I was a contributing writer to the Citibank Dining website throughout 2014 and photographer for Diageo’s World Class 50 Definitive Drinking Guide featuring the two consecutive winners of World Class Australia competition. I have also contributed articles for Executive Style, Trains on the Brain, The Urban Grocer and Uptake Travel Gems websites.
I am featured in an article in the Sydney Morning Herald, “Speak: not so easy” on the Glenmorangie Secret Society Dinner. Four months after launching Cocktails & Bars website, my article, Top 10 Cocktail Trends of 2015 was published in Executive Style by Fairfax media. I was named in the biannual Australian Bartender Magazine Top 100 Most Influential List and nominated in the Icons of Whisky Australia awards in 2020. I contributed an all-Australian cocktail recipe for Dulcie’s Kings Cross cocktail bar as part of their Martinis Between Friends cocktail list. In 2022, Cocktails & Bars was declared the winner of Best Supporting Media in the Whisky Live Exhibitor Awards.
Some of the highlights of my writing include documenting the emerging Sydney small bar scene and its development over the years. I have been championing Australian spirits since the industry was in its infancy as well as advocating Australian native produce.
My career in the bar industry has afforded me many opportunities of meeting and interviewing global industry luminaries such as Jim McEwan MBE (Bruichladdich & Cape Byron Distillery), Desmond Payne MBE (Beefeater), Jared Brown (Sipsmith Gin), David Stewart MBE (The Balvenie), the late Dr Jim Swan (Kavalan), Colin Scott (Chivas Regal), Dave Broom (Johnnie Walker), Dale DeGroff (DeKuyper), Guillermo Erickson Sauza (Tequila Fortaleza) to name a few. I am an experienced cocktail and spirits competitions judge and you can view the list of cocktail and spirits competitions I have judged over the years.
As well as my writing career in the bar industry, I am a cocktail gardener and I grow a wide range of botanicals including Australian natives which I use in my cocktails. My cocktail garden was featured on ABC TV’s Gardening Australia with host Costa Georgiadis in a segment entitled ‘Botanical Beverages’. Randwick Council awarded me Best Edible Garden and Eco Champion Awards and The Gourmantic Garden was the first place winner in the Grow It Local Awards in the Best Veggie Patch Name category. I’m a guest contributor to Real World Gardener radio program and was featured in Breathe Magazine UK in an article featuring my garden syrups and cocktails.
I live with my partner on Bidjigal and Gadigal land in Sydney, Australia.