Text Kevin Yeoh
In a quest for the ultimate blend, Chivas Regal created Chivas Studio, a lavish event which fuses design, fashion, art, music, gastronomy and mixology. Already held in New York, Miami, Madrid and Barcelona, in September 2008, the Studio touched down in Asia, and whadayaknow JUICE was invited.
After a four hours flight to sunny Hong Kong and a quick check in at the swanky Sheraton Kowloon we arrived at the 5-star pier front Watermark Restaurant. Transformed into a creative-luxury lounge and ultra-glamorous cocktail party that would span 3 nights, we entered on night one to be dispatched with cocktails prepared by Chivas Global Mixologist Max Warner from behind the spectacular Chivas Fireworks Design Bar, specially created by British-born, Hong Kong-based designer, Michael Young. Great start!
There was plenty to see and with a choice of drinks – the Chivas Lotus Martini, Chivas Cloud, Chivas Royale or Chivas served with a single big ice ball – we perused Chinese fashion photographer, Wing Shya’s first solo art photography exhibition Prevation: a Manga Story and his latest series of cinematic style photographic narrative, In Search Of… created exclusively for Chivas Studio. Other exhibits included Young’s Chivas 18 YO Shanghai Tang Luxury Barrel Bar Trunk, New York architect Evan Douglis’ limited edition Chivas 12 YO Gift Tin and Alexander McQueen’s limited edition Chivas 18YO Bottle Jewel. Flossy.
DJ and street artist Ge-ology, famous for his mural paintings and street art realisations, blended fashion and art in a live spray painting performance using a model and white gown as canvas. The hard working jock then dished out party jams as dancers took to the floor and VJ Maotik from France created the accompanying visual soundtrack.
Still it was Pharoahe Monch that we were all hot and sticky for. The respected emcee went on stage and practically tore the roof off with his presence, even going so far as to stir up a little speech on the US politics and perform the in-your-face single ‘F*ck You’. The invited beautiful people and who’s who of the industry lapped it up but the bossanova tunage that followed was a bit of a downer from the high that the NY artist had built.
Day two was strictly for VIPs so again JUICE found its was onto the guest list. Chef Pascal had created a Chivas 18 Gastronomy Dinner – yes, 18-courses, albeit presented platter-style. Selecting ingredients inspired by the rich smooth taste notes of Chivas 18 year old whisky, we washed down tasty morsels like Braised Anjou pigeon glazed with Chivas sauce, Chivas oak barrel-smoked trout, and Chivas jelly flavoured with vanilla beans and sprinkled gold leaf with yet more Chivas cocktails. Yum!
With much the same agenda as before, the party continued, this time with Hong Kong heartthrob Justin Lo serving it up solo as well with DJ Ge-ology, and more local faces in the crowd meant it was just bananas as they went completely ape over him. By the time the third night, which was open to the public, pulled around it was JUICE‘s cue to head home. Chivas Studio proved a sumptuous treat for whisky lovers to experience the fusion of superb taste with art, music and fashion, so watch out for Chivas Studio to hit Malaysia next year.
The first ever Chivas Studio in Asia was launched on September 4 at Watermark, Central Pier 7, Top Level, Star Ferry in Hong Kong. Thanks to Pernod Ricard and Chivas Brothers for taking JUICEalong for the ride. Click on www.chivasstudioevents.com for more Chivas goodness.