Evelyn Chick & 1841 – one of Heering´s 200 years

Words by: Jenny Adams

This talented bartender opens up about her youngest introduction to the beauty of drink design and the challenge of honoring Cherry Heering’s Bicentennial in 2018

What’s in a year? So many memories on a personal level. But in some years, there is catastrophic change, be it good or bad. Cherry Heering is set to celebrate 200 in business in 2018. It’s a milestone the brand will mark by contacting the most illustrious bartenders around the globe, giving each the option to take one year and divulge what it means in terms of not only drink culture but of global humanity.

Hong-Kong-born Evelyn Chick works today in Toronto, at the acclaimed bar PrettyUgly on Queen Street. Petite, known for a love of and a skill with gin tipples and a famously warm smile, she was a natural choice for Cherry Herring in the endeavor. Her year of choice was 1841––and there’s a lot to be said for the moments within.

The year of 1841 was a big one globally. In New York City, America’s first steam-powered fire truck engine was tested. New Zealand was proclaimed an independent colony from New South Wales, and Queens University in Ontario, Canada got its charter.

However, for Asia, the years leading up to 1841were times of upheaval, war, a drug crisis and a trade imbalance.

To fully understand this time, you have to look back to the 1700s and early 1800s.  Europe was experiencing a period of high demand for Chinese imports––particularly tea, porcelain and silk. The Chinese were rapidly seeking silver, imported from Europe.

However, for the British importing this silver, the sales were restricted by law to the southern port of Canton, and this was creating tension.

To evade these regulations, traders in the British East India Company began auctioning opium to independent traders in exchange for the English silver. The drugs then made their way up the coastline and into central China. It would create not only a rise in opium addiction around this region, but also a serious trade imbalance. This would all come to a climax in 1839, known as the First Opium War. It lasted from 1839 to 1842.

It was in 1841 that China ceded the island of Hong Kong to the British, officially signing the Treaty of Nanking in ‘42. The island and its inhabitants became a Crown Colony of the British Empire. It would remain under Great Britain until 1997.

“Though the history that led to this event was a blood bath from the Opium War, the influx of European immigrants allowed this tiny military staging point grow to a culturally rich, international city of 7.3 million in population,” offers Evelyn Chick, who grew up in Hong Kong until the age of 15 and wanted this pivotal year of 1841 in order to inspire and craft her cocktail––the Bad Blood.

She formulated a beautiful a mix of Laphroaig Select Scotch, LBV Port, a half-ounce of Cherry Heering and three-quarters ounce of Spanish sweet vermouth.

“The Bad Blood cocktail signifies the gleam of hope and growth coming from a seemingly devastating event,” she says. It’s a slight play on the famous Blood & Sand, without the citrus. The Port adds the drink’s necessary acidity.

Known for her simple executions of complex flavors in a glass, Chick works to adapt her menus to the palates of her guests, whether it’s at the bar at PrettyUgly or at her own home entertaining. In fact, her fascination with drink design began at a very early age, in her childhood, Hong Kong home. She often joined her parents when they hosted business meetings, serving up, Chick recalls, an array of beautiful wines, Martinis, Port and Scotch whisky.

“I wanted to be involved, and was constantly finding ways to ‘host’ my father’s foreign business partners,” she laughs, “by shaking up zero-proof cocktails at home. Hence, I took interest upon spirits and wine at a young age.”

Cherry Heering was among these early introductions, if in name alone. “I remember the fascination towards the Singapore Sling, and the economic status it carried if you knew how to order it at a bar,” she recalls. An early admiration would lead to a significant moment for Chick in Asia, as her career blossomed.

“A few years back, I had the privilege of being the first-ever guest bartender at the Long Bar in the famed Raffles Hotel in Singapore during the inaugural Singapore Cocktail Week,” she says. “It was incredible to watch the volume of Singapore Slings that went out from that bar to serve guests from all over the world. I made a menu surrounding Cherry Heering and had the pleasure to make a few Singapore Slings using the original recipe in its home bar. It was a bucket list experience.”

 Bad Blood 

1 oz Laphroaig Select

0.5 oz LBV Port

0.5 oz Cherry Heering

0.75 oz Spanish Sweet Vermouth

Pour ingredients over one large cube in an Old Fashioned glass, stir to dilute and zest an orange peel over top to release oils.

Garnish with an Orange peel


Harland: The Singapore Sling on sunstar.com


ALTHOUGH I’m a frequent visitor to Singapore, until now I’d never tasted a Singapore Sling. Given that this legendary cocktail – arguably the national drink of Singapore – celebrated its 100th anniversary last year, I decided it was high time to try one.

Fortunately, there’s a Raffles Hotel not far for my Makati home so I popped into the hotel’s Long Bar last week to find out more about this iconic cocktail.
It was created in 1915 at the original Raffles Hotel in colonial Singapore by Hainanese bartender Ngiam Tong Boon.
At the time it was considered bad form for women to consume alcohol in public. So Mr. Ngiam set about making a cocktail disguised as a fruit juice so the ladies could enjoy an alcoholic drink without fear of being branded unladylike. His concoction was the colorful Singapore Sling.
It quickly became a hit with the ladies and its fame soon spread to other countries. Today, the Singapore Sling is a standard classic on cocktail menus around the world.
Over the years, there have been a number of recipes for the Singapore Sling, but it’s believed one of several “original” recipes was mixing two measures of gin with one of cherry brandy and one of orange, pineapple, and lime juice.
According to senior bartender at Raffles Makati, Dennis Kantong, all Raffles Hotels and Resorts around the world, use the classic Singapore Sling recipe. It’s quite a list – Tanqueray gin, DOM Benedictine, Cherry Heering, Cointreau, Grenadine, Angastora bitters, lemon juice, pineapple juice, and garnished with a slice of pineapple.
There is certainly an art to making cocktails which Dennis, a 15-year veteran of Raffles Hotels, so aptly demonstrated. A series of quick pours, a steady hand, and intense concentration. Everything into a shaker with ice, a few firm shakes, and there was my very first Singapore Sling.
The verdict? Delicious, but potent!
Then it was the turn of fellow bartender Karlo Ramos to show off his expertise and demo the hotel’s rather special version of the Singapore Sling – the Makati Luxury Sling.
It’s an unusual blend of Tanqueray Ten, Grand Marnier, DOM Benedictine, and fresh lemon. It’s topped with local pineapple juice with Angostura and cherry blossom syrup. As a final touch of luxury, 24K gold flakes are sprinkled on the cocktail.
In no time at all Karlo had this unique concoction ready and “smiling” with just the gold flakes to add to complete the job. A rather extravagant drink, but delicious.
To commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Singapore Sling, Raffles Hotels & Resorts have joined forces with leading bespoke gin maker, Sipsmith, to produce “Raffles 1915 Gin.”
Handcrafted at the Sipsmith Distillery in London for Raffles, the recipe is a balance of Malaysian botanicals – jasmine flowers, fresh pomelo peel, lemongrass, Kaffir lime leaf, nutmeg and cardamom – distilled alongside some of the classic gin botanicals found in the award-winning Sipsmith London Dry Gin.
Served exclusively at Raffles Hotels & Resorts’ bars and lounges worldwide, the Raffles 1915 Gin will now be used in the creation of Singapore Slings, including special versions of the Sling that have been fashioned to be unique to each location.

2015 Heering Sling Award Refines the Singapore Sling on BarBizmag.com

The Peter F. Heering Sling Award 2015 refines the Singapore Sling and raises money to save the world’s wild cats.

To celebrate Singapore Sling’s 100th anniversary in 2015, Peter F. Heering invited bartenders all over the world to create exciting versions of the legendary Singapore Sling while adding a charity twist—Here’s to the Tiger—to the mix. The objective was to raise money for charitable organization Panthera in order to save the world’s tigers.

The 2015 Sling Award consists of two parts. In the first stage of the competition, the participating bars were to shake up their best Sling menus. We have now chosen the 20 best Sling menus from over 2,000 entries; these top 20 candidates will represent their countries in the global Sling Award 2015 and be judged by an international expert jury consisting of legends of the cocktail world.

We are proud to announce the names behind the 20 best Sling menus. Here’s to you!

Our international expert jury will now choose the 10 best Sling menus to be presented at the final in NYC the 22nd of September at Julie Reiner and Ivy Mix’s hot new Brooklyn bar Leyenda. The five bartenders who have concocted the best Sling menus will join us to Singapore in October, where we’ll meet up with Panthera’s tiger team and meat the tigers eye to eye. The fabulous five will also have their Sling menus immortalized in the legendary Difford’s guide.

In the second stage of the competition, a charity activation called “Here’s to the Tiger,” bars all over the world were invited to serve Singapore Slings and donate a fixed amount per sling sold to Panthera. The two bars that raised the largest sums for Panthera will each get to send two members of staff to Singapore in October. The four winners will meet members of Panthera’s tiger team and will also get the chance to meet the tigers eye to eye.
Peter F. Heering also has had the unique honor to be purveyor to every royal court worthy of their name while possessing the proper style, class, and breeding to socialize across the courts of the world. HEERING® has always been fashionable. CHEERY HEERING liqueur is sold in more than 100 countries all over the world and is the essential ingredient in the world famous Singapore Sling and Blood and Sand cocktails. For more information about Peter F. Heering, please visit www.heering.com.



What the Heck Is a Sling? Cherry Heering Wants to Help You Learn on huffingtonpost.com

By Tony Sachs

All through September and October I kept hearing about the Peter F. Heering Sling Awards which were taking place in Berlin. I wasn’t particularly interested because, well, it’s one of approximately 12 skadillion cocktail competitions that take place around the globe each year. And besides, I thought, I don’t even really know what a sling is.

Which got me wondering — what the heck is a sling, anyway? My knowledge included exactly three sling-related factoids:

1. The bittered sling was present at the birth of the modern cocktail in the early 1800s — in fact, the very first mention of the word “cocktail” in print, back in 1806, mentioned that it was “vulgarly known as bittered sling.” It was described as a spirit, sugar, water and bitters, which basically made it an Old Fashioned.

2. The Singapore Sling is a yummy cocktail first created at at the Raffles hotel bar in Singapore in the early 20th century. It includes lots of ingredients, at least one of which I never have on hand, so I don’t make it at home.

3. Modern slings include Cherry Heering.

Well, I was right about #1, at least. Nobody quite knows what the real, proper, original Singapore Sling recipe was. And in fact the early Singapore Slings may not have even included Cherry Heering, although today it’s a virtually essential ingredient.

At this point you may be asking, what the heck is Cherry Heering? Well, first off, it’s not a fruit-flavored fish. It’s actually a cherry brandy from Denmark that’s been around since 1818. It makes a delicious after-dinner liqueur, but more importantly it’s used in the Singapore Sling and the Scotch whisky-based Blood & Sand, two of the greatest cocktails you may have never made at home, possibly because you don’t have a bottle of Cherry Heering on hand.

The Blood & Sand’s recipe is more or less a constant, but the air of mystery surrounding the Singapore Sling’s “real” recipe gives bartenders, both pro and amateur, a lot of latitude when creating it. Which is why the Peter F. Heering Sling Award competition can exist. Which leads us back to the question, what is a sling? Simon Difford, one of the judges for the semifinal, said, “”The definition of what a Sling actually is was stretched to the breaking point by some competitors in their quest to stand out….” Other judges, like
David Rosengarten, the famed food/wine writer and one of the judges of the contest, admitted to not really knowing the textbook definition of a sling: “I wasn’t sure what had to be included in a sling, besides Cherry Heering, of course [this was the one hard-and-fast rule of the competition]. Gin? Juice? And then [fellow judge and cocktail historian] David Wondrich took us aside and told us, ‘Don’t think of the Singapore Sling as a drink, think of it as a category.’ And then it all made sense.” A HA!

Suitably emboldened, the panel of six judges (plus the invited audience, which also cast votes) tried the five drinks and quickly and unanimously settled on the winner. As Rosengarten put it, “It was pretty obvious to me which one stood out from the rest, and it turned out that the rest of the panel felt the same way.” The triumphant cocktail was the Sloe Sling, created by Denmark’s own Nick Kobbernagel Hovind, which switches out traditional gin and Benedictine for sloe gin (flavored with sloe berries) and aquavit — a nice Nordic touch. The recipe, for all you home bartenders out there:

In a Boston shaker glass combine the following ingredients….

2 cl. Cherry Heering
1.5 cl. Bitter Truth Sloe gin
4 cl. Aalborg Taffel Aquavit
3 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
3 cl. Fresh lemon juice
1 cl. Simple Syrup
1 small dash egg white

Shake all ingredients hard for 8 seconds. Double strain into a very chilled Palais glass. Top with 3 cl. soda and stir. Garnish.

(In case you’re wondering, 3 cl. is about 1 ounce.)

Does that explain what a sling is? Not really? Perhaps the best idea is to fix up a sling of your own and stop worrying about it. Here’s a Singapore Sling recipe from Gary (gaz) Regan’s indispensable tome, The Joy Of Mixology. Don’t be afraid to muck about with it — switching out ratios, base spirits, citrus, you name it (I recently made one using Basil Hayden’s bourbon in place of gin). After all, the Singapore Sling isn’t just a cocktail, it’s a category. Get it now?

Gaz Regan’s Singapore Sling recipe:

2 oz. London dry gin (gaz recommends Beefeater)
1/2 oz. Cherry Heering
1/4 oz. Benedictine
1/2 oz. triple sec
2 oz. pineapple juice
3/4 oz. fresh lime juice
Angostura bitters to taste
Club soda

Shake everything except the club soda, and strain into an ice-filled Collins glass. Top with club soda.



by David on OCTOBER 7, 2014

It is early evening in Berlin. I arrived in Germany this morning from New York on a mission: to find the world’s reigning mixology genius when it comes to the Singapore Sling. And by mid-evening New York time, the world will know!

I have been at the annual Berlin Bar Show all day, “warming up” my palate. It is an extraordinary collection of bar products from all over the world: drinks, mixers, bar accessories, etc. But the highlight of my day was the 3:30 PM talk that paved the way for tonight’s Singapore Sling contest, which is sponsored by Peter Heering, the Danish company that since 1818 has been producing Heering Cherry Liqueur, an essential ingredient of the Singapore Sling.

The 3:30 talk was given by David Wondrich, the rock star of all contemporary mixology rock stars. He presented a compelling history of the Singapore Sling, finding its roots in old English “punches,” then on to American “slings” of the19th century, then on to the variations devised in Singapore in the early 1900s which became known as the Singapore Sling.

Wondrich’s thesis was a wonderful set-up for tonight’s contest. He told us that gin and cherry liqueur are the two absolutes of a Singapore Sling…but went on to point out that because there is such variety in Singapore Slings, it is “really a class of drinks rather than one drink.”

Perfect. Because here’s what the Peter Heering company did in advance of tonight’s contest: they spent the year looking for brilliant new Singapore Slings that fit within the “class.” Their international panel considered over 1000 drinks, devised by leading mixologists from 44 countries. Then they selected the top five Singapore Slings…and brought all of the creators to Berlin today, so they could sling ‘em at a panel of judges tonight. I am proud to be one of those judges…and I am confident that by 7PM EST tonight, we will have found the best damn Singapore Sling in the world today. Make that the universe.

Here are the five contestants, where they’re from, and the Sling variant each one has created:

Aron Christian Manzanillo
Fables of the East

Taoufike Zafri
The Bittered Sling

John Kraus
New York City
Pepito’s Slingshot

Sigrid Sarv
O’ Polo Sling

Nick Kobbernagel Hovind
The Sloe Sling

Singapore Sling on Eurowoman.dk

By Emily 29.10.13

When in Rome… Så selvklart måtte vi forbi Raffles Hotel at prøve deres verdensberømte Singapore Sling, der blev kreeret på selvsamme hotel af den legendariske bartender Mr. Ngiam Tong Boon i 1915 i The Long Bar, hvor den stadig serveres. Og det i ganske betydelige mængder. Der bliver nemlig langet op mod 1000 slings over disken hver dag. Og dem har de helt styr på. Det er i alle tilfælde den bedste Singapore Sling, jeg nogensinde har smagt. Måske atmosfæren også hjalp på oplevelsen, historiens vingesus var allestedsnærværende og jeg følte mig hensat til starten af det forrige århundrede.

Den forfriskende og eksotiske drink er i øvrigt baseret på den danske kirsebærlikør, Cherry Heering. Og man må (nærmest skal) smide skallerne fra de jordnødder, der står på bordene på gulvet. Og så skal jeg nok også stoppe med facts om drinks for denne gang og med en varm anbefaling af både Raffles og deres slings og sliders, hvis I skulle lægge vejen forbi Singapore.

The Raffles Hotel, 1 Beach Road, Singapore, 189673

ENGLISH RECAP: When in Rome… So of course we had to drink Singapore Slings at The Raffles Hotel where the legendary drink was created in 1915. And they still had the hang of it and I enjoyed the best sling I’ve ever tasted. And some lovely snacks.

Singapore Slings, trishaws, and other adventures during city tour on depts.washington.edu/tmmba.com

…The weather decided not to cooperate with us and we got caught up in a big rainstorm, so we made some last-minute adjustments to our tour and headed up to the Jewel Box lookout at Mount Faber for a great view of the city. The skyline really is impressive. We followed that stop with a visit to the famed Long Bar at the Raffles Hotel where the Singapore Sling was invented (Singapore Sling = Gin, Cherry Heering, Bénédictine, and fresh pineapple juice). We all enjoyed one (and in some cases a couple) of the yummy drinks until the rain stopped. After the Long Bar we proceeded outside for a trishaw (rickshaw) ride through the Arab Quarter and Little India areas of Singapore, both representative of the mixed population of Singapore….

Heering on chickenangel.com

Kelsey’s not going to comment on this one
I wanted to make something with the Cherry Heering (mostly because I just really like saying “Cherry Heering” because of the way it makes me want to say “Cherry Herring” which makes me think of swedish fish, which, really, taste-wise, is not far off) and I found recipes for Singapore Slings and variations of, from which I concocted my own devious cocktail.
And when I say “devious”, I obviously mean “grossly sweet and girly”. I didn’t mean for it to be so. But I guess you can’t have Cherry Heering, Benedictine and St. Germain together without getting something, you know, sweet.
So here it is. A drink we may never try again. It’s not bad, really, just wussy.
1 1/2 oz Junipero gin
1/2 oz Cherry Heering
1/4 oz Benedictine
1/4 oz St. Germain
1/4 oz lime juice
dash(es) Angostura bitters
Shake gently with ice, strain into glass and top with soda water.

Heering at plasticsurgeryclass.com

Top 5 Girly Cocktails Of All Time
….Three: Singapore Sling
While working at the Raffle Hotel in Singapore, Ngiam Tong Boon created a masterpiece. He poured Gin, Heering Cherry Liqueur, Cherry Brandy, Cointrueau, Dom Benedictine and Grenadine and the Singapore Sling was born. Throughout history, bars and nightclubs everywhere have sold the famous drink and the hotel where the drink started its life has become somewhat of an icon. The original recipe can still be found in the hotel bar. Bar staff still serve Singapore Slings in the same way [tall], but it’s not mixed in the traditional method. Today they are premixed and dispensed using an automatic dispenser to combine the alcohol and the pineapple together more evenly and faster.

The Singapore Sling´s own facebook page

Singapore Sling


The Singapore Sling is a cocktail that was developed by Ngiam Tong Boon (嚴崇文), a bartender working at the Long Bar in Raffles Hotel Singapore before 1915. Recipes published in articles about Raffles Hotel prior to the 1970s are significantly different from current recipes, and “Singapore Slings” drunk elsewhere in Singapore differ from the recipe used at Raffles Hotel. The original recipe used gin, Cherry Heering, Bénédictine, and most important, fresh pineapple juice, primarily from Sarawak pineapples which enhance the flavour and create a foamy top. Most recipes substitute bottled pineapple juice for fresh juice; soda water has to be added for foam. The hotel’s recipe was recreated based on the memories of former bartenders and written notes that they were able to discover regarding the original recipe. One of the scribbled recipes is still on display at the Raffles Hotel Museum.

The current Raffles Hotel recipe is a heavily modified version of the original, most likely changed sometime in the 1970s by Ngiam Tong Boon’s nephew. Today, many of the “Singapore Slings” served at Raffles Hotel have been pre-mixed and are dispensed using an automatic dispenser that combines both alcohol and pineapple juice to pre-set volumes. They are then blended instead of shaken to create a nice foamy top as well as to save time because of the large number of orders. However, it is still possible to to request a shaken version from bartenders.

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