Blending Cultures, Crafting Experiences

Shingo Gokan, a celebrated mixologist, creates distinctive cocktails with Toki Suntory Whisky, blending Japanese meticulousness with Indian inspiration, embodying a fusion of cultures in each drink

By Spiritz Desk
New Update
Blending Cultures Crafting Experiences

In the world of mixology, where cultures converge in a glass, Shingo Gokan seamlessly blends traditions to create unforgettable experiences. As the Founder of the SG Group and a globally-renowned mixologist, Shingo's journey has been a testament to his passion for cocktails and his commitment to bridging cultures, says Shalini Kumar.

Originally hailing from Japan, Shingo travelled globally, refining his craft, and sharing his love for mixology along the way. He is recognised as one of the most influential figures in the bartending industry. "My journey began with pouring drinks in 2001, and today, 1 am proud to oversee bars spanning from Tokyo to New York," Shingo informs.

Shingo was always fascinated by India for its rich history and diverse flavours. Here he sought to marry Japanese precision with Indian inspiration. "Partnering with Toki Suntory Whisky felt like a natural fit, as its sweet and spicy blend allowed me to fuse Japanese precision with Indian inspiration," he shares.

A Fusion of Finesse & Flavours

Shingo's connection to Japanese bartending runs deep, influencing his approach to mixology and shaping his creations. He says that Japanese mixology brings a certain finesse and attention to detail that is deeply ingrained in Japanese culture.

"It is about respecting the ingredients and the balance of flavours. This meticulous approach translates into cocktails that are not just drinks but experiences.

In my creations, I strive to embody this ethos by carefully selecting ingredients and techniques that highlight the essence of Japanese bartending," he explains. Giving his perspective about the concept of Toki in Japanese culture and how it influences the creation and enjoyment of Toki Suntory Whisky and cocktails using Toki, he explains that Toki in Japanese culture embodies the concept of time; both fleeting and eternal.

"It is about cherishing the present moment while honouring the past and looking towards the future. This philosophy deeply influences the creation of Toki Suntory Whisky and cocktails made using Toki - each sip is a reminder to savour and appreciate the beauty of the present," he says further.

Shingo Gokan

Bartending Scene

Shingo is happy to witness that India's bartending landscape is experiencing a rapid evolution, fuelled by a growing appreciation for craft cocktails and a burgeoning community of skilled bartenders.

"What excites me most is the passion and creativity I see among these bartenders, which I was able to witness during my masterclass as well- their willingness to experiment with flavours and techniques, and their dedication to elevating the drinking experience," he says.

Talking about the growth of cocktails, he avers that the growing demand for quality cocktails is definitely on the rise, fuelled by a desire for authenticity. 

He believes that brands like Toki Suntory Whisky play a crucial role in meeting this demand by offering premium spirits that elevate the cocktail experience.

"Their commitment to quality and innovation sets the bar high for the industry as a whole," observes the renowned mixologist.

As Shingo Gokan continues to push the boundaries of mixology, his journey becomes a wellspring of inspiration, a living testament to the profound influence cocktails wield in uniting diverse cultures and forging indelible memories.