Erik Nilsson

JÖNKÖPING, SWEDEN

“I decided to work with a friend that picks plants on and around his farm and then creates liquors and syrups from them.”


– Erik Nilsson

Where are you working? What’s your bar like?
I work at a bar called Den Småländska Kolonin (The Småländska Colony) in a town in the southern part of Sweden called Jönköping. It is a fine dining restaurant that serves tasting menus. We have a cocktail bar there as well, where we serve our own customers as well as create drinks that are served with the tasting menus for the guests that are eating.

Tell me about your experience, what have you done before?
I have worked as a bartender for seven years now. I have experiences from many places around Europe and Sweden. I am also currently studying International Management in Jönköping University, Sweden.

Den Småländska kolonin (The Småländska Colony), in Jönköping.

Den Småländska kolonin (The Småländska Colony), in Jönköping.

Why did you decide to become a bartender?
From the very beginning it just seemed like something that would be fun to do for a while. Then I realized that I have a lot of passion for the profession and the industry. That is why I kept working and became really good at it.

Do you have a mentor in the Industry, an inspiration, or someone you would like to thank?
I would like to thank two people that mentored me during my early years, and that is my first bar manager Erik Samuelsson and my old co-worker and close friend Alexander Falkholt. I also want to thank my beloved girlfriend Jessica Nilsson for all the help and support she has given me throughout the years.

Tell me about the inspiration behind the cocktail you created for Jameson Barrelmen’s Homecoming?
My inspiration for my cocktail was to combine the best of what my part of Sweden has with best of what Ireland has. I live in a small county with a lot of nature and forests so it was obvious for me to use the flavors that grow around me.

Where did you find the ingredients?
I decided to work with a friend that picks plants on and around his farm and then creates liquors and syrups from them. Flavors such as Meadowsweet and Japonica was used from him. I also picked the gooseberries that I used myself from surrounding areas.

Are there any producers you would like to highlight?
The friend that I worked with, and his name is Jiri Holasek. His company is Jonas Broncks Spirits.

If I visit your city, what should I see/eat/drink?
Obviously you have to come to Den Småländska Kolonin and try our amazing tasting menu and experience the local flavors of Småland (the county where I live).

What is your best JBH 2019 memory?
It is not possible to choose only one. It is one of the greatest experiences of my life so far. All the amazing people I had the chance to meet. Of course, being able to finish 2nd was really great. The feeling I had after the speed competition where I was the only one who managed to make every cocktail within the set time was unbelievable. All in all, it was amazing!

What is the next city you would like to visit?
I still have not been to New York, so that has to be the next trip on my bucket list.

The Recipe

Sir James Goose

Erik Nilsson's cocktail entry in the Jameson Mix Master competition
  • 40 ml Jameson Caskmates IPA
  • 10 ml Jonas Broncks Älgörtlikör (Meadowsweet)
  • 25 ml Gooseberry syrup
  • 10 ml Jonas Broncks Rosenkvitten juice (Japonica)
  • 2 dashes Jameson Wild Sloe Berry Bitters
  • Garnish: metal skewer, green gooseberries
  • Make the gooseberry syrup as described below.
  • Combine all ingredients in a shaker.
  • Shake with big ice cubes.
  • Double strain into a coupe class, and garnish with green gooseberries on a metal skewer.

Ingredients

  • 40 ml Jameson Caskmates IPA
  • 10 ml Jonas Broncks Älgörtlikör (Meadowsweet)
  • 25 ml Gooseberry syrup
  • 10 ml Jonas Broncks Rosenkvitten juice (Japonica)
  • 2 dashes Jameson Wild Sloe Berry Bitters
  • Garnish: metal skewer, green gooseberries

How To Make

  • Make the gooseberry syrup as described below.
  • Combine all ingredients in a shaker.
  • Shake with big ice cubes.
  • Double strain into a coupe class, and garnish with green gooseberries on a metal skewer.

Homemade Gooseberry Syrup: Boil 2 l water, 2 l white sugar, 1 kg gooseberries. Let it rest for 24h, strain of the berries and refrigerate)

“Two very unfamiliar sets of ingredients that works surprisingly well when combined, and leaves you craving for more.”


– Erik Nilsson

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