Four Seasons Tenure
- Since 2007
- First Four Seasons Assignment: Banquet Server, Four Seasons Hotel Mumbai
- Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giravaaru; Regent Singapore, A Four Seasons Hotel; Four Seasons Hotel Mumbai
- Palampur, India
- Bachelor degree, Hospitality and Hotel Administration, Institute of Hotel Management & Catering, Indira Gandhi National Open University, New Delhi
- English, Hindi, and Punjabi
“Every cocktail should tell a story,” says Ashish Sharma, the award-winning Head Bartender of Bar Trigona at Four Seasons Hotel Kuala Lumpur, whose hyper-local sensibility and carefully crafted menu has made the bar a firm favourite among cocktail connoisseurs in the city.
Along with a wealth of technical know-how, Ashish brings a vibrant, playful twist to the table. “For me, it’s important to infuse the original art of mixology with unique local elements – that’s how I connect guests to the destination. Add a touch of surprise to the mix, and you’ve got yourself a great cocktail,” he explains, eyes sparkling with enthusiasm. It is this bold, creative approach that catapulted Bar Trigona to fame in its debut year, landing it a coveted spot among Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2019.
Ashish’s quest for story-infused cocktails has taken him everywhere from small, tucked-away farms to premium spirit collections. Here in Malaysia, he found the perfect muse – a rare, wild honey made by indigenous bees. Trigona honey (which happens to be the inspiration behind Bar Trigona’s name) boasts distinctive sweet and sour notes that captivate the palate. Sourced from a sustainable farm in small batches, this ingredient makes an appearance in some of Ashish’s most beloved concoctions.
The trailblazing cocktail list at Bar Trigona features an array of other locally grown ingredients, taking patrons on a fabulous journey through Malaysia’s rich flora and fauna. As Ashish notes with visible pride, “You won’t find our drinks on any other menu in the world.” With his root-to-shoot motto at work, the bartending team tries to find a use for every single part of the ingredient, thus minimising wastage.
Shaking things up in the best possible way has been Ashish’s specialty ever since he discovered a passion for artisanal spirits and cocktails at Four Seasons Hotel Mumbai in 2007, launching his pursuit of the perfect cocktail with Four Seasons. Now, more than a decade later, Ashish has attained star status in Asia’s glittering beverage circles, with numerous accolades under his belt – or, shall we say, in his cocktail shaker? In Mumbai, his upgraded menu and house-made specialties led the Hotel’s beverage program into the elite ranks of Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2017, while in Singapore, he brought his mixing skills to the renowned Manhattan Bar.
The winning trend continues at Four Seasons Hotel Kuala Lumpur. Under Ashish’s capable leadership, Bar Trigona won multiple awards within just a year of opening its doors, including the Ketel One Sustainable Bar Award at Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2019 and Best New Cocktail Bar in Asia-Pacific at the Spirited Awards by Tales of the Cocktail Foundation.
Ashish’s passion for great drinks doesn’t stop behind the bar. This mixology maestro is now cultivating a new movement among KL’s cocktail aficionados, with initiatives like the Bar Trigona Foraging Club. Members can explore farm-to-glass possibilities through private trips to Kuala Lumpur’s sprawling countryside, with hands-on experience in foraging home-grown ingredients and designing new recipes.
“As a head bartender, I feel a strong responsibility to stay true to the original art of cocktail-making, while still delivering unique, unexpected drinks that incorporate sustainable, local ingredients,” notes Ashish.