This category contains 180 posts

Social spy** LA MAISON COINTREAU Introduces COINTREAU NOIR in Australia

Sydney Social 101 was invited to attained the launch of the brand new Cointreau Noir, the party was hosted at Café del Mar which is always a delight and a current personal favourite when it comes to Sydney bars.

The bar was effortlessly transformed into a luxurious and elegant oasis within the Sydney CBD.

With the kitchen delivering culinary delights throughout the evening, with the canapes very well received, in particular the wild mushroom risotto.

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It was great to see one of the Cointreau dynasty at the party for the unveiling of the new drink, followed by a cocktail demonstration.

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All in all it was a great night had by the numerous attendees and I would definitely recommend the delicious new drink with an infusion of Cointreau and Cognac, best served straight

La Maison Cointreau, founded in 1849 and known for Cointreau, the iconic square-bottled orange liqueur, has launched a new variant Cointreau Noir.

Bernadette Langlais, the Cointreau’s master distiller, got inspired by “Majestic”, a premium blend of Cointreau orange liqueur and cognac crafted by Edouard Cointreau in the early 1900s. She then decided to give a rebirth to Majestic, adding her own personal touch to enrich the product experience and create “Cointreau Noir”.

Cointreau Noir is the ultimate blend of Cointreau orange liquor and Fine Champagne Cognac: it is an irresistible marriage of Cointreau’s perfect balance of sweet and bitter orange peels and world’s finest cognac, Rémy Martin. Bernadette Langlais enriched the original recipe by adding macerations of nuts and almonds, bringing even more sophisticated aromas and complexity. A touch of spice, rounded with notes of vanilla, honey and nuts allows for a mellow and deliciously smooth drink with a clean finish.

The perfect balance between a liqueur and a cognac, the spirit appeals to dark spirit connoisseurs and cocktail lovers alike. The symphony of zesty orange liqueur and smooth mellow cognac can be enjoyed neat or in simple long drinks like with cloudy apple and soda. Brand Manager Amanda Scarlett said: “We are proud to launch this magnificent spirit. The blend of Cointreau and Rémy Martin Cognac adds a unique depth and flavour, which can only be created when combined in this exclusive creation by Cointreau’s Master Distiller Bernadette Langlais.”

In the words of Bernadette Langlais: “We have spent the last few years endeavouring to hone the final product and reach the perfection we set out to achieve”.

Cointreau Noir will be available at fine establishments across Australia from 1st April 2014 and retails at RRP $64.99.

Social Spy** Just Desserts – March into Merivale



Last night Sydney Social 101 was invited to Establishment Main Bar last night as it was transformed into a sweet tooth’s heaven for ‘Just Desserts’, a sensational sweet event as part of March into Merivale.


We were greeted with over 400 dessert lovers arrived at the historic bar to enjoy mouth-watering dessert stations from est., Mr. Wong, Ms G’s and Lorraine’s Patisserie, alongside delicious dessert wines and espresso martinis.


Multi-award winning chef Peter Doyle, acclaimed pastry chef Lorraine Godsmark and Ms G’s head chef Paul Donnelly served up tantalising treats including Hazelnut parfait and apricot honey compote; Hot banana, nutella and salted caramel spring roll; strawberry ice cream with jasmine yoghurt and black sesame; and Swiss meringue roll served on banana and passionfruit confit.


It was a great evening, even if you don’t have a sweet tooth!


SOCIAL SPY** Around the World with Eighty Whites

Last week Sydney Social 101 was invited to preview Merivale’s ‘Around the World with Eighty Whites’ – which took guests on a global expedition of white wine discovery at ivy’s The Den on Wednesday night.



Merivale’s Master Sommelier, Franck Moreau, personally selected eighty white and sparkling wines from countries as far and wide as Chile, Austria, France, Greece, Romania and Japan!



Merivale’s sommeliers as well as a host of leading wine importers wore on hand to guide the guests around some of the finest and most unique grapes from around the world.



Executive Chef, Richard Purdue, designed a delicious canapé selection to compliment the range of wines including pea, mint and ricotta arancini, sofa taco with salmon ceviche, chill chicken sliders and of course, an almighty cheese table.


It was a great night and the wine was out of this world! Once again Merivale never fails to deliver!

Social Spy** The other side of the fence…

The other side of the fence… My client Schwarzkopf unveiled its collaboration with international supermodel Claudia Schiffer at Water Bar in Sydney last night!

As you know I get to attend some amazing events through Sydney Social 101, but you might not know that I also work in PR by day! Last night was my turn to work on the event behind the scenes for one of my lovely clients. It was a great event and fantastic to catch up with everyone – it also brought home all the hard work that does go on pre and post event to make it a success!


Guests in attendance included: Kate Peck, Tess Woolcock, Alexa Towery, Bree Robertson, Dr Nikki Goldstein, Simon Hancock, Viola Kumanji. There was also an exclusive set by The Faders and a hidden $3,000 diamond


Blue Hotel was the stunning venue for the launch of Schwarzkopf’s Essence ULTÎME and Blonde ULTÎME – an exclusive collaboration with international supermodel and beauty icon Claudia Schiffer.


The VIP attendees included: VJ & Model- Kate Peck, TV Presenter- Tess Woolcock and Actress- Tessa De Josselin, Socialite- Simon Hancock, Model- Viola Kumanji



Ultime-67-SimonHancock, ViolaKumanji, ThomasPopple


Guests, arrived at the stunning venue across a ‘pearl’ carpet and were treated to an exclusive set by The Faders.



Pommery Champagne provided the sparkle for the evening as the crowd of Sydney VIPs enjoyed a selection of delicious pearl and diamond inspired canapés which included: Lamb Loin & Eggplant Mash with Pomegranate, Apple & Pear Kimchi and mouth watering Chicken Dumplings. Continuing the opulent theme of the evening, the canapés culminated in an exotic desert that consisted of pomegranate panacotta topped with passion fruit and gold flakes.


The evening climaxed as eight gorgeous models, showcasing the new Essence ULTÎME andBlonde ULTÎME range, took centre stage within a Vanity Fair-style vignette. Each girl styled by Lores, illustrated with poise and elegance the stunning collection of colours and care products developed by Schwarzkopf and the iconic Claudia Schiffer.

The Faders provided the soundtrack to the evening with an exclusive set setting the tone for an playful evening.

To mark the conclusion of the show-stopping event, each guest departed with exclusive ULTIME product and a jewelry box, one of which containing a $3,000 diamond provided by Max Diamonds.

The event was in celebration of Schwarzkopf’s brand new ULTIME hair cosmetic range, which features five high-performing lines of hair care products and nine beautiful blonde shades. This salute to the pearl inspired range, combines the insider know-how of one of the world’s most successful supermodels with the hair expertise of Schwarzkopf, the ULTÎME collection pioneers celebrity co-development within the hair cosmetic market.

SOCIAL SPY**The Botanist Kirribilli Turns One!

On Tuesday night Kirribilli’s first small bar and restaurant The Botanist, which is owned by Applejack Hospitality, who is behind successful Sydney restaurants Bondi Hardware and recently opened SoCal Neutral Bay, held a huge birthday party to celebrate turning one year old. Over 200 locals, friends, media and celebrities attended, including Teri Haddy, Demi Harman, Tim Blackwell, Tara Rushton, Nacho Pop, and Scott Gooding, and the event was a lively night of celebration which continued late into the evening! Sydney Social 101 was there to provide a sneak peek into the VIP party!

 The Botanist 1st Birthday - Cocktails

Upon arrival guests were treated to a choice of two cocktails, the Barrington Boutique – made with Ketel One, lime juice, raspberry jam sugar syrup, cranberry juice and a dash rhubarb bitters, and Fothergill Punch – consisting of Pampero Especial, lime juice, orgeat, pineapple juice and a dash of cherry bitters. Charles De Fere French sparkling, wines by Geoff Merrill and Vale Ale & Vale IPA were also served. James Privett, Applejack Group Executive Chef, served guests delicious tasters from the new autumn menu such as the ever popular classic beef sliders, white fish ceviche lettuce cups, broccoli & blue cheese arancini, lamb & harissa sausage rolls and garlic prawn & noodle salad.

BenCarroll, Hamish Wash

BenCarroll, Hamish Wash

The restaurant’s name references illustrious Botanist Gerard Fothergill who travelled the world researching plants, and whose last years of his life were spent running a small bookshop in the very building the restaurant now occupies. The Botanist pays homage to these historical and botanical themes of exploration and discovery, creating food and cocktail menus using abundant offerings of fresh produce, herbs and spices.

Demi Harman & Teri Haddy, The Botanist 1st Birthday, Kirribilli

Demi Harman & Teri Haddy, The Botanist 1st Birthday, Kirribilli


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Sydney’s finest, from Sami Lukis, Tim Davies, Sacha Horler, Matt Day, Laura Csortan, Christian Wilkins, Victoria Hill, Rodger Corser and Lizzi Morrissey to famous faces April Rose Pengilly, Magdalena Roze and Nikki Phillips all gathered today in The Ivy Ballroom for the fourth annual SpinalCure Oscars luncheon. The event gave guests the chance to experience the excitement of the Oscars live while raising money for a good cause in the process. As the magic took place in LA, the stars were on the edge of their seats as they waited to see whether Aussie nominees Catherine Martin and Cate Blanchett would walk away with the movie industry’s top honours.
Hosted by TV personalities  Renee Brack, the event proved to be the perfect place to experience the glamour of Hollywood’s night of nights an ocean away here in Sydney. A TV journalist, pop culture commentator, adventurer and movie buff, Renee Brack is well known to Foxtel audiences having interviewed some of the world’s best known Oscar-winning actors and directors.
 Nikki Phillips, Nicole Byers

Nikki Phillips, Nicole Byers

Guests were treated to Vodka O cocktails on arrival, silent auction prizes, wines from St Hallet and a 3-course lunch that included zucchini blossom with pecorino, grilled salmon fillet and a delicious lamb rump. The event has raised much-needed money to help fund the research to permanently end paralysis caused by spinal cord injury.
Tim Davies, Sami Luki

Tim Davies, Sami Luki

Founded in 1994, SpinalCure has directly raised over $5million for researchers and universities nationally working to develop a permanent cure for paralysis caused by spinal cord injury (SCI). With an Australian paralysed every day by spinal cord injuries* and more than 12,000 people currently living with some form of paralysis, it is an issue that strikes at the heart of many families. The organisation has also assisted with raising more than $80million through the establishment of statewide government neurotrauma road safety funds and is an active participant in the International Campaign to Cure Paralysis (ICCP).
Magdelana Roze

Magdelana Roze

For further information on SpinalCure, visit


Fans get the first taste at Zumbo’s Sydney concept store

Last night Sydney Social 101 was invited to a preview of the brand new Tim Tam range that has been created in conjunction with Adriano Zumbo, Australia’s most celebrated patissier.

Zumbo has teamed up with Arnott’s Tim Tam to create a limited edition range to celebrate Tim Tam’s 50th birthday.

Sydney Social's Editor: Lisa Hollinshead with Adriano Zumbo

Sydney Social’s Editor: Lisa Hollinshead with Adriano Zumbo

Available in stores this March, Adriano Zumbo’s Tim Tam creations include three indulgent new flavours: tantalizing ‘Raspberry White Choc’, seriously addictive ‘Salted Caramel’ and the deliciously decadent ‘Choc Brownie’.

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Zumbo will be offering Sydney-siders an exclusive first taste of his new Tim Tam creations at his concept store at The Star. Taking place on February 19 (4pm – 8pm), Tim Tam and Zumbo lovers alike will be able to sample the new flavours as his dessert train transforms into a Tim Tam train.

The new range is inspired by Zumbo’s unique and whimsical take on desserts and provides a tempting variation to the classic chocolatey varieties.

As an extra treat on the night we were provided with a desert that had been specifically created to reflect the new flavours – it was UNREAL! Raspberry & Salted Caramel ice-cream with doughnuts, brownies, fresh raspberries and salted popcorn! Swoon!



Available in stores this March, Adriano Zumbo’s Tim Tam creations include three indulgent new flavours: tantalizing ‘Raspberry White Choc’, seriously addictive ‘Salted Caramel’ and the deliciously decadent ‘Choc Brownie’.

The new range is inspired by Zumbo’s unique and whimsical take on desserts and provides a tempting variation to the classic chocolatey varieties.

Zumbo, who is an Australian and French-trained patissier is best known for his elaborate, delicious desserts and has developed a cult following thanks to a debut on MasterChef in 2010.

“It was an honour to personally develop my own range of Tim Tam biscuits. I grew up on the iconic Aussie bikkie and it’s a joy to be able to put my own twist on it. I’ve played on traditional dessert flavours such as raspberry in addition to daring fans to try different ingredient combinations like salted caramel,” said Zumbo.

Aussies have been enjoying Tim Tam biscuits for over 50 years and consume over 45M packs each year.

Susanna Polycarpou, Arnott’s Marketing Director, comments on the collaboration; “Arnott’s Tim Tam always strives to provide innovative flavour variety to our fans. Working with patissier extraordinaire Adriano Zumbo, we have produced fun, unique offerings that match our fans evolving tastes for indulgent and sophisticated flavours, ensuring Tim Tams remain Australia’s favourite chocolate biscuit.”

Adriano Zumbo’s Tim Tam creations will be available in treat packs from March 2014, in Coles, Woolworths and independent grocers across Australia with an RRP of $1.89*.

SOCIAL SPY** Rabbit Hole Bar & Dining Turns One Year Old!

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Tucked away at basement level beneath the hustle and bustle of Elizabeth Street, Rabbit Hole Bar & Dining is one of Sydney’s premier bar and dining experiences in the CBD. Last night the restaurant and bar celebrated turning one year old with a birthday party for 120 invitees, with guests including top media, local customers and celebrities such as Justine Schofield, Nacho Pop, Sam McMillan and Brittany Cairns.

Chocolate Skulls, firm spicy pirate cream, coconut cake, rum & fire

Owned and run by Doug Laming, an avid and passionate molecular mixologist turned bar owner, the Rabbit Hole cocktail list for the night was compiled using ground breaking, pioneering techniques and flavour combinations that Australia is yet to experience. “Molecular mixology” means the process of creating cocktails using a physical and chemical modification of ingredients. Cocktail guru Doug’s experimentation last night translated into the use of house-made spices, powders and jellies in unique cocktails available exclusively at the Rabbit Hole, such as Torrontes and Pomme Verte layered agar apples, Powdered Rum with flaming passionfruit and Jellied G&T’s with fizzing tonic powder and flamed orange oils.

Smoked Apples

Newly appointed Executive Chef Jeremy Metivier, who has worked in numerous Michelin star restaurants, showcased his new modern French fine dining menu, and Michelin styled food. Guests enjoyed a selection of dishes such as goats cheese and beetroot apples, scallops on beetroot shortbread with mango and beetroot emulsions, mini wagyu sliders with brie cheese and house made relish, slow roasted lamb with artichoke puree, coriander and wine jelly, and the pièce de résistance – chocolate skulls, with firm spicy pirate cream and coconut cake – served on a flaming bar in front of awed guests.

Sam McMillan, Beth Tudehope, Justine Schoefield, Sean Widera

Sam McMillan, Beth Tudehope, Justine Schoefield, Sean Widera

The Rabbit Hole successfully balances what’s current in the kitchen with what’s trending behind the bar. You’d be mad not to escape the city…and hop down The Rabbit Hole!




Fancied, an Australian based dating App, has been moving in quickly on the dating scene and hopes to make it easier for Australians to find a date this Valentine’s Day! Having only launched in September last year, the App already boasts thousands of mutual ‘fancies’ nationally, and was nominated as Top 10 finalist for Startup of the Year by Shoestring Media, and for a MOBI Award in the Nightlife category.


Entrepreneur Christie Sharpe, the Founder and CEO of Fancied, stated “We are thrilled with the results and have 60% engagement on the app, this is mainly because users are getting matched by people they mutually fancy.”

Thanks to the rise of mobile dating, Gen X and Y users have now ‘opened their hearts’ (#boomchh) to testing out the market and have made it socially acceptable. Sharpe adds, “Fancied is about finding mutual connections made easy in a social environment – We don’t just show you who you can meet, we also show you where the best places are to meet based on your location.”

Alicia & Kristy Gray

There are two ways you can find your perfect match on Fancied. Firstly, by searching through singles profiles, and secondly, by checking into a local venue listed as a Hot Spot.

The geo-location gives the user a safer opportunity to meet their match at a recommended bar, or alternatively, motivates singles to step out of the house and socialise as they can see which ‘Hot Spots’ to saunter over to.

The Fancied team have launched a new blog ( which explores all aspects of dating and meeting people online. This light-hearted blog is perfect for dating advice, lists funny dating experiences and different ways to approach your love life. The step-by- step guide to the perfect New Year’s Kiss helped ease users into 2014 and is set to help singles navigate through the Aussie dating scene.

Fancied is available for free from the App Store on iPad, iPhone and iPod touch or at:

Socialising made simple, download the app and Get Fancied!

Android version coming soon!

Social Spy** Pop Up bar to bring the Spirit of Mexico to Manly


Cantina del Sol at the New Brighton Hotel in Manly


FIESTA! Last night Sydney Social was invited to Manly’s iconic New Brighton Hotel for Cantina del Sol’s pop-up fiesta.


The venue was transformed into a Mexican escape, with exotic decorations including scatterings of fresh fruit, flowers and candles. VIPs were greeted by Frida Kahlo skulls and a huge Cantina Del Sol wall canvas. Guests sampled authentic Mexican street food and sipped Sols to Mexican vibes by musical trio, Kallidad.

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The pop-up bar brings the colourful spirit of Mexico to Manly’s beachside and will run for ten whole sun-soaked days. The cantina will sit alongside the bustling Australian Open of Surfing and is open for the duration of the festival.


Surfers and spectators alike will find the Cantina Del Sol offers comfortable seating options both inside and out—making it the perfect place to kick back and enjoy some delish Mexican grub. Menu options include the Kingfish Ceviche Toastada ($10), Pulled Pork Tacos ($6) to Chicken Quesadilla ($10) and a refreshing Watermelon Salad ($10).


Live music will be held every night from the likes of Kallidad, Hein Cooper, James Englund and Dax Goulding followed by DJs and fun times until midnight.


Dos cervezas por favour!


Cantina del Sol at the New Brighton Hotel, Manly

Open 6-16 February

Echoer – Featured Blogger


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