Opening your minibar to find nothing but a bottle of Jacob’s Creek sparkling and a tiny bag of macadamias is disappointing. Sydney-based Justin Windle and Timothy Shaw found themselves in this pickle at midnight one too many times and decided to do something about it. The pair launched East Indian Trading Co on September 3 2016 with an event in Vaucluse, and the company will provide hotels and airlines with a new range of pre-mixed cocktails.

It’s a market that, they believe, hasn’t changed in more than 50 years. “Whenever I’ve travelled, whether it’s Asia or Europe or wherever, I’m always disappointed.

“You can have a perfect cocktail without having to leave your room.”

The company was named after the world’s first registered company, which traded in spice, silk, gold and other exotic goods. “I’ve been watching ‘East Indian Trade Co’ for a while, and so when the name became available again we grabbed it. We’ve taken something that’s old and given it an orient and persona,” says Windle.

Each bottle will contain the standard 60 milliliters of alcohol with a mixer. All you have to do is pop the cork, pour and add the attached garnish. Each cocktail is hand-mixed and hand-corked. Classics such as the Negroni; the Espresso Martini; the Manhattan; a Buttered Rye & Cranberry Sour; and Sazerac will be the initial offering. Further down the line, after the pair perfects infusing homemade oils into its selected alcohols, more exotic cocktails will be available.

The first batch of these drinks can be found in the minibar at Merivale's Establishment Hotel, as well as at Paperbark Camp in Woollamia. In the future the drinks will be released in well-known venues such as Haggerstone Island, at various hotels on Hamilton Island and Flash Camp, a pop-up hotel company. The guys are also in talks with various hotels in Dubai, as well as in Malaysia, the UK and other countries in Europe.

East Indian Trading Co cocktails are expected to be available next month in yet-to-be-announced locations. Stay tuned for more information.

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