THE LONDON RITUAL
The London Nº1 presents The London Ritual, an idea developed by Ciszak Dalmas studio exclusively for the Gin brand. The search of a unique experience is the main concept leading to the design of a new object for the best tasting of the gin&tonic.
Two ceramics shells were designed to cover the original serving glass and isolate it from the cocktail inside, perfectly maintaining its characteristic. Therefore the heat of both our hands and the environment can only slightly affect the temperature of the liquid.
When we arrived in Spain we realized that taking a glass of gin & tonic is something special. In northern Italy, where we are from, we usually serve after-dinner liquors like “Grappa” "Amaro" or “Prosecco”, which have a long tradition in our country. But we don‘t have the same tradition when it comes to serve a glass of gin & tonic. We remember our first drinks in the clubs of Turin, when the barman served cocktails in the typical tube shape glass and barely put two small ice cubes. As we were standing and holding the glass with our hands, the heat rapidly transferred to the cocktail, especially in summer, and the result was that the ice melted rapidly.
I was so attracted by the art of cocktails that I turned myself into a bartender for some months during college. I worked in the hands of an excellent “barista” who taught me the art of preparation, and since then I stopped drinking bad gin & tonics.
Once we landed in Madrid we discovered a new way of drinking this cocktail. We realized that no detail is casual: the cup was big, with lots of perfect ice cubes, and the serving “ritual” was impeccable. This memory helped us some years later to create a new handcrafted object, designed for both functional and symbolic purposes.
To begin the creative process we asked ourselves “What is a Ritual?”. In the case of a gin & tonic it starts in the moment you desire one. It follows with the mixing of the ingredients, the sound of ice against the glass, the popping of the bubbles, the weight and the design of the cup itself, the explosion of various flavors and the freshness sensation in the mouth. It ends with the memory of an experience articulated in the five senses.
The most important requirement was to choose an isolating material that could maintain the cocktail at a proper temperature. Instead of designing a new glass we decided to cover the original one with an accessory. This new object had to be designed in two separate parts to adapt perfectly to the glass shape. Once installed they served as a physical separation between the cocktail and the hand.
The prototyping process started with the digital scanning of the original glass and the design of two shells that could adapt perfectly. Later we 3D printed one shell in a technique called stereolithography and used this prototype to create the mold out of plaster. Since the clay has the natural tendency to reduce its volume of 6% while drying, we had to 3D print the shell bigger to compensate this loss.
Once the plaster mold got dry we could pour inside the liquid clay and wait for it to get dry. Afterwards the piece was baked at 1.000° Celsius degrees, hand painted and baked a second time at 1.020°.
To make sure the two shells could be stable on the glass we designed a leather strap with the logo engraved. At last we presented the object on a little altar, a light structure made of thin metal beams and glass. The result is a collection of physical objects that try to emphasize the symbolic character of the art of preparing, serving and enjoying a drink.
The design process has been a long journey of attempts and failures, in the search of new manufacturing techniques. It led to the combination of ancient techniques, like pottery and leathery, with the most recent manufacturing tools like digital scanning and 3D printing.
In collaboration with BRIDGE: www.thebridge.es
Produced by: London N.1
Photo Credit: Ciszak Dalmas and Massimiliano Polles