Konik’s Tail recruits bartender to job of ‘Konik’s whisperer’

Swanand Korgaonkar

A leading bartender is taking on a brand ambassador role as “Konik’s whisperer” for premium Polish vodka Konik’s Tail.

Pleurat Shabani, who launched the brand in 2010, has appointed award-winning bartender Swanand Korgaonkar (pictured), who was most recently head bartender at The Berkeley hotel in London’s Knightsbridge.

He will join the business full time on April 4, supporting Pleurat who, until now, has been looking after the brand single-handedly. More recently, he has been working with UK distributor Speciality Brands.

Pleurat said: “Swani is my first-ever employee, and his title will be known as Konik’s whisperer rather than ‘brand ambassador’. He will be there to do training and support me in talking to both consumers and bartenders nationally. There are exciting times ahead.”

His job title is based on the idea of a horse whisperer as a konik is a rarely seen wild Polish horse that is said to bring good luck if spotted.

Swanand left The Berkeley last week after two-and-a-half years. He previously worked at The American Bar at The Savoy and Knight’s Bar at Simpson’s-in-the-Strand in London as well as at hotel bars in Mumbai in India.

Konik’s Tail is a small-batch vodka distilled from a blend of three grains in accordance with Polish vodka-making traditions dating back over 600 years.

Pleurat added: “One thing I always knew was that I wanted to spearhead the revival of artisan small-batch hand-crafted brands with a true heritage. I dreamt a dream once that I wanted to create something special and different, something that I was able to share with bartenders.

“Everybody knows I have put my heart and soul in making artisan Konik’s Tail, and lost my mind along the way, but artisan distilling is what fuels my inner nerd. It has been fun and amazing journey, and I’ve made great friends with so many bartenders in UK and globally – who are brothers, amazing friends and part of me and my journey – a family more than anything, who have helped me make a quiet noise with Konik’s Tail. To them all I’d like to say thank you to the end of my days.”

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