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Introducing the #StayTrue Ambassador Crew.

We caught up with Ballantine’s Global Ambassador, Milo, to chat all things Ballantine’s from his home in Nairobi. Being a part of our ambassador crew, Milo has a unique insight into not only the brand, but the wider whisky industry as a whole. We picked his brains to get to the bottom of some whisky myths, what it means to #StayTrue and dive into his favourite whisky cocktails. 

So, without further ado… let’s jump in!

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What inspired you to join #TeamBallantines?

Well, I think the thing that inspired me most was being part of this movement to open up the world of whisky and to get everyone drinking and appreciating how much of a versatile spirit it is. For Ballantine’s specifically, I think what the brand represents, the whole “#StayTrue” attitude, “There’s No Wrong way”, you know, it’s a really authentic brand. You see so many brands that talk the talk, but never really walk the walk. Ballantine’s is definitely not one of them, they let their actions speak for themselves which is something I really relate to.

 

What does your average day as a Ballantine’s Ambassador look like?

 I think the best part of my day as a brand ambassador for Ballantine’s is I get to speak to so many people each day about Ballantines, about whisky, about all the things that I love: music, fashion, culture, creativity, art. It’s just a brilliant thing to be able to educate people about Ballantine’s. 

I do a lot of training in bars, talking to consumers and bartenders, telling them about our wonderful history and heritage, what they can do with the whisky, and how they can put it into a cocktail. It’s all about education. I have a very lucky job in that sense, I’m able to talk to people all day. WhenI’m not doing training, I’m planning events. Ballantine’s is a brilliant brand that put on some crazy parties so we’re always planning the next big event. 

 

Finish the sentence: There’s no wrong way to _____ 

For me, there’s no wrong way to live. The thing that Ballantine’s represents is that there is no wrong way to live your life, you don’t have to put on a front or anything like that. You can just do it exactly how you want, be yourself, and stay true to who you are.

 

What does a Ballantine’s drinker look like to you?

Well I think a Ballantine’s drinker doesn’t really have a specific image, and that’s the great thing about it.  It’s not about alienating or ostracizing a group of people, it’s all about being yourself whoever you are. You can drink Ballantine’s whether you’re old or young, irrelevant of gender, race, whatever. So, there’s no specific Ballantine’s drinker for me. 

How do you embody There’s No Wrong Way as a Ballantine’s Ambassador?

I approach it with authenticity, I really like that attitude of not having to perform or play to a certain expectation. I just like to be myself, so I think that’s the There’s No Wrong Way attitude.

 

What’s the one thing you would change about the whisky industry tomorrow if you have the power?

The one thing I would change about the whisky industry if I had the power would be to make people appreciate it more. Whisky is seen as not a very versatile spirit but that’s not true, it can be incredibly versatile as a spirit, in cocktails and with mixers, so I would change that.

 

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Share a whisky myth you’d like to bust?

You don’t have to drink Ballantines, or whisky for that matter, neat. You can drink it however you like, even adding water to a bit of whisky can really help open up the florality of it more to help you appreciate it more. And again, cocktails. It’s absolutely amazing in all kinds of different cocktails, there’s all kinds of things you can do with it.

 

What’s your favourite whisky cocktail & why?

My favourite whisky cocktail would have to be one I made recently which would be the Ballantines Mango Chilli Rimmed Margarita. It’s really really good with Ballantines Finest or Ballantine’s 12 if you’re feeling a bit adventurous, but the way the chilli kick compliments the mango and the whisky… * chefs kiss *.  

 

What do you think will be the next big trend in whisky drinking?

It has to be mixology. I’m starting to see the foundations of people to beginning to appreciate whisky a little bit more, so I hope that the next trend is that people are making whisky cocktails all over the world.

 

What does #StayTrue mean to you?

Star True is the way forward. There’s no point in performing or trying to be someone else. At the end of the day you want to be appreciated for who you are, so stay true to that and you’ll get far.

 

What tune is currently on repeat in your headphones?

So I’m based in Nairobi and there’s a lot of up and coming Afrobeat music going on, Calm Down by Rema has been a big one. Apart from that, Mac Miller’s Circle’s album, the track Complications has been in my head for weeks!

 

What inspires you to get creative?

The thing that inspires me most to get creative is spending time with other creatives. If I’m in an environment surrounded by dancers, artists, singers, designers, that’s when I feel most inspired.

 

What fashion trends are you loving at the moment?

At the moment I am based in Nairobi, so there’s not a lot of room for layering, but layering has been a big trend that’s come up recently. Knitwear as well, you’re not going to see a lot of that here but vest, cardigans, that kind of thing I’m really enjoying. I’m also a big fan of the loafer with low-cut black chinos, tucked in shirt. It’s a good one!

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Okay…and to finish, let’s quick fire!

 

Cocktail umbrella or funky straw?

Funky Straw.

 

Seaside cocktails or cosy drams?

Seaside cocktails! Love a cosy dram but there’s not a lot of cold weather here so there’s not a lot of room for cosying up. Seaside cocktail, that’s the way forward.

 

Favourite food to eat alongside a dram or cocktail?

For a dram, a steak. Marvellous pairing with Ballantines 12.

 

Favourite Ballantine’s Expression?

Ballantine’s 17 Year Old!

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