Under the creative leadership of award-winning Head of Spirit and Cocktail Development Rich Woods, Duck & Waffle's ever-changing cocktail lists feature a diverse selection of spirits and an avant-garde approach to mixology. Since joining Orange Brands Management (OBM) in 2012, Rich has spearheaded and overseen the direction of beverage program at Duck & Waffle as well as at SUSHISAMBA locations across the globe in New York, Miami Beach, Coral Gables, Las Vegas and London.
Impressing critics, connoisseurs and media alike, in 2014 he earned first place in the UK and Ireland Bombay Sapphire’s “World’s Most Imaginative Bartender Competition” followed by second place in the world finals and he contributed to the Duck & Waffle’s cookbook: Duck & Waffle: Recipes and Stories, sharing a selection of his iconoclastic recipes with the world. In 2015, he received the honor of being the first bartender to participate in the prestigious “Who’s Cooking Dinner?”, under his direction, Duck & Waffle was short-listed as a top 10 finalist in the “Best International Restaurant Bar” category for the Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Awards, and he was named one of Evening Standard’s “1,000 Most Influential People.” Rich has made numerous radio and TV appearances on such esteemed shows as the UK’s Channel 4 Sunday Brunch.
At OBM, Rich has the ability to work with a myriad of spirits, satisfying his passion for inventiveness and exploration. His creativity shines in D&W Serves such as the Roasted Cosmo 2.0 and the Chocolate & Blue Cheese Martini. In the spring of 2015, Richard introduced Culinary Cocktails to SUSHISAMBA London’s menu, collaborating with Executive Chef Claudio Cardoso to present libations that pair perfectly with the cuisine, including the Kobe Cocktail and the Coconut Seviche Cocktail.
Rich is a pioneer in the industry. He has raised the ‘bar’ for his contemporaries by distilling his own flavours and aromas, experimenting with intricate methodologies and incorporating diverse and unusual ingredients to transform the cocktailing experience.