Having worked as a bar consultant and bartender executive for the entertainment (nightclub and dining) brand Ce’ La Vi (previously named Ku De Ta) in Bangkok and Singapore, Knut Randhem has jumped on a new adventure. And he has found something very appealing.
After having already decided to remain in Southeast Asia, after the opportunity to come here had emerged with Nordic Bar Syndicate back in 2013, he has jumped on a new adventure to work with the Colombian brand Dictador, that offers spirits, cigars and coffee.
“I knew the brand since my early days with Ce’ La Vi (Ku De Ta back then) and we did a few events in Bangkok. Personally I felt it was time for a new challenge for me, and working with Spirit brands have always been something I’ve looked at so when this opportunity came I instantly felt it was the natural move for me. And I get to use Bangkok as my base again,” explains Knut, Regional Manager South East Asia for Dictador.
During the autumn of 2016 he travelled around in Asia, among other activities holding launch parties, like the Bangkok attended by ScandAsia, that took place at the ideal venue Havana Social.
“We wanted to spread the awareness about our products within Bangkok’s nighlife and f&b scene, as well to give back and show our appreciation of all the support received from the local industry; we would not able to be where we are today without them!”
Knut’s mission with this brand is quite simple; to make the Dictador experience available to everyone. “Having worked in the bar and beverage operations the last 12 years I know how important it is to have quality products to deliver a good experience. And I really do believe that our unique mix of products put us in an exceptional position in the market.”
Dictador consists in spirits, cigars and coffee and its heritage goes way back in time: In 1913, almost 180 years after Dictador’s myth was conceived, one of his descendants established Destilería Colombiana. Years were then spent researching the myth as well as the intricacies of rum production in order to become the finest Colombian rum producer in the Caribbean Zone.
The third generation of the family sought to expand and share their beautiful liquid around the globe. In 2009, savvy international investors came on board and helped to make Dictador one of the most-loved and awarded Colombian rums in the world.
“Dictador made its first baby steps in Southeast Asia about four years ago, but since the scene is developing very fast at the moment and the demand for quality products is increasing, things really kicked off the last year and we have expanded to a lot of new markets,” says Knut.
Coming from Latin America Dictador is the biggest exported rum in Colombia. “Although the Market is very different, we are in several different markets.”
The brand also have its own gin, being the first in the world producing gin from sugar cane and aging it in ex rum casks for richer character.
Finally there is Café Dictador, offering “something unique”, as the result of the harmony between the fruits of 3 diverse Colombian coffee regions with an independent roasting process for each origin.
All photos: Dennis Thern