Founder of Native bar in Singapore, Vijay is committed to using home-grown and regional produce and supporting local craftsmen. Vijay had over a decade’s experience in bartending when he decided to open his own venture. An award-winning mixologist, Vijay was also passionate about urban foraging and Native was the perfect way to combine his interests.
“You’ve got to keep innovating, coming up with new stuff, always be ahead of the curve.”
At Native, you’ll find creative cocktails that delight the senses, but not at the expense of the environment – Vijay has made a commitment to sustainability and reducing waste by using ingredients that are foraged locally. He’s passionate about working with Southeast Asian ingredients like mango, turmeric, cinnamon and tapioca and pairing them with something even more exotic – foraged ants for example! When it comes to flavours, he stands by the adage ‘what grows together, goes together’.
Vijay taught himself how to forage through trial and error. Now he’s passing this knowledge on, delivering foraging sessions around the city that he loves. He has helped shine a spotlight on the movement in Singapore and ignited a new passion in the people that join him on his foraging walks.
“If you compare getting produce in the package to going out in the wild and seeing it in its rare nature and understand maybe it’s not just a fruit – you can use the flowers, the twigs or the leaves – it gives you a full understanding of nature.”