A leading trendsetter of the spirit and cocktail scene in New York City for over 15 years, Gardner is proudly working in his ninth full year as National Brand Ambassador for Suntory Whisky. Whether carving ice for cocktails or educating consumers, trade and press on the subtle, refined yet complex taste of Suntory’s whisky, Gardner’s dedication to his craft is unmatched, making him the perfect representative for Japan’s first and oldest name in artisanal Japanese whisky.
Gardner has a rich professional history in his rise to Suntory fame. A graduate of the Beverage Alcohol Resource (BAR), he was a star barman for 10 years at some of New York City’s top venues. Gardner proudly represented New York City in the 2005 Cocktail World Cup hosted by 42 Below in New Zealand and at the Cabana Cachaca competition in Brazil.
Since joining Suntory, the results of his efforts have been clear in the tremendous growth of the Japanese whisky category and rampant recognition of Suntory as a premier player in the market. Suntory has received over 80 awards. He was publically recognized for his work in 2010 when he received the Whisky Guild’s prestigious “Brand Ambassador of the Year” award. He continues to hone his professional skills with frequent trips to Japan to study culture, whisky trends, and techniques with Suntory’s Master Blender and Chief Distiller.
Gardner continues to hone his skill and spread his knowledge as the Japanese Whisky Ambassador for Beam Suntory based in New York City.