Nico de Soto and the latest Danico Cocktail Menu: Japan

Paris Cocktail Talk
Paris Cocktail Talk
Nico de Soto and the latest Danico Cocktail Menu: Japan

The latest Danico cocktail menu ‘Japan’ launched in February and is the third in the bar’s conceptual series ‘Xplorer’. The Xplorer menu series launched in 2023 and the drinks evolve every 6 months to reflect different regions of the world, inspired by the global travels of bartender & owner Nico de Soto. This month Nico talks about the inspiration behind the Xplorer series, the current Japan menu, the style of drinks and ingredients, how he became known as the “pandan ambassador”, and what region will be the focus of the next Danico cocktail menu.

About our Danico Cocktail Menu Guest: Nico de Soto

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Parisian born and raised, he first began bartending in Paris in 2005 where he was trained in the art of classic cocktails. In 2007, he moved to Australia and began work in Melbourne, where he spent a year crafting libation.

Nico de Soto then returned to Paris, working in China Club and became bar manager at Mama Shelter before joining Paris’s most respected cocktail bars, the Experimental Cocktail Club and Curio Parlor.

In 2010 Nico joined the opening teams at Dram and PKNY (former Painkiller) in New York and then became the head mixologist of the Experimental Group, opening back to back the very successful Experimental Cocktail Club in London and New York, respectively nominated 3rd best bar in Europe 2012 at Cocktail Spirits Awards and top 4 finalists World’s Best New Bar in 2013 at Tales of Cocktails and 26th best cocktail bar in the world by Drinks International.

In 2013, Nico worked at the awarded 69 Colebrooke Row and Happiness Forgets in London, named respectively Best Bar in the World at Tales of the Cocktails and 6th Best Bar in the World by Drinks International 2013.

In 2015, he opened his first cocktail bar Mace in East Village in New York ranked 28th best bar in the World at Drinks International World’s Top 50 Best Bars, for the fourth year in a row.

In 2016, he opened in Paris Danico, in the heart of the Italian trattoria Daroco, with his two restaurateur friends Julien Ross and Alexandre Giesbert. In 2018, he opened Kaido in the Design District of Miami with James Beard’s awards multi-nominated chef Brad Kilgore, a Japanese influenced cocktail lounge.

His approach of drinks is inspired by travels and cuisine, always trying to get new flavors, combinations and techniques. He uses a lot of modern techniques, like sous-vide to achieve the best flavors, centrifuge to clarify juices or rotovap to make his own distillates.

In 2023, Nico returns finally to London, opening Daroco Soho and, in the basement, the cocktail bar Wacky Wombat.

Danico bar interior

About Danico Bar:

Established in 2016, Danico quickly became a prominent fixture on the Paris bar scene. Notably, it secured the 51st spot in the World’s 50 Best Bars 51-100 list for 2023 and garnering much global recognition. 

Products, People, and Places Mentioned in our Danico Cocktail Menu episode:

Nico de Soto

Nico’s instagram

Nico’s bars:



Wacky Wombat

Other bars mentioned in the episode:

Experimental Cocktail Club


Little Red Door


Mama Shelter

le China Club

The drinks of the new Danico cocktail menu are not just tasty, but also pretty

Cocktail of the Month from the new Danico menu: Sakura

170 ml Hendrick’s gin
90 ml Martini Rubino
160 ml Campari
80 ml umeshu 
1.5 g cinnamon stick
45 g frozen cherry
15 g Cherry blossoms, plus extra for garnish

  • Add all ingredients except cherry blossoms to a ziplock and heat sous vide with an immersion heater at 52.5 C degrees for 2 hours. If you don’t have an immersion heater, mix all ingredients, except cherry blossoms, together and let infuse for 48 hours.
  • Strain and then add 15 g cherry blossoms.
  • Strain again.
  • To finish, blend equal parts orange blossom water and almond water and add a dash to the drink.

And if that’s too complicated, just stop by the bar and order a Sakura and check out the new Danico cocktail menu in person.

If you enjoyed the Danico Cocktail Menu episode you may also enjoy:

My original review of Danico cocktail bar

Big Thanks to….

YOU for tuning in or downloading and listening

World Radio Paris for editing and production

Son Little for the music we use

As usual, I also remind you to drink responsibly.

You can also find more of the best Paris cocktail talk at:

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Until next time, Cheers!

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