Prizmic & Brill is a furniture company specializing in home furnishings that are themed around old world travel. There is a decadence and sophistication to their pieces, with the deep earth tones, the fine leather hides, the hard wood and forged brass, combined with meticulous craftsmanship and innovative designs that re-interpret classic pieces that make you feel like you have traveled back in time to when people roamed the world on ships and caravans.

The dining area in Mathew Brill’s home

The products are featured in world class hotels and resorts, including Blake’s Hotel in London, Jerome Hotel in Aspen, the Nomad Hotel Group, and the Six Senses Hotel chain, to name a few. We were fortunate enough to visit the weekend home of eponymous designer Matthew Brill to check out his home bar and got to talk to him about his designs, inspirations, and of course, his collection of booze.

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DrinkManila: Where do you get your inspiration for your designs, especially your bar designs?

Matthew Brill: Our home furnishings line is themed around Old World travel. So, our designs are based on trunks, ships, trains, and automobiles in the era of Colonial Culture. Liquor and alcohol make for the perfect companions of this lifestyle story. Classic spirits include whiskey, bourbon, gin, vodka, tequila, rum, which were the companions of any great exploration. Let’s not forget to mention the vast array of wine, port and champagne that represents the establishment.

DM: What are the inspirations behind the three bar designs in your home?

MB: The one on the top floor is a kind of lounge viewing area. The bar there is a hot air balloon bar, the bottom is like that of a hot air balloon basket and we topped it with brass. That’s the kind of bar that the golf courses get from us, just way longer and L-shaped.

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The green cabinet with mirrors near the dining area was given by a Filipino friend around 20 years ago. It was a family heirloom antique cabinet from Mexico. It used to be plain, dark wood and I painted it green.

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The big one, the one with the chairs, used to be a gaming table. We just added the top piece, with the shelving and wine rack. It’s an improvised piece, a multifunctional improvised piece. If I had to name it, it would probably be a buffet cabinet or butler’s cabinet. But more of buffet cabinet, I think.

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DM: There is quite a range of liquor bottles in your collection. Do you have any interesting stories you can share about how you acquired them?

MB: In a sense of history and culture, I equipped my bar selection to represent the finest of each category. Needless to say, when I am in Mexico I drink the most exotic tequila chased by classic Mexican beer. When in France, the best wine and cognac; when in England, malt whiskey and ale. Rum from Cuba. Vodka from Russia. It’s an evolving collection from different parts of the globe. I have my friends to thank for some of those bottles. Sometimes we go on a bit of a binge and maybe we’re in a particular mood, like tequila or gin or whatever. And we’ll all bring several bottles from all over the world and come to the house and have a bit of a party.

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Château Vieux Chantecaille Saint-Emilion 1981 wine
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Rum bottles from Mathew’s collection
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Vintage beers
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E. G. Booz’s Old Cabin Whiskey bottle. Original bottles of these were made for Edmund G. Booz by the Whitney Glass Works of Glassboro, New Jersey around 1860
Bénédictine is an herbal liquer made in France. The bottle has a D.O.M. on the label, which stands for “Deo Optimo Maximo” (To God, most good, most great).
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Herradura Reposado Tequila
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Château Bouscaut Grand Cru Classé

DM: So they’re not just for display then?

MB: No. Definitely not! (laughs)

DM: Do you have a favorite spirit to drink?

MB: Oh no. I like them all. I mean there are some that I prefer more than others. It depends on the mood, of course. And the palate changes over time. So it depends on the mood, taste, and opportunity.

DM: Tell us about the most exciting bar design you have made.

MB: The one we did for Smith, Butcher and Grill Room was quite experimental. Where else have you seen a leather bar? It was a very cool experiment. It’s working out well. We got inspiration from a leather-topped side table and the owner of Smith asked if we could do it to the bar. We’ve never done that before, so it was a pretty cool thing. We’ve also designed some bars for golf courses.

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Smith Butcher and Grill Room bar

DM: Tell us about the special box you created for Don Papa Rum.

MB: We did that for them when they launched their 10-year-old rum. We also did a drink box for them, which they can take during tastings and a coaching table, too. And sometimes we loan them a portable bar. They’re trying to get Don Papa into hotels, and we’re going to make a custom desk caddy with a stirrer and shaker and all that so guests can make their own Don Papa cocktails if they want.

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Don Papa rum special edition box for their 10-year-old rum

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DM: What would your dream home bar be like?

MB: It has to be big, so it can house both wine and liquor and it will have shelves for the spirits and a refrigerator for the wines that need to be chilled. Then, maybe add a huge, huge trunk with panels and compartments that you can close and lock up for the glasses and mixers and bar essentials. It has to be huge, to house all of the liquor.

Photos by Star Sabroso


Prizmic & Brills flagship store is located at the 3rd level of Greenbelt 5 in Legaspi Street, Makati City.


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