As to sonics, Hendry pursues reviews to fill in the blanks. Today is about his 1-metre Reference XLR which I'd try in two different systems against a few cable competitors. The Vermöuth catalogue is surprisingly extensive. It includes cables, connectors, three speakers and an integrated amplifier. Import products by electronics houses Gold Note and Trafomatic parallel product from parts vendors like Cardas, Jantzen, Mundorf, Neotech and Raal. There's a lot more to Vermöuth than the undeniably pictureque pretty face of Bali the famous tourist destination; far more than a hifi shoppe salesman gone solo to braid up some cables in his garage. To learn about the 'more', we let Hendry share his background story. Fore some insight into one of his smaller speakers, read this review by former contributor Edgar Kramer.

As to the brand's name, vermouth of course is a fortified white wine aromatized with sundry botanicals. It's key in classic cocktails like the Martini (gin + vermouth + olive), the Manhattan (whiskey + vermouth + bitters), the Rob Roy (whiskey + vermouth) and the Negroni (gin + red vermouth + campari + orange peel). If the takeaway is that Vermöuth cables go well with anything and are intoxicating with prolonged exposure, that's probably pure coincidence.

Here we see Hendry's place of work…

… and some parts inventories…

… and finally, the exploded view of the cable's geometry and makeup.

"Our Reference line eclipses our previous benchmark for quality. Our new reference cables were designed to replicate the most neutral sound that's closest to the recorded musical origin. Since we know that neutrality is subject to perception as influenced by taste and conditioning, our notion of neutrality is fundamentally based on musicality.

"Good musical sound will move you regardless of your tastes or preferences. That's what we wanted to achieve and it is that which inspired us to introduce the new Vermöuth Reference series.

"When I decided to ready our Reference balanced version, I realized that I couldn't use my available XLR plugs due to the bigger cable diameter which came from wanting to make the very best for this Reference series. So I contacted the supplier who makes all our connectors and we put special attention on this plug. Its body is CNC'd Teflon and the contacts are rhodium-plated tellurium copper. The outer shell is carbon fiber.

"The other reason why I preferred to get a custom connector is that if I wanted the very best of the standard alternatives, it would have been impossible to cost down the retail price plus quite difficult to arrive at a perfect final appearance like for example the gap between connector sleeve and cable jacket. A side benefit was that a special connector creates more prestige for my brand.

"About our geometry, the more important point is that I utilize high-quality OCC copper and finally perfected the strand ratio and structural details of the conductor as well as the final construction with air tubes, braided OCC copper shield, multiple Teflon and a copper-mylar layer.

"I order half-finished cable made to my specs on a spool because I didn't wish to end up with a fully hand-crafted cable which makes production consistency quite impossible to achieve. Also, I work alone so efficient time management is key. The half-finished cable thus includes the sleeving and the finished result is smooth without any edge/line on the cable's two sides."