This weekend I’m off to one of my favourite Summer events, Cocktails In The City: Summer Edition, and I’m excited!
On Friday 29th and Saturday 30th July 2016, 25 of top London bars will be pairing up with their favourite spirits to set up pop up bars in one of London’s largest private Georgian gardens – Bedford Square Gardens in Fitzrovia.
A two day celebration of London’s vibrant and eclectic drinking scene, Cocktails In The City will feature cocktail tastings, interactive demonstrations, games and entertainment – including crazy golf, escape rooms (an Alice In Wonderland themed one no less!) and cabaret performances.
Throughout the event, hosts Bourne & Hollingsworth will be putting on a series of ‘Spirited Sermons’ – interactive spirit masterclasses hosted by ambassadors and master distillers, exploring topics including healthy drinking, the origins of rum and Mayan Balché.
Food will be available from Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen (who by the way, created one of my favourite cocktails ever at the press preview of CITC, which I’ll tell you about in a moment) and there will be plenty of street food vendors as well.
Anyway, that’s enough blurb – just get yourself a ticket here for £15 (including one cocktail token – subsequent tokens available for £7.50) and come drink irresponsibly in the sunshine (hopefully, this is London after all!).
I was lucky enough to be invited along to the press preview event at Big Chill House in Kings Cross a couple of weeks ago – it was great fun, a cocktail shake off on a sunny rooftop!
Here I have for you my highlights of the night, and the recipes for them – so if you can’t make it to Cocktails In The City you can give them a go at home!
We Are Big Chill & Santa Teresa Rum – Watermelon Mojito
I love love love fizzy watermelon sweets, and We Are Big Chill gave me a whole watermelon full of them. Even without the candy bribe, their Watermelon Mojito was one of my favourites!
50ml Santa Teresa
50ml Muddled Watermelon
25ml Watermelon Syrup
15ml Lime Juice
Top with Mint
Add Lime Juice, Muddled Watermelon, Watermelon Syrup and Mint into a high ball, top the glass with crushed ice and add Santa Teresa. Churn the cocktail, top up with crushed ice and garnish with mint sprig and a skewer with 2 watermelon sweets.
This is a low sugar martini style cocktail, which Looking Glass served in a small bottle to take away! A classic tasting gin cocktail – strong yet fresh, with subtle spice and floral notes, this was one of the only cocktails presented which wasn’t specifically Summery. But it was just so good.
35ml Aviation gin
15ml Reina Lab. Mastrostefano vermouth (no added sugar)
5ml Reina Lab. Tonic syrup
5ml Reina Lab. Campi Elisi creme de aquavit
2 dash Reina Lab. Ada’s Lavender bitters
They definitely put the effort in with the presentation on this one…
Herb Syrup of your choice (thyme/rosemary or basil)
Choice of berries
Edible soil made of Reyka Vodka infused with Black Forest Gateau
Shake all ingredients and pour into a plant pot. Garnish with edible soy made of Reyka Vodka infused with black forest gateau.
This one was fun, served in a mini Chambord bottle with a side of brioche! Not sure how you infuse the Chambord with brioche in the first place, so you just leave it the cake in the bottle for a bit maybe?
25ml Brioche- infused Chambord
25ml gin or vodka
20ml lemon juice
50ml pineapple juice
2 dashes cherry bitters
Oh, and I had to show you their mixologists suit!
Fifteen & Langley’s Gin – Strawberries and cream
Remember I told you this was my favourite? Of course it would be, because it is the most ridiculously awkward thing to make! But if you have a party coming up and two days spare, here’s how to make 20 servings…
2x Punnets of good quality Strawberries
1x Handful of tarragon
15x Coriander seeds
20x Pink Peppercorns
250ml Lemon Juice
250g Granulated Sugar
2x Lemon Peels
250ml Green Tea
750ml Coconut Water
700ml Langley’s Gin
650ml Dolin Dry Vermouth
Add all the ingredients which are not liquid based in a large container with hot green tea, muddling the strawberries and stirring until sugar dissolves, forming a syrup. This will be your base. Add rest of the ingredients, cover the top and leave refrigerated over night. This is Batch#1.
1000ml Whole Milk
130ml Lemon Juice
Heat the milk in a large pan until boiling point, pour in lemon juice and take off heat and leave for 15mins or until you can see the milk split. It’s going to look like a baby just threw up everywhere. Normal. This is Batch#2.