Category Archives: From here and there

A few recipes we’ve picked up along the way

Cocktails for Easter

Cocktails for the Easter Bank Holiday

The longest Bank Holiday of the year calls for a toast – ideally something rich, smooth and luxurious. Marian Beke, Bar Manager at Nightjar and Daniel Dove, Ron Zacapa Brand Ambassador have come up with a special Easter treat that ticks all of those boxes – the Monterrico, a seriously indulgent cocktail combining the luscious Zacapa rum, fresh lime, homemade grenadine, carob-infused Amer Picon and orange liqueur, paired with three delicious Rococo chocolates. It’s on the menu for the Easter Bank Holiday only (18th-21st April), which gives you the perfect excuse to book your table at Nightjar. Call 020 7253 4101.

If you prefer to make your cocktails at home, try the selection below:

Carom Easter Basket

Carom Easter Basket cocktail

Two dashes of ‘The Bitter Truth’ chocolate spiced bitters
50ml full fat milk
50ml double cream
25ml Blackwoods Gin
25ml Crème de Cacao Blanc

Shake ingredients over cubed ice and strain into a mini jam jar. To finish, sprinkle a pinch of cinnamon powder along with a grating of nutmeg. Serve with chocolate eggs.
Available at Carom,

Auchentoshan Threewood Spanish Hot Chocolate Cocktail

4 fl oz. milk
1 fl oz Auchentoshan Threewood whisky
3-4 heaped tsps of a high quality Spanish hot chocolate powder
2 tablespoons of Scottish double cream

Add the chocolate powder into a glass teacup. Heat milk to boiling point on the stove. Fold the hot milk into the powder. Add your measure of Three Wood and stir briskly anti-clockwise until thick. To serve add freshly whipped cream.

The Jaffa Cake

40ml Pampero Especial
20ml Grand Marnier
2 drops Orange Bitters
10ml Mozart Black Chocolate Liqueur
20ml double cream
Dark chocolate

Melt chocolate and rim a martini glass. Add all liquid ingredients to a shaker with ice cubes and shake well. Pour into rimmed glass and garnish with orange slice.
Created by Angel de Sousa and Roland Varga at South Place Hotel

Too much cream and chocolate? Try these instead:

Apple Mint Julep

Apple Mint Julep

3-4 mint sprigs
90ml apple juice
60ml Bulleit Bourbon
A dash or two of bitters

Muddle the mint and apple juice together in a cocktail shaker. Add the Bulleit bourbon, a couple dashes of bitters and ice to the shaker. Shake well for 20 seconds and then strain into a tumbler glass filled with a couple large cubes of ice. Garnish with a mint leaf if desired.

Tanqueray Easter Sour

45ml Tanqueray London Dry Gin
15ml Cherry Brandy
25ml lemon juice
5ml sugar syrup
3 teaspoons cherry jam
½ an egg white

Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker, then add cubed ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with mini eggs or other Easter chocolates

Midori Spring Cup

35ml Midori
15ml lime juice
2 cucumber slices, 1 lemon slice
Sparkling grape juice
Lemon slice, mint sprig, cucumber and melon ball to garnish

Fill a wine glass with ice. Add fruit. Pour Midori over ice, add the lime juice. Top with sparkling grape juice. Garnish with lemon slice, cucumber slice, mint sprig and melon ball then serve.

And for the ideal Easter gift, head over to Alexander & James for the Ron Zacapa and Rococo Easter gift set – 24 premium chocs chosen to complement the full-bodied, vanilla-rich, spicy chocolatey Zacapa 23 rum. Lush! 





Cocktails for Mother’s Day

Flowers are nice and chocolates are always welcome but shall we tell you what your mum really, really deserves? All of those (plus lunch or dinner) and a well made cocktail.  Get her to put her feet up and mix her up one (or two) of the following:

Blood Runs Thicker Than Water

Continue reading


Awards season cocktails

If anyone knows about creating cocktails for swanky dos it’s Joe McCanta. As Global Ambassador at Grey Goose its his drinks that Elton John serves to his guests at his glitzy White Tie and Tiara Balls and who’s behind the delicious cocktails Harvey Weinstein and co. will be sipping at his awards season bash later this evening. But you don’t have to be a star to get in on the act, Joe’s Award Season Cocktail Collection inspired by the biggest themes of the best films from last year is available exclusively at the sumptuous Scarfe’s Bar at Rosewood London. Have your acceptance speech ready when you order.

The genre: Pioneering Spirit
The cocktail: Martini de la Mer
The storyboard: “Celebrating a pioneering spirit that overcomes adversity, our signature cocktail receives a maritime makeover. The Grey Goose Martini de la Mer invokes aromas of the open sea and is beautifully garnished with micro-shiso. amaranth and capers.”
And action!
60ml Grey Goose vodka
2 spritzes of ‘sea spray essence’ (Noilly Prat dry vermouth infused with oyster shells and a touch of flour de sel)

Stir and strain into a well-chilled coupette glass. Garnish with micro-shiso, red amaranth and a large caper berry.

Martini de la Mer

The genre: Unconditional Love
The cocktail: L’Amour Moderne
The storyboard: “A taste of love in a modern age, passionate but bittersweet, with fresh, fruity notes.”
And action!
35ml Grey Goose Le Citron
25ml fresh pomegranate juice
15ml fresh pink grapefruit juice
15ml bitter Italian aperitif
15ml passion fruit syrup
3ml fresh lime juice

Combine ingredients in a shaker filled with ice. Shake and double strain into a Martini glass. Garnish with an orange zest.

L’Amour Moderne

The genre: Futurism
The cocktail: The Cosmonaut
The storyboard: “A futuristic cocktail, the Cosmonaut is a refined and elegant blend of Grey Goose La Poire, ginger liqueur, fresh lime and cardamom bitters built over ‘planetary’ ice spheres. Inspired by futurism, the space candy rolled grape adds some playful glamour.”
And action!
45ml Grey Goose La Poire
25ml fresh lime juice
17.5ml ginger liqueur
1 dash cardamom bitters

Build ingredients over a large ice sphere in a spherical rocks glass. Garnish with a grape rolled in space candy.

The Cosmonaut

The genre: Return to retro
The cocktail: Lower East Side
The storyboard: “A sophisticated twist on the most popular drink of the 1960s, the Harvey Wallbanger, this downtown classic is a unique blend of Grey Goose L’Orange, seasonal blood orange juice and cognac liqueur, with a slight drizzle of aged balsamic to give an intriguing gritty bite.”
And action!
35ml Grey Goose L’Orange
70ml freshly squeezed blood orange juice
1 bar spoon orange flavour cognac liqueur
1 drizzle of aged balsamic

Build the Grey Goose L’Orange and blood orange juice, then float the liqueur on top. Garnish with a slice of blood orange and a drizzle of aged balsamic.

Lower East Side

The 2014 Awards Season Cocktail Collection is available exclusively at Scarfe’s Bar at Rosewood London until 2 March. 252 High Holbron, WC1V 7EN. rosewood




Cocktails for London Fashion Week

Hello London Fashion Week, how nice to see you again. And while we’re eagerly looking forward to seeing what the big bods like Tom Ford, Burberry and Paul Smith dictate we’ll be wearing this time next year, we hope there’s a bit of craziness from some of the newcomers – just to keep things interesting.

Fashion Disaster cocktails at The Riding House Cafe

It’s thirsty work though all this fashion malarkey, so a cocktail will be most welcome in between and after the shows. Luckily, a few of our favourite bars have devised some snazzy little numbers to sip into and we think it would be rude not to oblige. At Harvey Nichols they’ve created a menu based on some of the major fashion streets in the world such as Avenue Montaigne in Paris (Martell VSOP Cognac, fresh blueberries, cardamom, lemon juice and blueberry liqueur); Bhanhofstrasse in Zurich (Mozart liqueur, espresso and Absolut vodka, served with a chocolate truffle), and Sloane Street right here in London (Chase Rhubarb Vodka, honey water, lemon juice, Peychaud Bitters and Perrier-Jouët Grand Brut NV), all on the menu in the Fifth Floor Bar until Friday 28th February.

At the Benares bar at Atul Kochhar’s Michelin-starred Indian restaurant they’ve taken the fashion capitals as their inspiration. Choose from The London (gin infused with cardamom, star anise, black pepper and fresh berries, then muddled with vanilla sugar and topped with sparkling wine); The New York (vodka infused with strawberries, Visciolata cherry wine, passion fruit purée and sugar syrup); The Paris (Martell VS, chocolate liqueur and chocolate infused with chilli), and The Milan (Campari, grapefruit, lime, ginger, sugar syrup and homemade bitters). And for fashionistas on the go, each cocktail is served with bite-sized bar snacks (you don’t want to go eating too much – this is Fashion Week after all), including masala peanut salad, lamb samosa with mint and crispy squid rings with passion fruit. Available until 5th March.

Last but by no means least is the Fashion Disasters menu at The Riding House Cafe. Try ordering a White Socks & Sandals Sazerac (Sazerac rye whiskey, Angostura bitters, sugar syrup, La Fee Absinthe, lemon juice and Peychaud Bitters); Mankini Martini (Gin, Noilly Prat vermouth), or Bum Bag Bellini (white peach purée and Prosecco) while keeping your street creed in tact. Available until 18th February.

Fifth Floor Bar
The Riding House Cafe



How to… woo your amour this Valentine’s Day

Forget chocolates and flowers, say it with a lovingly made cocktail.

Something with gin…

Raspberry Rose Royale

25ml Hendrick’s Gin
5ml sugar syrup*
Two fresh raspberry (one to garnish)

Combine the raspberry, gin and sugar syrup in a cocktail shaker or Kilner jar and shake three times. Fine strain into the base of a Champagne flute then top with Champagne. Garnish with a fresh raspberry.
*To make sugar syrup – boil equal parts sugar and water together and allow to cool.

Raspberry Rose Royale

Angel Face Martini

35ml Tanqueray London Dry Gin
15ml Calvados
15ml apricot liqueur

Stir all ingredients together over ice. Strain into a chilled Martini glass and garnish with a twist of orange.

Something warm…

Apple Of My Eye

50ml Pimm’s Blackberry & Elderflower
150ml cloudy apple juice
15ml fresh lemon juice
10ml toffee or maple syrup
Blackberry to garnish

Add all ingredients to a pan and heat through – be careful not to boil. Pour into a heat-proof glass or, for a vintage vibe, a teacup and saucer. Garnish with a fresh blackberry.

Something sweet and milky…

Bene-Dulgent Milk Punch

30ml Bénédictine
20ml Mozart Dry Chocolate spirit
10ml De Kuyper Butterscotch Liqueur
20ml condensed milk
40ml milk

Pour all ingredients into a shaker or Kilner jar, fill with ice and shake very hard for 10 seconds then fine strain into a wine goblet. Garnish with grated chocolate and nutmeg.

Something with a touch of coconut…

Silver Angel

50 ml Malibu
5ml Crème de Peche
Apple juice
Champagne or sparkling wine

Shake Malibu and Crème de Peche over ice in a shaker or Kilner jar. Pour into Champagne flute and top with apple juice and Champagne or sparkling wine.

Silver Angel

Something with vodka…

The Cîroc Dark Sunset

50ml Cîroc Red Berry Vodka
15ml raspberry liqueur
15ml fresh lemon juice
5ml sugar syrup
5 fresh raspberries
Soda water
Blackberries to garnish.

Gently muddle the raspberries in a cocktail shaker, add 50ml of Cîroc Red Berry Vodka and shake well. Strain over ice into a Sling glass and top up with soda water. Garnish with three fresh blackberries.

From Russia With Love

40ml Beluga Vodka
40ml lemon juice
40ml agave syrup
Dash of Crèmè de Mûre
5 fresh raspberries (1 to garnish)

Place four fresh raspberries into a shaker or Kilner jar, use a muddler or spoon to crush. Pour vodka, lemon juice and agave syrup into shaker with the crushed raspberries and fill with ice. Shake hard and then strain into a rocks glass. Add a dash of Crèmè de Mûre to create a red tint, top with ice and garnish with a single raspberry.

The Cocktail Lovers say…

On your own on 14th Feb? No worries, treat yourself to one of the handsome gift sets in the Singles Collection at Alexander & James. For rum lovers there’s the Zacapa XO and Zacapa Alchemy glass; for tequila fans there’s the Don Julio Reposado and Don Julio Drop glass and whisky buffs can choose from either The Singleton o.D 18 and Baccarat crystal tasting glass or Talisker Storm and Alexandre & James Highball glass.

This week we’re loving…

Why should IKEA have all the fun on the flat pack front? At London Cocktail Club, JJ Goodman and co. are offering their guests flat pack cocktails. Oh yes indeedy, choose from Bellini, Summer Fruit Daiquiri, Martini or Pornstar Martini and you get all of the ingredients presented to you in a nifty box for you to make at your table. And if you want to turn the fun factor up even further, the team invite you to buy one of their Party Bags – dressing up kits for grown-ups who are still young at heart. Guaranteed to get any party off to the perfect start.
From 14th February at London Cocktail Club. Valentine’s Day treat perhaps?

As featured in The Independent Dish of the Day blog 13/2/2014