Currently browsing June 2008
With old ingredients like Crème de Violette becoming available once more, and many classic cocktail books being republished, these are exciting times for classic cocktail enthusiasts. Harry Johnson’s Bartenders’ Manual from 1900 has just been republished, but can we learn much from such an old tome?
We’ve all been told how vermouth spoils once opened if it isn’t kept refrigerated, but just how much does the flavour change? Armed with old and new bottles of Noilly Prat dry and Martini & Rossi sweet vermouth I decided to see if you really can taste the difference between them.
Though you may expect a liqueur with the word créme in it to contain cream, it infact means that the liqueur has a single dominant flavour, usually a fruit. Créme de pêche is one of the more unusual fruit liqueurs, but along with its cousin créme de pêche de vigne it can make some wonderful cocktails.
Located deep inside the Ritz Paris, on the über chic square of Place Vendrôme, Bar Hemingway is without doubt the classiest establishment I have ever drank at. After a seemingly never ending journey through the corridors of the Ritz you arrive in a small and cosy bar, but are the drinks as nice as the surroundings?
Just off Place de la Madeleine on Boulevard Malesherbes sits Le Forum, a modern Parisian take on the classic American cocktail bar. A mixture of new and old, Le Forum ha a cosy environment full of wood panelling, comfortable chairs and ornate stucco which is brought up to date by the young crowd and hip french house music.
Hosted by the guys at Scofflaw’s Den, this months Mixology Monday takes a look at Bourbon, one of my favourite spirits. Eager to find a new discovery I take a look at the Frisco Sour, an interesting mixture of Bourbon and Bénédictine that uses plenty of citrus resulting in a drink definitely deserving its sour name.
The Annual Hendrick’s Bartender Croquet Competition returns to London this week to kick of events for Bar08. I popped down to enjoy the croquet and gin, and finally got a chance to meet up with Stephan Berg and Jörg Meyer, Travelling Mixologists and last years coquet competition winners.
On a quiet side street just a short walk from the grand Palais Garnier is a rather unassuming neon-fronted bar called Harry’s New York Bar. Frequented in the past by the likes of Ernest Hemingway, Coco Channel, George Gershwin, Noel Coward and Marlene Dietrich, does Harry’s bar still deserve the reputation it enjoys?
This week I’m in Gay Paris, a place that always charms me with the ubiquity of alcohol… cafés, parks, McDonalds – there aren’t many places you can’t get at least a beer. Even 640 feet up Tour Montparnasse you can grab an apéritif to enjoy the sunset with. We have a lot to learn from the continent.
The English summer means the return of one of my favourite long drinks, the Pimm’s Cup. A firm favourite here, it may just be the perfect drink for a hot afternoon. Pimm’s isn’t the only fruit cup around though, so how does it compare with the competition, and just what fruit and mixers should go in to the perfect Pimm’s cup?
After several months, 23 different spirits and countless cocktails The Great Oh Gosh! Orange Liqueur Showdown draws to a close with a look at the best spirits from the selection. Whether you want something to mix drinks with, or a liqueur to sip neat, find out which are worth keeping on your shelf.