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Cover: Shaken and stirred

27Sep 12

Mojito Jelly Shots

Warning: Mojito Jelly Shots can turn you seriously silly! Note to self and guests: Remember they contain alcohol! I remember first making Mojito Jelly Shots one evening for a dinner party with close friends. Two of our friends were Cuban, and we often had competitions to see who could prepare the best Mojitos. So the jelly shots were my way of stepping up the game. The after-dinner treat turned, what started as a fairly reserved dinner, into one very funny evening. The combination of the refreshing Mojito cocktail with a chilled jelly is just divine. As the idea just came to me during the morning, I didn’t prepare with shot glasses or individual serving bowls. I just made the jelly in one large bowl, and we all ate from the bowl with tablespoons! However, I recommend that you serve the jelly in shot glasses or create unique forms with jelly […]

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20Sep 12

Lemon Cranberry Splash

Pucker up for this lemon cranberry splash cocktail! Unlike most of the cocktails I write about, this tipple I concoted myself. Well, that’s not to say that others don’t do the exact same thing, but in my travels, I have never seen one exactly like it. The lemon and cranberry flavours seem to blend together, but there is a bit of a sour aftertaste. That’s why I usually like to rim my glass with sugar to offset the tart flavour of the fruit. For the lemony flavour, I like to make my home-made lemonade. It takes a bit longer to prepare, but I prefer natural ingredients as opposed to the shop-bought version. However, I have been thinking about having a go at combining limoncello with a bit of cranberry juice to substitute for the lemonade. Using both limoncello and vodka will make the cocktail as a whole a bit stronger, […]

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27Aug 12

Gazpacho Cocktail

Next destination: Spain! Here is a great cocktail recipe that turns Spain’s famous chilled summer soup, gazpacho, into a sublime and extremely healthy cocktail! I would recommend attempting the gazpacho recipe first. The measures have to be just right to ensure that all the flavours shine through – tomato, pepper, garlic and vinegar. Just think of this as a summer version of the Bloody Mary. And you can serve up the remaining gazpacho for lunch or as an aperitif before dinner. This Andalusian recipe is packed full of vitamins. Tomatoes are a super food that keep your skin younger for longer. This recipe should give you enough mix for 4-5 tall glasses of Gazpacho Cocktail, with approximately 1 part vodka to 3 parts gazpacho. Served ice chilled, it is perfect for hot summer days – if you can catch one, that is! Print Gazpacho Cocktail Author: Jeremy Larson Recipe type: Cocktail Prep time:  45 […]

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31Jul 12

The Bronx cocktail, a daring drink from the Big Apple

Throughout history, the names of many drinks have been associated to places. This is due to the fact that some cocktails are named after the town they are first concocted in. On other occasions, the mix earns its name after the region where the main ingredient in it is grown or distilled. The drink I want to tell you about today has a powerful name, and is one of the 5 cocktails named after one of New York City´s five boroughs: The Bronx Cocktail. The Bronx cocktail is basically a perfect martini with orange juice added. In 1934, it was ranked third in “The World´s 10 most famous cocktails”, which made it a very popular rival to both the Martini and the Manhattan. And although it does not have the glamour of any of the latter, it is certainly a drink with a great story behind it. According to the […]

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28Jul 12

Horse´s Neck, the drink which came from a film

One evening a few weeks ago, I sat on the couch at home and watched an independent film. The lead character was a Polish climber, Jerzy Kuckuzka, who told his story while seated in a pub in London. The whole idea was pretty bizarre, but what really struck me was the drink this guy was ordering: the Horse´s Neck. To be quite honest, I had never even heard of it but decided to investigate further. And this is the mix I want to share with you today. A Horse´s Neck is an American cocktail that dates back to the 1890s. It started as a non-alcoholic mixture of ginger ale, ice and lemon peel. By the turn of the century, bartenders in Kentucky had a variation to the original, which included brandy –sometimes even bourbon- and which was ordered as a “Horse´s Neck with a kick, please”. The main ingredient to […]

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25Jul 12

Chocolate Martini

Chocolate martinis bring back fond memories for me. I’ve done a lot of travelling in the Americas, but I’ve seen a little of Europe too, living for a few years in London, and working in a graphic design agency. At that time I had a British racing green sports car for a while and I would sometimes drive from London to Nice in the South of France. I love to travel, in all sorts of ways and to all sorts of places… and for me it was the spirit of adventure that drove me to pack a few things on the roof and set off on the longish journey; across the English channel, meandering down through France, stopping off in Bordeaux, or to see friends in Clermont Ferrand – before snaking my way down to Nice on the Cote d’Azur; sometimes taking a little time to explore Provence on the […]

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22Jul 12

The Tornado, a Caribbean classic

Last Easter, a couple of friends decided to go to the Caribbean for a few days, so I tagged along. We went to the Dominican Republic. As soon as we arrived at the hotel in Santo Domingo, we were greeted by their wonderful staff with a drink I had never heard of before, but which has become a favourite both in flavour and memories: the tornado. The Dominican Republic turned out to be a vibrant, hectic and incredibly invigorating experience. We spent quite a lot of our time wandering the streets of the capital and became fixated by its people. The stories we heard mostly involved two topics: merengue and tornado cocktails. Merengue is a type of music and dance from the Dominican Republic. It was created by Nico Lora in the 1920s. There is a saying in the country which goes: “It does not matter if you are rich […]

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20Jul 12

B-52, an unlikely gunner classic

A couple of years ago, I got to watch a lot of Arsenal home games at Emirates Stadium in north London. A cousin of mine had season tickets but spent most of the year traveling on business and kindly offered me his seat. One Saturday, Nicklas Bendtner, a Danish forward who played for the gunners, changed his shirt number from 26 to 52. That same season, he scored an amazing goal against Liverpool in the Carling Cup. From then on, he was known as “the bomber”, and the B-52 cocktail became an Islington favourite. The B-52 is a layered shot made with a coffee liqueur, Irish cream and orange liqueur. Although there are special machines that can prepare a B-52, most bartenders rely on their traditional, hand-made preparation. This method is called “building”, as opposed to blending or shaking. The coffee liqueur is served first, because it is the thickest […]

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17Jul 12

Chilcano, a Peruvian classic with a story

During the last decade, I have visited Peru various times. Lima, the capital, is a fascinating place. There are colourful street markets everywhere you go, and people are always friendly and ready for a drink and/or a chat. On one of my latest trips, I met a chap by the name of Jaime Pesaque, who happens to own a restaurant in town. After dinner at his place one evening, he offered to mix me a drink he reckoned I had never tried before. The name of the drink was, as I recall, chilcano. At the time it seemed an odd name because it is also the name of a famous dish in Peru. Today, I want to tell you about this drink. The chilcano is a traditional Peruvian beverage. Its main ingredient is Pisco, which is the country´s national drink. Pisco is a colourless or yellowish-to-amber coloured grape brandy produced […]

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16Jul 12

Brandy Alexander

Traveling by train is, without a doubt, my favourite way of getting around, especially in foreign countries. One very cold January I went from New York to Los Angeles using Amtrak, the sole intercity passenger railroad in the continental United States. After leaving Denver in the evening, I headed for the bar in the second coach, looking for a drink that would warm me up. That was when the bartender offered me a variation of the gin-based Alexander cocktail: a Brandy Alexander. The Brandy Alexander has a long history. According to various cocktail books, it was first concocted for the wedding celebration of Princess Mary and Lord Lascelles in 1922 by a bartender at the Savoy Hotel Bar in London. By the middle of the century, it had become a widely known cocktail, and it is said that Mary Richards asked for one during her audition in the pilot episode […]

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