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Cover: Shaken and stirred

Recipes with milk

25Jul 12

Chocolate Martini

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 way.

The journey itself was part of the adventure; you see I’m not one of those that just wants to get straight from A to B! After a few days of relaxed journeying, we would stay on the Nice harbour overlooking the sea and enjoy the buzz of the city with its Italianate architecture, stony beaches, meandering roads and lively nightclubs. It was here in that I sampled my first chocolate martini.

So I weave the story because of a personal link between the south of France and this creamy cocktail; not that the two are connected in any other way. There are lots of variations on the chocolate martini; and of the many that I’ve tried since my days in Nice, I find this the creamiest and most delicious. You can rim the glass with chocolate if you wish, and top off with a cherry.  I include white chocolate liqueur in my mix… if you’re a white chocolate fan, check out this white chocolate mousse too.

Chocolate Martini
Recipe type: Cocktail Drink
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
There are lots of variations on the chocolate martini; I find this mix of chocolate vodka, chocolate liqueur, creme de cacoa and milk, the creamiest and most delicious.
  • 4.5cl chocolate vodka
  • 9cl white chocolate liqueur
  • 2cl shot crème de cocoa
  • 9cl whole milk
  • crushed ice
  1. Fill a shaker with crushed ice, measure in the ingredients, give it a good shake and pour into a glass.


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26Mar 12

White Russian

White Russian cocktailBack in 1998 I spent a winter in the United States working at a ski resort called Crested Butte, on the western side of Colorado. Today, I want to tell you about this experience and a drink which is not only ideal for cold winter afternoons, but also a mix that has gained enormous reputation over the last decade: the White Russian.

The cocktail was one of the first popular drinks based on vodka and appeared in bars in North America in late 1950’s, when a marketing campaign for beverages with vodka such as (vodka with cranberry) was put forth in the United States to promote the little-used alcohol. The White Russian first came into popular existence in 1965 with the advent of a recipe printed in the Oakland Tribune.

In my case, the White Russian came as a surprise. Not only because I was offered one on a chilly and windy afternoon and found its rich, creamy taste almost irresistible and great for the climate, but mainly because I discovered its secret that very first time: it is a very alcoholic cocktail. As an instructor friend put it, it’s a perfect drink both for someone who doesn’t really drink (because the flavour reminds you of an overly rich milkshake), as well as for someone who drinks too much (because you only need two or three and you’re there!!). Because of its white, creamy colour, you tend to forget its main ingredient is vodka.

After that first sip on a cold afternoon, the cocktail became a habit during my whole stay in Colorado. I was still, however, missing the final lesson. One evening, my friends introduced me to a film called “The Big Lebowski” where the main character, “the Dude”, (played by Jeff Bridges) spends most of his time on screen drinking White Russians. It is possibly one of the funniest films I have ever seen, and according to The New York Times, is the reason behind the resurge of the cocktail over the last decade.

If you are ever in a cold place and feel like you need a stiff vodka, maybe the White Russian is the answer to soften the taste. And if you are ever in a tight spot and need a good, loud laugh, then “The Big Lebowski” and “the Dude” are definitely the answer.

• 30ml coffee-flavored liqueur
• 30ml vodka
• ½ cup cream or milk

How to make it:
1. In a mixing glass, combine the coffee-flavored liqueur, vodka and cream or milk.
2. Pour over ice in a highball glass.

Time: 2 minutes
Serves: 1 cocktail

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