Source: The Telegraph
13 May 2016
It’s hard to imagine that anyone would need a reason to have a cocktail. But since it’s World Cocktail, here are ten…
Bull In The Heather (USA)
From Dona Bridges, one of my favourite bartenders who mixes up a storm at The Hungry Cat in Hollywood, comes this summery lavender scented dream of a cocktail. And the name? No, it’s not because it should be drunk while cow tipping — it’s dedicated to a song of the same name by Sonic Youth. So there.
First you will need to make the chamomile scented whisky: Take one bottle of Scotch — Dona favours mellow Pig’s Nose for its mellowness — and add 60g chamomile tea leaves. (You could use teabags too.) Leave to infuse for 45 minutes then strain.
Fill a shaker with ice and add 60ml chamomile tea scented whisky, 30ml red vermouth — preferably Cocchi de Torino — 10ml St Germain and 2 dashes of lavender bitters. Stir until chilly and serve ‘up’ (no ice) in a rocks glass. Garnish with a lemon twist. Put on some Sonic Youth, and rock out.
The Queen’ s Cocktail (UK)
Luca Missaglia is a thoroughly Italian boy who loves the UK. He is the Bar Manager at Aqua Shard high up above the city of London and with view to die for. So it’s hardly surprising that he was inspired to create a cocktail for HMQ herself to celebrate her 90th birthday. We salute you ma’am!
In a shaker of jug, without ice, stir together 50ml Tanqueray 10 gin, 10ml your favourite dry sherry, 25ml sugar, 60ml mint tea, a dash of orange bitters, 10ml grapefruit juice and 15ml lemon juice. Stir whilst standing to attention until the sugar has dissolved. Find the most regal glass you have, add ice and pour.
Sip whilst wearing a tiara. Or a crown. Corgi optional.
This was invented last autumn by Nitisak Jirakitanan, bar manager at The Siam Hotel in Bangkok. It’s inspired by my all-time favourite comfort food, pad krapow, and features a glorious shrub made with holy basil, which you’ll have to make first.
To do so, take 20 leaves of good fresh Thai holy basil and pop them in a blender with 180ml white vinegar. Whoosh until smooth. Push the mixture through a fine sieve and discard the pulp.
Now pop 2 cloves garlic, crushed, and 1 dried long red Thai chilli, crushed, into a container. Add the basil vinegar, 200g caster sugar and 300ml hot water and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Set aside to cool completely before straining and refrigerating.
To make the cocktail put 20 leaves holy basil and 1 teaspoon caster sugar into a cocktail shaker and muddle. Now add 30ml Bacardi white rum, 30ml Ketel One vodka, 60ml holy basil shrub, 15ml lime juice and 30ml lemon syrup. Add plenty of ice and shake, shake, shake. Strain into a rocks glass, over fresh ice if you like, and garnish with a few extra basil leaves and a dried chilli.
Sip as if sitting at the edge of the Chao Phraya river watching the sun set over the Temple Of The Dawn….
The Seawind (Jamaica)
My husband Fred came up with this after being served too many drinks that were far too sweet in a hotel in Montego Bay, where we had gone to visit his grandmother. Like her, the drink is strong and feisty, and is best drunk in a shaded hammock on a hot, hot day.
In a highball glass, stir together 40ml white overproof rum, 30ml lime juice, several dashes of Angostura bitter and 20ml sugar syrup. Fill the glass with ice and top up with soda water. Picture the blue Caribbean sea. Annnnnnd relax.
The Trans-Siberian Spritz (Russia)
As the seasons roll around, a lot of drinks brands develop cocktails to promote their product. And some are marvelous. Like this one, from premium Russian vodka makers, Beluga. It’s a sparkling gem of a summertime drink, created by Walter Pintus, and based on a recipe from Charles H. Baker’s 1939 A Gentleman’s Companion. Walter says it is “a fresh, elegant and aromatic take on the spritz, which perfectly reflects the ingredients of an English summer.” I couldn’t agree more.
First make the rhubarb and red fruit cordial: put 300g Yorkshire rhubarb, 10 hulled English strawberries, 10 raspberries, 500g caster sugar and 1.5 litres of water in a saucepan. Bring to the boil, turn down and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside. Add a vanilla pod. Then leave to cool completely. When cold, strain and refrigerate.
To make the cocktail, fill a shaker with ice and add 30 ml Beluga Noble vodka, 30ml rhubarb and red fruit cordial and 10ml Galliano L’Aperitivo. Strain into a beautiful glass or flute with a block of ice, if desired, and top up with ice cold dry champagne. Finish with a squeeze of orange peel.
Sip whilst reading Agatha Christie….
The French Twist (France)
In a similar vein, this delicious twist on a classic Mojito comes from Calvados Boulard. The apple and the mint flavours play beautifully with the ginger ale to create something very refreshing — perfect for a heatwave.
In the bottom of a Collins glass, muddle the leaves from 1 sprig of mint together with the juice of ½ lime. Add 40ml Calvados Boulard and 10ml sugar syrup, and stir together. Then fill the glass with ice, and top up with 60ml ginger ale — ideally Fever Tree, because it’s better than anyone else’s.
Mexican Spice (Mexico)
My friend Michel Dozois makes mean cocktails. This is one. With love from Mexico. Via L.A.
Fill a shaker with ice and add 60ml El Jimador Silver tequila, 30ml lime juice, 20ml agave nectar, 2 dashes of cayenne pepper and 1 small strawberry, hulled. Shake to the rhythm of a mariachi band until it’s as cold as Cruella de Ville’s heart.
Strain and serve over ice.
I’m Jim Morrison, I’m Dead (UK)
— Sam Herlihy (@samuelherlihy) August 24, 2015
This one comes from James Ramsden and Sam Herlihy, and their wonderful team at Pidgin, London’s hottest eatery and one of the few places for which I will dust my passport and venture east of Lincoln’s Inn. I’ve asked James about the name. Apparently is a reference to a song by a band called Mogwai. Of whom I am too old to know.
Place 35ml Rittenhouse rye whisky, 15ml oloroso sherry, 10ml Maraschino liqueur and a dash of Miracle Mile’s Toasted Pecan Bitters into a shaker. Add some ice and stir down for roughly the length of the intro of Light My Fire. Strain and pour into an Old Fashioned glass over ice and garnish with a maraschino cherry.
Chattanooga House Rules (USA)
I came up with this for Julia “Lenny” Leonard, who hails from Chattanooga, though its famous choo-choo whisked her off to Santa Fe, New Mexico and thence to London. She likes her bourbon, and a drink that’s not too sweet nor too medicinally bitter. This has, I think, just the right balance of strength and freshness, much like the lady herself.
In a dry frying pan, lightly toast a dried New Mexico chilli to bring out its aroma. Then snip off a 2cm piece and put it into an empty cocktail shaker. Add 50ml Maker’s Mark bourbon, 10ml Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao, 15ml fresh lime juice, 15ml fresh blood orange juice and two good dashes of Miracle Mile’s Toasted Pecan Bitters. Cover and leave to stand for 5 minutes. Then add ice and shake until cold. Then strain into a tumbler and garnish with a flamed orange twist. Behold its colour — all the hues of a Tennessee sunset — and enjoy.
The Martini (The Universe)
You cannot measure all the brilliant innovation in the world of cocktails without a benchmark of perfection. Let there be no doubt about it: the Martini is the benchmark. It is the drink that launched a thousand quips. It is so simple and yet so complete that it is easy to make, and very difficult to make well. And to complicate matters, every Martini fan likes theirs a little different. I prefer mine naked (the drink, not me) — no twist, no olive — and the amount of times a bartender has remarked, “Oh, so just a glass of cold gin” beggars belief. No: I do not want a glass of cold gin. I want a Martini. It is a mixed drink. I don’t care if you put my vermouth in with a pipette, so long as it’s in there. This is how I make mine:—
Fill a stirring glass with plenty of ice — I favour the stainless steel ones designed by Arne Jacobsen because they give you a perfect chill without too much dilution. Add a dash of Noilly Prat vermouth and stir it over the ice. By a dash, I mean a dash: put you thumb over the bottle mouth and… dash. About 1/4 a teaspoonful. Pour out your serving of gin, based on the glass you’re using. As far as I’m concerned, the gin should be Beefeater, and ideally at its export strength of 47%. Pour it over the ice and stir until your martini is as cold as the bottom of a penguin’s foot. Strain into your glass, garnish as you see fit with an olive or a lemon twist. Or not. Sip and give thanks. Because this is pretty much as good as it gets.