Tag Archives: New Zealand

Mr Fogg’s Residence: Around the world in 80 cocktails

Located in the heart of Mayfair, a short walk from Green Park underground station, there is a place of wonder and intrigue; a portal to a world long forgotten: Mr Fogg’s residence.


I’ve always wanted to visit Mr Foggs’ Residence. For years, I’ve dreamed about seeing the inner sanctum of that famous drawing room. I also don’t get to visit London very often. As I finally get to spend some decent time in the English capital, it would be rude not to make my way through the glitz and glamour of Mayfair to this mysterious and intriguing bar…

Mr Fogg, the fictional adventurer of Jules Verne’s 1873 novel ‘Around the World in 80 days’, is an eccentric adventurer and the theme behind Mr Fogg’s Residence – a bar located in Mayfair, London.

Having looked forward to this London city break for the best part of 3 months, I have no qualms in telling you, unequivocally, that it was by far the highlight of my week!

Having used this outing to meet with an old university friend and his girlfriend, this night was made even great via the nostalgic catch up. Great bar, great company, fantastic cocktails. There was even a little bit of magic thrown in for good measure!

The venue…

To reach the establishment I had to pass through the Ritz’s walkway, past several other high-end hotels and restaurants before finally turning down a rather ominous looking alleyway; only then was I within sight of the large, towering, one-way door.

As you pass the fresh hold, the door shutting behind you makes you turn back, but like some 1930’s film you spin on your heel and are met with the glorious, time-defying drawing room pulled straight from the novel itself. With leather-clad, lavish wood seating, fanciful stools, and tables, scattered about the place, you feel utterly cut off from the outside world – in the best possible way.

The bar itself is a tall solid beast, behind which stands one of the tallest collection of spirits I’ve ever seen. The seating me and my friends were taken too was amongst the plethora of stools and tables in an area directly in front of the bar. All of this in the midst of the Victorian led décor.

From stuffed reptiles and tiger skins to mounted guns and ancient leather-backed books, the décor is brilliant and that brilliance is, remarkably, not halted when you finally decide on a cocktail to order…

The cocktails…

The cocktail list is inspired by the novel ‘Around the world in 80 days’ and is called ‘Around the world in 80 cocktails’. There are 80 cocktails on the list and they’re split into their base alcohol (all the whisky based cocktails are together, and then the Gin, vodka, rum etc.) and whilst this makes it easier to single out those that contain ingredients you may not favour (for example I kept away from any whisky cocktails) the waitress that served our table brought us a rather cute foldout map that had overlaid the different cocktails to where they’re supposed to be inspired by. Different areas of the map reflected certain aspects of the cocktails they inspired.

But what about the cocktails themselves I hear you say! Well, look below at 3 of the cocktails we had that night… There will be no measurements as they were not included on the menu, neither would I want to supply them as these cocktails are all unique to Mr Fogg’s residence and, to truly appreciate them, you’d have to go there yourself…

 

Cocktail #1: No.8 Maidens Blush

 

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No.8: New Zealand – Sweet, fruity, sharp.

 

Ingredients: Tanqueray number 10 gin, raspberry jam, fresh lemon juice, sugar, drop of absinthe.

This cocktail was fragrant, as well as being exactly as advertised: sweet, fruity & Sharp. You lose the sting of the alcohol (the thing I hate the most about some stronger spirits) and yet you get the full aroma of the base spirit as well as all the flavours introduced by the other ingredients.

The vivid deep red of the drink, combined with the low-lit ambience of this Victorian speak-easy, really suited its title and made for a well-balanced cocktail.

Sarah, my friends’ girlfriend, liked this one – it was ordered more than once, and she seemed to really enjoy it.

Cocktail #2: No.34 Dewdrops of the Samurai

Photo by www.JohnnySphotography.com
No.34: Japan – fresh, light, delicate, shaken.

 

Ingredients: Ketel One Vodka, Isake classic Sake, shiso & mint Leaves, pomegranate seeds, pomegranate juice, fresh lime juice, and house made sugar syrup.

This was my first choice, having spent a long time looking at the menu, and, after not being able to decide, I went with the one drink that really stood out. Shamefully I have to admit it jumped out at me for two main reasons: its name, and the fact that it used Sake.

I’ve never had sake in a cocktail before, nor have I tried it on its own. So to me, this drink, seemed like the perfect starting point for a place as wonderful as Mr Fogg’s Residence.

As the drink was placed before me I was not disappointed, it sat in a small bowl like glass that looked as though it would suit a bramble perfectly. Upon it’s crushed ice sat a dried piece of peel (I assume pomegranate peel, although it could have been grapefruit) and, like a boat used to cross the Nishiki River, the pomegranate seeds used the peel to protect them from a sea of exotic flavours.

It was an extremely well-balanced drink, a fact making itself known among all our drink choices, and really allowed the flavours and fragrances of the ingredients used to fill your nostrils as well as your taste buds.

Cocktail #3: No.31 Boo Boo on Bromo

 

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No.31: Indonesia – Spicy, aromatic, exotic, shaken.

 

Ingredients: Kaffir lime infused Grey Goose vodka, Domaine De Canton ginger liqueur, pear puree, House ginger syrup, apple juice, and lime juice.

This cocktail took even longer to choose because I was only having one more. I searched the map they gave us and perused the cocktail list several times before settling on this spicy yet fragrant looking concoction. I’ve used Ginger Liqueur before and Domaine De Canton is sublime. So I knew kind of what to expect from that ingredient. I also liked the idea of the orchard theme coming from the use of pear and apple. So I happily exclaimed, “the no.31 please!”

The cocktail, I received was a longer one than the previous Japanese themed drink, and yet still looked just as exotic. With leaves and dried fruit sprouting from the crushed ice filled glass, it really helped project a sense of the exotic towards me. The fragrance you’re hit with straight away is this lime filled apple orchard. Something that is not unpleasant to me at all. I certainly chose well that night.

Whilst a balanced fragrane doesn’t always lead to a balanced taste, one thing Mr Fogg’s residence does is balance all of their cocktails, no matter how exotic or weird they sound, and that, I believe, a sign of true class in the cocktail world.

Overall…

To have 80 different cocktails, and all of the ingredients that then infers, and still have 80 well-balanced, fragrant and truly unique cocktails, is truly a feat well achieved by those in charge.

This establishment is a truly fascinating place. A bar that allows you to, once that door shuts, fully lose yourselves within its confines. Mesmerising you with the authenticity of a Victorian (via Jules Verne) themed drawing room, Mr Fogg’s residence goes above and beyond that of any normal bar I’ve ever been too. From the beautiful waitresses, and highly skilled bartenders to the wandering magician who wows with his splendid talent, Mr Fogg’s residence is not only my new favourite bar, it’s my new favourite destination. Every time I go to London in the future, I will set aside time to visit this glorious palace of delight and every one of you reading this, who has the opportunity to travel to the English capital, should do the same. I cannot implore to you how much you should visit the residence of the fantastic Mr Fogg.

Final word: A huge thank you to Mr Francesco Medici, the Bar Manager. Thanks to him and his staff for a wonderful evening. Thank you to Siegfried, the fantastic magician – who, to this day, still amazes me and my friends. And finally: A massive thank you to my friends Stuart and Sarah. You both made the night just that little bit more fun!

 

 

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My companions this night. Left – right: Stuart & Sarah.

 

Cocktails O’ Clock: Kiwi Kutee Cocktail

A cute little rum cocktail, with a tropical kick…

A Kiwi Kutee cocktail, not to be confused with this Cute Kiwi Bird…
Picture courtesy of jobryantnz.wordpress.com/

Although you might think ‘Kiwi = New Zealand’ but this cocktail is surprisingly versatile. It is primarily a summer cocktail, yes, but it works so well for those chilly autumn evenings or calm spring days, even on family afternoons during the winter; this cocktail is fantastically versatile and to prove that here are some great examples of themed events you could use it at…

Of course you can use it at Weddings, birthdays and other celebratory events, but more so; the tropical elements in this cocktail allow for the use in any of the following themes:

–          Tropical

–          Beach Party

–          Caribbean

–          Hawaiian

–          Summer

–          Garden Parties

–          BBQ’s

Kiwi Kutee Cocktail Recipe:

(2 measures) 30ml Lime Juice

(3 measures) 45ml light rum

(2 measures) 30ml Pineapple Juice

(6 measures) 90ml Guava Juice

(2 measures) 30g freshly chopped guava

(1 measures) 1 whole kiwi (skinned & diced)

A wonderfully fresh cocktail, that even gives you 2 of your 5 a day… kinda… Picture courtesy of Food Network.

Method:

1)      Blend all the ingredients until smooth.

2)      Pour into a tall glass filled with crushed ice.

3)      Garnish with a Lime & Kiwi wheel.

Top tip: This cocktail is perfect for scaling up to pitcher (punch bowl) sizes… The best way to do this is to use the above recipe but look at 15ml as 1 measure, so use the ‘measures’ above to create your perfect pitcher…

This cocktail is rather light on alcohol, but tastes amazing. The guava gives it a real fruity overtone, blending with the soft rum flavours. The pineapple juice adds a little tang, the Kiwi adds its nicely balanced sweet & sour mix and the lime juice ties it all together.

Really this cocktail is perfect for those chilly summer evenings, but resilient enough for any time of the year. You can make it for your close friends during the Sunday football sessions or for your girls instead of a wine evening… But if you ever want to relive those summer afternoons on the veranda this has to be the cocktail for you…

 

Original Recipe (and the cocktail picture) taken from The Food Network, the Cute Kiwi was borrowed from ‘Chronicles of Illusions

King of Cool: Cocktails and Justin Timberlake…

“Take Back the Night… With a Cuba Libre”

At home I make cocktails all the time, granted I drink a lot of Cuba Libre’s, (hell if I have rum I’ll drink them all day long) but every now and then I push the boat out, buy some Tanqueray, and chill with a classic Gin fizz, but mainly I’ll use my Boston Shaker for something a little more challenging. Now when I do this, it’s like making a meal, I gather all my ingredients; making sure I have all the tools (utensils, shaker glass etc.) ready and the right measuring jiggers for what I need.

Now to really get into the ‘zone’ I like to chuck on some music, whatever I happen to be into at the time. When I want a classic cocktail from the prohibition I go for Jazz, it just sets the mood, but when I’m making something more modern I like to listen to a bit of pop. Mainstream I know but its easy listening and easy to jig along to.

Anyway, to the point, the other day I chucked on Justin Timberlake’s new song ‘Take Back the Night’ and started to test out some cocktails for the Angostura 2014 Global Cocktail Competition. This was one of the more fun sessions I’ve had recently, both distressing from my current job, and also general life. You might say it’s my happy place… Now I’ll listen to anything me, I’m quite partial to a bit of the classic 80’s & 90’s stuff but also quite into artists like Diana Vickers. Something happy, upbeat and fun, that’s the name of the game for me. This is where good old JT comes in to the fray:

JT likes a drink or two... He's also pretty good at music if you hadn't heard...
JT likes a drink or two… He’s also pretty good at music if you hadn’t heard…

I was jigging along to we take back the night, mixing away working out cocktails that worked and those that didn’t (those that were as crisp and refreshing as being hit around the face by a Pimms marinated cucumber, and those that were worse than a martini containing more brine than a walrus’ backside), when I realised I’d come up with something a little special.

What I came up with are 3 very fantastic but equally dangerous cocktails. I have no doubt that I will not be invited to the UK heats, as I’m sure that there are other people better than me, but I live in hope, the hope that I get to go to such an event and have someone professional judge my work. That’s my aim, for professional feedback from someone in the drinks business. The money always helps should I ultimately win it too hehe.

One of these cocktails is a tweaked version of a mule cocktail I published on a recent post; the Mordor Mule (that’s right the New Zealand themed Mule Cocktail).

I won’t be sharing the cocktails just yet as, should I be invited to the heats, I want them to be a surprise (you never know who’ll read the post right folks?)…

What I’m trying to get across is that for me, music and cocktail making work extremely well together. If I enjoy the music, it helps me get lost in the atmosphere I create, letting my creativity run a little looser than usual.  And the magic potion this time: JT’s Take Back the Night

Although my favourite song at the moment is: Diana Vickers: Music to make boys cry

It doesn’t always result in great cocktails every time, but I find it helps me focus in on the ingredients that work better than others. It may not work for you but that’s the point, I find it works for me, so thought I’d share that with you all… Not to mention this funny cocktail related picture 😀

Even the lesser mammals enjoy a cocktail or three...
Even the lesser mammals enjoy a cocktail or three…

Drink well, drink responsibly!

Bon Anniversaire…

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What it feels like to know someone, anyone (other than your own mother) likes your work…

I finished work early today, and when I did my customary stat check on the blog and I was met with a notification symbol, the likes of which I’d never seen before. It was in the shape of a cup, not a tea cup, but one of those ‘takes two people to lift it’ football sized trophy cups…

Anyway I immediately clicked on it to find out what sort of prize awaited me, some glorious honour from my fellow bloggers? No? What about a special delivery, a message or gift from some famous alcohol company? – Too good to be true! Instead I was met with this message:

“Happy Anniversary with WordPress.com!”

And then:

“You registered on WordPress.com 1 years ago!

Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging!”

Now to me nothing says happy anniversary like a nice bottle of Havana Club, or a sneaky ‘pushing the boat out’ bottle of Prucia Plum Liqueur. But whilst this message is a bit of a ‘well done old chap’ tap on the back, it does lead me onto a reflective train of thought…

It’s been a whole year since I signed up to my blog, granted I did take a couple months to publish the first blog, but I’ve still come a long way.

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White Arrow: You are here…

I started out with the small hope that I could grow my online presence and help get the UK more enthusiastic about cocktails (by celebrating ingredients, cocktails and bars wherever I find them!). Now having looked back at the stats, I’ve been blown away at just how many people have actually read a post on my blog. Let me share a few figures for you:

1)      Total Views since I started (and counting):                                            6,430

2)      Total months I’ve been posting not including this month (august):             10

3)      Total months where the blog has grown in views                                     10

4)      Top 3 Countries by views:

  1. United States of America:                                                                        2,508
  2. United Kingdom:                                                                                      1,397
  3. Canada:                                                                                                       226

5)      Total Countries reached:                                                                           108

6)      Number of spots on a leopard:                                                                    176

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THATS NUMBERWANG!!!!

Ok so that last one was a red-herring (ha-ha I’m full of animal puns today), but just look at the countries reached: 108… Now when I set out that was a number that hadn’t even crossed my mind. I was aiming to hit the U.K. solely and start my way on the U.S.A. at a later date. As it turns out, the North Americans (USA/Canada) are up there in my top 3. The only other places in the world I wanted to hit this early on were Australia and New Zealand (both of which are inside the top 20 (with 149, and 43 respectively).

Now I hope you can understand that to me these figures are mind boggling! I would never have dreamed that over 6,000 people would’ve read my blog, not to mention commented on it.

And this is where we move onto my followers…

I have 30 WordPress followers (as well as 200+ on twitter and Facebook) and, well to be totally honest, I don’t think I’d be where I am today without you all. Thank you all for reading/sharing/re-posting the contents of my blog. I’d like to think I could call a couple of you pals. Something I certainly never thought would happen!

At least I’d like to think some of you guys are at least on common speaking terms: here’s looking at you;

LordsOfTheDrink & ThingzThatFizz… among many others!

My last post: ‘The Fervent Shaker’s Top 10… Liqueurs’ was an apt blog on which to have this little number follow. University for me was as much about discovering cocktails and furthering my love for them as it was about getting my degree in Geography & Geology.

Hang on I hear you say, a student that drinks? Surely not! Well I can tell you that I did further my knowledge of cocktails, the best way anyone can: by consuming them in vast quantities over the course of a few years…

Well, finally let me end this emotional drivel and just say; I intend to commemorate this 1 year’s anniversary by continuing my blog as it is now. Fear not for you shall continue to see Recipes, alcohol specials, event specials and my general musings for many more years to come! (Hopefully).

Again thank you all, and if you ever need a recipe for any cocktail, you know where I am!

Dan

The Fervent Shaker.

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Oh, should anyone want to send me a few of these babies, then please do… (I reckon 1 for every post should be enough) haha. Peace out!

3 course cocktails: Vodka Madness!

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42 Below Special: ‘42 Below’ Vodka has origins in the grand countryside of New Zealand and is a relative new comer in the shelves of the supermarkets here in the UK (over the last year or two). This 3 course cocktails post is a dedication to the product and the drinks supplied are tweaked to pay homage to its New Zealand heritage, whether it be the use of that vodka alone, or the addition of other ingredients can be seen below, either way the drink is a twist so not a classic recipe.

Starter:

Starter: It’s the Bloody Oysters Mary!

New Zealand, a place currently at the top end of my places-to-visit list and second only to the full state tour of the USA (for obvious cocktail/historical reasons), is the theme of this 3 Course Cocktail post. And the starter for this 3 course cocktail post is a twist on the Bloody Mary.

The classic recipe is simple enough: Vodka, Tomato Juice and then a combination of seasonings to the drinker’s choice. Traditionally a classic bloody mary will contain the vodka and tomato juice, but also salt, pepper, celery salt, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, lemon juice and tobasco sauce (although how much of the latter depends on how hot you prefer the drink). There are many variations of this recipe; using different combinations of the above ingredients as well as using different sauces altogether, some recipes even include cooling agents such as cucumber or avocado to the drink!

Now this recipe is different from the traditional recipe but only in one ingredient: Oyster Sauce. Now being in the UK, and around 21,000 miles (give or take) from New Zealand, you may find it a little difficult to come across good quality New Zealand Bluff Oysters (if you don’t know about these I suggest you Google a.s.a.p.). However a simple dash of oyster sauce, should supply the flavour hit required.

A New Zealand Bloody Mary; perfect for those trips to bag end…

Now there are two ways to make a great tasting bloody mary cocktail. One way is the ‘cheating’ route: By some bloody mary spice mix, add 1 teaspoon to the relevant amounts of vodka and tomato juice. This is perfect for large quantities at parties (especially when people are too drunk to taste the difference) but not so great for the budding bartender/mixoogist.

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My New Zealand inspired Bloody Mary, with a splash of Oyster Sauce to put an interesting spin on a class cocktail…

My preferred method, is of course the old fashioned ‘build it from scratch’ route. And to show this, here’s my preferred recipe too (it’s mild-borderline quite spicy):

1 teaspoon Salt

1 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper

½ teaspoon Celery Salt

2 slices of cucumber

15ml Fresh Lemon Juice

½-1 teaspoon Horseradish*

½ teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce

¼ – ½ teaspoon Oyster Sauce

2-3 dashes Tobasco Sauce

50ml Vodka

150-200ml Tomato juice

Preparation:

Start by adding the ingredients in the order above. Once the lemon juice goes in, muddle the contents gently. Then continue to build your drink. Once all the ingredients are in the glass (use a boston glass – as we’re about to shake, rattle n’ roll here people) add some ice cubes and using a boston shaker, ‘roll’ the drink to chill it.

Top Tip: If you’re making this drink in advance it pays to shake it like normal, but for making it there and then, rolling the drink results in a better quality drink (it’s easier on your arms too!).

Main:

Main Course: It’s 42 Below and all I have is a Kiwi fruit?

So the idea of this main course is to supply something a little different, a tweak on a classic. The Caipirinha is a Brazilian drink, but has a great many variations. A very popular variation is the Caipiroska, a similar drink with the only difference being the use of Vodka as the base spirit (instead of Cachaca). This particular main course cocktail is a New Zealand themed Caipiroska. Using 42 Below Vodka and Kiwi fruit (puree, flesh and some fresh juice).

The variety of kiwi used in this cocktail is a UK commercial fruit (Hayward). For those of you reading this that are blessed with several different varieties to choose from, please feel free to try some different ones out, especially those that taste better than the commercial brand here in the UK!

Caipiroska 42 Below

50ml ‘42 Below’ Vodka

½ lime, quartered

1 tablespoon Caster Sugar

½-1 Kiwi Pureed

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A nice little New Zealand twist on a Caipiroska. Smooth & sweet this cocktail will go down just right….

Preparation:

Base:

1)      Quarter a lime and drop it into a thick bottome, serving glass.

2)      Drop in the caster sugar

3)      Mudlle to relasea the limes juices, oils, and to dissolve all if not most fo the caster sugar.

Drink:

1)      Pour in the crushed ice.

2)      Add in the kiwi puree and vodka.

3)      Cover with a napkin and mix up the drink [vigorously] with a barspoon.

4)      Top up with crushed ice and serve with 2 straws.

Garnish: Lime wedge & Kiwi slice.

I have a bit of a thing about Caipirinha’s, including all variations. The idea that a cocktail that tastes so great can be so simple to make is just fantastic. The classic Caipirinha is simply sugar, lime and Cachaca. That’s it! So when you decide to switch out the Brazilian spirit and mix in high grade vodka, you have an end product that is simply, smooth and fresh…

This is more of a New Zealand Themed recipe, as you can see from the ingredients, and whilst it is a little different than the normal recipes, it’s just as refreshing as it is stunning to look at…

Dessert:

Dessert: when 1 dessert is too few and choice is just right…

For this menu, I’ve decided to go for cocktails that are more dessert than cocktail. This doesn’t really change anything other than they are more ‘meal-like’ choices.

The three dessert course cocktails chosen for this menu are a combination of traditional cocktail recipes using Below 42 vodka, but served in a slightly contemporary fashion.

The first is a cocktail version of the classic Italian dessert: Tiramisu. Using Below 42 Vodka and combining it with coffee liqueur, bailey’s and a splash of amaretto this recipe supplies the creamy-coffee flavoured dessert but with an alcoholic hit.

The second is a student inspired Jelly-Shot like dessert: Lemon Drop Jelly Shots. Again using Below 42 Vodka and Organic, unwaxed lemons this rather special jelly (Jell-O as you Americans call it) shots are something a little different. Taking a classic student staple and adding some class is not a regular move for me, but in this case it does add something special to the flavour of the lemon jelly. Using the zest of 1 whole organic lemon per batch the generic lemon jelly will take on the zesty-ness (I’m not sure that’s even a word) and give out an improved and rather robust lemon taste. Serve this with some candied citrus slices and a little vanilla ice cream and you have a rather simple, yet elegant dessert cocktail.

The third and by no means least is definitely the star of the lot: Cosmopolitan Sorbet.

This dessert cocktail combines on of the most famous cocktails in the world and that summer dessert favourite: sorbet. Using an extremely simple method (as well as fresh produce) you can create some rather fantastic cocktail-sorbets.

The recipe included is for a very fresh tasting classic cosmopolitan, but the recipe I did at home (also included underneath the classic one) was a cherry cosmopolitan. This was purely as I could not source cranberries (fresh or frozen!) at the time of making the cocktail! Hopefully you’ll enjoy the different way of serving this great cocktail!

White Russian Tiramisu

250ml Expresso Coffee (made up and chilled)

250g Mascarpone cheese

55g Brown Sugar

120ml 42 Below vodka

50ml Baileys (original)

75ml Coffee Liqueur

Sponge fingers (1 packet = 6-12)

2 eggs

Ecuadorian dark chocolate

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A perfect combination of alcohol and dessert.

Preparation:

1)      Separate the eggs, and keep them both.

2)      Combine the expresso coffee, coffee liqueur & vodka in a bowl and dip in (1 by 1) the sponge fingers.

3)      Line 4 serving dishes with the fingers and drizzle on the remaining mixture.

4)      Beat the egg yolks and the sugar together until the mixture is thick and creamy. Add in the mascarpone and baileys and beat again, until the mixture has been well combined.

5)      Then, using clean utensils whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. Then using a metal spoon fold in half the egg whites into the previous mascarpone mixture. Fold in the rest of the egg into the mixture until well combined.

6)      Spoon the mixture into the glasses and cover, then chill for 6 hours.

7)      Sprinkle with coarse dark chocolate just before serving…

Top Tip: I opted for Ecuadorian chocolate here, but as long as it’s dark chocolate, and not Belgian then you should be fine! – Have a look at the subtle flavours (of the chocolate) and choose the one best suited for your guests.

Original recipe ‘borrowed’ from: http://the-dessert-drink-life.blogspot.co.uk/ (Thanks).

Cosmopolitan Sorbet

250ml water

250g sugar

680g Frozen Cranberries

120ml Below 42 Vodka

120ml Fresh Lime Juice

30ml Cointreau (or other orange liqueur)

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A classic Cosmo, frozen and delicious…

Preparation:

1)      Bring sugar and water to a boil and stir until the sugar is dissolved.

2)      Add the cranberries and let simmer (uncovered) until the berries collapse when lightly pressured (should take around 8-10 minutes).

3)      Take off heat and blend into a puree.

4)      Gently press through a sieve, being careful not to push through any of the flesh.

5)      Cover and then cool the syrup until cold.

6)      Stir in the vodka, lime juice and Cointreau and place in flat bottomed container, and place in the freezer.

7)      Check regularly and when the mixture is frozen on the outside, but runny in the middle take it out of the freezer.

8)      Empty into a large bowl and stir until well mixed. Return to the freezer until frozen.

9)      Take it out of the freezer and place in the fridge about 10 minutes before serving.

10)   When serving, scoop it into a martini glass and garnish with a drizzle of blackberry coulis.

Lemon Drop Jelly Shots

270g Lemon Jelly

Hot water

1 Lemon, Zested

75ml 42 Below vodka

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Classic Student dessert cocktail, spiced up with a little New Zealand class.

Preparation:

1)      Prepare the jelly as per instructions.

2)      Leave, covered, to cool slightly.

3)      Stir in the vodka & lemon zest.

4)      Separate into serving containers.

5)      Chill in the fridge until set.

6)      Serve with candied citrus fruits, or a pear compote.

Top Tip: When zesting the lemon, try to make it as fine as possible. Also, serve with any vodka cocktail to help make it go down a little better!

Chaser:

Kamikaze Shooter

Equal parts:

‘42 Below’ Vodka

Lime Juice

Triple Sec

That classic death-defying shooter: The Kamikaze; is the epitome of the death-skirting shooters, and let’s face it, it tastes fantastic! A simple combination of Vodka, Lime and Triple Sec, this drink tastes great, but man o’ man it packs a mighty punch…

A perfect finish to some great cocktails/dessert, finish the kamikaze before it finishes you!

Hope you enjoy the cocktails/desserts. Feel free to share any recipes you may have in the comments section below. Until next time!

3 course meal New Zealand Special: A preview…

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The place i want to call home…

So, it’s been a while. I’ve been working, not drinking a lot and generally not had a lot of time to write. It sucks. But now i have 2 weeks off, and plenty of time to write my heart out.

Starting with this preview of my upcoming 3 course cocktail: New Zealand special.

Now i have a special day in out in london planned next tuesday (25th) during which i’ll be trying out 3 or 4 different cocktail bars located near/around the London Bridge area of London. This will be posted in the form of both cocktails, event reviews and of course the write up of the Cointreau Fizz Garden event i’m going to in the evening.

Until then i intend to finish the preview below and of course supply plenty of other great posts. So read on, enjoy and look forward!

I have a deep held love for New Zealand, it started when i was about 14 and saw a documentary about it. Then when i was 18 my best friend moved out there, and ever since i’ve been obsessed with the wonderful country, culture, scenery and all. Hopefully one day i can visit, and if i’m really lucky i may even get to call it home. But those are dreams. This is fact and here come the great cocktails, all with a New Zealand theme… FACT.

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It even looks like Italy upside down. What’s not to love?

Starter: It’s the Bloody Oysters Mary!

New Zealand, a place currently at the top end of my places-to-visit list and second only to the full state tour of the USA (for obvious cocktail/historical reasons), is the theme of this 3 Course Cocktail post. And the starter for this 3 course cocktail post is a twist on the Bloody Mary.

The classic recipe is simple enough: Vodka, Tomato Juice and then a combination of seasonings to the drinker’s choice. Traditionally a classic bloody mary will contain the vodka and tomato juice, but also salt, pepper, celery salt, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, lemon juice and tobasco sauce (although how much of the latter depends on how hot you prefer the drink). There are many variations of this recipe; using different combinations of the above ingredients as well as using different sauces altogether, some recipes even include cooling agents such as cucumber or avocado to the drink!

Now this recipe is different from the traditional recipe but only in one ingredient: Oyster Sauce. Now being in the UK, and around 21,000 miles (give or take) from New Zealand, you may find it a little difficult to come across good quality New Zealand Bluff Oysters (if you don’t know about these I suggest you google a.s.a.p.). However a simple dash of oyster sauce, should supply the flavour hit required.

Main Course: It’s 42 Below and all I have is a Kiwi fruit?

So the idea of this main course is to supply something a little different, a tweak on a classic. The Caipirinha is a Brazilian drink, but has a great many variations. A very popular variation is the Caipiroska, a similar drink with the only difference being the use of Vodka as the base spirit (instead of Cachaca). This particular main course cocktail is a New Zealand themed Caipiroska. Using 42 Below Vodka and Kiwi fruit (puree, flesh and some fresh juice).

The variety of kiwi used in this cocktail is a UK commercial fruit (insert genus name here). For those of you reading this that are blessed with several different varieties to choose from, please feel free to try some different ones out, especially those that taste better than the commercial brand here in the UK!

Dessert: when 1 dessert is too few and choice is just right…

For this menu, I’ve decided to go for cocktails that are more dessert than cocktail. This doesn’t really change anything other than they are more ‘meal-like’ choices.

The three dessert course cocktails chosen for this menu are a combination of traditional cocktail recipes using Below 42 vodka, but served in a slightly contemporary fashion.

The first is a cocktail version of the classic Italian dessert: Tiramisu. Using Below 42 Vodka and combining it with coffee liqueur, bailey’s and a splash of amaretto this recipe supplies the creamy-coffee flavoured dessert but with an alcoholic hit.

The second is a student inspired Jelly-Shot like dessert: Lemon Drop Jelly Shots. Again using Below 42 Vodka and Organic, unwaxed lemons this rather special jelly (jell-o as you Americans call it) shots are something a little different. Taking a classic student staple and adding some class is not a regular move for me, but in this case it does add something special to the flavour of the lemon jelly. Using the zest of 1 whole organic lemon per batch the generic lemon jelly will take on the zesty-ness (im not sure that’s even a word) and give out an improved and rather robust lemon taste. Serve this with some candied citrus slices and a little vanilla ice cream and you have a rather simple, yet elegant dessert cocktail.

The third and by no means least is definitely the star of the lot: Cosmopolitan Sorbet.

This dessert cocktail combines on of the most famous cocktails in the world and that summer dessert favourite: sorbet. Using an extremely simple method (as well as fresh produce) you can create some rather fantastic cocktail-sorbets.

The recipe included is for a very fresh tasting classic cosmo, but the recipe I did at home (also included underneath the classic one) was a cherry cosmo. This was purely as I could not source cranberries (fresh or frozen!) at the time of making the cocktail! Hopefully you’ll enjoy the different way of serving this great cocktail!

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When you live near this sight, why would you be sad?

So there you go, a little bit of an upcoming blog that i’m sure will go down well with you all. The full post will of course contain various recipes, preparation methods and a few home shot pictures to boot. Until then, keep mixing! (responsibly of course)…

Profound thinking… Oh and a Cocktail to boot!

Finally i have had a view from New Zealand!

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The place I hold dear in my heart… And one of my cocktail inspirations (especially for summery drinks)

One of the few things i wanted to achieve when i set out with my blog was to reach as many countries as possible and spread the word that cocktails are great. So far, since humble beginnings back in October, I have reached 855+ views spread across 47 different countries and that’s a substantial amount more than I ever could have envisioned.

One country that holds a special place in my heart (ever since one of my best mates emigrated there nearly 10 years ago) is the wonderful land of Middle Earth… That’s right New Zealand! Well after 7 (and a bit) months I have, today, finally received not 1 but 2 individual views from the wonderful land of New Zealand…

So this is a more personal post, and it’s just to say that I’m nearly there… I’m 132 views away from the magic 1,000. If I can hit that figure by the end of this month I think it will have been a fantastic achievement. Not only that but with me looking to branch into some video blogs in the next few months alongside my normal text blogs, I’m hoping I can hit 2,000 in half the time it took to hit 1,000… In theory at least!

Anyway onto the cocktails: Yeah I’m sitting here enjoying a Cuba Libre! A little bit of a treat this time; using Angostura 1919 rum, a golden, slightly spiced and 100% beautiful-in-every-way-possible style rum. Add a half lime’s worth of freshly squeezed lime juice and top up with cola and you have one of the nicest Cuba Libres ever concocted…

I’m enjoying this lovely drink (or two!) and generally chilling out and I started thinking about different posts I’ve done before, and how well they’ve been doing… Now the one post that has done better than all the others (by a long mile) is the Licor 43 Spirit special I did a while back. It’s been superbly popular and its only about the alcohol’s history (in brief) and a couple of cocktail recipes to boot.

Recipe for the Cuba Libre i’m drinking:

50ml Angostura 1919 Rum

1/2 Lime Juiced (roughly 25-30ml)

Top up Coca Cola

Basically I was thinking how good it would be to pay homage to the post and the liqueur itself by gathering some of the best cocktail recipes using the spirit as well as some useful links about the spirit (hopefully showing its overall place throughout the cocktail & spirit worlds).

Well this will be the next large blog I do, and will probably be here within the next month or so, intermixed will be some more cocktail recipe blogs, as well as anything I think you all should know…

Anyway that’s all from me and this rather more sombre post, except to say that I’ve recently updated my about me and ‘services/rates’ pages and would love to direct you all there to have a look at what I can offer (services are unfortunately only open to the UK at this time but I will take emails from anyone who needs help!). Check out these links below for the pages themselves and have fun!

About me: https://theferventshaker.wordpress.com/about/

Services & Rates: https://theferventshaker.wordpress.com/hire-me-services-rates/

Keep your eyes peeled, and thanks again for reading!

Here’s a cocktail to whet your appetite:

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A cocktail all the way from New Zealand… It has something about it doesn’t it?