Friday, 9 October 2015

The best drinks we discovered at London Cocktail Week

Talk about sensory overload. Over the last four days we've read countless cocktail menus, smelt so many syrups and tinctures, watched bartenders from some of the best bars in the capital do their thing, and tried a LOT of cocktails which we'd never normally order, all to find the best drinks that London Cocktail Week has to offer.

The good news is that it's still running - until Sunday, no less. Grab yourself a wristband and get down to one of the 275 bars doing £5 cocktails and try them all! Here are our personal favourite discoveries.

The Fizzy C.B.G.T
Credit: Christina Kernohan

In the centre of the London Cocktail Week Village at Old Spitalfields Market is the Alchemy Lounge by SodaStream MIX. It was here we found one of our favourites, the Cold Brew G&T, (we told you it'd be the next big thing) All of the drinks here are recipes by Ryan Chetiyawardana A.K.A. Mr Lyan, (who was recently crowned Best International Bartender of the Year, don'tcha know). What's more, they're all fizzed up with everyone's favourite retro machine, the SodaStream!

The Pococello Tonic

A collaboration between the Chase Distillery and the founders of Pizza Pilgrims, Pococello is a limited edition limoncello.

Normally, I'm no fan of limoncello, but this stuff is made with the best Amalfi lemons, and has none of that sickly sweet synthetic taste which coats your tongue, like the mass-produced stuff you may have hidden at the back of your spirits cupboard. It's zesty and sharp, and combined with tonic (in this case Fever-Tree Indian Tonic Water), is unbelievably refreshing. A great alternative to a G&T when you want serious refreshment.

Pococello is available to buy from, Harvey Nichols and various Soho establishments for £25 per 50cl.

The Walker 79

This one's for the whisky lovers. We found this decadent little tipple at the World Class London Cocktail Week Hub in Soho.

Comprising Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve, apple, honeyed water, and 'Italian Aperitif' (the menu didn't specify, but it must be some sort of Vermouth), and finished with sparkling wine, this was the smoothest whisky I've ever tasted, perfectly balanced with the honey syrup. A truly luxurious drink.

Plus, how awesome is this cup?! I imagine this is what royalty drink.

The Charlie Brown

Each day at the World Class Hub sees an international guest bartender make their signature drink.

On Thursday, we had the privilege of meeting Jose Maria Robertson, who'd flown in from Lisbon that morning, made us his "all-time favourite cocktail". We can see why - it was easily the best drink we'd had all week. Made with Zacapa 23 (a rum aged in brandy barrels), Grandmarnier, fresh lemon juice, a dash of sugar and orange peel. It was fragrant, warming, citrusy and complex.

Two parts Zacapa 23, one part Grandmarnier and one part lemon, if you want to give it a whirl at home and wow your mates.

Get down to London Cocktail Week if you haven't already, and let us know the best cocktail you discovered recently.

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