Artisanal cocktails at home

The nice folk at Fentimans recently invited my good friend Anni and me to a mixer masterclass in the deep dark depths of east London (quite a feat; those who know me know how rarely I step foot out of the discomforts of south London).

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Of course, we took this opportunity to get too drunk for a school night. Case in point…

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And again… I feel like I want to shout DON’T DO IT to my past self.  But at least I made some friends:

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Anywho, less of my debauchery. I thought I would share some of the cocktails that rendered me useless at my desk come 9am the following morning…

For those who don’t know Fentimans, they make super beverages with a unique, botanical brewing process. Water and pear juice are boiled in small, steel tanks, before a combo of kaffir lime leaves, lemongrass, orris root and juniper berries are chucked in. These herbs are then strained off and the mixture is allowed to cool. They then make their way to fermenting vessels, where yeast is added to the mixture to start a 2-4 day fermentation process. This allows the ingredients to simmer and release all the natural goodness which helps to create a full-bodied end product. Take away the yeast et voila; you’ve got yourself one delightful bev.

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I liked the Traditional Rose Lemonade the best, so I’ll share some of the cocktails we made with that…

La Vie En Rose: 

  • 60ml sweet white Vermouth (we used a Martini Bianco but something like Lillet Blanc would work just as well)
  • Fentimans Rose Lemonade
  • Rose petals
  • Lemon wheel

Pour the Vermouth in a large wine glass with ice cubes. Top up with Rose Lemonade and garnish with fresh rose petals and a lemon wheel (I presume you have those just casually lying around the house?)

Paloma Rosa:

  • 50ml tequila
  • 15ml grapefruit juice
  • 15ml lime juice
  • Pinch of salt
  • Fentimans Rose Lemonade
  • Slice of grapefruit

Put the first four ingredients in a double Collins glass and stir. Add the Rose Lemonade and garnish with a slice of grapefruit.

Hendrick’s Rose Fizz:

  • 50 ml Hendrick’s gin
  • 15 ml fresh lemon juice
  • Fentimans Rose Lemonade
  • Rose petals (optional)
  • Cucumber slices

Shake the gin and lemon juice, strain it into a glass and add ice cubes. Add the Rose Lemonade and garnish with fresh rose petals and cucumber slices.

Spirit suggestions:

These are the recommended spirit suggestions for the Rose Lemonade, chosen by Bonbar’s Jonny Hume for their light, floral undertones:

  • Bloom gin
  • Hendrick’s gin
  • Miller’s gin
  • Pinkster gin (that’s the one we were drinking – delightful)
  • Plymouth gin
  • Portabello Road gin
  • Tanqueray gin
  • Aperol aperitif
  • Ciroc vodka

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They’ve also just launched the 19:05 Herbal Tonic Water, a complex drink containing a delicate mixture of floral and herbal flavours. It’s got a distinctive aftertaste, so if herbal bevs are your thing, check this one out. I liked the Hedgerow Fizz:

  • 50 ml gin
  • 15 ml simple syrup
  • 15 ml lemon juice
  • 19:05 Herbal Tonic Water
  •  Juniper berries

Shake the gin, syrup and lemon juice and strain it into a double Collins glass. Add the tonic water and garnish with juniper berries.

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Spirit suggestions

The 19:05 Herbal Tonic Water goes better with heavier-tasting spirits, and Jonny says these are your best bets:

  • Death’s Door gin
  • Elephant gin
  • Ford’s gin
  • Monkey 47 gin
  • Plymouth Navy gin
  • Tanqueray Old Tom gin
  • Aperol aperitif (ok, not so heavy; but it’s lightly bitter so it still works)
  • Illegal Mezcal

 

Right everyone, enjoy; but don’t enjoy as much as I did (unless you have a big batch of paracetamol).

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Amy


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