Beefeater Gin is turning into a serious follower of fashion as it launches new cocktails in time for London Fashion Week. In a nod to the SS14 pastel trends, think pink and soft green, the new recipes include the gorgeously smooth Green Goddess that will leave anyone green with envy, and the blushing pink Rhubarb Martini that adds a fresh twist to an all-time classic.
Tapping into an emerging trend for hand crafted bottled cocktails, as seen in leading bars from San Diego to Shoreditch, International Brand Ambassador for Beefeater Gin, and creator of the new cocktails, Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge says: “I have taken inspiration from my work around the world, my years of developing recipes to work with food and how others have been approaching new ways of delivering cocktails. These are easy to drink cocktails using fresh and zesty ingredients. This new style of serve is something I have been working on for number of years, and this is the next step in that development. A hand crafted bottle of mixed ingredients to add to your Beefeater gin means that they can easily be prepared in advance.”
The step-by-step recipes ensure they are easy to prepare without the need for specific cocktail equipment – ideal for entertaining at home. So for your next party, or even a night-in with friends just prepare the fresh ingredients in advance for minimal effort and fuss on the night. Then mix, drink and re-fill!
The Green Goddess is a gorgeously fresh and zesty drink, which comes to life through the addition of cucumber, lime and basil to the mixer. “Cucumber is a great companion for gin, while the pepperiness of the basil pairs well with the gin’s botanicals and the black pepper on the rim of the glass,” says Sebastian. “Both ingredients give the drink its distinct fashion-forward green colour and the salt on the rim lifts the freshness of the ingredients, in particular the cucumber. We love the current trend for vintage glasses – as seen here with these elegant punch cups.”
Ingredients (serves one)
- 1/7th cucumber
- 20ml lime juice
- 2 large basil leaves
- 15 ml sugar syrup (3 tsp of caster sugar dissolved in water)
- 4-6 ice cubes
- Sea salt, black pepper and basil leaf to garnish
- Serve with Beefeater Dry
Blend the fresh ingredients, sugar syrup and ice cubes on a low speed in an electric blender. When they begin to come together and move as one, increase the speed to maximum. There should be no lumps of ice so as soon as the mixture is spinning smoothly and freely, turn off the blender.
Now, pour the contents through a sieve and into a bowl. Rinse the sieve and repeat the process again to get a more refined liquid. Use a teaspoon and have a taste of the mix. Is it too sweet? Too sour? Too intense? If so, add a little more citrus or sugar or water to adjust to the perfect point. Skim the mix with a small tea strainer if you have one. Pour the final mix into clean and sterilised bottles, seal and store in the fridge if using later or serve immediately.
Crumble sea salt and ground black pepper onto a side plate, then use a slice of cucumber to moisten the top and outer rim of all your punch cups. Gently press and roll the rim and outer edge of each cup in the salt and pepper mix, then, whilst still holding the cup upside-down, lightly tap it to remove any salt and pepper not well stuck to the rim to stop it from falling down into the cup.
When serving, carefully fill the glass with cubed or chipped ice so as not to knock off salt and pepper, add Beefeater, mix to desired ratio and finish with a fresh basil leaf for aroma.
The Rhubarb Martini is a delicate but distinctive drink. Its powdery pink hue comes from the infusion of rhubarb in a bottle of Beefeater and its gentle shade belies the fact that it really packs a punch. Sebastian comments: “The fruity flavour and aroma, along with a little bitterness and zing, all work in harmony with the gin without overpowering it.”
Ingredients (serves one)
- 40ml of Beefeater Dry infused with rhubarb*
- 20ml of Lillet Blanc
- 5ml Fruit Cup (preferably homemade**)
Stir all the ingredients with ice then strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a fine slice of rhubarb.
*To make the rhubarb infused Beefeater Dry gin, take two good sized stalks of rhubarb, finely slice lengthways and add to the gin. Simply store the bottle somewhere cool and out of direct sunlight for a few days, the fridge is perfect. The gin is ready to use when the rhubarb is white and stripped of its colour and the gin is a pretty pink. Before using, filter the gin through a sieve and discard the rhubarb.
**To make the Fruit Cup, combine the following ingredients in a 500ml bottle and store in the fridge:
- 165ml Beefeater Dry
- 165ml Dubonnet
- 82.5ml Plymouth Sloe Gin
- 82.5ml Apricot liqueur
- 5ml Gin Barrel Aged Orange Bitters
- Fresh lemon zest from one lemon (remove the peel when bottling).
This Fruit Cup recipe is not just restricted to the Rhubarb Martini, and can be served with fresh fruit, cucumber, mint and lemonade.
And here are Sebastian’s top tips for a really professional touch when you’re mixing drinks at home:
- If you are planning ahead you can filter your mix even more finely by passing through a muslin or coffee filter paper. The flavour will not change; however, the liquid will be almost clear and therefore that little more refined, if that’s what you like. If using coffee filter paper, you may have to change the paper a number of times, and both methods should be left to filter in the fridge to keep the mix fresh. Whichever method you decide on for filtration, pour the final mix into clean and sterilised bottles, seal and store in the fridge until it’s time to party.
- The ice used in the blending of the mixer is there for a little dilution, essential in all cocktails to bring out the flavours in the drink, especially those locked in the alcohol. The ice also stops friction from the blades heating up the natural ingredients and damaging them.