More than a fabulous excuse to drink on a Monday (wait, we have the 4pm update for that, right?), a fair few of us across the nation are taking on the role as bartender at home. Bombay Sapphire’s resident gin expert and ambassador Chase Bickerton gives us his top five tips for making the most of your tipple – even if your bar cart is looking a little lockdown fatigued!
And if you’re keen to level up your cocktail making ability, or you’re just wanting something else to do, head to thecreativitylab.co.nz to order your at-home cocktail making kit. From beginner to advanced, they’ve got you covered!
1 – KNOW THYSELF, KNOW THY GIN
When making gin cocktails, the first step is to know your gin and the botanicals used in its formulation. The botanicals used, and style of gin, lead it to be better suited to some of the gin classics over others. In the case of Bombay Sapphire, there are 10 botanicals used, and because they impart their flavours into the spirit through an unique vapour infusion distillation process, it exhibits the fresh, crisp, real flavours of the botanicals and is best suited to long gin cocktails, like the G&T, or cocktails with citrus in them,
2 – FRESH IS BEST
Use fresh ingredients in your cocktails whenever humanly possible. Bombay Sapphire only uses real botanicals in its formulation and any cocktail made will benefit from being made with the same ethos in mind.
3 – A VESSEL ISN’T A VESSEL
Glassware is important, not only to the aesthetics of the drink but also to the way you perceive the flavours of the cocktail. That’s why many choose to drink their gin from Copa de Balon glasses (see main image). These large, fish bowl like glasses from Spain are perfect for gin & tonics as the shape of the glass helps trap the aromas of the drink, giving the lucky person imbibing a better chance to enjoy the flavours.
4 – AND EATING ISN’T CHEATING
Just like wine, cocktails can be matched with food to create a culinary experience. Again, look to the botanicals and flavours in the gin for direction on what it will pair with best. For example, the lemon & coriander seed used in Bombay Sapphire leads it to matching well with citrus & ginger flavours, or you can draw on the peppery notes of the cubeb berry or grains of paradise used to match it to dishes with a touch of spice.
5 – EMBRACE YOUR ARTSY SIDE
The final tip is to get creative! Use an existing cocktail recipe, and switch out one of the ingredients with something similar that you enjoy. A great place to start is by switching out or adding to your usual garnish. By simply adding two sprigs of thyme alongside the lemon wedge squeezed into your G&T, you draw on the juniper notes and completely change the G&T experience. From there you can experiment and find all sorts of interesting twists and combinations – coffee infused Negroni, anyone? Stir some creativity and make your own signature Bombay Sapphire serve!