Something sexy to bring on the summer

Four classic cocktails to see you through summer days and nights: Trailer Happiness Grog, Johnny Fransman’s Pimm’s cup, The perfect summer G&T, The Faithless, Mal Spence

Trailer Happiness Grog Trailer Happiness, London

40 ml Dark Rum (I like Pussers)
20 ml Spiced Rum (Sailor Jerry’s)
15ml Lime Juice
30 ml Apple Juice (not concentrate)
30 ml Mango Purée
2 Dashes Bitters

Fill a shaker with ice and add the above ingredients. Shake vigorously for roughly 10 seconds before straining into a highball glass (or indeed a hollowed pineapple or coconut if you are really that keen) which is filled with ice. Garnish with a couple of pineapple spikes.

Trailer Happiness in Notting Hill has obtained a somewhat legendary status on the British Cocktail scene since its establishment. By rejecting the old school, Savoy inspired approach to the mixed drink and opting for a kitsch Polynesian theme instead, Trailer Happiness really did something completely unique in a market so saturated with profit-crazed and soulless cocktail establishments. Do not be fooled by the casual atmosphere and tongue in cheek décor, the people behind the bar are really at the top of their game. This recipe was kindly donated to us by the bar team and if you are lacking the ingredients to replicate the original potation, I do certainly recommend stopping by if you are in the area.

Jonathan Fransman’s Pimm’s Cup

350 ml Pimm’s
75 ml Gin (Hendrick’s Cucumber gin)
1000 ml Lemonade
300 ml (roughly) Ginger Ale
25 ml Framboise (optional)
Summer Fruits
Cucumber slices

Though by no means essential, an excellent way to make Pimm’s is to let the fruit sit in the alcohol (though only the alcohol) for a few hours prior in order to infuse the spirit with the taste of the fruits and vice versa. After this fill the jug with ice (the more ice the less dilution) and add the non alcoholic ingredients before, if you have it, floating the Framboise on the top.

The traditional Pimm’s cup is, much like our unfortunate lingering distaste for our continental counterparts, a quintessential component of British culture. Pimm’s was created in 1823 by James Pimm, an oyster bar owner in the city of London. Though marketed as a “secret recipe”, the drink is gin-based with the addition of various herbs and spices, including quinine. My recipe is a slight twist on the standard Pimm’s cup wth the addition of a few slightly unusual extra ingredients. Hendrick’s is a cucumber and rose petal (seriously) infused gin and Framboise is a raspberry liqueur which compliments the fruit.

The perfect summer Gin and Tonic

Gin of Choice;
Hendrick’s Cucumber
Tanqueray No.10 with Grapefruit
Martin Miller’s with Cucumber/Lime
Plymouth with Orange

Fill a highball glass with ice. Rub the appropriate garnish around the rim of the glass and drop in. Add the gin and tonic in whatever ratio you see fit.
The perfect G&T is somewhat of an oxymoronic concept. What makes the perfect G&T is as hotly a debated topic in some circles as the conflict in the Middle East and the value of the welfare state. Fortunately, there is some common agreement. First and foremost the drink must be piercingly cold. The more ice you put in your drink the slower it will melt and turn your state of the art G&T into nothing more than a sloppy, vulgar mess which you wouldn’t even want to offer to the most troglodytic of house guests. Gins to try include Hendrick’s (see the Pimm’s recipe), Martin Miller’s – which is lighter and quite perfumed – and Plymouth, which is slightly more full bodied than the others and the only gin available on the market to hold an appellation. Also, try to use cans rather than bottles so the tonic doesn’t go flat.

The Faithless, Mal Spence,
Rick’s Bar, Edinburgh

Muddle (crush with a blunt object to release a herb or fruits oils and juices) four sage leaves into a shaker and add squeezed grapes. Add the Gin, Lemon Juice and Gomme to the shaker and fill with ice before shaking vigorously for about 12 to 14 seconds. Strain into a highball glass filled with ice, top with tonic and garnish with the remaining two sage leaves The Faithless, created by multi-award winning mixologist Mal Spence, is a delectable contemporary twist on the classic G&T. The addition of sage leaves renders the drink a perfect summer aperitif but could equally be enjoyed the whole year round. The recipe calls for Hendrick’s gin but can be just as pleasant with other substitutions though do remember, good cocktails highlight the spirit component and bad alcohol will inevitably result in a substandard drink, not to mention a painful hangover. For a cheaper alternative to the £20 a bottle Hendrick’s, try Bombay Sapphire, Plymouth or Tanqueray.

Leave a comment

Please note our disclaimer relating to comments submitted. Please do not post pretending to be another person. Nouse is not responsible for user-submitted content.