EVER ordered a cocktail and marvelled at how the bartender makes the creation of a simple drink look like a work of art?
Usually, us girls are secretly impressed by all the twirling, shaking and decorating of glasses with frilly fancy things.
Men, not so much. I’ve heard many a male companion grumble that they should ‘just get on with it and stop faffing around’ – but generally they’re only jealous because they would probably look less like Tom Cruise in Cocktail and more like Mr Bean behind a bar.
However, Revolution is giving everyone a chance to become a slick, steady-handed cocktail maker. Well, they’re giving you the chance to try to learn by offering cocktail master classes at its bars.
So, to see if we would fall in love with cocktail making – and drinking – a party of Examiner reporters went to test it out at Revolution on Cross Church Street.
We were in an ideal size group of six, meaning we could split into pairs and expert bartender Glen could teach us two at a time.
First, Glen gave us a bit of background on cocktails, including several amusing (but factually doubtful) stories about how where the phrase ‘cocktail’ came from. Then it was time to get down to business.
Number one on the menu was a mojito – traditionally made with lots of fresh mint, lime, flavoured juice of your choice and rum. But Revolution add some vodka – well, it is a vodka bar!
First, in went the mint and limes, which needed bashing with a pestle – known in the trade as a muddler – to release the flavours.
Very theraputic, but hard to do properly when your friends are making you laugh!
Next, the glass was topped up with crushed ice and juice – in this case raspberry – along with a shot of vodka and Havana Club rum.
On went the metal shaker and we were instructed to hold it near our heads and give it a thorough mixing.
Now, I’m known for being clumsy, so I was a little worried that the rest of the group could end up covered in my mojito. Fortunately, there were no disasters.
Making sure all the liquid was in the shaker end, we gave it a hard slap to free the glass, which was rinsed off and filled with the cocktail mix.
Not forgetting the finishing touches, we added a stirrer and two straws – one straight, one bent – and a napkin. After a few all important samples, the product was declared perfect.
We repeated the process for several more cocktails, including a creamy White Russian and a zingy apple-flavoured Polish Bullet. Then it was time for our session to stop – fortunately while we could all still stand.
That’s the beauty of a cocktail masterclass, you get to drink your creations. It’s also a good value night out, costing around £15 per person. For this, you’ll get a three or four cocktails each, plus some drinks vouchers for the rest of the night.
Perfect for a birthday celebration, office do or even just a night out with friends.