2017 has once again been the Year of Gin and we have had such fun creating curated gin bars for our clients. Naturally all this expertise required some serious research ...so we asked members of our team for their favourite cocktail recipes using the spirit of the moment, Gin!
MD the forum company
Well I’m actually more of a bubbly drinker...but my arm can be twisted to indulge in a Gin Fizz.
I’m not a connoiseur of gin but my knowledgeable friends recommend Musgrave Pink, which goes perfectly with the crimson raspberry cordial. I must say this is particularly delicious when enjoyed outside next ,to the Pool Bar at Embassy Hill.
Jono Lawson at Embassy Hill created this recipe for the perfect Gin Fizz.
20ml Musgrave Pink gin
Dash of homemade raspberry cordial ( from our kitchen)
Fresh mint sprig
Slice of cucumber
3/4 glass of PONGRÁCZ BRUT MCC
Method: Add the raspberry cordial and gin to a champagne flute then top with PONGRÁCZ BRUT MCC. Decorate with mint and cucumber.
The forum company.
Botanical G & T
I’m excited that the current enthusiasm for gin looks set to continue. We have so many fantastic local gin producers which is great for the hospitality industry in general. The depth of flavours is only just being explored and I look forward to 2018 with many new gin brands coming to market. Many local variants are only available in limited quantities and quite hard to come by, but The Kitchen at L’anticco hosts a Gin of the Week promotion which is a great opportunity to taste something new. I discovered the Geometric Gin Company at The Kitchen and just love their range of artisanal tonic waters. These are old fashioned cordials which you mix with soda water, making them naturally low in sugar.
To make the perfect G & T:
Fill the glass with ice.
Pour 50ml of Geometric Gin over the ice.
Pour 50ml of Symmetry Floral Tonic.
Peel a lime zest and squeeze the oils into the glass and drop it in.
With a stirring spoon, pour ice cold soda water to the brim, gently raising the cordial to blend with the water.
Add a branch of lavender for decoration.
The forum company
I adore a gin Martini. There are many pretenders out there but a Martini is a classic and a drink of true simplicity, with only two ingredients - gin and dry vermouth. Plus a Martini glass is a timeless design. Turbine Hall is one of our venues and I think a simple gin Martini made with one of my favourites - Inverroche Verdant - complements that historic setting perfectly. Add some vintage jazz or a DJ -and you are set for an amazing experience.
50ml Inverroche Gin Verdant
15ml Dry Vermouth
Zest of Lemon
Pour gin and dry vermouth in cocktail shaker with ice. Stir well, then strain into chilled Martini glass. Zest the lemon peel and garnish by twisting it in a perfect spiral.
GM forum events
The forum company
Monkey Gland Cocktail
I think gin and orange juice is a fantastic combination especially if you choose a citrus infused gin like Clemengold, using flavours of South African mandarin. Harry MacElhone, owner of Harry’s New York Bar in Paris, is credited with mixing the first Monkey Gland in the 1920s and the original version uses orange juice .I created this recipe as a welcome drink for an event, but is equally enjoyed as well deserved sundowner - great in the bush. Here at the forum company based in Bryanston you can see the sun set over the Magaliesberg - which is pretty special with a Monkey Gland in your hand.
60 ml Clemengold gin
30 ml freshly squeezed naartjie juice
10 ml grenadine
Dash of absinthe
Garnish: slices of naartjie
Mix gin, naartjie juice and grenadine. That combination is already great but if you want to add another dimension, add a dash of absinthe. Keep that flavour in check because it can quickly ruin the effect. What you want is just the underlying hint of anise to take this cocktail to the next level. It is that finishing twist that takes the Monkey Gland from good to spectacular.
The forum company
Gin & Tonic Tart
I’m not much of a gin drinker but I really enjoy making (and eating) this innovative Gin & Tonic Tart. As a pastry chef, desserts are my main focus and this recipe is the perfect combination of creamy custard and light pastry. This is a great option for summer entertaining and could be served with a scoop of vanilla bean ice-cream or even a dollop of natural yogurt.
165g caster sugar
1 tbs finely grated lemon zest,
plus 185 ml strained lemon juice
150ml thickened cream
- 200 plain flour, sifted, plus extra to dust
- 35g icing sugar, sifted
- 75g chilled unsalted butter, chopped
- 2 tsp lemon zest
- 1 egg yolk
- 60ml chilled tonic water
- Gin & Tonic Syrup
- 150g caster sugar
- 250ml tonic water
- Very thinly pared zest and
- juice of 2 lemons
- 60ml gin
- 5 juniper berries*, lightly bruised
- 1. For the pastry, place the flour, icing sugar, butter and lemon zest in a food processor and whiz until the mixture resembles fine crumbs. Add the yolk and tonic water and process until the mixture comes together in a smooth ball. Enclose in plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes.
- 2. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease a 23cm loose-bottomed tart pan.
- 3. Roll out pastry on a lightly floured surface until 5mm thick, then use to line tart pan. Chill for a further 15 minutes.
- 4. Prick base with a fork, then line with baking paper and fill with baking weights or uncooked rice. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove the paper and weights and bake for a further 5 minutes or until the pastry is golden. Allow to cool.
- 5. Whisk the eggs, caster sugar, lemon zest and juice, cream and gin together until combined. Pour the filling into the cooled tart shell and bake for 20-25 minutes until just set.
- 6. Meanwhile, for the syrup, place the sugar, tonic water and lemon juice in a saucepan over low heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Add gin and juniper berries and simmer for 5-10 minutes until slightly thickened. Blanch lemon zest in boiling water for 2 minutes, then drain and add to the syrup. Simmer for a further 5 minutes. Cool completely.
- 7. Remove the juniper berries from the gin and tonic syrup, then drizzle the syrup over the tart and serve.