Gin at the bar | Scottish Licensed Trade News

Scottish Licensed Trade News

Gin at the bar

Dean Evans, The Finnieston, Glasgow

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• Favourite gin?
My most reached-for gin, whether I’m making myself or one of my guests a drink, is City of London Dry Gin. It’s a relatively new gin that is distilled and bottled at the City of London distillery; it’s very nicely presented in a stubby clear glass bottle with an eye-catching red wax seal; more importantly, the liquid itself is fantastic.

• Favourite gin cocktail?
The Pegu Club Cocktail. It’s been my favourite for years. I make mine with 35ml gin (something robust like Plymouth, City of London, Beefeater or Sipsmith), 15ml triple sec, 25ml lime juice, 10ml gomme syrup, 2 dashes Angostura, and 2 dashes Bitter Truth orange bitters shaken very hard and garnished with a lime wedge.

• Most popular gin serve in your bar just now?
The G&T is the most popular, Martini second.

• Most unusual gin serve in your bar just now?
I suppose the Spice Trade (Old Raj Blue, Fentimans, pineapple wedges) or the Amazon (one part gin to five parts ginger beer built over ice and garnished with fresh cucumber slices) could be seen as unusual.

• How many gins does your bar stock?
I tend to hold around 45 to 50. There are easily double available but I like to keep it tight and make the most out of the ones on my shelves rather than just buy them all for the sake of it.

• What percentage of your spirits sales are gin?
Generally around 75%.

• Who would you most like to create a gin cocktail for and what would you make for them?
Arnold Schwarzenegger, just because historic bar idols and musicians, artists and poets have enough drinks created for them. He’d get a Ramos Gin Fizz-style drink. I’d let him shake it himself.


Sian Ferguson, 99 Bar & Kitchen, Aberdeen

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• Favourite gin?
Portobello Road Gin because it’s like a classic London Dry but with a nice citrus edge.

• Favourite gin cocktail?
A classic Gin Fizz because it’s simple, quick, tasty and shows off the gin. I use 50ml gin, 25ml fresh lemon juice, 12.5ml sugar syrup and egg white served in a highball straight-up (no ice) with a dash of soda.

• Most popular gin serve in your bar just now?
Gin and tonic.

• Most unusual gin serve in your bar just now?
Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Served straight-up in a Coupette glass and garnished with a slice of melba toast.

• How many gins does your bar stock?
24.

• What percentage of your spirits sales are gin?
30%.

• Who would you most like to create a gin cocktail for and what would you make for them?
Frank Sinatra. I would make him a sweet Vermouth-heavy Martinez because he enjoyed a sippable gin beverage and worked his way through quite a few of them!


Iain Meldrum, Drinks consultant, Michael Neave Kitchen & Whisky Bar, Edinburgh

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• Favourite gin?
Caorunn. It has a distinctive zesty, floral aroma but still with a satisfying base of juniper.

• Favourite gin cocktail?
As a Bond aficionado I am partial to a Vesper. The recipe, as quoted by Bond himself, is: “Three measures of Gordon’s, one of vodka, half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it very well until it’s ice-cold, then add a large thin slice of lemon-peel. Got it?” Gordon’s can be substituted for any decent dry, juniper-heavy gin. Use a Quinquina or Americano such as Cocchi since Kina Lillet no longer exists.

• Most popular gin served in your bar just now?
Our Botanist Bramble.

• Most unusual gin served in your bar just now?
We don’t really go in for unusual here so I’d have to settle for the White Lady as the most ‘uncommon’.

• How many gins does your bar stock?
Five.

• What percentage of your spirits sales are gin?
I would think a good third of our sales are gin-centric.

• Who would you most like to create a gin cocktail for and what would you make for them?
A Martini and it would have to be for one of the late, great legendary drinkers of the past; it would be a coin-toss between Ernest Hemingway and Franklin Roosevelt. Both were fascinating characters and both had very specific ways of having their Martini.


Chris Sproule, Alston Bar & Beef, Glasgow

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• Favourite gin?
Blackwood’s Vintage Dry Gin; it’s a more gentle style of gin with a slightly floral spirit.

• Favourite gin cocktail?
The 1873, which is named after the year the main street of Grahamston village was last seen before being covered up by Central Station, where Alston Bar & Beef is located. It’s made with Caorunn gin, St Germain elderflower liqueur, blueberry jam and lemon juice, shaken and finished with Champagne.

• Most popular gin serve in your bar just now?
We anticipate our Gin and Gingerbread cocktail – a modern twist on a 16th century delicacy including a good dose of homemade ginger beer – will be a favourite.

• Most unusual gin serve in your bar just now?
We will barrel-age our own gin on-site at Alston Bar & Beef to make our unique barrel-aged Martinez.

• How many gins does your bar stock?
Over 50 gins from across the world.

• Who would you most like to create a gin cocktail for and what would you make for them?
Scottish actor James McAvoy. I would create a Last Word cocktail (Hayman’s Old Tom Gin with maraschino liqueur, lemon juice and chartreuse).

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