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A Cosmopolitan Cocktail

Erika got an email from the Gaucho mailing list the other week, containing a list of special events as part of their ’10 years in the City’ celebrations. One of those was a free cocktail making masterclass on the terrace of their Broadgate restaurant. We both like cocktails and I’m interested in how to make nice ones so we booked ourselves on.

To start, the bartender gave a brief history of cocktails including the spirits and mixers used and the different styles of drink that have come into popularity over the years. We then went on to make our cocktail – a cosmopolitan – apparantly made famous by Sex and the City (I’m not a fan so wouldn’t know!). It’s a mixture of 50ml raspberry vodka, 25ml cointreau, 25ml lime juice and cranberry juice to taste, all shaken with ice. Their cranberry juice was freshly made that morning – we were told that really fresh juice makes a much better cocktail. You only want to put in a dash of cranberry as you don’t want to overfill the glass; the perfect cosmopolitan should be bright pink.

Pouring a Cosmopolitan Cocktail

After putting all the various ingredients into the mixer glass and filling it with ice we were taught how to correctly put the shaker on the glass. By putting the shaker on at a slight angle then hitting the top a few times, you create a seal which should be strong enough to let you pick up the glass holding only the shaker.

Next, shake the drink holding the base of the shaker in one hand and the base of the glass in the other. You really want to shake hard and should be trying to break the ice. You can stop when you can see that water has condensed on the outside of the shaker – this means that the cocktail is cold enough to drink.

To break the seal you do some magic involving putting two fingers on the glass and two on the shaker, then hitting the join between the two with your other hand. Very confusing and I’m sure a video would be more useful!

Finally pour the cocktail through a strainer into a martini glass. I’ve seen many bars chill the glass by filling it with ice before pouring the finished cocktail in, but it doesn’t seem to be necessary as the drink was perfectly cold and tasted wonderful. Not the kind of drink I’d choose (mostly due to the colour) but it made me realise that it’s not too difficult to make your own cocktails at home – you just need plenty of ice.

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