The week in pictures
This week in the world of drinks: Wines of Germany celebrates Riesling’s birthday, we visit Tozi Battersea for a ‘Taste of Tozi’, and Amarula African Gin collaborates with black culinary collective The Future Plate for Mother’s Day.
First documented in 1435 near Hochheim, Riesling celebrated its 588th birthday on Monday 13 March, with The Wines of Germany team hosting a birthday party for the trade at the Opera Tavern in Covent Garden.
We visited Tozi Battersea’s for its ‘Taste of Tozi’ event that showcased Negronis & Cicchetti. Three signature Negroni serves were paired with an array of cicchetti curated by Executive Chef Lee Streeton.
In advance of Mother’s Day, Amarula African Gin joined forces with the progressive, leading black culinary collective, “The Future Plate”, to present an event entitled “Sweet Mother”. Held at Holborn’s October Gallery, Amarula African Gin ambassador and MasterChef: The Professionals semi-finalist, William Chilila issued dishes to the sound of traditional African drummers. Pairings included canapés of Bobotie spiced braised beef croquette and curry mayo with an Amarula gin sour, and main of roasted lamb rump, Bobotie shoulder parcel with pap purée with a “HOWZIT?” cocktail starring Amarula Gin, crème de banane, Tio Pepe Fino and citrus. Chilila shared the maternal inspirations informing his menu with enraptured guests. “My mother, the matriarch of the family, would regularly cook Malva Pudding for me – a known pudding in South Africa.” This final dish featured coffee, apricot and Amarula chantilly and was matched with a gin and grapefruit-led “Savannah Sunset” to culminate. (amarula.com/gin)
In celebration of International Women’s Day, a quintet of women working at the Michelin-starred Hakkasan together created “The Golden Nectar” cocktail, which is ordered from a golden ticket-like menu, fusing English sparkling wine, Irish whiskey, an Italian-inspired mimosa syrup and a comely meringue which brings it more than mere aesthetics.
The minds behind are the head of bars at parent company, Tao Group Hospitality UK, Wendy Hopkins, in collaboration with bartender, Gessica Orofino, head sommelier, Alessia Mandolini, pastry chef, Christina De Leo, and general manager, Pauline Dubord.
The flower itself being a symbol of International Women’s Day, Orofino’s homemade mimosa cordial meets the uplifting yuzu notes of the 2018 Blanc de Blancs from a single parcel of Chardonnay at the boutique Chilterns sparkling wine producer, Hundred Hills, and the base cocoa, coffee and sweet almond notes of the PX finished Irish Single Malt, The Donn from The Craft Irish Whiskey Co. The drink is finished with a lemon meringue which guests are encouraged to stir in order to bring the fresh, depthful drink more sweetness.
“The idea was to create something which allowed for collaboration and showcases individual skill sets and expertise,” said Hopkins. “I was inspired by my favourite cocktail concepts, the old classic cocktails, where craft and individual ingredients are big players, with elevated distinctive flavours and complexity, yet not over complicated, so even if you are at home, you can easily remake it, even if you are not a bartender.”
The Golden Nectar is available until the end of March (£24), although having been ordered an astonishing 300 times in less than a week since the launch on International Women’s Day, there is an argument to maintain its positioning… (hakkasan.com/mayfair)
The Glencairn Glass – produced by Scottish glassware company Glencairn Crystal – revealed the winner and runner-up of its Scottish themed crime short story competition this week. Congratulations to the winner, Frances Crawford, for her story The Dummy Railway and runner up, Allan Gaw, for The Last Tram To Gorbals Cross.
And “Wine Chap”, Tom Harrow revealed the latest edition of a now legendary suit collection, being a moleskin number which may be worn “both in a vineyard and then at dinner afterwards,” he said. Created by his long-term tailor, Timothy Everest MBE, whom he met via an introduction care of “Rare Tea Lady”, Henrietta Lovell, the suit debuted at the quarterly “Threads & Reds” event held at the premises of Everest, “Grey Flannel”, being the longest-standing indie menswear boutique on Chiltern Street. Alongside wines from the merchant of Harrow, Honest Grapes, flowed, including San Leonardo 2018. (honestgrapes.co.uk/threads-and-reds)
Have you been out and about this week? Got somewhere you think we should know about? Let us know!