Thursday, 26 April 2012

Orange Julep

Take the chill pill
Another day in the bar. Busy! Great!
And another, and another...
Weeks go by! No time to snooze! No time to loose!
But sometimes you need to slow down. Take the Chill Pill! :)
When during busy service you get some time to spare for a chat with your caring guest, it's incredible.
It's like finding oasis in a desert.
Last weekend I had a customer who ordered one of my creation from the cocktail list @Cinnamonsoho.
It's called "Orange Julep". A twisted classic!
It's a perfect companion for your night in the busy city!
Take a break, have an "Orange Julep"!
Orange Julep
The drink:
Orange Julep
40 ml Bourbon infused with toasted figs*
15 ml Grand Marnier
1 bar spoon (massive) of Gooseberry Chutney**
5 ml Simple syrup

2 Orange wedges

Muddle orange in  a copper mug or julep tin.
Add Gooseberry Chutney. Fill glass with crushed ice.
Add the rest of the ingredients and mix vigorously with the bar spoon.
Next top up with crushed ice and add garnish.;
Orange zest & a Cherry

* Bourbon infused with toasted figs:
In this case i used Makers Mark Bourbon
5 dried Figs per bottle of bourbon.
Cut figs in half and toast them under grill or pastry torch until figs caramelises and gets nice 
brown crust from both sides. Keep figs 3 days in the bourbon.

**Gooseberry Chutney:
1 kg of gooseberry (room temp)
1 whole chilly
1 tea spoon fennel seeds
3 star anise
5 cloves
2 inches of cinnamon stick
2 bay leaves
2 table spoon of chilly powder
400 gram of sugar
150 ml white vinegar
salt according to taste
Cooking Method:
Temper all spices until starts cracking
add gooseberries
after 5 min of cooking add sugar+salt+vinigar
cook until thick puree.

Enjoy your drink!

You been served by Bar Alchemist

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Veronika decides to die

Dear all,
I’m sorry I abandoned you for a good month without any notice.
The thing was, that I helped opening one restaurant in central London, and I didn’t had any time to spare for my blog. But I promise you I’ll pay it back with a heap.
So leaving excuses aside let’s talk about drinks. Let me remind you all the comments welcome post it or email it to
New Drink:
Veronique  (Or the long version after P. Coelho book- Veronika decides to die)
  • 50 ml Havana 7
  • 15 ml Martini Rosso
  • 10 ml Homemade Spiced Syrup (Cinnamon, Vanilla and Anise)
  • 4 Drops of Naga Biters
  • Stirred in the mixing glass and stained in to chilled coupette glass.
  • Cherry and oils from orange peel.
The guest, Veronika, after trying one of my "Spicy Berry Martini" asked for one more, but spicier and not so fruity.
You been served by Bar Alchemist

Wednesday, 15 February 2012


This is my new creation.
Mangouste- or Mongoose in English. This cocktail is made with mangoes, and if you are looking for seasonal product, it is great in the month of March and April. Further more, the ingredients I choose will help to get rid of the winter blues and misery out of you like mongoose would scare the cobra.
  • 35 ml Dark rum 
  • 15 ml Drambue
  • 40 ml Mango puree
  • 10 ml Fresh Lemon Juice
  • 25 ml Cloudy Apple juice
  • 1x 2cm Slice of Ginger 
  • Muddle ginger in the shaker, after pour all the ingredients and shake it hard. Double strain it.
  • Cobbler, Dessert or Port glass. 
  • Ginger fan

You been served by Bar Alchemist

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Customer Wise

Before I start writing about drinks I thought I should write a bit about whom we are making them for.
Because one of the reasons we are make those drinks is our customers.
You have to know your customer! Not literally :) 
But we, bartenders, have to gather quite a bit of information as quickly as possible before we start serving the guests. Information about the places and businesses around, if customers are locals or tourists. Did your customer came with family, friends or colleagues and what's the occasion.
All these tiny factors might change consumers choice. Knowing them will help you to guide your guests through an experience. 
Short story: This happened to me a few years ago while I was working in this funky all day Spanish tapas and late evening Dj bar in London. It was a quiet Sunday evening. As usual on Sundays we had a "Cool" DJ playing reggae in the basement, so you can imagine the were our customers that evening. It wasn't busy, maybe around 30 guests on the premises and restaurants close by were pretty quiet too.
The next moment the door opened and this girl in her late 20's stepped into the bar. Straight away I said:
Unfortunately for you miss, I have red "Lucky Strike" and the strongest "Dunhill" only.
She stood there, by the door, frozen for a moment. Then I'll have "Lucky Strike", she said. After she asked me, how did i know that she only wanted cigarettes. 
I have told you about the bar little bit. What did I know about the guest? Nothing until she walked in to the bar. I had never seen her before in this bar too. But when she stepped into the bar from her eyes I knew she was looking for something. She was dressed quite stylishly, like she was on the date. I could tell from her high heels that she wasn't the fan of reggae too. From head to toe dressed in designer clothing and holding a little back bag like she came in to the place to get something.  If she was looking for toilet, she would be looking around the premises for the toilet sign, but she wasn't. She was looking at the bar, but the music and the crowd we had that evening weren't her style either. The last bit of information I knew was that the restaurant next door didn't sell cigarettes at all. 
The girl said she was surprised that the bartender could read his customers so well and added that she would come back some time to try my drinks too. 
Information is the key. Unlock the knowledge. 
You been served by Bar Alchemist.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

One Day at a time!

Over 10 years behind the bar. And here I am. Like pen on paper! Technology era :)
I have decided to write this blog about drinks, bars, bartenders, customers and other cocktail lovers, however else they would like to call themselves. Here you will also find here some stories about the classic cocktails and spirits that changed the history and our judgment about one or the other products. Some of the these products are still widely used every day. But is it because it is a quality product, or because of the advertisements and marketing. I will also review some bar books and bar equipment so you can decide if it is worth spending your money on them.     
So if you sip Martini's every day or just enjoy an occasional dram of the good single malt this is the blog for you.

All comments, questions and suggestions are welcome by Email: