Cocktail master classes catered for the masses are swiftly becoming an interactive experience many establishments are trying to get behind, I completely understand why, it’s an insightful explanation about the intriguing world behind the drinks.
One of the most recent to join the aforementioned is Mayfair’s starred Michelin restaurant, Benares. Once a month they feature a master blender course with a guest bar tender from a renowned London cocktail bar. It’s Rude To Stare went along on the 27th of March to check out the team from Purl’s collaboration with Benares.
Held in the more intimate, relaxed setting of the cocktail bar, as opposed to the more formal main dining area, guests are provided with a four drink menu – a well picked balance of drinks. We started with the Benares Passion Fruit Chutney Martini from Benares.The drinks were all well presented and thoroughly explained by staff, second up was Purl’s feature drink entitled “Bribe,” which was an interesting Chivas 12 based drink with an apple wood and cinnamon smoke. The presentation was well executed and the drink itself was delicious, albeit slightly sweet at the start, with a little dilution it was delicious and reminiscent of a caramel toffee apple.
The third cocktail was The Perfume Maker, a blend of vodka, gomme syrup, lemon and lavender egg white. We finished with a Venetian Sptitz, prosecco, aperol, peach and wine foam. Provided was a small arrangement of nibbles that were, in theory, palate matched to the drink selection. I can’t say I wholeheartedly agree with how well they were matched or with the small quantity provided for our table of five but I do like the idea of it.
I think all in all this would be an exciting learning experience for those who wanted to try it, you get the benefit of trying drinks from two establishments simultaneously and you have the opportunity to talk to the staff in depth about the drinks. Over all the drinks were slightly too sweet but I have a palate that slants slightly towards the bitter side, the service was efficient and knowledgable and the slightly dark, decadent atmosphere was the perfect place to enjoy it all.