I don’t often go out to events on a Monday night, Mondays are generally spent moaning about the fact that the weekend is over, hazily trying to get myself back into working week mode and then heading home for an early night in the hope that Tuesday will somehow be easier to handle.
However this week I made an exception and not only headed to an event on a Monday but headed to an event that involved alcohol. I was invited to a cocktail masterclass at The Millennium Hotel in Mayfair with around twenty other fashion, lifestyle and events bloggers and as I’m partial to the odd cocktail or two it seemed too good an opportunity to turn down.
I’ve tried my hand at making cocktails before of course (haven’t we all?) There was an infamous Mojito in the early hours of Hogmanay 2012 which may go down in history as the worst drink ever made, I’ve been the instigator of a few cocktail competitions at parties over the years which always end badly and I’ve even got my own cocktail shaker and mixer at home… But I’ve never actually learned the art of cocktail making properly.
When I arrived at The Millennium Hotel I was shown into the lounge area of the Hotel’s main restaurant, Avista, where our name tags had been laid out on tables to ensure we were all sitting in teams of people we hadn’t met before. I was teamed up with the lovely Sharon from I eat Fashion, Gemma from Gemsies and Ashanti from Adorn Girl (who I know pretty well but is always a hoot!).
There was time to mingle and chat over a couple of glasses of champs, an elder flower version which was extremely moreish, and partake in some fun games to get us all laughing, including having to sketch our best version of a cow and find out what it said about us. Mine looked like some sort of amalgamation of horse, cow, donkey and The Devil so I wasn’t sure I wanted to know what that meant.
We were then given a tour of the prestigious Hotel and shown some of their top suites, which during the Olympics were going for around £2000 a night, sheesh! If you are lucky enough to find yourself staying in one of the Hotel’s top floor rooms then you will be privy to a gorgeous view overlooking the whole of London and the lovely Grosvener Square Gardens on your doorstep.
Once we had been suitably wowed it was time for the main event and after a short lesson on the history of cocktails we took mixology into our own hands, each getting to make our own Mojito as part of a team challenge. A few things I learned; Only muddle the limes and sugar together but never the mint as you will bruise it and ruin the flavour. Instead simply clap the mint between your hands once and add in before your alcohol. Traditionally Mojitos should be served with gold rum rather than dark or white and finally you should never give me the option of free pouring. Case in point my Mojito ended up basically being a glass of rum with a touch of ice!Clearly my lack of knowledge previously was what attributed to Mojitos being so bad in the past.
I’d only just finished marveling at my finished Mojito when the mixologists started a little Cosmo challenge of their own. Another lesson; lighting orange peel will produce a flame and release the flavour in your drink. Amazing to watch the pros do it but I fear the results may not be quite as suave should I try it after a few drinks.
Before I knew it I had two delicious cocktails in my hand and found myself having a thoroughly enjoyable Monday evening, no moaning involved! Who knew?
You can find out more about the Hotel and the cocktail classes here.
Millennium Hotel London Mayfair
44 Grosvenor Square