My approach to drinking is much the same as putting on a treasured dress – I like to do it with a great deal of passion, artistry, and fabulous couture ingredients. So where does a girl go in search of the perfect organic, festive cocktail and the promise of a little old fashioned allure in the mould of Harry’s Bar? Why, to the Dorchester, in the footsteps of Frank Sinatra, Kate Hudson and Nelson Mandela for a cocktail masterpiece created by legendary bar maestro Giuliano Morandin.
“Organic is the way the world is going. People recycle their rubbish and care about what they eat,” declares Giuliano, who was brought up by an Italian mother never to waste anything. “To me waste is a sin. It’s also only right and fair that we should be able to reflect a growing awareness of the environment and offer some interesting and authentic organic ingredients in our signature cocktails.”
I couldn’t agree more. I can’t tell you how excited I was when I discovered the Dorchester was using my favourite Chegworth Valley apple juice in Perfect Pear – a divine cocktail with Havana Club, shaken with pear liquor, organic pear juice and bespoke pineapple and ginger syrup. On a snowy winter’s night in London you will instantly be transported to the Caribbean. Giuliano was recently voted best barman by Travel and Leisure Magazine in February – and no wonder. He is exacting in his search for authentic ingredients and actively seeks out tiny, artisan producers for the handmade syrups and bitters that will tantalise your tastebuds.
So what does Perfect Pear taste like? Like freshly distilled nectar from the gods, and not in a sickly artificial sort of way. What I love about the careful alchemy that goes into every cocktail in this friendly, iconic bar is that you can taste each and every ingredient, including the wonderful, lingering hit of ginger. His Majesty was tempted by the rather exciting Dorchester 75th. A refined and celebratory cocktail served in a elegant flute and composed of Tanqueray gin, nettle cordial, fresh mint, Chegworth Valley apple juice and champagne. Cheers!
The Dorchester Bar at The Dorchester Hotel, Park Lane, London is open daily 12.00noon – Midnight
Dress Code: Smart Casual – But smart is more fun than casual. His Majesty wore a tweed hacking coat and a Scottish cashmere cardigan with a polka dot silk tie, … and was congratulated on his good taste!