Wednesday, 6 July 2011

A little taste of Venice

So far our summer has not been the kind that we're used to. However it has been a typical English summer. Mostly in the low 20's, rain and the very occasional spurt of sunlight. When we woke up one sunday morning and felt some warmth and could not see a cloud in the sky, we couldn't pass up the opportunity to go and visit a place in London that we had been saving for a day like this. We had heard of a place called "Little Venice", right in the heart of london. As the name says, Little Venice consists of a mini maze of canals just like the real venice. So we decided to walk the banks of the canals and explore the region.

As it was a rare warm day in London, the people were out in numbers. The pubs, bars and restaurants were packed. Everyone fighting to get a prime seat outside on the canal bank. We came across a popular bar called the "Waterside Bar".  Everywhere we looked all we could see were jugs of Pimms & lemonade. We found a nice spot in the garden near the canal bank to sit and selected a cocktail from the menu.  We decided to try some champagne cocktails. Cara doesn't mind a bit of lychee in her cocktails so she went for a drink called a "She-She". This consisted on muddled lychee and cucumber with lychee syrup shaken and double strained into a glass and topped up with champagne. For me this drink was a little too sweet, but Cara liked it. However she did say that the cucumber over powered the lychee. Lychee is such a strong flavour, and not many things over power it, so it was interesting to hear that the cucumber was the predominate flavour.

I ordered a drink called "Aszu like it". What interested me about this cocktail is that it consisted of a Hungarian wine known as Tokaji Aszu. Tokaji Aszu is a sweet white wine which is added to muddled grapes and sugar syrup and topped up with champagne. A simple cocktail,  but like the 'She-She', it was so sweet. The sweetness of the wine plus sugar syrup certainly made it perfect for the sweet tooth.

I did like both of these cocktails and I like the concept of muddling fresh fruit and topping it up with champagne. It follows the idea of the classic Bellini cocktail. However I do believe that they need to ease off the use of sugar, but thats just my personal opinion.

After another walk along the banks of 'Little Venice' we made our way home. We had a great day and couldn't think of a better way to spend a sunny afternoon in London.

In a shaker:
Muddled lychee & cucumber
Add a dash of lychee syrup
Shaken and double strained into a champagne glass
Topped up with champagne

"Aszu like it"
In a shaker:
Muddle grapes
Add a dash of Tokaji Aszu (Hungarian white wine)
15ml of sugar syrup
Shake and double strain into a champagne flute
Topped up with champagne

1 comment:

  1. That little camera takes good shots! Picture looks so inviting on a warm summer day.