Features // Britain's Best

How to improve your cocktails

7 minutes to readMay 14, 2021
Publisher - Great British Food Awards

Dani R

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Need we explain why we love cocktails? Cocktails symbolise celebration and escapism. You might not be able to go away this year, but mix yourself a pina colada and you can imagine yourself on a Caribbean beach!

We spoke to award-winning mixologist Mr Lyan, a.k.a. Ryan Chetiyawardana, to discover his tips for award-winning cocktails.

‘Spring itself carries a great feeling of new growth that encourages being outside, socialising and zippiness, which is an ideal practical feeling that your cocktails can help with,’ he says.

‘Whilst the greener shoots are pushing through, and there’s a lighter feeling in the air, something with a greener note is great to have on hand. British mint and homemade elderflower cordial adds a whole new dimension to spring cocktails.’

‘Highballs, wine-forward aperitifs and spritzes are ideal for Springtime – I call them garden drinks! They’re bright, long and usually not too boozy, which makes them ideal for catching up with friends, and whiling away the time.’

Finally, Mr Lyan recommends working with the best ingredients you can find.

‘It really elevates your cocktails,’ he explains.

We’ve put together a curated list of elements that will really help you take your cocktail recipes to the next level.

Enjoy 'A gin fit for a Duchess...' with Chatsworth Gin

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We absolutely love the taste of Chatsworth Gin. The infusion of Chatsworth House lemons, lemongrass and lemon verbena produce a crisp citrus character which is complemented by the herbal notes of the banana leaf.

The connection between Chatsworth and the Cavendish banana is integral; the addition of banana leaf, as a botanical, is unique. Serve it over plenty of ice, with Fever Tree Indian Tonic and a slice of lemon.

Savour Tipsy Wight’s Elderflower and Basil Cocktail

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Tipsy Wight sources delicious ingredients from its family farm on the Isle of Wight and steeps them in vodka to produce multi-award winning cocktail liqueurs. It recommends combining its fragrant elderflower liqueur with lemon juice, fresh basil leaves and vodka to make a refreshing cocktail.

There is currently a twenty percent discount on all its beautiful vodka liqueurs and gift sets until the end of June: just add the discount code ‘Gorgeous’ at the check-out.

Elevate your cocktails with Foodie Flavours

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Add a twist to your cocktails or G&T with only a drop or two of Foodie Flavours. It’s a fantastic range of natural flavourings including Rhubarb, Raspberry, Mango and many more.

Head to the website to check out the full range of drink-suitable flavours! To celebrate World Cocktail Day, we’ve created an exclusive reader discount of 10% off when you spend £10 or more: just use the code GBFGIN at checkout.

GRAB your Taste of the Caribbean TODAY with OTC Beverages

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OTC Beverages Limited was founded in 2018 by Shirley White.

“The idea of creating a Caribbean drink came to life at my father’s 80th birthday party, where I last saw him dance. It was a turning point in my life as I wanted to create something to pay homage to my father and mother’s generation, who created these home brewed flavours and leave a legacy for my children and my nephew,’ she explains.

“I also wanted to bring a soft drink to market that is a healthy alternative to the current offering of non alcoholic beverages in the market. Encasing the bottles in premium packaging to give the look and feel of luxury ensures that the consumer receives a rounded experience with the brand.”

OTC Beverages come in ‘Ginger Beer’ and ‘Sorrel’ flavours. They can be used as mixers or enjoyed by themselves. However you choose to enjoy them, they’re delicious and refreshing. #Enjoythetaste.

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