Head bartender Nelson Forchini and his team at Social 24, the bar at Jason Atherton's restaurant City Social, have created a new menu for 2019.
Inspired by the golden age of cocktails, Social 24’s 10-strong offering showcases a mix of classic and distinctly less-so combinations, on a menu (beautifully designed by artist Clotilde Lataille) that uses a colour coordination system to allow guests to easily find the drink that suits their palate: salty, sweet, floral, fruity, sour and bitter.
Imbibe tried four of the new roster. First up, Jelly Jolly Mint. Comprising Plymouth gin, Lillet blanc, Italicus and mint gel caviar, it sits in the sweet and floral categories – thanks mainly to the bergamot flavour profile of Italicus. This would work well as a digestif, mostly due to the intensity and cleanliness that the mint caviar brings to the drink, and comes with a teaspoon to mix them with.
Next for something more sour: Cacao d’Amour. Amaretto, Drambuie, citrus, egg white and cacao perfume sit classically in a coupe, making for a more conventional post-prandial sipper. Meanwhile, the Social Mistress – a mix of Bacardi, pear liqueur and Maraschino – benefits from a blackberry ice-cream candy garnish, which offsets the heavy hit of alcohol in this sweet-and-sour serve.
But it was the Bulleit Proof that topped our list on the night. Bulleit Rye whisky, sweet vermouth, and orange bitters are matched with artichoke liqueur Cynar. It’s an earthier update on a classic Manhattan and suits the dark, evening-friendly interiors of Social 24.
Thirsty for more menus? Read all about the latest lists from the UK's top bars here