Welcome to the first edition of Star Serves by Imbibe, where we shine a light on some of the fantastic bartending talent in the UK and the drinks being created. We asked a range of brands to work with a bartender to develop a bespoke seasonal serve, hoping that the drinks featured here will give you inspiration for your own cocktail list and help you to add a seasonal twist to your drinks offer.
Whether you recreate some of the drinks on these pages or devise a seasonal serve of your own, we'd love to know what recipes you're working on. So share your ideas and pictures with us on Twitter @imbibeUK or on Facebook.com/imbibeuk. And check out the entire Star Serves booklet online.
Bartender: Bruce Govia, Oskar's Bar at Dabbous
'I was born in Trinidad, so Angostura's been part of my life since I was legally allowed to drink, and the food from Trinidad is massive for me, too,' says Bruce Govia, who decided he wanted to create a drink with Angostura that was similar to Trinidadian cuisine – big and bold, with sweet, sour and spice. 'Combining rum and citrus is such a standard thing, with the only real exception being the Rum Manhattan, so I wanted to make something without citrus, but that still gave the same effect.
'The Gammel Dansk helps with the bitter notes, and Dubonnet gives sweetness and colour. Then there's something that’s always popular in Trinidad around Christmas time, and that's hibiscus, which we call sorrel. So I use a hibiscus and tonic syrup that helps add some bitter notes. I'm also garnishing with the burnt cinnamon I use to smoke the glass – the rum can stand up to that. Between that and the lemon verbena, your nose is confused, with both fresh and smoky notes.'
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Photography: Steve Ryan
FROM TRINI WITH LOVE
Garnish: Lemon verbena and burnt cinnamon
Method: Smoke the rocks glass with cinnamon, shake ingredients and strain over fresh ice.
40ml Angostura 7yo
25ml hibiscus tonic*
15ml Gammel Dansk
5ml sugar syrup (1:1)
*Combine 1 litre of water with 100g hibiscus flowers and cook for 30 minutes on low heat. Strain, top back up to 1 litre and add 2g quinine and 400g sugar.