This month, we have been all smiles at Hidden Curiosities towers. Why? Because it’s our sixth birthday, that’s why! That’s six happy years of selecting botanicals, distilling, mixing and sipping craft gin. We’ve been bowled over by the glowing response over the years, and even picked up some awards along the way. To the gin-drinkers of the UK and beyond, we tip our hat to you!
To help us celebrate this auspicious occasion, we’ve compiled some fantastic cocktail recipes that simply scream “celebration” at us, and work wonders with the natural flavours of both Hidden Curiosities Original and Hidden Curiosities Aranami Strength. Open your drinks cabinet, dig out the cocktail shaker and read on…
The Bee’s Knees
This sweet-but-refreshing drink is something of a favourite of ours, with the honey you choose making a great difference to the final effect. We like heather honey for its deeper, almost bitter overtones, though eucalyptus with its menthol notes works well too.
2 tsp Heather Honey
25ml Fresh Lemon Juice
Lemon Zest, to serve
First, take a small cup. Add the honey, then add around 1 tsp of hot water and stir, just to let the honey down a little and make it less viscous. This will help distribute it and make it more “drinkable”. Into a cocktail shaker, add your thinned honey, the gin, the fresh lemon juice and a good quantity of ice. Shake well, until bracingly cold. Wipe a coupe glass with a piece of lemon rind and strain in your chilled drink. Garnish with the same piece of lemon and you have a cocktail that is at once fresh, sweet, warming and lively.
While putting anything “extra” into a Martini could be seen as an act of sacrilege, elderflower and gin is a spectacular pairing, more than justifying the addition. The lime balances the extra sweetness that the St Germain possesses, while the floral and resinous quality of the Lillet vermouth brings it all together.
10ml St Germain Elderflower Liqueur
10ml Lillet Blanc Vermouth
Dash of Fresh Lime Juice
A Sprig of Rosemary, to garnish
Take your Martini glass, run a little water around the inside, then put it in the freezer for at least 20 minutes. Ideally, your gin should be kept in the freezer too - the correct temperature separates a mediocre Martini from a great one. Once you’re assured that everything is nice and cold, pour the alcohol into a mixing glass full of ice cubes. Stir well - this serves the dual purpose of bringing the temperature down further, as well as diluting the very strong drink slightly, “opening up” the cocktail. Strain into your chilled Martini glass, then squeeze the tiniest bit of lime juice in. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary, and your sweet, fragrant and bracing Martini is ready to enjoy.
The French 75 is classic if there ever was one. This wonderful champagne cocktail is given a sun-soaked twist by the addition of Catalan Cava. This delicious (and cheaper) alternative gives pear, melon and mineral flavours, which pair better with the peppery notes of the gin. Nothing says “I’m celebrating” better than a glass of fizz - the more realistic price point of Cava just means that you can have more than one!
12.5 ml Fresh Lemon Juice
12.5 ml Simple Syrup
Lemon Twist, to serve
Add the gin, lemon juice and syrup to a cocktail shaker with plenty of ice. Shake well until the ingredients are nicely chilled, then strain into a champagne coupe. Top up with Cava, ensuring it has been in the fridge, or even better, a bucket of ice. Garnish with a twist of lemon and sip decadently, preferably on a sun-kissed terrace.
Matcha Mint Smash
Japanese matcha is a fine-quality powdered tea, with a complex bitter flavour and beautiful vibrant green colour. Mixing this with gin gives an unusual flavour profile, with the sourness from the lime emphasising it all the more.
¼ tsp Matcha Green Tea Powder
10ml Simple Syrup
10ml Fresh Lime Juice
A few Mint Leaves
First, you need to make your matcha. Heat your kettle to below boiling - you need it to be around 80℃. Put your matcha in a small bowl or a small mug. Add a couple of teaspoons of the water and whisk vigorously. If you’re lucky enough to have a bamboo matcha whisk, all the better.
Muddle the mint leaves in a shaker with the syrup and lime juice. Then add the matcha suspension, along with the gin and ice and shake vigorously for about a minute getting everything good and cold.
Strain out into a heavy-bottomed tumbler or whisky glass. Garnish with either mint or a little sprinkle of matcha powder if you wish, and serve.
Needless to say, these are only suggestions and both of our gins make fabulous bases to any classic cocktail. If you’re a gin fan, or even on the fence, it’s worth giving one of the recipes above a whirl - they’re sure to sprinkle a little magic dust on any celebration, whether a birthday party or otherwise.
To celebrate our birthday, and for a limited time only, we’re offering all customers £5 OFF both of our award-winning gins. Simply use the code 6THBIRTHDAY at checkout to receive our special birthday discount.
*Applies to 500ml bottles and pouches only. Offer ends at Midnight on 31st July 2023