Bombay Sapphire Gin Cocktails at Sanderson Hotel:
Gin is probably the most exciting drink around right now, and Sanderson Hotel is hosting a new 6 week Gin Journey popup with Bombay Sapphire, aimed at cocktail drinkers who want to understand what all the hype is about. And with National Cocktail week this October 5th – 11th, it couldn’t come at a better time.
Part of the popup involves a full one hour Gin Journey Masterclass, which can be booked in advance at Sanderson Hotel. Running twice a week, the Masterclass offers the inquisitive drinker a chance to understand how Bombay Sapphire gin is created, and how its flavor’s work in a drink.
Bombay Sapphire is made with 10 botanicals, from Southern Europe, N/W Africa and Asia. The recipe has been consistent, and Bombay Sapphire work directly with its botanical producers to ensure consistency, trust and harmony. Each botanical adds a specific flavour and aroma to the gin, and the Gin Journey Masterclass is a rare opportunity for drinkers to explore gin and all its flavours. The class also aims to ‘reverse engineer’ the gin flavours to identify what other ingredients pair nicely to bring out the full flavours of both.
Three Bombay Sapphire cocktails are laid out, and each has a spray atomizer alongside with a specific flavouring that has been pair with each drink.
The three cocktail reflect the geography of the botanicals and are:
- Mediterranean Ultimate – with almond and fig flavour of vermouth and salted caramel. Sensory atomizer of coffee
- Moroccan Ultimate – with coriander infused Martini Rossaro and coconut water. Sensory atomizer of ginger
- Asian Ultimate – with lemon grass, coffee. Sensory atomizer of szechuan peppers
Each drink was tried and its flavours discussed. The matching atomizer was sprayed into the mouth so you could take on its full flavour, and the the cocktail was sipped again. Many comment of ‘oh wow!’ or ‘where did that flavour come from’ could be heard and further discussion on the complexity of the botanicals ensued.
Lastly, the Mediterranean cocktail was tried with headphones on playing Turkish markets sounds, and a blindfold, heated and moist to imitate the hot sun at midday. The flavours certainly change, and become brighter and more refreshing with this ‘illusion’ of being in a different location, and many of the tasters could identify specific botanicals in the Bombay Sapphire gin they had not noticed before.
Everyone left with a mix of awe and wonder, heading straight to the bar to try some more of the cocktails on the regular menu. You can order a Gin Journey Experience cocktail, called a Signature Sensory Serve, which includes the atomizer and full description should you want to, the cocktail being changed every two weeks. If you cannot get on the Gin Journey Masterclass then I recommend you try this instead.
There are also 5 more amazing Bombay Sapphire gin cocktails, without the testing atomizer, that can be ordered, each one being wildly different, and throwing up flavours and aromas that reflect different geographies and moods. These have been crafted by Renaud de Bosredon, the Bombay Sapphire brand ambassador, to highlight the sensory variety that can be achieved. Feeling hungry? Matching snacks have been specially created to go with each of the Signature Sensory Serves, such is the focus on taste, aroma and the full sensory experience.
Sanderson Hotel has probably the longest open bar in London, with sophisticated drinkers sitting all around it. But, what really makes the bar a social place is the friendly staff who really enjoy their work and sharing their knowledge of drinks. You could call them mixologists or other trendy term, but they are so much more.
Full marks go to Abigail Messenger who seemed to keep everything running smoothly and put up with my questions and endless photography. Drinking cocktails is as much about the experience as the drink, and Abigail made sure that everyone had great service and a great experience to remember.