All posts tagged: birthday

Artesian: Best Bar in the World?

Well, this has been rather a long time coming. After a holiday from work and then a horrifying plunge back into work, I’ve been taking a bit of a break from the cocktails. Time to catch up with a bar visit from waaaay back at the end of March. For a special occasion (ahem, major birthday), my friends and I took a trip to Artesian, the no.1 bar in the world according to this reputable authority. We were all dressed up and ever so slightly tipsy on French 75s when we arrived at the Langham Hotel, just north of Oxford Circus, where Artesian is located. It was a Saturday night and we were worried about queuing, (no reservations but it was pleasantly busy rather than heaving and we got right to a table by the window. The bar itself has a Chinoiserie theme, with an absolutely gorgeous back bar which I did not manage to get a photo of, and the drinks are Surrealism-themed, each with a hashtag to call their own. The presentation is… unique, …

Cocktail of the week no.13: the French 75

I have a birthday looming menacingly on the horizon, and I’d been waiting for this occasion to make a rather celebratory cocktail, the French 75. Not so much a cocktail for sipping on the couch on a weekday evening while watching Murder She Wrote (my normal MO), this champagne and gin concoction called for a slightly more special occasion. (Although now that I’ve realised how great they are, they might be making an appearance on sofa nights anyway.) This drink seems to have been popularised by Harry McElhone at his New York Bar in Paris in the 1920s, and apparently owes its name to a particularly effective 75mm artillery gun used by the French in World War I. Drinking a couple of these had a similar effect to getting shelled by one of the above, apparently (thank you Gin Foundry!). It really took off in the 40s after being ordered in Casablanca. It’s definitely worthy of its name, with a deceptively light, fruity taste but a kick like the hind leg of a horse (something I …