Gin, the drink of the moment, perfect for alfresco evenings, summer picnics and weekend BBQ’s.
We caught up with Walter Pintus a renowned mixologist who has headed up many of the UK’s best loved bars and has partnered with leading gin brand –Caorunn – to compile a set of unique tips and tricks for anyone looking to impress friends with cocktails or simply step up their G&T game this summer.
Nice Ice Baby!
Creating bar quality clear ice can be extremely difficult. It involves a process called Direct Freezing where the source of energy is pulled directly from one side only. Walter takes us through how to make this happen.
You Will Need
- A 5 Litre Ice Cooler Box
- A Home Freezer
- A Spoon or a Fork and a Knife
- 24 Hours
- A Mallet/A Rolling Pin
Step by Step
1: Remove the lid from the ice cooler box.
- Fill the ice cooler box with tap water and place it in the freezer.
- After 24 hours, remove the ice cooler box from the freezer.
- Let it rest for 15 minutes at room temperature.
- Flip the cooler upside down in order to extract the block. Tip: Do this on your kitchen sink. You will notice that in half of your block, the ice will not have completely solidified. Instead, you will have a very thin layer of ice with unfrozen water inside.
- At this stage you can simply break down the thin layer of ice and let the water escape. As the ice is very thin you can do this with a fork or with a spoon.
- You will now have a huge block of crystal clear, bar quality ice. To cut the ice, first score the block carefully with a knife, then using a mallet or rolling pin, bang gently on the knife to create smaller blocks. Portion the smaller block into cube sizes of your choice and get mixing with a spoon, straw or stirrer!
No Time to Waste!
Maximising the life of your cocktail ingredients is a fantastic way to reduce waste in your home and promote sustainability. Here, Walter takes us through some simple steps that uses all the parts of the fruit from the pulp and the juice to the skin, in order to create some amazing mixing ingredients.
You Will Need
- A Small Tupperware Type Container
- A Pestle & Mortar or Electric Blender
- A Saucepan
- An Oven
- An Apple
- Caster Sugar
- Lemon Juice
Create Fruit Syrup
Fruit syrups are made through a technique called Oleo Saccharum. This is a way of producing an incredibly aromatic sugar-oil mixture to use a base in many cocktails.
Simply coat the apple rinds in an excess of sugar and let it macerate for 24 hours. The maceration process breaks down the fruit so that all the flavours are absorbed into the liquid. The wonderful liquid that is obtained can then be used as a sweet base for some amazing cocktails.
Create Apple Infused Gin
Remove the apple core and infuse it with 100ml of Caorunn gin into a small Tupperware type container. Leave it for 24h at room temperature and strain the liquid through a fine mesh.
Create Apple Soda
- Dice the remaining Apple and place the small cubes into a glass jar.
- Add 60g of caster sugar, a pinch of salt, 10ml of Lemon juice, and 250ml of water.
- Close the lid and give it a little shake to dissolve the sugar.
- After couple of days, you should be able to see a lot of bubbles in your jar.
- Strain the liquid through a fine mesh
- Bottle and refrigerate.
Create Apple Crisps
Alternatively, the leftover diced apple can be transformed into a tasty snack or garnish:
- Add the apples into a kitchen blender with 1/2 cup of lemon juice.
- Blend for few seconds to obtain a purée.
- Spread a thin layer of the purée over a baking sheet.
- Place the baking sheet in the oven and dehydrate the at low temperature oven (80 degrees) until crispy.
Create Fruit Puree
All of the apple pulp that was left behind when you created the fruit syrup can be used too. Simply blend it in an electric blender or pestle & mortar to make a zingy puree for a great Bellini. This puree can even be used as the foundation for a dessert or simply made into fruit lathers for a tasty snack.
Caorunnknows how important it is to try out new processes, methods and recipes. And they also know how important it is to share them with the world. Now they want to encourage everybody to do the same.
That’s Gin Genius!