Pimm’s anyone?

Cocktail makingNothing says summer like a glass of Pimm’s, it always reminds me of Wimbledon, The Chelsea Flower Show, weddings and happy times with friends.
So as it is definitely a fun drink, it needed to be made with the help of a friend.

For each glass
ice cubes
1 measure of Pimm’s No1
1 measure of gin
2 measures of lemonade
2 measures of ginger ale
cucumber slices,blueberries, strawberries and orange wheels to garnish.Cocktail garnishFill a highball glass with ice cubes (we used these vintage beer glasses as our highball didn’t look the part). Add each ingredient one by one then decorate with cucumber, strawberries orange and blueberries.

This is the first time I have added a measure of gin, it tasted good but did make it a lot stronger. Pimm’s is a dangerously refreshing drink so for a lighter (but still alcoholic) option leave out the gin.Pimms cocktailPimmsCocktails in the gardenProceed with caution, may cause wobbly legs. Drink aware etc.

All photographs ©designsbysusy

Mojito time


For one cocktail
1 shot of white rum
1/2 measure of sugar syrup
6 mint leaves
1 lime
crushed ice
soda water to top up

The famous Cuban cocktail, a Mojito is made by first “muddling” the mint and lime. This bruising releases the essential oil from the mint and juice from the lime.

If you looked very closely, I rolled the lime, which helps to get the maximum juice. I then sliced the end off, cut a thick slice, which I then quartered.  I added the lime and small mint leaves to the glass. Using the end of a metal grater I ‘muddled’ away.
When I was all muddled, then I added the crushed ice, rum and sugar syrup which i gently mixed together. A top up of soda water and a touch more ice and cheers


Proceed with caution, may cause wobbly legs. Drink aware etc.

All photographs ©designsbysusy



This rum based cocktail, named after the Cuban town Daiquiri, created by Jennings Cox, an American mining engineer who was working there in 1900. Rumoured to have run out of gin, he used rum with sugar and lime to create a new drink for his guests.
It still remained unfashionable as a drink until 1940s thought of as only a drink for sailors. At this time, whiskey and vodka were rationed, new trading and travel with Caribbean and Cuba, meant rum became readily available and it’s popularity changed.   It became the favourite drink of the writer Ernest Hemingway and US president John F Kennedy, so clearly must give it a whirl then (please note interest in the Lost Generation in my first cocktail post).

Ice cubes
3 measures of white rum
1 measure of lime juice
2 teaspoons of caster sugar
slice of lime to decorateDSC_8098
Half fill the cocktail shaker with ice cubes.
Add rum, lime juice and sugar.
Shake well and strain into a well chilled cocktail glass.
Decorate with slice of lime.

Proceed with caution, may cause wobbly legs. Drink aware etc.

All photographs ©designsbysusy

Harvey’s Wallbanging

cocktail 2 copy
The 1960’s Harvey Wallbanger cocktail, a modern day classic, has quite story behind it. It seems to be named after a Californian surfer who drank so many he literally banged and bounced off the walls. Maybe the orange juice made the drink seem less intoxicating so clearly don’t do a Harvey and drink responsibly.

1 measure vodka
3 measures fresh orange juice
1-2 teaspoons Galliano
orange wheels to decorate
6 ice cubes
Put half the ice cubes into the cocktail shaker, add vodka and orange juice. Shake until frost appears on the outside of the shaker. Add remaining ice cubes to a highball glass and strain contents of the cocktail shaker. Float the Galliano on top.
Decorate with orange wheels and straws.

While researching this cocktail, I came across  this youtube clip, which tells a slightly different tale.

harvey wallbanger

Proceed with caution, may cause wobbly legs and avoid walls. Drink aware etc.

Recipe and information from The Classic Cocktail Bible

I’m just an old fashioned girl

As usual, I looked through my cocktail books comparing
various recipes for an Old Fashioned cocktail before making
this week’s cocktail. Sugar cubes or syrup, orange bitters
or angostura, optional splash of soda etc, so I settled on
this one.
The ingredients in this 19th century drink, which I found
a tad strong to be honest, are muddled together.
My husband, however had no complaints!


Old Fashioned
2 parts Bourbon
1 teaspoon of sugar syrup
4 dashes of bitters
ice cubes and orange peel

Pour bourbon into a short glass, add some ice cubes.
Pour bitters and sugar over the ice.
Decorate with an orange rind twist.



Books featured in the post include my vintage cocktail book
‘Booze’ and my lovely new cocktail book ‘Cocktails The Present
from the Past’.

Proceed with caution, may cause wobbly legs. Drink aware etc.

All photographs ©teaandtiffindesigns

Moscow Mule? White lady?

This week it is the turn of the Moscow Mule. I had never had one before, in fact my only knowledge that the cocktail existed was from the advert shown below. Which obviously I now say each and every time “Moscow Mule” is mentioned, and yes I do try to sound like the barman.

Following research on Moscow mules, I discovered that they must (okay probably not must, but we are trying to be classic remember) be served in a copper mug, s lovely husband bought me a pair of copper mugs for my birthday last year.

The Moscow Mule seems to have been created as a clever marketing idea to sell vodka and ginger beer in America at a time when gin was the spirit choice. In the late 1930’s it was a collaboration between John Martin, a head of a food and alcohol distribution company who had bought the rights to Smirnoff vodka, and Jack Morgan president of a ginger beer producing company, which would lead to this cocktail’s creation. It was one evening drinking together, planning how to shift their products, which were not selling, that they came up with the now famous cocktail in it’s distinctive copper mug.

moscow mule

They took the Moscow Mule into bars across America, photographing the Smirnoff vodka alongside the copper mugs and by the 1950’s this vodka cocktail had become very popular.

2 parts vodka, juice of 2 limes, ginger beer to top up. Ice cubes & lime wheels to decorate.

Place cracked ice into a cocktail shaker, add the vodka and lime juice. shake until a frost forms on the outside of the shaker. Pour without straining into a copper mug. Top with ginger beer.

Proceed with caution, may cause wobbly legs. Drink aware etc.

I guess a White Lady should come soon

I’ll take Manhattan

Next on my classic cocktail journey is The Manhattan. It’s history seems a bit unclear, the most interesting story suggests it is Winston Churchill’s mother Lady Randolph, who we should thank for this delicious grown up cocktail.  It seems she asked for it to be made for a party at The Manhattan Club in New York, back in 1870’s,  I like the link with England however possibly just a story. as she was not in New York and pregnant at the time.

2 parts Rye Whisky
1 part sweet vermouth
1-2 dashes of bitters
ice cubes and orange peel.

Place the ice into a cocktail shaker, add the whisky, vermouth and bitters.
Give a shake as per usual.
Rub the orange peel around the rim of the glass.
Pour into a chilled glass.

I prefer mine served on the rocks as it is quite strong.
Proceed with caution, may cause wobbly legs. Drink aware etc.

Variations on a Classic Manhattan
A Dry Manhattan with dry vermouth instead of sweet.
A Perfect Manhattan equal parts of sweet and dry vermouth.
A Brandy Manhattan replacing Brandy with whiskey.

Proceed with caution, may cause wobbly legs. Drink aware etc.

I found this amazing 1960’s cocktail book called Booze, it’s brilliant psychedelic design and illustration was the inspiration for my cocktail post.
Booze – by June Dutton and Edith Vanocur, illustrated by John Astrop and Eric Hill (Determined Productions Inc., 1967).