Monkey Shoulder madness & some cocktail judging

 

Chandeliers, cocktails, bundles of candy floss, vintage cars and a bar in a box.

Sound extravagant? HARDLY. With a location such as Shoreditch you shouldn’t be surprised that such an event would be a little on the wacky side. Just how I like it 🙂 

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By now you really should know how much I adore a well made cocktail and im certainly not shy about broadcasting it. I wont deny that lately, I have been most spoilt for choice with tasting some of the best developed concoctions around London. When I was asked to come along to this event to judge and try out even more top notch cocktails courtesy of Monkey Shoulder, I was curious to to find out as to what exactly goes on at a social gathering such as this. Well lets see shall we…

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On our arrival we stumbled across an outdoor mobile disco bar serving drinks such as the Monkey punch or show me the monkey. How appropriate I might add. The weather for the evening I can safely report was most pleasant – mild with blue skies and the glistening sunshine beaming down on us. I just love summer in London (when it is actually warm that is) people are laughing and smiling, pubs and bars are heaving and its still light as day at 9 pm. Bliss

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After gathering our money chips, we decided to take a look around the inside space of the venue and do a bit of ‘exploring’. I had developed quite a thirst and couldnt wait to try out the first cocktail. Basically the story behind all of this is that teams of talented bar tenders are here to compete for a spot at London cocktail week through a competition run by Monkey Shoulder Whiskey. The aim of the game is to get bartenders to work as a team to run an entire bar rather than the traditional ‘create one-off cocktails’. The winners are given the opportunity to run their own all-expenses-paid bar with Monkey Shoulder during the popular event in October each year. Im almost keen to give it a go myself next year! 

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Each team had their own theme or concept which included a mysteriously almost pitch black bar in a walled off box. Their drink seemed quite fitting – Scotch in the box and my word it was certainly on the stronger side of life. You had the chance to scribble on part of the wall as you made your exit, while watching a number of artists on the opposite sides busy at work creating the most amazing masterpieces. Meanwhile us piss heads were getting a little on the merrier side of things and asking the usual annoying questions! Seriously, who brought her along?

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At the far end of the building, The Dead parrot team had a very clever circus inspired bar with candy floss, popcorn, rubber duckies and a toy car that kept me and my friend highly amused through out the night. I can assure you that the novelty did not wear off and caught on very quickly with other guests. Such trend setters. 

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Speaking of cars, the classic number was drawing us in for a picture (or maybe 20) so we couldn’t help but whip out the headscarfs/sunglass attire and pretend how glamorous we really… aren’t (kidding!) 

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By about 10pm we were all ushered into the centre of the room for the announcement of the winning team. With over 400 votes the Dead Parrot stole the evening with their Beerded Lady, Hook a Buck and Tin Can Alley creations. The Beerded lady containing whisky, pineapple, peach, passion fruit and soda was my favourite out of the four tested, so presuming everyone else had the same exceptional matching tastebuds. 

Nice out fits!!! 

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‘Highland Sourz’ cocktail 

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A huge pat on the back to the other teams that contributed in this competition. Representing Hyde & Co in Bristol – Danny Walker and Isaac Windsor.  Ash Bovey from Hyde & Co in Bristol and Sam Boulton, Steve Arthurs, Jordan Moore from Tiger Hornsby in Newcastle upon Tyne. Stellar effort guys with plenty of Monkey madness and well worth the sore head the next morning – Cheers! 

 

**Alway remember to drink responsibly** 🙂 

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