If there was ever a reason to believe in angels, it happened to me about two weeks ago. I was just checking my mail when bam! Into my inbox pops an invite to a gin and chocolate tasting workshop. This was my reaction.
Then I looked closer, this was not just any chocolate nor was it any gin, these were the big guns, the forerunners, the Tony Sopranos of the gang. I was going to a Tanqueray and Lindt Tasting. Can you deal? Because I can’t. I spent the whole of last week dropping names even when the conversation topic was nowhere now my subject. ‘Oh your aunt died, you know what you should serve at the wake? Gin. Speaking of…”
Once I had embarrassed Sara enough we made our way inside and found our seats near the front. As soon as we sat down, we were given these delicious gin gimlet cocktails. I’m sure we were told what was in them but all I remember was birds singing, the sound of the ocean and all my cares floating away. They were that good.
Then we got down to business. Tanqueray, already a master in quality and taste, teamed with Lindt’s Excellence chocolate range to create taste explosions in the form of new cocktails paired perfectly with different chocolates from the range. Thanks to a mixologist (a fancy term for a barman to the rest of us) and Lindt chocolatiers (super fancy chocolate person) we were given the background to gin, chocolate as well a demonstration on how to create these new cocktails and why these chocolates are so perfectly paired.
While we sipped our gimlets, we were given a history of gin. Did you know there are four types? Tanqueray is a Dry London, which means I still have three others to taste. I consider this research. We also got to have a look at what makes gin, gin. It’s a whole bunch of seeds and stuff. The finished project is a whole lot more exciting.
Next up was a mini lesson in how Lindt chocolate is made. I was really interested and keen until I got distracted. Right next to the lovely chocolatier, there was this machine from which chocolate poured out. Like liquid. I wanted to stick my head underneath and just lay there. But that type of behaviour gets you uninvited from PR lists so I had to stay put.
|Enlarge the pic.|
Then it got a little bit dirty. With the help of the fancy pants barman we learnt how to make cocktails. Apparently just pouring alcohol and a mixer is not a cocktail. Weird ;)
This is Sara doing her thang at an apple and gin mojito and the final product. This drink was delish and was paired with the Lindt Mint Intense.
Next up I had a go at trying to make a coconut and honey something. I really must take proper notes at these things. Boys, please note the wrist action and that I am available for dates. Also bring the Coconut Lindt, it’s amazing with this drink.
Sara then attempted her hand at this wasabi, cucumber concoction. She loved it. I pretended to when I was asked about it. Also the Wasabi chocolate is something I have avoided for ages. I tasted it here and while it’s tasty Imma gonna stick to my coconut one.
The final cocktail of the night consisted of raw eggs (for reals), caramel vodka, coffee liqueur, gin and something else. At this point, I had had three cocktails and really was game for anything. Until I remembered there were raw eggs involved. Can you tell how nervous I was. This one was definitely an acquired taste. But the white chocolate that came with it was insane. That is a winner.
So while my alkie-side was taken care of, my fat kid side was looking for some attention. She got it in the form of a chocolate fondant. We watched the boys mix stuff, fold stuff and put things into a piping bag. Let me tell you, it’s sexy. And the best bit, it only took 8 minutes to bake. And then whoop! There is it, chocolate fondant with coconut ice-cream. I literally had to will myself to take this picture before eating it. The smell was so intoxicating my will power disappeared.
Sadly then it was time to go but not before being rewarded with goodie bags. I say reward like I did something heroic. Inside the bag were recipe cards for Lindt and Tanqueray, a slab of Lindt and a whole bottle of gin. You see what I mean about reward?!
To all the angels I now believe in, thanks for getting us in and for having us. Your work is amaze.