So, was it the ultimate cocktail? For me, no. As far as short and strong whiskey drinks go, I would choose the Full Fat Old Fashioned from Hawksmoor or the Manhattans Project's Fake Orgasm over this. But it was a good drink with a smooth blend to its flavour, strong but not make-you-cough strong, and the Ultimate Fighting Champion it came with was very cute. I actually was more impressed with the drink Alison got – they blended cucumber juice with lemon juice and citrus peel syrup to create a really refreshing drink that had a Pimmsesque flavour without the sweetness. Quite sophisticated. And so pretty!
The food was nice too, but wouldn't leave me raving, although perhaps if we'd tried one of their main dishes, which were more obviously Caribbean-influenced, I would have a different opinion. First we shared a salad of pumpkin, poached egg and rocket. The egg was cooked perfectly and if you thought pumpkin and egg didn't go together, you're wrong. The pumpkin for me was undercooked though. I haven't really had pumpkin much before, perhaps it's supposed to be like that, but I thought it would be cooked to the texture butternut squash takes on when it's done well.
We then shared a caramelised onion and goat's cheese tart, and some oxtail spring rolls. When we requested some condiments, a really delicious sambal was brought out, with some sweet chilli sauce. The ox tail spring rolls were exactly that - completely packed with meat and nothing else. They were pretty good but I couldn't get the idea out of my mind that having one big fat one, maybe mixed with some veg would have been even better.
The caramelised onion tart arrived with the goats cheese sitting atop. I was really impressed with this. Inside the pastry a whole bulb of roasted onion sat, and it wasn't at all overly sweet like some caramelised onion tarts can be. I would say there was exactly the right amount of goats' cheese to accompany it – so often you can have too much and it overwhelms anything else.
We had a couple of glasses of wine after our cocktails. Warning - the prices are instantly appealing but you don't get very much for them. Buying bottles here is the smart move. I unwittingly ended up trying a red and a white. Unwittingly as I thought I had ordered the 'Friendly' white wine from Sonoma but a red one turned up. Nevermind, I made up for it by ordering the Granbazan Verde - how could you not with a description like that?!