Thursday, July 30, 2015

Cocktail Trading Co, 13th June

From the cocktails I tried I would say some of the drinks here are more style over substance. But when the style is this fun, who really cares?

I was already very familiar with this space when it was but the '&Co' part of Central and Co - it was my and my best friend's go-to cocktail joint that we always seemed to get a seat at. The Cocktail Trading Co has got a lot of publicity lately but it also doesn't really make a song and dance about it when it comes to any signage which might explain why I managed to get a seat as soon as I turned up after work.

I already knew I liked the space and it's just as cosy as before, but this time you get monkey nuts to snack on. The staff are just as friendly and attentive, even though it's busier than it ever was when I went previously.

Reading through the cocktail menu is where the fun begins. Not only do they have great names like Tu-Whit-Tu-Whoo-Woo but the descriptions are actually instructions - telling you how to make them and including helpful advice such as 'shake like a dog in heat' or 'shake it up like a revolution'.


They have the more 'normal' cocktails towards the front - margaritas and even mojitos. On my first visit my friend had a 'Delicious Sour' made with calvados and peach wine which was indeed delicious and also very pretty.
I had the aforementioned Tu-Whit-Tu-Whoo-Woo which was a Frankenstein version of a woo woo. Vodka, sage, peach and cranberry syrup and topped up with prosecco. And packed full of ice, so that the flavours were a little muted. I loved the owl it came in and the candy floss it was adorned with, even if the other things festooned on the top got stuck in it.
On my second visit I finally chose a Scout's Honour which was served in a tin cup and came with a ration tin wedged on top and some toasted marshmallows to complement the smoked marshmallow syrup. (Marshmallows are really only any good when set alight to some degree.) Again, I loved the presentation and the tin actually opened to reveal some sweets and a party popper! (Duly popped). But the drink itself didn't do much for me - it took quite a while before I could discern the mallow sweet flavouring over the tequila.
My companion had the Urn-Aged Corpse Reviver No.2 which, for one of their fanciful cocktails, was the least wackily presented. The cocktail rested atop a plot of grass/hay and with a little hand beside it (I think it was meant to be poking out of the ground). But it did taste nice, even if it was only half full. I didn't even mind the absinthe afternotes.
And then I found myself there on a third occasion where we blitzed through even more of the ker-azy cocktails. Again, they were immense fun to order and drink from (squirting cockails into your mouth from a condiment container is always good for a laugh) but they weren't as memorable from a taste point of view.
So, I still really like the bar, and would happily share the experience with someone who hadn't been before, though I might stick to the more 'serious' ones which are a bit fuller on flavour. 

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I work as an editor in educational publishing by day, and then spend most of my spare time discovering interesting things to do in London, and taking people there with my own Meetup.