Nothing is bound to get you feeling more festive than the 12 Cocktails of Christmas menu at Duck & Waffle. The restaurant’s Head of Spirit and Cocktail Development (what a great job) Rich Woods has delved into the ingredient cupboard, using both familiar and unusual ingredients to capture the essence of Christmas in 12 creative drinks – even the menu is like an advent calendar, open each door to reveal the cocktail underneath. It’s one hundred times better than cheap chocolate.
The Handbook headed up to the 40th floor to try the cocktails out for ourselves and can confirm the Winter Spiced Champagne Cocktail, made with Champagne, Bombay Sapphire and home-infused mince pie liqueur really does smell like mince pies. Excuse us whilst we head off to create our own liqueurs… The Three Wise Men, made from Jack Daniel’s whiskey, salted maple and a hay infusion featuring edible gold, frankincense and myrrh is a great option for those wanting to ease themselves into the world of Old Fashioneds thanks to a sweetness that (amazingly) isn’t too sugary. That’s not even mentioning the bed of hay it comes on; a must.
The Winter is the most aesthetically impressive drink on the menu; a blowtorch is used on a plank of wood (the same wood that Jack Daniels use for their barrels) to create smoke at the table, which is then trapped in a glass so you feel as though you’re sipping it next to a roaring fire in a ski lodge somewhere far, far away from the City. Almost like a mezcal, Grey Goose La Poire vodka, toasted walnut, amaro, cola nut and maple leaf makes it a great choice and one that definitely suits its name.
The Yule Mule – based on a Moscow Mule, here Grey Goose vodka, ginger snap, lime and ginger beer – is by far the bestseller. We are told it outsells the second next bestselling drink by more than double! It’s sophisticated but approachable – again, these mixologists know what they’re doing. Sustenance comes in the form of bacon-wrapped dates, crispy polenta balls and BBQ-spiced crispy pig ears. We know, we know, but don’t knock them till you’ve tried them!
Far from gimmicky, the 12 Days of Christmas cocktails have been expertly and thoughtfully created by the pros at Duck & Waffle, making the bar as much as a destination as the restaurant itself. Throw in the A-grade views and you’ve got yourself a winner…
The festive cocktail menu will be available 1st – 31st December at Duck & Waffle
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Fran can be found sipping espresso martinis by night and, by day, on the hunt for London's best brunch. Bonus points for a runny yolk and the perfect flat white.