Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Cocktails at The Plough

Style: Pub  Location: Harborne

Price: £ (£7 for a cocktail) 

The venue

Even if you're not from Harborne, you'll most likely be aware of The Plough. It's a popular pub serving up all manner of tasty food and good quality drinks in a buzzing environment. Until now they've avoided cocktails, not wanting to make customers wait too long for their drink.

I was invited to their 'Spit' wine school room upstairs (where you can take part in wine and spirit tastings) in order to try out the drinks they've settled on.

The drinks

The Plough is a busy pub and the bar staff have a lot on their plate. The management were insistent that the cocktails should be easy and quick to prepare but also be of a high quality. The obvious man for the job was Rob Wood, cocktail legend and owner of Smultronstralle, an exciting secret bar which serves up a tasting menu of cocktails. He's designed easy-to-use cocktail menus for other bars and restaurants and was a perfect fit for The Plough.

He's come up with seven cocktails. The majority of work is done before the customers come through the door, as the key ingredients have been pre-mixed and bottled up. Just a spirit or some sparkling wine needs to be added. All the drinks are served in highball glasses and are £7 each, an excellent price for the quantity and quality of alcohol.

I love the names too- they literally tell you the flavours you can expect from the drink. Skimming the list, you're bound to see a flavour you'd enjoy. My eye was caught by Rhubarb and Rosehip and Japanese Plum and Cherry Blossom.

But don't be scared to try something new. I'd never go for an apple drink (other than cider) but I loved the Green Apple and Matcha. Containing apple liqueur, fino sherry and matcha green tea soda, this really does taste of a juicy, sharp apple, perfectly partnered with matcha tea.

As predicted, Japanese Plum and Cherry Blossom was a favourite. Made with Jinzu cherry blossom gin, cherry blossom tonic and umeshu, which is essentially a sloe gin made with Japanese fruit. This was a fragrant take on a G&T.

Another of my favourites was the Rhubarb and Rosehip, a kind of summer cup containing Slingsby rhubarb gin, rose wine and rhubarb cordial, topped with prosecco.

One I didn't expect to love, the Coconut and Ginger contains the excellent Koko Kanu coconut rum, yuzu liqueur and excellent quality ginger beer. As I write this, in the midst of Christmas festivities, this is just what I want to drink. Warm and tasty and not too sweet.

Each drink is made with care and thought and good quality ingredients but can be with you in moments. Thanks to The Plough for having me along, I'm looking forward to heading back.

The Plough, Harborne

Photos by Helen

I was able to try the drinks for free in return for a review.

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