Spritzing It Up – Part 1


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Sales of Spritz this summer in Scotland are booming. Latest stats show that sales of Spritz drinks in Scotland have grown by over than 53%, over the last year, and in the last 12 weeks sales are up more than 64% with the market worth £16m a year in Scotland. The proportion of Spritz serves in the Scottish market are still quite a bit behind the proportion of total sales for the UK so there is still plenty of room for growth. An Aperol Spritz is by far the most popular with consumers and bartenders alike with more Aperol Spritz sold than Pimms. In part 1 of this two-part special we talk to the people behind Scotland’t top cocktail bars to find out other trends making their mark.

EAC4D305-B29B-4815-9D45-DC86905CA77C 4 5005 cJohn Clark – General Manager, The Whitehouse, Inverness

81AF8688-74BB-4463-A56D-933D5BC04748 4 5005 cThe Whitehouse likes to be a trend setter in the Inverness bar scene – from high quality, themed boozy brunches, to being the first venue in Inverness to introduce aluminium straws, they are always looking for innovative ways to improve – and the drinks are no exception. General Manager, John Clark says, “We have a fine balance between a great setting and all of our team are really flexible about drinks. We like to break the mould and set trends. Our house cocktail list is designed to give good balance, but we are happy for customers to order off menu.

For example, if someone wants a whisky cocktail then we can offer a range to suit the persons taste -from a sour, to an Old Fashioned or even a Boulevardier.” The range of choice at The Whitehouse is clear, but there are some of their house cocktails that sell extremely well. John adds, “We do a cocktail called a ‘Pop Rocks Martini’, our modified version of a Pornstar Martini, that has pineapple gin, orange gin, pineapple juice, passionfruit puree, vanilla and is topped with a vanilla and passion fruit cream then garnished with popping candy. “One of our other fizz-based drinks is called the ‘Fizzy Rascal’ made with gin, Aperol, strawberry and topped with a Prosecco float. It looks almost like a lava lamp in the champagne flute. The Whitehouse also do their part for sustainability. As well as the aluminium straws, they’ve swapped out a lot of lemon and lime juice for citric acid, as well as dehydrating, making cordials and creating infusions.

Sarah Scorgie – General Manager, The Giddy Goose, Dundee

093A38C9-1C02-4595-BF8D-EFD922FA91BA 4 5005 cThe Giddy Goose in Dundee has a bohemian feel with its floral décor and beautiful outdoor area making it one of Dundee’s hot spots, especially in the Summer. General Manager, Sarah Scorgie, tells me, “We like to have our own little twist on everything. We do classic cocktails as well, but we have section on the menu called ‘Giddy Classics’ where we have cocktails that we come up with ourselves with our own twist. The specials change every week so the staff can always get creative and be involved as well.” She adds, “Our most popular drinks over the Summer are the ‘Ophelia’ which is pink gin, amaretto, raspberry puree and lemonade, or a ‘Raspberry and Coconut Mojito’. We’ve definitely noticed that when its sunny people love a drink in a tall glass. A favourite of mine is the ‘Tipsy Tipples’ which has coconut rum, pineapple and orange – it’s so refreshing!”

The Giddy Goose also runs cocktail classes which are hugely popular for birthdays or hen parties. Sarah tells me, “These are run by one of our mixologists and people can come in just for that, or pair it up with a party package featuring nibbles and food too! They’ve been so popular and actually run across all our venues.”

Alex Palumbo – Co-owner Hey Palu, Edinburgh

CE0B4364-31A6-44F5-8128-F5D32276F626 4 5005 cHey Palu is a friendly, modern Italian Bar in Edinburgh owned by husband and wife, Alex and Rachel Palumbo. The drinks are influenced by the Italian ‘aperitivo’ style of drinking, served in what Alex describes as a “neighbourhood bar”. He says, “since we opened, we have had a lot of regulars which is what makes our place special”. One of their specialities is the Negroni, but they don’t just offer the classic Negroni. There is a ‘Wild Strawberry Negroni’, a ‘Caffe Cyroni’ and even a ‘Negroni Flight’, so you can sample all three! Alex shared, “If someone has never had a Negroni before we give them the chance to try the classic one, which is Gin, bitters, and our homemade sweet vermouth. Then, there is our strawberry negroni which still has all the bitter elements of a negroni but with a nice strawberry aftertaste. Finally, we do a Caffe Cyroni, where we use rum instead of a gin, amaro instead of sweet vermouth, and bitter coffee. So, we have three different flavours profiled from the lightest to the more robust where people can try all the different styles.” The rest of their cocktail menu also looks delicious, with delights ranging from a Yuzu Margarita to a Spicy Paloma and even a Nutella Old Fashioned. Alex says, “We like to use different techniques for the bar so that we are trying different methods of infusing flavours. We are playing with the carbonated cocktails and things like that, so we can offer our guests new, interesting flavours in the best way possible.”

Ally Shaw – General Manager, The Gate, Glasgow

557A5B7C-0157-4FFD-8B02-73D96C84E990 4 5005 cThe Gate is situated directly across from the iconic Barrowland Ballroom and is warm, cosy and a delight to visit. General Manager, Ally Shaw says, “We are here to give people good drinks and great service first and foremost, but we also have events, socials and make sure that we’re always constantly doing other things. We serve delicious, balanced drinks and enjoy being able to have a conversation with customers, whether they are having a cocktail, a pint, or a great dram. It’s having a great team that creates the atmosphere and that pulls it all together.” Its menu is fresh, seasonal and exciting. One of their bestselling cocktails this Summer is a Mezcal cocktail which takes the form of a Gochujang honey mezcal margarita.

Ally says, “Mezcal certainly seems to be the hot spirit just now and this cocktail has got a nice balance of not too boozy but not too smoky as well.” They are also keen on good practice when it comes to sustainability making red wine grenadine from spent red wine, their own champagne cordial and cutting their citrus to reduce their carbon footprint. Ally adds, “We’ve got a drink on the menu called the Disco Biscuit, which uses a hazelnut orgeat. We toast the hazelnuts and cook them with milk and sugar. We then take the toasted hazelnuts back out and we roast them in the oven to create biscuits with them. These are used as a garnish for the drink. So, we’ve taken one product and we’ve used it in two different ways.”

Read Part 2 here



Category: Bar & Pub, Drinks, News
Tags: Alex Palumbo, Ally Shaw, Campari, Campari Spritz, John Clark, Sarah Scorgie