A cocktail using an infusion of mahonia flowers and rowan berries was the winner in a competition run for The Botanist gin to encourage foraging of ingredients.
Nikolett Macza (pictured) of the Nightjar in Old Street, London, impressed the judges with her cocktail, Druid’s Botanist Cup, which was made by infusing Islay gin The Botanist with mahonia flowers and rowan berries that she had foraged.
This was combined with Caol Ila whisky from Islay, Unicum plum liqueur, damson jam, conifer bitters, bee pollen and lemon, presented in a pine cup and garnished it with frankincense “holy smoke”.
As the prize, the Nightjar will be able to keep The Botanist Infuser which was loaned to a selected number of bars to help them develop a new serve using foraged ingredients.
Nikolett and the bar team will be taken to Islay to find out more about how the gin is made. The Nightjar will list the winning cocktail on its menu until the end of March.
The other four bartenders at the final, all from London, were Alix Nardella of Sager & Wilde, Steve Georgiou of Mr Fogg’s Tavern, Josh Linfitt of The Worship Street Whistling Shop, and Alessandra Tasca of The Manor.
Pictured below, they presented their creations to Abigail Clephane, brand ambassador for The Botanist and Bruichladdich whisky – which are produced at the same Islay distillery – alongside Greg Almeida of Pollen Street Social and Scott Paterson of Mac & Wild in London.