After more than 70 bartenders entered nationwide, the final round was held in the Pickering Cellar underneath the St James’s headquarters of Berry Bros & Rudd, which introduced the Mauritian vanilla spiced rum two years ago.
The two winners of the UK heat will fly to Mauritius, where they will pair up to represent Team UK in a three-way competition against South Africa and Mauritius.
Luigi Barzini, brand manager for Pink Pigeon, said: “Pink Pigeon Rum’s first-ever cocktail competition has been a great success. What made this competition truly great was the number of entries, the calibre of the mixologists and the quality of their cocktails.
“We had guys entering the competition from some of the most respected bars in London such as The Worship Street Whistling Shop, Experimental Cocktail Club, The Ritz, Ziloufs, Hawksmoor and many more. Having such mixologists endorsing Pink Pigeon makes us very proud and we are looking forward to working with them further in their respective bars.”
Pink Pigeon is a premium rum handcrafted on the Medine Sugar Estate on the tropical island of Mauritius. It is named after a pigeon that, like the rum, is found only on Mauritius.
She Always Comes Back by Leon Dalloway
50ml Pink Pigeon Rum
10ml Plum liqueur
10ml Punt e Mes red vermouth
1 dash of The Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas Own Decanter Bitters
1 dash of MSK Allspice
Stir and pour over rock ice in an Old Fashioned glass. Garnish with the zest of an orange and discard. Spray of vanilla essence over the glass. It is served on a board alongside Pink Pigeon Chocolate truffles.
50ml Pink Pigeon Rum
12.5ml Apricot liqueur
20ml Honey gomme
25ml Lemon juice,
50ml Coconut water
1 dash of peach bitters
20ml Sparkling lychee juice
Swizzle/churn in a tiki vessel with crushed ice. Top up with the sparkling lychee juice. Cap with crushed ice. Serve in tiki cups inside a carved watermelon with a garnish of two lemon slices, a lemon fan and a mint sprig.
Mile High Club by Gareth Evans
40ml Pink Pigeon Rum
20ml 1:1 forced rhubarb syrup
25ml amalfi lemon
Half a Machiavellian egg white
Dry shake, add ice and shake. Fine strain into a Nick & Nora glass. Garnish with vanilla bitters on the foam.
Bird Bath by Gareth Evans
160ml Pink Pigeon Rum
40ml Ceylon Arrack
40ml Pimento dram
120ml Apple juice
120ml Pollen Street Social blend tea
80ml Calamansi fruit juice
60ml 1:1 passionfruit syrup
Shake and strain over block ice in a mini ceramic bathtub. Add spiced apple “bubblebath” and serve with four toothbrush holder cups, with rock ice, edible flowers and a pink rubber duck.
Gareth, pictured centre below, is due to head a new bar, The Blind Pig, which opens in April as part of chef Jason Atherton’s second London restaurant, Social Eating House in Poland Street, Soho.