I have to admit I accepted Leonid Shutov’s invitation to taste vodka with some trepidation having heard tales of the hangovers that some of my colleagues had suffered as a result of their visits to his Soho restaurant Bob Bob Ricard.
A vodka party sounds dangerous, the sort of idea you used to come up when you were a student but think Russian-style hors d’oeuvres, or zakuski as they call them, and you’ve got a great theme for an evening with friends.
At £32.50 a head (and you have to order it for two) this isn’t the cheapest aperitif in London but it’s certainly the classiest. As you would expect of a restaurant just off Sloane Street in Knightsbridge.
For those of you who are lucky enough to be serving caviar this New Year's Eve I just dug this post I wrote back in 2009 out of the archives. Is champagne or vodka the better pairing? (I must confess the *research* was fun ...)
Vodka may be primarily thought of as a base for cocktails but in vodka-loving countries like Russia and Poland it’s always accompanied by food. Basically anything smoked, pickled or cured works well. Here are some ideas:
I love it when a restaurant lays on an imaginative drink pairing and this was a terrific one from Ben Cooke at Little Gloster just outside Cowes on the Isle of Wight.
Whatever you get up to on Valentine’s night (and truly, I’d rather not know) my guess is you’ve got better things to do than spend it slaving over a hot stove. So this is an unashamed cheat’s menu for you to romance your loved one with the absolute minimum of effort. Needless to say, buy only the very best ingredients.
Smoked salmon is most commonly associated with champagne but in fact it goes with many other wines as well as with beer, whisky and vodka.
With temperatures falling well below freezing this weekend it’s a timely reminder that matching drinks is not just about flavour but temperature and alcohol levels too.
You may find the idea of making cocktails daunting but bar consultant Kate Hawkings says it's simply a question of stirring a couple of good ingredients in a glass. Here are four of her current favourites.
With the explosion of exotic spirits and liqueurs that is now hitting the supermarket shelves no-one need be stuck for an unusual gift this Christmas.
This might sound a wacky pairing (OK, it is) but it’s sooo good I had to pass it on. One for Christmas morning, even.
This theatrical after-dinner cocktail from Simon Hopkinson's latest book Simon Hopkinson Cooks strikes me as the perfect Bonfire Night cocktail once you've put the kids to bed - or indeed for any winter evening you want to show off.
Last week was (highly unusually) a big week for caviar - and caviar substitutes which I ate on two successive nights paired with everything from vodka to beer. Decadent or what?
If you’re planning a Pancake Day celebration for Tuesday and haven’t yet decided what to drink here are few ideas.