Pairings

Pairings | Vodka

How to drink vodka like a Russian

How to drink vodka like a Russian

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.

How to throw a vodka and zakuski party

How to throw a vodka and zakuski party

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.

A vodka and caviar tasting flight

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.

The best match for caviar - vodka or champagne?

The best match for caviar - vodka or champagne?

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 ...)

The best food to pair with vodka

The best food to pair with vodka

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:

Gazpacho, oak-smoked tomatoes and smoked vodka

Gazpacho, oak-smoked tomatoes and smoked vodka

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.

A Valentine's dinner for lazy lovers

A Valentine's dinner for lazy lovers

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.

10 tips for cold weather drinking

10 tips for cold weather drinking

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.

How to make simple, great cocktails

How to make simple, great cocktails

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.

9 great bottles to give this Christmas

9 great bottles to give this Christmas

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.

Whisky tangerine cocktail and buttered toast

Whisky tangerine cocktail and buttered toast

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.

The Unknown Soldier

The Unknown Soldier

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.

Oscietra caviar and Galvin at Windows’ White Snapper

Oscietra caviar and Galvin at Windows’ White Snapper

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?

Japchae and a Happy Ending cocktail

Japchae and a Happy Ending cocktail

I really think there are some cuisines that work better with cocktails than wine and Korean is one of them as I was reminded at the opening of celebrity chef Judy Joo’s JinJuu last week

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