Rhubarb Gin Fizz

The Botanical at Cornercopia

This is Nicholas Horton’s signature drink and uses Boxer gin which is intensely citrus and has a strong juniper flavour. If you can’t get it use another premium gin, preferably export strength. This cocktail also uses a saffron syrup and a vanilla shrub – or syrup made with vinegar instead of water. It’s absolutely worth the effort to make these: the saffron lends a beautiful colour and subtle flavour to the drink, and the vanilla shrub has the effect of both sweetening the rhubarb and enhancing its natural acidity. Don’t omit them.

Ingredients

For the Saffron Syrup

  • 250g caster sugar
  • pinch of saffron
  • 125ml water

For the Vanilla Shrub

  • 250ml white wine vinegar
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 1 vanilla pod

For the Cocktail

  • 1–2 rhubarb stalks
  • 50ml Boxer gin
  • 25ml egg white (about 1 small egg white)
  • 15ml saffron syrup
  • 15ml vanilla shrub
  • handful of ice cubes

Method

Put the sugar and saffron in a pan with the water and heat until the sugar has dissolved. Once the syrup becomes thick and glossy, remove it from the heat and cool in an ice bath. Bottle when cold – it will keep in the fridge for several weeks.

Put all the ingredients in a saucepan and simmer at the lowest possible heat until all the sugar has melted. Remove from the heat and cool in an ice bath. When the shrub is quite cold, strain out the vanilla pod and bottle. It will keep in the fridge for several weeks.

Juice the rhubarb stalks and pour a 25ml measure of the juice into a cocktail shaker. Add the rest of the ingredients and dry shake (without ice) to properly emulsify the egg white. Then add ice and shake again.

Double strain the cocktail through mesh into a chilled coupette. Garnish with candied dried rhubarb skin or a small stalk of fresh rhubarb. Enjoy!