Published on October 1st, 2014 | by Gavin


Monkey Shoulder’s Ultimate Bartender, Shoreditch

The stage is set, menus finalised, and thirsty guests crowd outside the door.  6 months of trekking high and low around the British Isles, and here we are, down to the final two; there can only be one winner of Monkey Shoulder Whisky’s Ultimate Bartender.

Monkey Shoulder Whisky have been scouring the country to find the nation’s best bartenders in the hope of finding just three to man their space at the prestigious London Cocktail Week and it all came to a head on 18th September in Shoreditch as the two finalists locked horns with a small group of guests given the arduous task of deciding who would get the nod.  The rules?  Serve a line up of up to 5 cocktails all made with Monkey Shoulder whisky; the bar with the most tokens at the end of the night wins- simple.

Team Cowbell from Scotland led by Stuart Bale, with signature drinks including Berlusconi’s Love Child and Glasgow Kiss.  The drinks are punchy and this is reflected in their choice of décor with purple lighting and limited seating, forcing everyone to mingle; ironic given the Scottish Independence vote was exactly one week later.

Berlusconis Love Child

Team Sipp and Chatter from the Isle of Man captained by Jamie Lewis with imaginative concoctions Old Fashioned Bru (with 1980s Wham bar garnish!), and Mint Choc Julep.  Unlike The Cowbell, they have gone for a more relaxed, low lit atmosphere with plenty of seating and a table service style approach.

Old Fashioned Bru

Both bars had their merits, and although I preferred the drinks at Sipp and Chatter; they were taking far too long to come out, which meant frustrated guests fled to The Cowbell for their fast, punchy delights.  And this was ultimately Sipp and Chatter’s downfall as they lost by a mere 15 tokens, and it is The Cowbell that will be ringing in the crowds from 6th October at London Cocktail Week.

If London Cocktail Week is the showcase for talented bartenders, then the Monkey Shoulder Ultimate Bartender competition has done much of the searching on behalf of us cocktail lovers, so The Cowbell is well worth a try on your Cocktail Week journey.

The Cowbell, 9 Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials, WC2H 9AT.  Open 6 – 12 October 12pm-11pm.

London Cocktail Week wristbands are available for £10 and entitles holders to £4 cocktails at The Cowbell and hundreds of other bars around London.  For more information on London Cocktail Week events, visit http://www.londoncocktailweek.com/ or check out our pick of the lot HERE.

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About the Author

Born and raised in Croydon, South London, Gavin is a lover of cocktails, a passionate foodie, and a self-proclaimed ‘dancing god’. A (relatively) normal guy that decided to start blogging about his experiences around the city he loves.

One Response to Monkey Shoulder’s Ultimate Bartender, Shoreditch

  1. Pingback: ImALondoner.com » Win: Monkey Shoulder Whisky

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