Three Simple Steps to Mastering Mixology

I don’t even remember when the word mixology started popping up. I think its around the same time as the prohibition-theme took over bars, and a large mass of young professionals moved on from fruity Daiquiris and Pina Coladas to artisan gin and different expressions of a Dark n’ Stormy. A Bartender was no longer a bartender, but a mixologist, and the cocktail was no longer just a drink, it was a piece of culinary delight. A new era of making cocktails had begun… or I just got older, who knows. Continue reading “Three Simple Steps to Mastering Mixology”

Wineweek 160: November Rain

I wish the topic was referring to a song, but its not. Its referring to the weather; which is as you would expect in November – rainy. Next week, the weatherman has promised snow. I am not excited about that either. So until we fly to Asia again, I intend on staying inside. Instead of going out for cocktails I will make them at home.  Continue reading “Wineweek 160: November Rain”

Gin from the heart of Stockholm – Stockholms Bränneri

Gin – my second favorite topic after wine. I don’t know if I have mentioned where this obsession started from? London of course. It was there, under the railway arches in Bermondsey I had my first taste of small batch “boutique” gin from a Danish ginmaker called Jensen’s. I was expecting to grimace after a sip of raw gin, but to my surprise the taste was soft and silky. It was one of those aha-experiences, where I realizes that the gins I have been drinking before have just been questionab quality. That day, spirits went back on the shopping list again, but only quality spirits. And I am happy to announce that I have found a local favorite here in Stockholm: Stockholms Bränneri. Continue reading “Gin from the heart of Stockholm – Stockholms Bränneri”

Wineweek 155: Gin and Tonic

Fall is in full speed right now: cold winds, drizzle and pitch black evenings. However, if you are lucky, you have the type of weather we had today: crisp and sunny and on the better side of +/- 10 degrees. These are the kind of days that makes me happy about having four seasons in a year. Fall can be great at its best. And its a perfect time for some game, light red wine and spiced gin&tonics.  Continue reading “Wineweek 155: Gin and Tonic”

Wineweek 151: The Opening Weekend

The leaves are starting to fall. There is only two weeks left of September. The winter is coming. In a week, we will escape the cold weather to Barcelona. Unless the cold weather is waiting for us there. I have heard concerning weather reports from past weeks. There is also another reason for concern, which is the Catalonian referendum. The closer to the date we come, the more unrest is to be expected. I’m trying not to think too much of that, and this weekends events have been the perfect escape: Wine at the cellar, making cocktails at home and opening party of the new Johan & Nyström concept store in the center. Continue reading “Wineweek 151: The Opening Weekend”

The Little Gin Bar at Nytorget – Bar Agrikultur

Nytorget is kind of a hipster-cool city oasis. It’s a little park in SoFo (South of Folkungagatan), Södermalm, surrounded by charity shops and vegan cafes. I have long avoided hanging out there. Not because I don’t like second hand or vegan, but rather because it is so crowded by locals and tourists and the food and drinks selection has been limited. This summer, everything has changed – Bar Agrikultur has opened next to the park. Now, I have been hanging out around Nytorget every week. Other newcomers, like Café Pasqal opening a branch there will make it even more attractive. Continue reading “The Little Gin Bar at Nytorget – Bar Agrikultur”

Wineweek 119: February Favorites

For those who have been reading this blog:  you know I am not a winter person (I was clearly born in the wrong country). However, February is a month of hope. Days are getting longer, skies clearer, and they sell these awesome plush buns with whipped cream and almond mass in the middle. You eat them until the end of February when the buns have their own signature day: Fettisdagen (fatday).  With more light, there is a feel of having more time; and I am not so tired all the time. This week we did a lot of stuff at home. I even baked (bake-off croissants. Haha!), and got an inspiration for making some cocktails at home.  Continue reading “Wineweek 119: February Favorites”

Wineweek 72: Easter in Helsinki

It has been a mad March. We have been working hard: ordering summer wines and looking for a new warehouse. We also did a short wine trip to the city we fell in love in – London. All the buzzing around came to a nice relaxing halt when we flew on Thursday to Finland for relaxing Easter celebrations.  There is nothing like coming to a ready set table. While in Helsinki, we had the chance to try some nice Finnish Gin, visit one of our favorite wine bars as well as finally try out one of the most talked-about Helsinki restaurants, the Michelin-starred Chef & Sommelier.  Continue reading “Wineweek 72: Easter in Helsinki”

Cocktails and Ships at Bottles Pop-Up Bar, Stockholm

Imagine old wooden chairs and tables, figureheads and miniature ships. And imagine holding a rum cocktail with zesty lemon peel and a huge ice cube floating in the middle. There is no music, just steady murmur coming from the other tables and the clinking of ice against your glass. There is no rush, and the calm bar invites you to relax.

Bottles Pop-Up bar is all about the drinks. It is run by three Stockholm bartenders with merits from Little Quarter, Shibumi and Lilla Nygatan. The Pop-Up bar has an interesting concept, it moves around within the Gamla Stan restaurant scene, and the theme changes with every venue. Right now it is located in the Victory Hotel (the Congress Center) and houses a theme loyal to the venue style. I have previously written to you about Tweed, the semi-speakeasy cocktail bar inside the hotel (review here). Bottles current style is similar, however it feels less clubby and more genuine. Other venues will include restaurants (by the same owner) in the Gamla Stam/ Lilla Nygatan are: Pubologi, Djuret, Svinet, Lejontornet, Tweed and Burgundy.

I was at Bottles for some afterwork drinks with fellow Yelpers. We arrived early, around 6pm and had no trouble finding a seat. Ok, we even had a reservation, but we would have found a seat nonetheless. We were offered a drinks menu with around seven different cocktails that all were named after ships of past and present. Ingredients included all of the usual suspects: rum, gin, tequila and bourbon. I was perhaps a bit disappointed that the spirits used were quite main stream: Bacardi, London Dry and other big brands (very un-hipster). The mixers were the ones to set the mood with tastes of rosehip, marinated fruits and ginger ale. Every cocktail was named after a boat and had a story, which the bartenders introduced when serving the drinks. I had a Carina II with variations of old wine (tasted a bit like fortified wine), grapefruit and champagne, and a Rumbullion with Bacardi, Havanna Club, Captain Morgan, Barbancourt and Gunroom and Sour. Both cocktails were very good and fit the historic atmosphere of the hotel.

All in all, a fun concept with spiced with tasty drinks and great service. I am already excited about where the bar moves next and looking forward to exploring what kind of drinks the other venues have to offer.