The Clover Club. A magical summer cocktail that tastes just as good as it looks (and it looks bloody great). Raspberries at the ready, please.
Ah, raspberries. Perhaps my favourite summer fruit. I’m not typically an enormous advocate of fruity cocktails (I prefer ‘em punchy and boozy) but the Clover Club is an exception. A sharp, gin-fuelled affair, it is fruity in the correct way: it is not sweet, it is not banal, and the fruit isn’t masking the complexities of the alcohol.
The Clover Club is a cocktail to wheel out when you’re sitting in the garden on a sunny evening. It’s a bloody excellent crowd-pleaser, too — more accessible than a martini, and good looking to boot.
There are a bunch of different recipes, some of which involve stewing raspberries and such malarkey. Don’t bother. I think it works better (and it’s certainly a whole lot simpler) using good raspberry jam. Here’s how I do it, anyway.
Clover Club Recipe
3 parts gin (a classic London gin is best: Tanqueray, Gordon’s, etc)
1 part dry vermouth (Noilly Prat or Dolin are both good)
1½ parts lemon juice (freshly squeezed, natch)
½ part raspberry jam
Raspberry or lemon twist
Chuck the above ingredients except the last into a cocktail shaker, fill it with good chunky (solid) blocks of ice, then shake for 20 seconds or so.
Strain the resulting liquor (innit pretty?) into a cocktail glass you’ve whipped from your freezer (a Nick & Nora glass is lovely). For a nice, smooth result, you can double-strain it (ie. pour from the cocktail shaker strainer through a finer sieve into the glass). But it’s by no means disastrous if you can’t be bothered to do that.
You get top marks if you have a fresh raspberry or two with which to garnish this, but in the absence thereof, a twist of lemon peel will do just fine.
Tresolmos Verdejo from the Wine Society is exactly what you need after battling through the bleak London rain
What do you need after battling through the bleak London rain? What do you need after huddling shivering and sodden on the back seat of a bus whose windows have been inexplicably flung open by some masochistic Chelsea commuter?*
You need a glass of Tresolmos Verdejo, you miserable, trauma-eroded marmoset, you.
Because it’s very nice. And (which is One Of The Reasons For Which I Love The Wine Society) it defibrillates your tastebuds with a flavour you can’t pick up off the shelf at your local express supermarket, that’s for sure.
Defibrillation for £7.50. Save the NHS a few quid and do it my way.
So, as I jerk back to consciousness, my gob’s suddenly alive with bitter, gripping zest — lemony pith. But alongside the electric, citric jangle, there’s that fullness. That almost indecent fullness, set alongside all that bite and the zing. But it’s not a bit oily, not a bit flabby. It’s cialis online to buy like a slim, clean sort of chap who goes to yoga five times a week: he may look slender, but he’s strong.
I drink Tresolmos Verdejo and it makes me think of being outside when it’s not actually freezing and hosing down with rain. If you can picture that scene even vaguely. Makes me think of lemons and the oil of lemons on my fingernails. Of stones and sunshine.
And of a beautifully aerated number 22 bus.
Rating ???? 4 stars (very good) Region Rueda, Spain Grape Verdejo ABV 13% Price £7.50 from The Wine Society. But — ye gods! — I now find it’s sold out. Back in stock!
* Yeah, so, according to guardian angel of the online wine community Robert McIntosh, the fresh air is good for me. What-ev-er.