By The Gentleman and The Lady
Sometimes when you’ve struck a good thing it’s best not to mess with it. The last time we went to Gouger Street’s Loft Oyster & Wine Bar we had just finished an intense period of university study. You know that time of year when every deadline feels like it’s on the same day and you find yourself forgetting what sunlight or normal sleeping patterns are like as you madly rush to get everything done. Yeah, good times. Well, that wonderful time of yeah came again, but we’re through to the other side now and everything is coming up Milhouse! So, in the mood to celebrate, we decided to head back to Gouger Street and sample some more delicious cocktails from the Loft.
While we were at the Loft to celebrate it was also a bit of a last hurrah for the current cocktail menu. The Loft has a classic cocktail menu and a rotating menu of new specialties and we tip our hat to the Loft Twitter handler for giving us the heads up on the upcoming menu change so we could sneak in a taste before it changes. From the specialties we tried the White Rabbit, the Cold Drip Negroni, and the Bangkok Breakfast and we also went for the classic Orange Daisy.
As soon as The Lady saw the White Rabbit she knew I was going to order it. It was a mix of brown butter washed dark rum, smoked maple syrup, orange and lemon juice. Brown butter and smoky maple syrup? Sign me up! The drink was surprisingly very citrus forward at first. You got a lot of orange aroma and sweet fruit flavour. About halfway through the drink though you get hit with the smoky maple flavour and aroma. It was a really delicious transition of flavours that was topped off with a smooth spiciness from the butter washed rum and a definite lingering citrus tang. An intriguing and easy to drink cocktail.
As much as I was tempted by the White Rabbit I also had a strong suspicion The Lady would choose the latest Coffee Experiment, the Cold Drip Negroni. Gin and coffee are two of The Lady’s favourite things and she rarely misses an opportunity to combine the two. Throw in some Campari and sweet vermouth and you’ve got a really good time. The coffee and Campari pair excellently to provide a delightful bitterness and who can resist the heavenly aroma of coffee tinged with citrusy orange. Plus, we were rather impressed by the massive hunk of ice used to chill the drink (yes when you drink a lot of cocktails ice size becomes an important thing). It was both practical, keeping the drink cool but not diluted, and looked rather nice, sticking out the top of the glass. One for all the coffee lovers.
The other two cocktails caught our eye not only because they sounded amazing, but because they offered both a regular and a small size. It’s not that we didn’t think we could drink a whole other cocktail (trust us, we most certainly could), we just appreciated the option of a slightly cheaper option. We’re more than happy to pay what a good cocktail is worth. We’re also poor students so the option to try something that sounds so nice for a bit cheaper price is definitely quite attractive to us. The Bangkok Breakfast was served in a cute little milk bottle with a straw. It mixed citrus vodka, breakfast tea, lime, ginger, and lemongrass. The drink wasn’t as citrusy as we thought it would be. Instead the ginger was really dominate and had a really pleasant spiciness that left a nice tingly sensation on your tongue. To us it screamed hot summer’s day as it was refreshing and easy to drink. The Orange Daisy was also quite a good accompaniment to the Bangkok Breakfast. It was similarly refreshing and tasted kind of like an alcoholic soft drink. The orange and cardamom cordial was not too syrupy or too sweet. It was delightfully balanced and again we loved the citrus flavours, mixed something a little bit different. Without even realising we went through a bit of a citrus cocktail tasting, but we’re okay with that when the results are so good.
This was our second visit to the Loft after struggling through study hell and we’re starting to feel like this is the start of a great tradition. As long as they keep making cocktails as good as these those long nights of study may just be worth it. Good cocktails are always the best motivation.