Licor 43 Workshop – Adventures in Chinatown!

Last week I was lucky enough to win two tickets to a Licor 43 Cocktail Workshop, courtesy of those fab folks The Cocktail Lovers.

Hosted at the Bartenders Table in Opium Bar in London’s Chinatown, it was an intimate gathering of around 12 people, with The Cocktail Lovers themselves, Mr G and Mrs S, at the helm.

Licor 43 Opium Lounge

Now, I’m a big fan of Licor 43, which is why I entered the contest in the first place, but a lot of people haven’t really come across it before. Licor 43 is a Spanish liqueur, named for the 43 different ingredients it contains. It is has a lovely amber-honey colour to it, and the stickiness of pour you would expect from a liqueur. It is an enjoyable sipper all on its own, and this is how we started in the workshop. It is the best way to discover a liqueur, and understand which other flavours it will pair with.

The dominant flavour is vanilla, and although sweet, it is not sickly, as many other notes come through, herbal flavours and warming tones. It is nice at room temperature, or can be enjoyed with ice for a milder flavour.

Once we had tasted Licor 43 on its own, it was time to start experimenting! Now, I mainly use Licor 43 in my Porn Star Martini recipe, so I was excited to see what other drinks it could be a part of.

We started with a refreshing little number, called Spanish Water, that The Cocktail Lovers whipped up for us. Licor 43 Spanish Water

  • 25ml Licor 43
  • 75ml freshly-pressed orange
  • Top up with Cava or Prosecco

Served in a large wine glass over ice, this is a nicely jazzed-up version of a classic Bellini mix. Perfect in the summer, when you want a longer drink to enjoy in the sunshine!

But now it was our turn, and we were challenged with making a classic Sour, using Licor 43 as the base. Take a look at my recipe for a Chambord Sour.

Now, I do love whipping up a cocktail, but my friend had never – shock horror – made a cocktail herself, so it seemed best she take the reins! We worked on a straight up Licor 43 Sour, with egg white, served in a lovely Champagne Coupe.

Licor 43 Sushmi 1st cocktail

  • 25ml Licor 43
  • 50ml Lemon Juice
  • 12ml Sugar Syrup
  • 1 Egg White
  • 1 Dash Angostura Bitters

Add all the ingredients to a shaker, fill the shaker 3/4 full with ice, “shake until you can’t hold on” (Cocktail Lovers tip), and then strain into a chilled Coupe glass.

If you don’t fancy the egg white, you can leave it out, but you will lose some of the nice frothy head. If you don’t have Bitters, again, these can be left out and won’t make a huge difference, but they’re inexpensive and are used in many drinks, so worth the investment.

This was a lovely variety on Sours I’ve had in the past and I will certainly be trying this at home!

Next up, we tried a version of a classic Americano.

Licor 43 Americano

  • 25ml Licor 43
  • 25ml Campari
  • 50ml Prosecco

This is a built drink, served in a heavy rocks glass. Fill the glass with hard ice, then add the ingredients one by one. Serve with a slice of lemon.

Now, I don’t like Campari, so this wasn’t a drink for me, but it is a beautiful colour, and if you find most cocktails too sweet, then this would be ideal!

Finally, (which was good, as we hadn’t had any dinner), we moved on to the final drink. An adpatation of the classic sharing drink, Sangria.

Licor 43 Sangria Fruit Licor 43 SangriaMakes 2

  • 50ml Licor 43
  • 20ml brandy
  • 75ml red wine
  • 50ml soda
  • 75ml orange juice
  • 1tbsp sugar

We started with a carafe and plenty of fruit, including sliced apple, pear and lemon, as well as fresh raspberries. Add the Licor 43, Brandy and sugar, and let it infuse for a few minutes. Then add wine, soda, and orange juice and give it a stir. Pour into balloon goblets filled with ice, and make sure some of the fruit makes it into the glass!

If you’re making this for a crowd you can up the quantities and keep everyone happy!

Now, as I don’t drink wine I didn’t expect to like this, but somehow when all the flavours combine it becomes a delightfully fresh and fruity drink, which I throughly enjoyed!

I want to say such thanks to The Cocktail Lovers for organising this event and inviting us along. They made it a fun evening that everyone could enjoy, whether you are new to cocktails and Licor 43, or whether you are somewhat of a seasoned amateur! I will be looking out for their next event! You should too, and you can keep up with all their great endeavours in their magazine.

As I was lucky enough to win a bottle of Licor 43 at the end of the evening, I will be experimenting with some new cocktails soon. There are lots of great recipes on the Licor 43 website, and I will share the best ones I discover!

So much fun for a Tuesday evening! So whatever you’re up to this weekend, remember to enjoy (responsibly) x

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