This compact chunk of ice won’t melt easily, which means that your whisky remains chilled, but not watered down.
Cocktail guru Giancarlo Mancino tells you where you can find your perfect tipple with his guide to where you can order the world’s best drinks and cocktails
The bar: Del Diego, Madrid
Giancarlo says: You feel as if you’ve just walked into a film set from the 1930s or 40s. It is run by two brothers. I loved watching their father Fernando del Diego at work behind the bar. He would stand there in a sharp suit, and crush the ice for each drink with a metal spoon. Fernando recently passed away, and now his sons are carrying on the tradition.
GIN AND TONIC
The bar: King Cole Bar, St Regis Hotel, New York
Giancarlo says: Gin and tonic today has got really commercialised. People are now serving it in huge balloon glasses with a lot of ice and fruit. For me it doesn’t make sense. For me, a G&T should be served in a beautiful highball glass with just a twist of lemon. At the King Cole Bar in New York, they serve you a nice measure of gin with a twist of fresh lemon. They keep it simple. And that’s how it should be done.
The bar: On Dining Kitchen and Lounge, Hong Kong
Giancarlo says: At my bar in Hong Kong we serve between 80 to 100 Old Fashions a day. We use a unique technique that takes 10 to 12 minutes. We soak the sugar cubes on cocktail napkins, use cherries from Poland that have been marinated in bourbon, and we serve it with a twist of orange and a cherry on the side.
The bar: Ronin, Hong Kong
Giancarlo says: They specialise in Japanese whisky. While they don’t have a large selection of whiskies like some other bars, what they have is very good quality. They also take care of the ice and the glassware. They serve it in a thin crystal cut glass with one block of ice. This compact chunk of ice won’t melt easily, which means that your whisky remains chilled, but not watered down.
The bar: 28 Hong Kong Street, Singapore
Giancarlo says: They mix together castor sugar, rum and fresh lime. You won’t see them pull out a jar of prepared lime juice (if you see any bar do this, send your drink back as the juice will have gone off). At 28 Hong Kong Street will squeeze the lime juice in fruit of you, which means that it’s still fresh and hasn’t lost any of its flavour. When your drink arrives it will have a little white foam on top, which means they’ve used fresh citrus. They also have some very sexy variations. What David [Cordoba, Global Ambassador for Barcardi] is doing is perfect.