1073 Cocktails and 238 Bars now listed
I don’t think I’ve ever been confronted with a cocktail menu that doesn’t include a Mojito, a Margarita or a Cosmopolitan before. You’d think the person who had written it might have been off sick (or nursing a hangover) the day they taught Cocktail 101.
But that certainly isn’t the case when it comes to Culture and Cure – in fact, a lot of effort, thought, and experimentation has gone into creating this compact but perfectly composed list. You see, everything on here is made and sourced in Britain.
This is the ethos and the passion of the owners, and it is evident the moment you get comfortable in the cosy, oak-beamed interior of this cheese and charcuterie bar in Bath. Blackboards on the wall declare that local specialities are on offer to nibble, and their varieties of beer and ale are all from the UK.
But could this be sustained on a cocktail list? I was here to find out.
A long and inviting bar runs through most of the room, behind which I spotted familiar favourites like Sipsmith and Sacred (next to tasty looks slabs of cheese, dangling salamis, and a fearsome looking slicer.) I decided to nestle into one of the snug cubby holes beneath a huge portrait of a cow, and peruse the ‘All British Classic Cocktails‘.
Luckily, gin is my thing, and so this was going to be a pleasant experience. The first cocktail on the list seemed a good place to start, since it declared itself the signature. The Wilde Cherry used Somerset Morrello Cherry and Somerset Cherry Liqueur, all topped up with Three Choirs Sparkling Wine. I could almost hear the tinkling of the cow-bells in the pastures.
When it arrived it looked suitable impressive, and one gulp assured me the bartender knew what he was doing. Refreshing and elegant, the drink was a perfectly balanced mix of fizzy bubbles and sweet cherry. The effect was far too drinkable, and soon I’d emptied my glass.
I ordered my second cocktail – this time going for a Sacred Negroni. Now now, before you leap from your chair, point a finger and shriek ‘but Campari! Campari! That’s about as Italian as Pavarotti’s pizza order!’, then let me assure you – this is a Sacred Negroni, and, along with gin and vermouth, uses Rosehip cup, an English alternative.
The result? Delightfully crisp, with a herbal edge that was nicely balanced by the gin. It pulled a punch as well – this was certainly for sipping – and there was a hint of spiced orange that I really enjoyed.
By this time an acoustic act had started up in the corner, and the melodic tunes of folk music were providing the ideal backdrop for all the relaxed clientele who were sipping on drinks or picking at platters. Apparently every Thursday night Culture and Cure host live music, and it does set the perfect ambience. Definitely something to remember.
I decided to have one more before leaving, and although I was tempted by the English Bramble (which included Bramley and Gage Elderflower liqueur) and the British Mule (made with Sipsmith Gin), I decided to have something with whiskey. This came in the form of the Blood and Sand – whiskey, more Somerset Cherry liqueur, Sacred Vermouth and fresh orange juice.
This actually turned out to be my favourite cocktail of the night. There was a definite kick of whiskey (they let the spirit speak for itself at this place), but the sweet addition of cherry, balanced out by the crisp vermouth and then topped with fruity, tart orange, made for a really tasty treat that lingered on my palate long after the drink was finished.
After three drinks, my reservations were completely shattered. Who says you can’t provide a versatile and delicious list using only British ingredients? The cocktails were well-crafted, well-considered, and the atmosphere was just right to sit back and enjoy a few indulgent drinks. It didn’t matter that the choice was small – there was evidently thought and care put into its creation, which pretty much sums up Culture and Cure. It’s a bar where the passion and love for great British produce makes it a wonderful place to spend an evening, and I will certainly be back.