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Christmas Presents

The cocktail cabinet of dreams

You don’t need to have a home bar groaning under the weight of fancy bottles and expensive kit to enjoy a bit of mixology at home. Drinks specialist Julie Sheppard devises the ultimate party mixer set

At this most frenetic of times, is it really worth fussing with shakers and muddlers? Before I started mixing drinks at home, I’d have agreed that it’s a bit too much like hard work. But with the right ingredients and a few basic rules, it’s easy to make cocktails – and it’s worth it when you see how delighted friends and family are when you present them with a sensational drink for festive sipping.

First, some advice from expert bartender Oskar Kinberg, who runs Oskar’s Bar at Michelin-starred Dabbous restaurant in London. “Variations on sours are a good place to start, using 50ml spirit, 20ml lemon juice and 15-20g sugar (see formula, far right). Think of lemon and sugar as seasoning,” says Oskar. “It’s good to use a recipe at first, but don’t be scared of experimenting. What’s the worst that can happen?”

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About Delicious Magazine

Make your Christmas and New Year the best ever with our December issue. Shopping’s a breeze with our last-minute gifts, drinks advice and festive taste test. On the sweet side, there’s cake decoration, Scandi baking recipes and 16 pages of showstopper puddings. The River Cottage’s Gill Meller rustles up a fish pie, Theo Randall slow-cooks Italian beef stew and Raymond Blanc makes the best party canapés. For a stress-free Christmas day cook our classic turkey lunch with timeplan or squash and chestnut vegetarian wellington, then roast our cover ham for Boxing Day. Finally, see out the festive season with our recipes for leftovers. Happy Christmas – guaranteed!
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