DIY COCKTAIL: The Southside Royale

It’s summer and you may be getting bored of Negronis, Pornstar Martinis and Mojitos. So how about a Southside Royale? Refreshing and potent in equal measure, rumour has it was born in the Prohibition era as Chicago’s Southside Gang disguised the quality of their bootleg liquor. It’s “Royale” for the splash of champagne luxury.

Small handful of fresh mint (save single leaf for garnish)
2 parts London dry gin
1 part fresh lemon juice
0.5 part sugar syrup (it’s easy to make your own)
Champagne – Difford’s Guide recommends Laurent Perrier (Cava is a decent, cheaper stand-in)

Chill a Martini glass or coupe
Muddle mint in a cocktail shaker
Add gin, lemon, sugar syrup, ice cubes and shake well
Strain into your glass
Top with a splash or two of champagne/cava
Garnish with mint leaf

Pimp it?
Strictly speaking, the champagne is the pimp, but once at a pretty indulgent party, your Bugle Food & Drink Ed stumbled into the garden and picked oregano instead of mint, didn’t notice and his “oregano royale” was surprisingly impressive.