That special something that some men just seem to have, almost as though they’ve been schooled at some point in their lives in the ‘Art of Man’ by the gentlemen who invented the ‘sometimes, always, never’ rule of jacket buttons (FYI…top should sometimes be buttoned – your choice, the middle should always be buttoned as it pulls the jacket together and the last button should never be buttoned unless you are still 10 in your mother’s eyes and she’s dressing you for a wedding…)
You know the type of gents we mean. Whether they’re in a top hat and trainers (very Hankey), bowler and brogues (a touch of Bannister), tweed and a tie or they’ve just thrown it all together and somehow it all just works, what these types have in common is the C word – confidence.
Not ones for faker makery and charlatans, we prefer that good old-fashioned confidence that comes from really knowing your stuff. The type of know-how that can charm, impress, entertain and inspire anyone and everyone. The ‘wink of an eye, tap of the nose, half smile’ type of magic that can only be gleaned from a serious geek out on the man life manuals and downloading the knowledge of experts (or by picking up of some of Mr Hankey and Mr Bannister’s classic nuggets of knowledge right here right now).
Life should never really be about the fancy fripperies. Confidence comes from doing simple things very, very well with ease, style and pleasure, especially when it comes to entertaining (and by that we mean cooking, drinking and hosting rather than fire juggling although by all means be our guest if you have been circus schooled…).
Now more than ever we’re harking back to the classics and winners of times gone by to give us that simple, sophisticated edge today and that has never been more true than when it comes to cocktails.
So, pop your palm tree cocktail sticks, your neon glow stirrers and your Blue Curacao right to the back of the drinks cabinet (we know we know, you’re too good for all of that riff raff unless it’s 80s night) and reach for your choice of Hankey Bannister.
Enjoying a renaissance as Don Draper’s liquid of choice in Mad Men, this simple classic found its origins in the late 19th century, primarily as a backlash to the concoctions of the overexcited bartenders of the 1860s and their liberal use of the newly discovered maraschino liqueur, absinthe, curacao and Chartreuse. A call for something simple and classic rang out within groups of the old school tipplers of Tennessee’s drinking establishments in the Midwest and somewhere (and nobody has ever proved where), the Old Fashioned was born. It is said that the name of the cocktail was given at the Pendennis Club, a gentlemen's club founded in 1881 in Louisville, Kentucky and in 2015, the city named the Old Fashioned as its official cocktail.
An out and out classic in the 1960s, the drink lost its popularity in the dawning of disco and its vodka based cocktails in the 1970s but thanks to Don, its appeal was revived in 2007 and remains a modern day classic.
Drink of choice for:
George Lucas, Don Draper
50 ml Hankey Bannister Original
1 cube or teaspoon of sugar (demerara works best)
2-3 dashes of angostura bitters
1 twist of orange peel to garnish
1. Place the sugar and bitters into a rocks glass (chilled) and muddle together until mixed, feel free to add a dash of water to help it mix.
2. Once mixed add some of the whisky and a few ice cubes and stir for 15-20 seconds to bring the alcohol down to a good temperate and to start the ice melting. Keep adding a little more whisky, then a little more ice, and continue to stir. You might want to sip a little as you go and stop stirring when you feel it’s diluted to your tastes.
3. Garnish with a twist of orange peel (twist the peel over the glass so the peel expresses its oils).
Invented in 1792, the original recipe was given to sailors to combat sea-sickness, malnutrition and scurvy. The British favoured gin and brandy while the Americans chose whisky as the alcoholic staple of this so-called medicinal tipple. August 25th is National Whisky Sour Day (one for your end of summer soiree).
Drink of choice for:
Taylor Swift, Johnny Depp
50ml Hankey Bannister 12 Year Old
25ml lemon juice
20ml gomme syrup
3 dashes of Angostura bitters
Add all the ingredients to a shaker. Shake without ice, then add ice and shake again. Garnish with a cherry and lemon twist.
Numerous stories of the origins of the Manhattan have circled for years, the most popular one being that the drink was invented at the Manhattan Club in New York for a banquet hosted by Lady Randolph Churchill (mother of Winston). However, Lady Randolph was in France at the time and pregnant so the story doesn’t ring true (despite it being a rather good story). Another account suggests it was created in a bar near Broadway by a bartender called Black. Whatever the case, the Manhattan Club still claims ownership of the original recipe and the drink is one of the most popular cocktails in the world.
Drink of choice for:
Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon and Marilyn Monroe in ‘Some Like it Hot’
50 ml Hankey Bannister of your choosing
10 ml Sweet Red Vermouth
10 ml Dry Vermouth
Dash Angostura Bitters
Stir over ice, strain into a chilled cocktail glass, garnish with a maraschino cherry. Serve straight up.
Distilled, Blended & Bottled in Scotland
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