31 October 2012

Flavour of the Week

The flavour of the week is tamarind. The tamarind, a slow-growing, long-lived, massive tree with strong, supple branches, is covered in dark grey bark. The tree is covered in bright green, feathery foliage and produces inconspicuous, inch wide flowers yellow with orange or red streaks.  The Tamarind tree is indigenous to Africa, but is now grown in most tropical countries, including Mexico, India, Australia, and China.
The fruits are flattish, beanlike pods and are tender skinned with green, highly acidic flesh and soft, whitish seeds. As they mature, the pods fill out somewhat and the juicy, acidic pulp turns brown or red. When fully ripe the skin becomes a brittle, easily cracked shell and the pulp dehydrates naturally to a sticky paste enclosed by a few coarse strands of fibre.
The flavor of the greenish unripe tamarind is watery, acidic and very sour. The ripened sticky pulp has a musky flavor and is sweet and sour due to the sugar and the acid content.
The food uses of the tamarind are many. The tender, immature, very sour pods are cooked as seasoning for savoury dishes in India. The fully grown, but still unripe fruits are roasted in coals until they burst and the pulp is dipped in wood ashes and eaten. The fully ripe, fresh fruit is eaten raw.
The pulp is made into a variety of products. It is an important ingredient in chutneys, curries and sauces, including some brands of Worcestershire and barbecue sauce. Sugared tamarind pulp is often prepared as a confection.Tamarind drinks are very popular in the tropics and most especially in Mexico. The strained pulp, much like apple butter in appearance, can be stored under refrigeration for use in cold drinks or as a sauce for meats and poultry, plain cakes or puddings. Tamarind is excellent in margaritas and other cocktails.

Absolutely Stunning Perfume Jewelry

Jody Kocken loved perfume but was allergic to any skin contact. So she created a stunning line of industrial jewelry designed to trap the scent and release it when the metal was warmed with contact with the wearer's body. Clever girl...
                               PERFUME TOOL JEWELRY

24 October 2012

Bar Le Coq- Opening November 10th in Paris

Oui, c'est vrai! It's official, Bar Le Coq will be opening on November 10th in Paris.
Bringing many elements of French drinks, perfume, and literary traditions together under the glamorous and somewhat sordid banner of the 1970’s, Le Coq combines a rock chic sensibility with an eye towards locally sourced French products to create drinks that are not just delicious, they are infused with the spirit of the vrai esprit Parisian.
Bucking the current trends in drinks industry Le Coq celebrates the style and spirit of a different era. Yves ST. Laurent, Jane Birkin, and Marian Faithful would all have felt at home in Le Coq. It brings to mind the feeling of Andy Warhol’s Factory, a slightly dark space where the people that inhabit it are as much the art as the photography and paintings on the walls.
Taking direct inspiration from the 1970’s and drawing on the cross-pollination of the Paris/NY/London musical influences of the time, Le Coq brings together the tradition and glamour of the French “chanteuse” with the brash energy of the NY underground music scene. Le Coq is all dark glamour and delicious drinks. Tres sexy....
Vive Le Coq!

GQ.com, Tony C.'s Article on London Cocktail Week

Tony C.'s favorite moment at London Cocktail Week revealed!


Flavour of the Week

The flavour of the week is curry leaf. Curry leaf, also known as Bergera koenigii, Chalcas koenigii, or Dhivehi is a tropical to sub-tropical tree in the family Rutaceae which is native to India.
Curry tree is a fast-growing deciduous shrub or small tree with deep roots and scented leaves. It can can grow to 6 m high and the bark is dark brown, almost black. The berries are poisonous. The leaves are an important ingredient in curry in South India and Sri Lanka. They look rather like bay leaves and have a smoky deep flavour. In South Asia they are used fresh and dried in cooking. Fresh leaves are also steam distilled to produce an oil which is used for the production of soap. It is important to note that British curry powder does not contain curry leaf. Ingredients it may include are chilli peppers, cumin, corainder seeds, black pepper and dried ginger.
Curry leaf is used in South Asian traditional medicine to treat the digestive system, skin conditions and diabetes. Its anti-diabetic properties are supported by scientific research. Scientists believe that the Indian curry may contain agents that slow down the rate of starch-to-glucose breakdown in people with diabetes. The tree's leaves could control the amount of glucose entering the bloodstream.
Curry leaves are readily available on line and in Eastern speciality shops. The tree grows well in temperate areas and can even handle some frost. A tincture of curry leaf adds a subtle smoky depth to a cocktail.

16 October 2012

Tony C, 69 Colebrooke, and the Zetter Townhouse in the New York Times Magazine

69 Colebrooke Row, The Zetter Townhouse, and Tony C feature in the New York Times Magazine Food and Drinks issue regarding culinary quests around the world. Fantastic to be in the NYT of course, but also worth noting that the piece ended up in an article regarding culinary quests. Kudos to the entire team at the lab and both bars!
Read the full article here:

Explaining Why Food and Wine Pairings Work

A new study highlighting and explaining why some foods and wines naturally pair up. It seems the sommelier was right- you really do want a high tannin, high acid wine with that fatty steak.Or pickled ginger with your sushi. Or even an olive oil and red wine vinegar salad dressing.
It’s all about texture, researchers say, tannic beverages and foods feel rough, while fats feel slippery. As quoted from the study,
...weakly astringent brews—in this case containing grape seed extract, a green tea ingredient, and aluminum sulfate—build in perceived astringency with repeated sipping. When paired with dried meat, those astringent beverages indeed counter the slippery sensation that goes with fattiness.”
In other words, having a sip of red wine after your bite of steak hits a reset button in your mouth and in perception of flavor and texture, allowing you to re-experience that first pleasurable mouthful without having a buildup of fat on your tongue. It would appear the sommelier buzz-phrase, “palate cleansing”, is actually spot on.
Read the entire article, published in the October 9th issue of Current Biology here:

10 October 2012

New article in the Evening Standard about Tony C., the new book, the new bar, and distilling the colour blue. This is one worth clicking on, full stop!

The Intersection of Fragrance and Opera

 A lovely article about Cheryl Barker, an Australian opera singer who uses perfumes to inform and flesh out her characters. Yet another example of how aroma is inextricably tied into art and emotion...

05 October 2012

Charles Spense and Condiment Junkie, Very Special Masterclass!

Can we taste woodland sunlight, hear the scent of roses, or smell the sound of the barber’s clippers..!?
These are intriguing questions which Condiment Junkie, the sensory experience architects, will be exploring at this interactive masterclass.
These long-time collaborators with the world’s most innovative chefs and food/drink brands will be taking guests on an elegant synaesthetic journey as they enjoy three unique cocktails; the Woodland Martini, the Rose and the Barbershop Fizz.
Prof. Charles Spence, Head of the Crossmodal Research Lab at Oxford University, will be on hand explaining the neuroscience underpinning the perceptual effects.
And there will be plenty of experiments to participate in and enjoy as we further our understanding of these crossmodal effects on our senses.
This unique event is taking place at 69 Colebrooke Row on October 20th 2012, 2-4pm, £25pp…
To book your place, email: maria@69colebrookerow.com

Holiday Cocktail Masterclass in London

Holiday Masterclasses the 17th of November and 15th of December in London, presented by Drink Factory! Perfect punch? Amazing Eggnog? Champagne Cocktails? Click on the link below for more information and how to reserve your spot.

04 October 2012


 We leave you to your own devices on this one...


An article on a new perfume museum installation in Florence, Italy, curated by one of our favourite perfume writers, Chandler Burr. In this exhibit Chandler tries to illustrate the global nature of perfume, from Tonka beans from Brazil to ginger oil from the Ivory Coast.
The idea for this concept came from the idea that he “had never thought of it, (perfume), in terms of its human geography, nor of the people whose lives perfume is made of. The perfumes we wear are things that come from our planet, an immense, miraculous factory of extraordinary scents, and are filled with the lives of human beings. Every bottle of perfume contains a world.”
The article itself is a good read, but there is also a fantastic video interview with Chandler Burr himself. Enjoy!


Ever wondered what the most influential factors have been in humankind’s history relating to the advancement of food and drink? Here The Atlantic breaks down the 20 most influential. Hint: The list does not include a waffle or a cheese toastie maker.

02 October 2012



                      Drinks International profiling the one and only Tony C.


An interesting article from Chemistry World on some of the problems scientists face when trying to translate the world of scent into the world of words. It's pretty difficult- judging from the fact that DrinkFactory couldn't even decide what photo to put up to illustrate the article...