Tuesday, 2 July 2013
Sweeteasy - Cakes and Cocktails
Last Friday we spent a very civilised and yummy evening at Afternoontease's Sweeteasy event. You may have heard me mention Afternoontease before - who does have a name, her name is Jo and she is a local Cambridge baker supplying her delicious layer cakes to lots of cafes locally, and she is also one half of the Platelickers supperclub duo. Jo also hosts Sweeteasy, which is a simple but excellent concept - cocktails paired with cakes.
Everything is homemade, with the exception of the spirits of course - Jo makes the cakes, brownies and other sweet treats and also concocts purees and infusions from to go into the cocktails.
We started off with a Gooseberry & Elderflower Fool Martini. It was made with gooseberry puree from Jo's parents garden which was perfumed with locally picked Elderflower, then mixed with gin and served in wide cocktail glasses. Gin is one of my least favourite things but this cocktail was great, the gin was perfumed but in a good way, and the sweet fruit puree worked so well. This was matched with Bramble Friands - light sponge cakes made with ground almonds and whisked eggs whites, they were finished with a blackberry and gin glaze.
Next up was Honey Bourbon Milk Punch - my favourite of the evening - Honey bourbon mixed with a little nutmeg and then milk, served in cute little mini milk bottles. We had these with chunky stout brownies, made with Hot Numbers Coffee Stout, brewed by Moonshine Brewery. These were proper brownies, no messing around, dense and tall with a great crispy top.
After this we had Limoncello Tiramisu, something I clocked immediately when the menu was presented to us, and it didn't disappointed. It was served as a lemon mascarpone zabaglione in a little teacup with two homemade sponge fingers on the side, dusted with icing sugar. A shot of limoncello served in a cute little wax seal bottle was served with it.
Finally, to round things off, was a warming Fruitcake Infused Rum Daquiri. Jo explained to us that this was a proper daquiri, none of the terrible crushed ice and overly sweet fake fruit. Instead it was made with proper rum (infused with dried fruits and spices), lemon juice and a cube of ice. This was the Mr's favourite of the night.
I thoroughly enjoyed Sweeteasy, I'm just getting into cocktail making and Jo's evening gave me a really good idea of the kind of flavours that work well. None of the cocktails were too overpowering - in sweetness or alcohol and Jo has some amazing ideas for combinations. And I definitely think that cakes should be paired with cocktails more often, why do we always have savoury nibbles when we can have cake?
You can find out more about Jo's cakes and events on her site here.