The first gin cocktail I ever drank?

The legend that is, Tom Collins. I absolutely adore this simple but beautiful cocktail. It’s basically boozy lemonade, what’s not to like? I had this made for me by my first bar manager, Jonboy. If you ever get the chance to ask him about the first time he saw my naive self behind the stick please do, it’s hilarious and embarrassing, but brilliant and humbling for me at the same time. It’s one of those drinks I always talk about on Gin Journey’s or in cocktail masterclasses and it recently brought me back from the grave on a very boozy trip to New York. Tom, I love you, don’t ever change.

First gin cocktail you ever made?

It’s a pretty funny one. Tom Vernon’s Bitch Juice at the rock and roll burger bar, Almost Famous. It’s the house cocktail there. A fruity twist on a G&T with the volume turned to 11. To be fair to it, many industry luminaries from Manchester have had the pleasure of churning this glow stick ladened disco drink out. I’ve had plenty of laughs over this guilty pleasure.

Favourite gin cocktail at 7pm?

Corpse Reviver Number Blue. Drinks are supposed to be fun!

Favourite gin cocktail at 10pm?

Martini. Gin (naturally), dry, twist. However a 2:1 Martini, gin:vermouth, if I’m feeling particularly parched after chatting to guests for 5 hours about Gin.

Favourite bar in the world?

I’ve had the pleasure of visiting some of the best bars in the world and been served by some of the finest hosts and bartenders around. For me though it’s a cliché answer. My favourite place can be anywhere I’m having a great time with friends over a few (or more) drinks. As long as the service and hospitality is exceptional that’s all that matters to me.

Lewis Cooke Gin