I was invited along last night to kick start the summer in style with some fantastic Negroni cocktails in the beautiful and opulent surroundings that is Contini on George Street.
Although the sun had decided to take a break for the evening, the sight of a mobile Martini cocktail bar and a freshly poured Negroni that greeted me at the door, meant the evening was off to a good start. Who needs sun when you have a Negroni in hand?
Hosted by our very generous hosts, Carina and Victor Contini, this rather special restaurant/bar was buzzing. Throngs of guests were here to celebrate the launch of Martini’s new lines of Martini Riserva Speciale Ambrato and Martini Riserva Speciale Rubino, and we were all clearly enjoying the food, drink and company. Bleeker, a fabulous male (guitar/vocals) and female (vocals) added to the atmosphere playing some great covers.
Three cocktails were on offer to showcase this iconic vermouth: a Martini Negroni made with the bitter sweet blend of Martini Riserva Rubino, Martini Riserva Bitter and Edinburgh Gin, served over ice and finished with a slice of orange peel; Ambrato Sbagiato, (try saying that after you’ve had a few!) made with Martini Riserva Speciale Ambrato, Martini Riserva Bitter, topped with Prosecco; and Martini Riserva & Tonic. Sadly the Fentiman’s tonic used in the last serve was too sweet for my liking and completely masked the delicate flavours of the Martini. Next time, I’d probably request a ‘refreshingly lighter tonic’!
Some delicious Italian bites were on offer showcasing some wonderful Italian flavours and ingredients with my favourites being the Mozzarella di Bufala DOP, basil and mint marinated melon, served on a tomato crisp and the arancini, crispy risotto balls made with Vialone Nano rice, Gorgonzola and pesto alla Genovese. I also loved the salty chunks of Parmigiano Reggiano and the olives served in Martini branded dishes set on the table, which offset some of the sweetness of the Martini.
The drinks were flowing and a great evening was had by all and by the time we left, I doubt there wasn’t one person (or rather those old enough to remember) who didn’t dance away into the night humming the old Martini advert song ‘Any time, any place, anywhere, it’s the right one, it’s the bright one, it’s Martini.@
Thank you to Victor and Carina for a wonderful evening.