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A Romantic Restaurant in London

El Pirata serving the best Spanish tapas one of the top tapas bar and restaurants in London since 1994 superb function party room in Mayfair.

Romantic Spanish Restaurant London

Fancy a cocktail? What’s your tipple – a negroni, a margarita, an espresso martini? 

Cocktails have been with us in their current form for a couple of hundred years, but nobody is really sure where the word ‘cocktail’ comes from. 

One theory is that horses of mixed pedigree would have their tails docked, and would end up with a ‘cocktail’, indicative of a mix. Another, suggests that it’s derived from coquetier, French for eggcup. Apparently one Antoine A Peychaud, creator of Peychaud’s Bitters, used to serve guests cognac mixed with bitters in eggcups.

The first written mention of a cocktail was in the US in 1803 in a quirky magazine called The Farmers Cabinet. In 1862, Jerry Thomas produced the first proper guide to mixology – How to Mix Drinks, or The Bon Vivant’s Companion, which included ten cocktail recipes using bitters.

Mixing it

The 13 years of prohibition in the US, when alcohol was banned, gave cocktails a huge boost. The  speakeasies that were set up as secret drinking dens used fairly rough alcohol from illicit distilleries – it was much improved by mixers.

Catholic monks also had a big part to play in the creation of cocktails. Green chartreuse has been made by Carthusian monks in France for 200 years, and Lindores Abbey in Fife, Scotland, is said to be the original home of aqua vitae, the water of life – or whisky to you and me.

Cocktails fell out of fashion in the 1960s and 1970s, but have come roaring back in recent years. And you can try 13 classic alcohol based cocktails (although not all at once, please) at the cheerful bar of El Pirata in Mayfair’s Down Street. Most of them are cheaper than a glass of wine in nearby establishments. And for those of you who prefer non-alcoholic drinks, there are three for you to try at just £6 each – Islas Canarias, Fresa Tropical and Jungle Mint.

El Pirata serving the best Spanish tapas one of the top tapas bar and restaurants in London since 1994 superb function party room in Mayfair.