Moonlight and Martinis in London.
Sometime after dinner, on a recent visit to London, my British friend and I were wandering through Kensington in search of a quiet, low-key bar. Of course there were the usual assortment of pubs but in this neighborhood, they seemed to have more American patrons than British. I wanted to find a spot where I was in the minority.
That’s when we stumbled upon the Baglioni Hotel London. Understated Italian-style elegance from the exterior made it seem like it might be home to a bar without barstools and few if any American tourists. I was right.
We were escorted to a couple of over-stuffed armchairs, tucked neatly beneath a small dark-wood round table. Settled in, we were approached by a very friendly but restrained cocktail waitress. Not wanting my usual straight-up Grey Goose Martini with olives, I suggested that she could choose my beverage du nuit.
“All that is gold does not glitter, said J.R.R. Tolkien. Apparently, he hadn’t seen this drink.
A few minutes later, I was totally astonished when regally presented with a Gold Dust Martini. Actual gold dust powder was gently floating on the surface, while some sort of edible flower (not eaten by this ‘tini Gal!) floated on top. Not only was this probably the most expensive Martini in the world, there was no way that I would drink it or even sip it. A milk moustache is one thing…a gold one? Eww.
The recipe is very similar to a typical Cosmo, but here it is:
Combine all ingredients in a shaker filled with ice. Shake well and pour into chilled Martini glass. Dust surface with edible gold dust, garnish with an edible flower and serve.
Unfortunately, the John Howard hotel in Kensington where I stayed many times was sold and turned into condos. If a weekend at the Baglioni Hotel London is a bit out of your budget (as it is mine), there are a few other very nice and reasonably priced hotels nearby. But do visit the Baglioni for a late night cocktail. The little snacks with drinks were also excellent.
For more information:
Baglioni Hotel London, 60 Hyde Park Gate – SW7 5BB London (UK)
Ph +44 207 3685900
I’m the editor and creator of CruiseMaven.com, a solo traveler cruising the USA and Europe on land and sea. Always looking for new vistas, local food and wine. I hope my articles and photos entertain, advise and inspire you to savor and travel the world without flying.