When the temperature drops and London gets blanketed in fog and frost, there is a distinct need to make an evening cosy. Some people choose to hibernate at home until the spring, whilst others wrap up and wander the city’s streets in search of a warming winter tipple.
East End Tours walking tours of London run right through the winter and offer a real insight into the history and culture of the East End. What’s more is that we stop at a variety of East End watering holes, each with their own personality and interesting past. But these pubs aren’t just for decoration!
Once the tour is done, you will want to duck inside and warm yourself up with a winter warmer – especially after all that walking in the brisk night air. So to help you make the most of your miniature East End pub crawl this season, here are three wintry favourites you can enjoy.
A snowball is a cocktail composed of creamy advocaat and lemonade, with just a twist of lime juice. High in both protein and carbohydrates, it is the ideal winter warmer.
Advocaat was first introduced and enjoyed by Dutch settlers in Suriname (South America), but quickly became popular across Europe and in European settlements. The original recipe was not egg-based but called for fruit instead, namely avocado. When the settlers returned to the Netherlands though, they had to substitute creamy avocado for egg yolks. And so, the custard-like advocaat we know today was born.
The iconic Irish cocktail consists of hot coffee, Irish whisky and sugar; once stirred, these ingredients are topped with thick cream.
There are many different coffee cocktails that pre-date the Irish coffee by a century. The classic we know today though first came into being in the 1940s when chef, Joe Sheridan, created a warming beverage for a group of American passengers who had arrived at Foynes port.
The drink quickly made its way back over the pond, becoming a popular choice in the US and UK. With just a few tweaks and touch-ups, it has become the classic Irish coffee we know and love today. Click here for East End Tours festive London walks and finish it off with a lovely mulled wine in a Victorian boozer today!
This drink is made when red wine is combined with a selection of mulling spices and raisins. It can be served either hot or warm, and there are even non-alcoholic versions available. Traditionally though, this winter warmer is made with a port or claret. The spices used include cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, cloves, star anise, nutmeg and mace. Some recipes include bitter orange and brandy as well.
The Romans were the first ones to heat and spice wine, way back in the 2nd century AD. Over the centuries though, mulled wine has been refined and perfected, becoming the festive favourite it is today.
Over the years there have been Victorian versions, Swinging 60s versions, Nordic Glöggs and German Glühwein, to name but a few. One thing is for certain though; mulled wine is a favourite and will continue to be for many years to come.
These are just three of the tastiest winter tipples out there. Any proper British pub will stock a selection of seasonally appropriate drinks, and you might even discover a new favourite. So get yourself on a www.eastendtours.com tour of the East End, and take notes, so you know which fine establishments to visit afterwards.