Food & Drink Tuesday, June 7th Words by: Adam Knight

Herefordshire-inspired cocktails you have to try this summer

Food & Drink Tuesday, June 7th

Herefordshire-inspired cocktails you have to try this summer

Fish ‘n’ chips. Black and Decker. PJ and Duncan. Some things just fit together.

If you haven’t already, it’s time to add ‘Summer Weather’ and ‘Cocktails’ to that list.

Because while as recently as five years ago ‘Bow and Black could have passed for a cocktail in this county, the revolution has well and truly arrived.

To find out what we should be sipping this summer we caught up with some of Herefordshire’s premiere cocktail-slingers  – Richard Manning and Ed Houlbrooke from Hereford’s wildly popular Shack Revolution and Euan Barker and Willow Shaw, the duo currently transforming Hay Castle into a cocktail bar for the festival


Rich Manning behind the bar at the Shack Revolution in Hereford

Rich Manning is the all-singing, all-shaking one-man hurricane at the heart of Hereford bar The Shack Revolution, which started out as a pop-up cocktail business that he launched with his brother using fruit juice from their family farm. That business has since made a decent stab a world domination with bars in the almost all of the UK’s major sporting arenas and festival sites, and the Hereford bar Is the Bromyard brothers’ first permanent location.

Having established itself as the best cocktail spot in town last summer, GM Ed Houlbrooke is the man gearing it up for another hectic summer.

Trend For 2016:

Rich: “Flavoured vodka is coming back into fashion in a big way. Chase are going to be launching a new flavour soon. It's great for cocktails, and it’s perfect for people looking to mix something simple at home.”


What You Should Be Sipping This Summer:

1. The Rhubarb Martini

Ed: I would say the summer cocktail that people want to be drinking is the Rhubarb Martini as this is in season now as well, and you can't beat British rhubarb.

2. Herefordshire Pimm’s

Ed: We are looking to make our own Shack-style Pimm’s here from Chase Gin for this summer.

It is going to have the regular fruit that you would find in a Pimm’s but using, where possible, local fruit to infuse it.

A big part of this is British strawberries for the garnish and in the Pimm’s – which we are sourcing from a great farm in Ledbury called The Strawberry Stop.



I've found the place to be #hayfestival

A photo posted by Briony (@bribri11) on

Willo Shaw is the man behind The Menagerie, a two-week takeover at Hay Castle during Hay Festival 2016 – it'll see see the historic building transformed into an evening cocktail bar with live music and DJs.

With his company, Village Designs, Shaw’s a master at bringing throwback style to an event, with his Club House bars hugely popular at the achingly cool festivals Wilderness and Secret Garden Party.

Moo and Two tea guru Euan Barker will be on-hand at Menagerie with the best brews to revive book lovers and music fans alike at this year’s festival.

Trend For 2016:

Euan: G and tea

What You Should Be Sipping This Summer:

1. Iced tea with a twist

Euan: We are going to be putting on some pretty exciting drinks at the castle over the next two weeks. 

We will be pushing out a couple of tasty gin cocktails amongst other spirits.

One of our cocktails will be a G and Tea: a double measure of gin, cold brew tea hand-sourced from India, a splash of demarera sugar and a twist of lemon to garnish. 

2. Black Pepper Gin

Euan: We have another interesting take on a gin cocktail called Black Pepper Gin - cucumber ribbons, double gin, single dry white wine, a splash of elderflower, topped up with tonic and a crack of black pepper over the top.


So, there you go. Next time you find yourself out and about in the sunshine, you’ve got no excuses not to switch out your tried-and-tested bottle of Bulmers for a refreshing cocktail.

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