Day of the Dead with Jose Cuervo, Southwark

A convoluted walk through Southwark to the OXO Tower Creative Spaces brings us to the enormous art gallery that is the Bargehouse. Serving up some Day of the Dead realness, Jose Cuervo is another in the line (like last week’s El Nivel, click HERE for review!) of tequila events leading up to the Tequila Fest 2014, sponsored by the Mexican Embassy in London. From the 30th Oct to 2nd Nov, artwork is geared to depicting the Day of the Dead and with themes of the passed and loss, accompanied by drinks provided by Jose Cuervo tequila. Also included in the festival are Jose Cuervo masterclasses, a variety of children’s art and crafts workshops, and a screening of The Day of The Dead 1984 cinema classic, “Under the Volcano”.

Entering the gallery to a mindblowing DotD float crowned in sugar skulls and marigolds, traditional to Dia de los Muertos, guests make their way through the sprawling galleries to finally the two Jose Cuervo bars serving up a small selection of tequila drinks to accompany you through the artwork. As per 2014’s obsession with the drink, Frozen Margaritas make an appearance, as do Palomas and Sours, all priced at a perfect 6.50 GBP.

The Paloma is standard, but worth it at the price, but the star of the night would be Tradicional Sour, A tequila sour with egg white and fig puree – a much better choice than infusion since the perfectly seasonal, ripe sweetness of the fig comes through excellently. A must try this weekend!

Muer2

Drinks wise, yes, it is an event to definitely visit. Art was enjoyable, but I couldn’t help but feel that the event did not capture both aspects of the Dia de los Muertos. True, there is a remembrance and honouring of those that passed, with an appreciation for feelings of loss and grief; but there is also celebration in their memory, and in terms of the art here, the festivities are lost with the artwork being predominantly focused on grief, old age and suffering, and even horror. This may or may not have led to the rather sombre attitude of the crowd most of the night.

Nonetheless, great pieces of artwork, with excellent drinks at 6.50 – what’s not to love?

Enjoy your Dia de los Muertos all, and a Happy Halloween!

Bargehouse

Bargehouse Street, South Bank
London SE1 9PH

http://www.oxotower.co.uk/events/day-dead/

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The House of Peroni Press Launch

Beer giant Peroni relaunches it’s massively popular pop-up – House of Peroni – in London, a ‘celebration of Italian culture’.

A multi-storey affair, it presents Italian art installations reflecting Rome, with food provided by Bottega Wapping (Yum), and cocktails innovated with Peroni beer.

Now I ain’t no art critic, so let’s go over the drinks as we wander through the various installations munching on canapes.

"The Secret Garden" art installation

“The Secret Garden” art installation

Unfortunately, the launch only served 3 of the 6 cocktails proposed – which to be honest, was a massive disappointment. If this was a matter of using certain ingredients sparingly, a token-for-cocktail affair could have been organised. A real shame since couple of the drinks not being served at the launch seemed to be far more promising that what was served in the end.

Let’s begin with the best of the lot:

The Nerone, inspired by the myth of Nero standing by as Rome burned, evoked the fire and smoke of a city-wide conflagration. Peroni Nastro Azzurro shaken with chilli, passionfruit and smokey Lapsang souchong tea. The smokey tea really mellows the normally overpowering passionfruit, simmering with spiciness. Unfortunately, the flavours separate if the drinker takes time, leaving the last half of the drink to taste almost entirely of Peroni instead of a steady mix, or slight layering of the drink. Nonetheless, a successful cocktail.

The following two were a bit less enticing.

Fellini’s La Dolce Vita inspired the La Dolce Vista (geddit.) – meant to be sipped slowly, a twist on the Aperol Spritz. Peroni NA, orange, grapefruit and Prosecco; demands a VERY long sipping time. And though mediocre, would be probably more enjoyable as a shorter drink. In any case, mixed well, and something to relax in the outdoor area with.

Finally, the Honey Peroni brings together Peroni NA, vanilla infused rum and honey for a drink described as well-balanced – but is anything but. Painfully sweet on vanilla and honey, and left unfinished.

The "Roma Phantasma" art installation

The “Roma Phantasma” art installation

Unfortunately, I cannot comment on the last three drinks that were not served on the night, so cannot review them. Which should have been considered since a press launch would demand, well, people giving a fair review of what a venue has to offer. Similar with the sparse canapes. In any case, service was excellent, employees were absolutely wonderful.

In any case, the House of Peroni provides an interesting, if not university-house-party-esque atmosphere for a night out, even if the coffee leaves a lot to be desired. For an evening of socialising, worth one drink.

Drinks: **
Atmosphere: ****
Service: ****

The House of Peroni

64 Lincoln’s Inn Fields,
London, WC2A 3JX.

http://thehouseofperoni.com/