Cocktail of the month: Bee's knees

It's the cat's whiskers.


As you could probably infer from the name, the Bee’s Knees originated in the roaring ‘20s, in prohibition America, where bathtub gin was all the rage. The classic combination of sweet and sour from honey and citrus would, at the time, have helped mask the somewhat rough-and-ready nature of the available spirit, though the deliciousness of this cocktail has outlived the necessity behind its creation. In particular, the inclusion of honey gives layers of floral, fragrant complexity that one simply wouldn’t get from sugar syrup; experiment with different kinds of honey for subtle flavour variations.

For our version, we’ve reached for a bottle Monkey 47 gin, whose distinctive and unusual character adds yet another dimension to this deceptively simple recipe. From the Black Forest, Germany, this unfiltered, hand crafted, small batch gin is bottled at 47% ABV. More than a third of its 47 hand-picked ingredients come from the Black Forest and are not among the typical gin botanicals, including wild hibiscus, sloe, elderberry, dog rose, hedge rose, acacia, chamomile, and blackberry. Appropriately enough, these tasty botanicals are all deliberately and powerfully bee-friendly – a fact which is reflected in the distillery’s on-site colony of busy bees and its line of home-made honey.

It really is the cat’s whiskers.


60ml Monkey 47 Schwarzwald Dry Gin

30ml runny honey

25ml lemon juice

Lemon zest


Shake and strain into a coupette glass. Garnish with lemon zest.

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