Mixologists, bartenders and lovers of alcohol braved “a potentially historic ice storm” to congregate at Budweiser gardens on April 14 for the Cocktail Show.

The event was spearheaded by the mastermind behind the Tequila expo – Pablo Tovar.

The Cocktail Show had a good mix (get it?) of spirits to brighten everyone's day.
The Cocktail Show had a good mix (get it?) of spirits to brighten everyone’s day.

Over 1500 tickets were sold, and it represented some of our local London favorites like London Brewing Co-op, blackfly and Hunter and Co.

In the true spirit (get it?) of alcoholic festivals, the Cocktail show infused the free flowing alcohol with local music and food.

The brains behind the Cocktail shows Pablo Tovar and Daniel Phillips
The brains behind the Cocktail shows Pablo Tovar and Daniel Phillips

After multiple rounds I set my sights on five different cocktails to sample. I also indulged in two very delicious dishes from The Home Chef – a wonderful tangy shrimp ceviche and a mouth-watering brisket.

The Home Chef Crew, hopefully coming to a home near you.
The Home Chef Crew, hopefully coming to a home near you.

The first cocktail was a classic mojito, it was a light and refreshing start to a Saturday of day-drinking. It was muddled and mixed to perfection by the mojito enthusiasts Danny, Camilo and Simon.The trio are turning their love of this cocktail in to their dream business aptly named Mojitos.

Al Aguilar stirring up a storm to challenge the one outside.
Al Aguilar stirring up a storm to challenge the one outside.

Next was my go to cocktail, an old fashioned.

There were two little twists to the traditional old fashioned, the Brown-Forman representatives used spiced syrup and smoked cinnamon bitters. Even though I usually like to make my old-fashioneds with grapefruit bitters, the smoke cinnamon variety were a welcome change that added a new degree of warmth.

London Brewing Co-op crafting the beers of our heart.
London Brewing Co-op crafting the beers of our heart.

My favorite cocktail at the show was Spring Fever. The taste of this drink had me dreaming of warm spring days invoked by the wonderful lavender foam that topped the drink off. It was concocted by local mixologist Raven Brown, who was representing Top Shelf Distillers.

Brett from Bar Raval shaking up a magarita.
Brett from Bar Raval shaking up a magarita.

The cocktail show also attracted talents from around Ontario, my last two cocktails were made by Brett and Ryan of Bar Raval, Toronto. The first was a refreshing brazilian-inspired cocktail called the Caiparinha. It would be the ideal drink for a day at the beach.

No show is complete without the man in the mask giving out roses.
No show is complete without the man in the mask giving out roses.

No cocktail is as iconic to me as a margarita, it is mostly associated with happy memories. The cocktail was elevated by the addition of Mezcal, giving it just enough depth to stand out from a usual margarita.

The Cocktail show was a great way to spend a Saturday, and a great reminder of all the wonderful festivals of alcohol that we will soon have to look forward to! So keep your eyes peeled for more editions of Booze with Fuse.

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