FOOD AND DRINK: It’s always happy hour with these summery cocktails

A trio of cocktails
A trio of cocktails

One sip of these heady cocktails and you will be instantly transported to a sun lounger beside an aquamarine pool. Klavs Bumerts, Sofitel London Gatwick Hotel’s new food and beverage supervisor, creates a little holiday magic.

Forget blousy cocktail umbrellas and thick smoothie-style drinks that feel heavy on the stomach. Today’s cocktail recipes are less about quantity and more about quality ingredients. In just a few years working at the Sofitel, Klavs Bumerts, already has a repertoire of around 40 cocktails and a full grasp of the etiquette that goes with mixing these drinks.

He says use the best liqueurs and spirits you can afford and invest in a cocktail shaker to chill the liquid without diluting it too much. Another top tip is chill your glass. Fill the glass with ice while you make your cocktail, then empty out before pouring in the drink. There is even an optimum number of times you should shake the cocktail he says – 12 times to be precise. It’s enough to blend and chill the liquid. Any more times, says Klavs, and you risk diluting the cocktail with the ice. And the tip that most people will like the best – start sipping your cocktail immediately to enjoy it at its best.

Cocktail hour at Sofitel London Gatwick Hotel starts from 11am – just turn up.

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A trio of cocktails

Each recipe serves 2 people. Make sure you have plenty of crushed ice to hand.


Quarter of a fresh ripe mango, peeled and stoned

60ml vodka

40ml Cointreau

Splash of fresh lime juice


First, place the mango into the cocktail shaker and mash (‘muddle’ is the cocktail term) with a wooden spoon.

Add a handful of ice cubes and pour over the vodka, Cointreau and lime juice. Shake well. Pour through a sieve into a cocktail glass and decorate with slices of mango.


40ml peach schnapps

8 fresh cherries – stoned

40ml cherry brandy

Champagne, prosecco or cava to finish.


Reserve 2 cherries and place the rest into the cocktail shaker and mash. Add a handful of ice cubes and pour over the peach schnapps and cherry brandy.

Shake well and strain into a flute glass.

Add a whole cherry and pour over enough champagne to fill the glass. Serve.


40ml gin

25ml fresh lemon juice

20ml sugar syrup (known as gomme) available in most supermarkets

10ml Crème de Mure (blackberry liqueur)


Fill a glass tumbler to the top with crushed ice.

Pour the gin, lemon juice and sugar syrup into the cocktail shaker.

Shake well and pour over the crushed ice. Then trickle over the crème de Mure. Serve.

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