I’ve reviewed a lot of interesting brunches on the Battle of the Brunches so far but a tequila based brunch is probably the most intriguing (and terrifying) I’ve heard of. The Thinking Drinkers, award-winning drinks writing and comedic duo, have teamed up with 1800 Tequila to convince brunchers that tequila should be their drink of choice – read on to find out whether or not I’m a convert…
As we entered, The Thinking Drinkers duo were poised ready to give us a lecture on the history of tequila. If you’ve ever seen them perform, you won’t be surprised to hear that this ‘lecture’ was an amalgamation of interesting facts, dark humour and a sprinkling of dad jokes for good measure. They broke the ice with an Oscar Pistorious joke…need I say more? The Thinking Drinkers encouraged us to drink tequila neat, as they do in Mexico – but not in shots(!) in a normal glass, sipping as you might a whisky on the rocks. A lighter option at brunch to ease you in is the Bloody Maria. This twist on a classic Bloody Mary was actually pretty tasty. Somehow the tequila dampens the tomato juice flavour and produces a much lighter cocktail. To encourage more people to opt for a Bloody Maria at brunch, 1800 Tequila produced this carousel (below), which gives you the freedom to experiment with your cocktail. With these 27 ingredients, there are over 1,800 variations of Bloody Maria to be made! I played around with some flavours and my best concoction was; tequila (obvs), sherry, rosemary, agave nectar, tomato juice and pineapple juice. It sounds weird but tasted amazing!
The 1800 Brunch Saloon is a pop up and this time around chose Bourne & Hollingsworth Buildings as its home. B&H is a favourite among brunchers for the bright, homely decor, flowing drinks and top class food. They provided ceviche to start, huevos benedictos (a Mexican eggs benedict) for the main, and some chocolates for dessert. The ceviche was probably the best I’ve ever had – super fresh and clean flavours, the perfect starter.
I had my eggs with chorizo and we all know chorizo can only make things better. Add to that some creamy guac and you’ve got a winner! The main was super tasty and surprisingly filling. The poached eggs were fluffy and the hollandaise was on point – it didn’t taste weird with the guacamole as I thought it might. The chocolates were tasty but I think I would have preferred a proper dessert – but something light rather than chocolatey as the main was quite rich. Perhaps a sorbet/ice cream combo or a mousse…anyway, all in all, the food did not disappoint and I’m looking forward to going back to B&H to try something else on the menu!
The brunch saloon only had about 12 guests in a private room so was very intimate. This was good during the performance/lecture hybrid from The Thinking Drinkers and initially when we started mixing our own drinks. I only went with one friend but we ended up talking to some other people on the table – we were all sharing our ideas and thoughts on our cocktails. However, as we got to dessert things quietened down and people were having their own conversations in the pairs they came in. Guests then started to leave in dribs and drabs, killing the vibe a bit. It was a lovely, informative, enjoyable event but didn’t quite have the same buzz you get at most boozy brunches. Perhaps a bigger group, or a compere taking over after the Thinking Drinkers leave, or even some background music could help keep spirits up (no pun intended) throughout the whole brunch.
The Fine Print
As mentioned, this was a pop up event, so watch this space for the next one! The tickets were £30 and will stay in this price range for upcoming events – a bargain in the boozy brunch world! If you can’t wait for the next brunch pop up, you can head to B&H buildings for brunch and request an 1800 Carousel to try your hand at creating new variations on the Bloody Maria. The carousel will also be popping up in high end venues across London so keep your eyes peeled 👀 If brunch banter is what you’re looking for, in the mean time you can visit 1800 Tequila and The Thinking Drinkers at the Citadel Festival this Sunday. The Thinking Drinkers will be doing a set at the Sunday Papers session and will be giving out Bloody Marias! Follow 1800 Tequila and The Thinking Drinkers on social to make sure you don’t miss out on what’s coming up (details below).
1800 Brunch Saloon educated, entertained and – most miraculously -convinced me that tequila is not just for shots. It’s an incredibly unique event with the perfect fusion of food, drinks and something a bit different. As long as you’re happy for a more mellow boozy brunch, this should be on your list.
The scores are in!