Specialty b’Lure cocktail, Down The Rabbit Hole, featured at The Rook Bar, Sydney

February 1, 2015 20:58

We are always amazed at where our products end up, whose hands they fall into and the creative ways they are used. Case in point, the colour changing, two part cocktail, Down The Rabbit Hole which features Wild Hibiscus Flower Company’s new b’Lure (a bright blue flower extract from the butterfly pea flower). This cocktail was created by the talented bar team at The Rook and first served in July 2014.

The Rook is a rooftop bar in York Street, Sydney which feels like a real hideaway - perfect to slip into an experience of unique and inspiring cocktails that it is well known for. The Rook is part of the Keystone Group, owner-operator of an impressive portfolio of other high-end venues in Sydney and adorns an impressive selection of over 80 gins, along with the bar team’s wide knowledge on the subject. The venue is therefore the perfect location for the Juniper Society to hold its monthly meetings where gin-lovers gather, learn and enjoy the quirky and interactive cocktails.

Down The Rabbit Hole is one such cocktail, jointly created by Bar Manager, Cristiano Beretta, Head Bartender, Rollo Anderson and The Keystone Group's Group Bars Manager, Jason Williams. The name was decided upon pretty quickly as the magical cocktail conjured up images in their minds of Alice in Wonderland.

This cocktail is served in two parts to the guest with instructions to pour one part into the other for a colour change before their eyes. Part one is the main cocktail, citrus yellow in colour and served in a quaint glass bottle to pour over a glass with ice cubes and a few drops of b’Lure. The addition of citrus (and more acidity) to b’Lure results in a bright violet coloured cocktail. The dried orange slice used to garnish the glass now perfectly complements the drinks taste and colour. Whilst the flower extract is rich in antioxidants and natural blue colour (quite rare in nature), it adds just a subtle sweetness and botanical element.

Down The Rabbit Hole is the most popular drink on the latest menu which was also nominated for Cocktail List of the Year at the 2014 Australian National Bar Awards.

This cocktail is said to get its popularity due to the overall taste of the cocktail, its vibrant colour and the guest’s interactive experience. We can vouch for that, having tried it ourselves at The Rook.  We highly recommend you too stop in and enjoy the experience of momentarily slipping Down The Rabbit Hole

Down The Rabbit Hole

40ml Beefeater Gin

15ml Creme de cacao

5ml Solerno blood orange liqueur

15mlm Lemon juice

10ml Sugar syrup

3 dashes Scrappy’s Cardamom bitters

Shake well and strain in little bottle

Serve alongside a glass that contains few drops of b’Lure (by Wild Hibiscus Flower Company) and ice. 

down the rabbit hole

Recipe and images kindly supplied by The Rook with permission to share.

About The Rook Team:

Cristiano Beretta

Cristiano Beretta is a veteran bartender starting his career in the 1990’s in Italy and has since continued to expand on his capabilities working in various venues in London, Italy and Australia, including the award winning Black Pearl, in Melbourne, Australia. Cristiano is now one of Australia's most well-known and respected bartenders and since becoming Bar Manager at The Rook in 2012 has ensured the continual turn-out of memorable cocktails.

Cristiano is known for adding a little theatre to his cocktails by combining his world-class recipes with different forms of presentation, textures, and techniques to enhance the customers overall experience and taste sensation.

Rollo Anderson

Rollo Anderson is Head Bartender at The Rook and was nominated in the top 10 bartenders globally at The Spirited Awards at Tales of The Cocktail, New Orleans for 2014.

Jason Williams

Jason Williams is a respected member of the Australian bartending community, combining 15 years of passion for the craft, a love for bartending, bars cocktails and dreams.

Having opened some of Australia’s leading cocktail destinations in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane – Jason has developed his love for cocktails; introducing new flavours and old classics to his guests in any bar he has worked.

Jason won Australian Bartender of the Year in 2010, and has also been awarded ALIA Bartender of the Year in 2006 and 2008. He has represented Australia on the world stage and recently took out the Global Beefeater 24 Bartender Competition for 2013.

Jason was recently nominated for International Bartender of the Year 2014 at the Spirited Awards at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans.

Hailing from a family of pub owners, Jason was destined to work bars and restaurants. After earning his stripes in nightclubs running around on the floor and polishing glasses, Jason got behind the bar in 2001, and has never looked back.

Jason has since worked on national training programs, has been a local brand ambassador for leading spirit brands and been involved with the establishment of popular institutions such as Melbourne Rum Club and Juniper Society (Sydney).

It’s through his own passion and dedication to the profession of bartending that he has developed a keen interest in training and bartender culture.

Jason is now the Group Bars Manager for leading Australian hospitality operator The Keystone Group, managing extensive training, beverage and cocktail programs across 26 venues. He was just awarded Bar Manager of the Year at the 2014 Australian Bar Awards.

Jason is also passionate about spirits and spirit category education. He is an accomplished presenter and thrives on sharing his knowledge, and enthusiasm.



By Jocelyn Etherington, Wild Hibiscus Flower Company