Adam McMahon, is bartender at Frontier Room in London. He makes two cocktails for us, one is with bourbon and demerara sugar and the second is with rum and stout.
Adam introduce yourself
I’m Adam McMahon, I work at the Frontier Room at Q grill, part of the Des McDonald Group here in London. Five years ago I came for a holiday to London, got a job in a sushi bar to earn some cash, but ended up falling in love with the hospitality industry. I started as a waiter when Alan Farrell, (the bartender there) asked me if I’d like to join him behind the bar and we’ve worked together ever since. For me, the reason I decided to specialise in cocktails was the diversity of flavours. I grew up in a remote national park in Australia and all we ate was steak and mash, as we had limited access to produce. When I moved, I discovered so many different flavours and especially with spirits all I wanted to do was discover new combinations.
The classic you want to show us
50ml of Eagle Rare ten year bourbon
1 dash of Angustura bitters
5 ml of demerara sugar syrup
The bar or party you dream of
I would open up a relaxed experimental cocktail and wine bar. It would have a distillery downstairs where we could spend our days creating our own spirits and upstairs a Victorian English looking room for about 30 people to sit down with table service. A comfortable space where the barmen come out and talk to you to explain the menu and tell you the stories behind the drinks. The list would be short, with a couple of classic cocktails and the rest would change when we had perfected a drink, just like they do in Michelin star restaurants.
The spirit you like the most
I do love working with rum. You have dry rums, sweet rums and I really like Columbian rums which have an incredible flavour profile.
What makes a good cocktail and which product do you want to highlight at this moment
Good cocktails are all about balance and telling the story of the ingredients you use in them.
I like working with smoke. Different woods, different grasses and seeds all produce unique characters that enhance a drink. At the moment my favourite thing to smoke is green tea, it adds an earthiness to a drink that works really well.
The signature cocktail you want to show us
50ml of Eldorado 12
25ml of Meantime Stout
10ml of demerara sugar
Where do you think we need to go to interview another bartender?