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London Speakeasy Mocktails with Boardwalk Empire

January 20, 2015

Purl London 5To celebrate the release of Boardwalk Empire season 5 on DVD and Blue-ray this week, I was invited to attend a mocktail master class at London speakeasy Purl last week. Purl is a beautifully furnished underground bar in Marylebone with a very vintage feel. The bar and it’s vast array of drinks pay homage to the Prohibition era, which is also the time in which HBO series Boardwalk Empire is set. In honour of Dry January the bar has released a mocktail menu inspired by Boardwalk Empire, so if you’re staying off the drink this month but love a good cocktail then this might just be the place for you.

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This was an intimate event in which Mattia our expert mixologist showed us how to make some prohibition era mocktails from their menu. It was fascinating to see how much skill and preparation went into making the drinks and the attention to detail involved in getting the ingredients just right. Matt was really knowledgeable about the history of cocktails and which ingredients where historically appropriate.

Purl London 6Mattia cooking up a warm mocktail for us.

Purl London 8The finished result was absolutely delicious. 

Purl London 9Having a go at mixing up a drink myself – not as easy as it looks!

Purl London 10Made by me!

The speakeasy atmosphere was the perfect venue to go with Boardwalk Empire too. If you haven’t seen it yet then you are missing out, for vintage girls the gorgeous costumes and sets alone are enough to keep you watching. The series stars Steve Buscemi as ‘Nucky Thompson, season five takes place in the depths of the Great Depression in 1931. With the end of Prohibition looming Nucky is looking to legitimise himself through alliances with liquor producers.


The bar features fabulous vintage decor and a plethora of unusual drinks behind the bar. I was really impressed when Mattia showed us some of the vintage spirits that are used in cocktails. Some of them dating from the 50s and 60s. Apparently they are really different in taste to their modern counterparts. I’d love to go back and taste some vintage gin! After we were showed some cocktails, Mattia made us a few of the bars signature drinks including and talked us through some of the bars speciality drinks.

Purl London 11Vintage Orange Bitters – one of many unusual cocktail ingredients at Purl.

Purl London 12Vintage Gordon’s Gin – I would to give this a try.

I was so impressed by the bars integrity to make authentic and original cocktails with a fair of creativity and quality that really made it stand out from other cocktail bars I’ve been to. I really can’t wait to go back.

Buy Boardwalk Empire – Season 5  from Amazon.

Thank you to Purl London for the masterclass and Premier who invited me along to this event. 

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