the spirit of Scandinavia
Johan Claesson

1. Bramble shrub by Johan Claesson of Plateau wine bar and restaurant, Brighton

“The inspiration for this drink is the old Swedish tradition of foraging and preserving wild fruit – blackberries are particularly abundant on the Swedish west coast, where I am from. If you don’t have a cocktail shaker, an old jam jar works just as well.”

• 50ml Mackmyra Brukswhisky
• 20ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
• 10ml crème de cassis
• 2 tbsp blackberry jelly preserve
• 1 blackberry, to garnish

Shake all the ingredients with ice, then strain into an ice-filled tumbler. Garnish with the blackberry.


Oskar Kinberg

2. God shandy by Oskar Kinberg of Dabbous restaurant, London W1

“God means ‘good’ or ‘tasty’ in Swedish. Elderflower complements the hops in the beer well while whisky enhances the maltiness. It makes a fresh shandy with a long floral finish and good bite.”

• 50ml Mackmyra Brukswhisky
• 25ml elderflower cordial
• 10ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
• 35ml ginger ale
• Nils Oscar God Lager

Shake the whisky, cordial and juice with ice; strain into a half-pint glass. Add the ginger ale; top with lager.

Micky Pearson

3. Hyldeblomst by Micky Pearson of Norse restaurant, Harrogate 

“We make this cool, refreshing cocktail with homemade elderflower cordial and serve it with lightly cured or pickled white fish.”

3-4 slices cucumber, plus a ribbon to garnish
lime wedge
• 50ml Hendrick’s gin
• 25ml elderflower cordial

Muddle the cucumber and lime in a mixing glass, then add the gin and cordial. Shake with ice and strain through a fine sieve into a coupe glass. Garnish with a ribbon of cucumber threaded onto a cocktail stick.

Kell Skött

4. North star by Kell Skött of Danish café Snaps & Rye, London W10

“This cocktail makes a great aperitif and it’s easy to make your own rye bread vodka (see recipe, below). Danes have been eating rye bread for hundreds of years and eat roughly 25kg of it per person a year! The vodka is also delicious served as chilled shots with Scandi snacks or used to add a nutty twist to espresso martinis.”

• 50ml rye bread vodka
• 12.5ml sugar syrup (see tip, below)
• 25ml freshly squeezed lime juice
• 25ml freshly squeezed orange juice

Shake all the ingredients together with ice and strain into a chilled martini glass.

Monica Berg

5. Dill dallby Monica Berg of Pollen Street Social brasserie, London W1S

“Light and refreshing, this cocktail captures the flavour of Scandinavian summers at their best and can be easily scaled up to make a jug. Pair with both warm and cold seafood dishes.”

• 45ml London dry gin (or akvavit)
• 15ml fino sherry
• 15ml freshly squeezed lime juice
• 15ml sugar syrup (see tip, below)
• 1 sprig fresh dill, plus extra to garnish

Shake all the ingredients with ice, then strain through a fine sieve into an ice-filled tumbler. Garnish with dill.


Rye bread vodka

To make one 70cl bottle of rye vodka, preheat the oven to 150˚C, gas mark 2. Cut 300g rye bread into cubes and toast in the oven for 20 minutes. Mix the bread with 70cl vodka in a Kilner jar. Seal and leave in a cool, dark place for 5-7 days. Strain through a fine sieve into a sterilised bottle before use.