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Testing new waters

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Two for toffee Thomas Altenbeger and Franziska at work
Two for toffee Thomas Altenbeger and Franziska at work

Check out Dooley’s original toffee and vodka at The Park’s Agni bar

Till they actually arrived in India, Thomas Altenbeger and his wife, Franziska, had a very different perception of Indians. As bartenders from Berlin, they thought Indians were conservative about their drinking habits and didn’t drink anything other than whiskey. But their notion has changed now. “It is so much different to what we thought. It’s while talking to the bartenders at Agni bar that we realised Indians are open to trying out new drinks. Now that I am behind the bar making drinks, I can say it’s so true. I think this change has come as a result of globetrotting,” says Thomas as he blends a perfect martini at Agni in The Park.

Caramel and vodka

The duo, recently in town to introduce Delhities to Dooley’s original toffee and vodka liqueur, made by infusing toffee caramel into clear crystal vodka, showcase its uniqueness by concocting cocktails and long drinks using it. One of the world’s most popular distilled beverages, vodka is a drink that blends well with other drinks as well as flavours, and Dooley’s crème liqueur has received accolades in this regard. “The silky smooth consistency allows almost any drink to be made using it,” explains Thomas.

Dooley’s Blue Crème (made with Blue Curacao, Galliano and crème), Caribbean Dream (vodka, Grenadine syrup and orange syrup), Dooley’s in the Jungle (vodka, green banana, coconut syrup and pineapple juice), coffee toffee (coffee and whipped cream) are some interesting drinks that can be made using Dooley’s crème liqueur. “Dooley’s goes very well with any fruit based drink and also mixes well with rum,” says Thomas. .

If you are game for experimentation, Thomas has something special to offer. A drink that has been created specially for India, it is aptly titled Discover India. “It is cuisine style drink. We used fruits, mango-chilly mousse along with some spices and Dooley’s to create this drink,” explains Thomas.

The different tastes of Thomas’ drinks have people wondering about the content of the cocktails. If some have found their drinks a little too sweet, some are calling them strong. If some have found the toffee flavour strong, others have felt it is the vodka that is making them heady. But everyone seems to have fun acclimatising to the new tastes.

So is it the vodka or the toffee? We guess the argument continues…

MANGALA RAMAMOORTHY

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