“Each country has their own drinking identity that can be traced back hundreds and hundreds of years,” says World Class bartender Tim Philips, of Sydney's Bulletin Place. “Unique drinking rituals are closely tied in to the overall culture and history of each country.”

We're speaking with one of the country's most creative bartenders about how to put a spin on the classics. Given our country's roots, we're starting with Britain, and gin. Originating in Holland in the late 16th century, the clear botanical spirit was sold in chemists to treat stomach pains, gout and gallstones. A tough drink to down with a tender belly, the Dutch added sugar and botanicals, including juniper, to make it more palatable.

The British connection arrived via the Thirty Years’ War (1618 - 1648), when British troops fighting in Holland had a nip of gin (“Dutch courage”) to get through battle and ward off illness. When they returned home after war, they brought the gin with them and it became a firm British favourite.

We asked Philips to look at the humble G&T and other well-loved drinks from around the world, and provide a different take on three of his favourites. Philips says each drink is an adaptation of a classic cocktail that’s popular in a different country.

The British India Cup? A nod to the traditional gin and tonic, with the addition of white wine for acidity and a little honey for sweetness.

Then there's the Kentucky Pinch, a contemporary spin on the Mint Julep. Using Bulleit Bourbon as a traditional base, Philips has added Aperol and citrus to the mix. “Fresh, clean and delicious," Philips says.

For his third creation, the 2012 World Class Bartender of the Year gives us a new take on the Ernest Hemingway favourite, the daiquiri. Called the Mayan Mule, it uses rum (a spirit popular in places such as Cuba, Panama, Venezuela and Guatemala), as well as fresh ginger, agave nectar and freshly pressed apple juice, "to bring the drink alive.”

Take a quick trip to your country of choice by whipping up one of Philips’ creations.


Approximately 1.25 standard drinks

30ml Tanqueray no. TEN
30ml riesling
15ml honey syrup (a 2:1 mix of honey to water)
Tonic water (Philips recommends Capi)
Slice of lemon to garnish

Add all ingredients to a highball glass and top with tonic water. Add ice and garnish with a lemon wheel (a round slice of lemon).


Approximately 1.5 standard drinks

30ml Bulleit Bourbon
20ml Aperol
15ml lemon juice
10ml simple syrup (a 1:1 mix of sugar to water)
Handful of fresh mint
Slice of orange to garnish

Place all the ingredients in a julep glass. Add crushed ice, then swizzle to dilute and chill. Top with more crushed ice then garnish with mint and a slice of orange.


Approximately 1.25 standard drinks

40ml Ron Zacapa rum
20ml lime juice
20ml freshly pressed apple juice (preferably Granny Smith)
15ml ginger syrup (sweetened pressed ginger juice)
5ml agave nectar
dehydrated apple to garnish

Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice. Shake and then strain into a chilled coupette glass. Garnish with a slice of dehydrated apple.