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CITY DWELLER MAGAZINE’S COCKTAIL OF THE MONTH With Malmaison’s Leo Higney

CITY DWELLER MAGAZINE’S COCKTAIL OF THE MONTH
With Malmaison’s Leo Higney
 
When choosing our next Cocktail of the Month, it’s important to make sure the venue, the barman and the drink are perfect. 
Malmaison Hotel Leeds, their Food and Beverage Manager Leo Higney and their Summer Berry Collins ticked all the right boxes. 
We caught up with him over a cocktail to find out exactly why you should be heading there for a drink. 
Can you tell us a bit about your job role at Malmaison? 
My name is Leo and I’m the Food and Beverage Manager and I’ve been with Malmaison for over three and a half years now. I also oversee the cocktail programme with one of my colleagues for the company, so we write all the national menus and train the bar managers at other venues. It’s a challenging job but it’s great fun! 
So what do you think makes Malmaison’s cocktail menu unique? 
We’re just launching our new menu in September and our previous menu was all about approachability, so it was all about the classics. But we now feel that people are more confident when ordering adventurous drinks so we’re pushing the boat out and we’ve done a tour of the country to get every hotel to design their own cocktail based on its local area. The whole idea is to become more engaging and, even though we’re a national group, to show that we’ve still got that boutique hotel feel. 
What sort of cocktails can our readers expect to find on this new menu? 
All sorts! We’ve got everything from a cocktail called Rhubarb Triangle, which is rhubarb gin, rosemary and apple, to a ginger cocktail named after Red Rum’s trainer Ginger McCain in Liverpool because of the Grand National. It’s not just about the drink, it’s about the story behind it. 
Why have you chosen to make this cocktail for us today then? 
This is a Summer Berry Collins which is sort of a twist on a Tom Collins. It’s nice, refreshing and fruity, but it’s not too sweet. It’s really easy drinking. 
So why should our readers come down and visit Malmaison for a cocktail? 
For me, it’s our customer service that really stands out. We’re a busy, vibrant bar but we still maintain that personal feel and you’re going to get welcomed and looked after here. We’re not just famous for our drinks, it’s all about the experience.
They offer some incredible deals including cocktails for just £5 during their Thank Mal It’s Friday promotion between 5pm and 8pm. If you’re looking for a group activity they also offer Cocktail experiences. 
Why not meet Leo for a cocktail soon? To book at Malmaison, visit them at 1 Swinegate, LS1 4AG, head to www.malmaison.com/locations/leeds or ring them on 0113 426 0047
 
Summer Berry Collins
What’s In It: 
Sipsmith Sloe Gin
St Germain Elderflower Liqueur
Lemon
Raspberry
Lemon tonic
The Taste: 
Fruity and refreshing, perfect if you’re looking to hang on to summer in the form of a delicious cocktail.

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