Gymkahna clubs were ubiquitous in India under the British Raj: places where nobs and nabobs assembled for sports and other de rigueur recreational pursuits – namely the consumption of heroic quantities of hooch, cooling cups, fizzes, slings and suchlike. Not surprisingly, pukka drinks inspired by height-of-Empire recipes are the stock-in-trade at this destination cocktail lounge appended to Gymkhana – the dishy Mayfair sibling of Trishna in Marylebone. The handsome Merchant Ivory-esque space is a triumphant exercise in restrained elegance that references East India punch houses of yore – so discover various Ceylonese arrack punches and well-balanced exotica such as spice monopoly (a spiced rum daiquiri served with orange blossom and coconut-milk ice cream). Ooty Town gimlet (made with Dalmore 15 whisky) and family tree (a Hendrick’s and rose petal take on classic G&T) are also hits at this unmissable haute modern Indian.
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