Just as beauty, fashion and décor have their trends, so too do beverages and the niche places that cater to them. Speaking of beverage trends, it seems the newest fab fad on that front is gin. Have you noticed that over the past few years, the trendy tipple has been experiencing a revival with edgy cocktails and exciting infusions stepping into the limelight? Well, thanks to mixology geniuses Rob and Mark Mulholland, the movement has arrived in Cape Town on the uber-trendy Bree Street, no less! That’s right, it’s Mother’s Ruin Gin Bar!
When I first heard about Mother’s Ruin, I was immediately excited and couldn’t wait to try it out – and so I did. Since my first visit, I’ve been back many times! I’m a big gin-drinker, okay? Let me first explain the meaning behind the name of this hip new joint: Mother’s Ruin was the name of a spirit that in the 1720s was the most widely-abused alcohol in the world. Did you know that? I didn’t. The name of the bar, coupled with the décor that has some obviously British accents, give Mother’s Ruin a somewhat old-school yet trendy feel… Fedoras and flapper dresses optional!
The upstairs bar is moody and gorgeous – think high dark-wood tables and scattered Union Jack cushions. It also boasts an enviable display of all the gins on offer. The 80-strong collection of gin comprises varieties from all around the world, as well as some best local offerings such as Jorgenson’s and Inverroche. Downstairs is a retro-cool space and outside is a whimsical courtyard decorated with fairy lights, which is just perfect for the balmy summer evenings that are well on the way!
On the menu, you’ll find a list of gins, tonic water and cocktails. If neat gin isn’t your thing, try one of their top-notch, beautifully-presented gin and tonics. There are at least seven different styles of tonic water you can choose from, as Mother’s Ruin believes that the tonic in your G&T is as important as the spirit. The options include fruity, floral and savoury. There’s also a range of garnish alternatives to make your drink look pretty and Instagram-worthy – fancy that!
If you’re more of a cocktail kind of gal, don’t worry – they have something for you too! Indulge in a classic and utterly delicious gin-based cocktail like The Lawrence of Arabia, the Old-School Negroni or the Dirty Martini. If you’re feeling adventurous, try the Strawberry Fields, which is a mix of gin, strawberry juice, lemon juice and ground pepper. For the champagne enthusiasts, there’s the Fig Bellini, which is a shake of gin, fig syrup, figs and sparkling wine (my favourite – hands down!).
It doesn’t actually matter what you order up at Mother’s Ruin – you’re sure to be charmed by whatever it is you decide to sip on! Each time I’ve visited this gem of a bar, I’ve enjoyed a thoroughly bespoke experience. Go and try it out for yourselves – it’s a lovely spot for after work drinks or a warmup before a night out, especially considering the vibrant yet unpretentious atmosphere. Now you know where to find me after work this evening, don’t you?
Address: 219 Bree Street, Cape Town CBD
Phone number: 082 681 6601
Facebook page: www.facebook.com/mothersruincpt