because she didn’t know there was any real difference between them. So on his recommendation, she decided to have the Fever-Something one. At which point he asked did she want elderberry flavour or aromatic, which, he confided in a way that Jennifer found smug, contained “hints of cardamom, pimento and ginger”.
“No, just normal,” she said, suspiciously, wondering was she missing a trick. And now, here he was, bearing what looked like a goldfish bowl — a huge, circular goblet on a long, thin stem. It looked awkward to carry, and would clearly be worse to drink, probably spilling all down her front. Slices of cucumber lurked in the depths of the goblet, and it had what could have been a strand of chive, or grass, poking out of it, in addition to a grinding of black pepper, which floated on the top of the gin.
And to think she’d chosen a gin and tonic because it seemed to be the easy option. And perhaps it still was, she thought, remembering the list, full of names like ‘Punch Up’ and ten different permutations of Martini, including a ‘dirty’ one that sounded nasty, and an upside-down one, with ingredients she had previously only encountered in cooking, like cherry tomatoes, rosemary and balsamic vinegar.
No cocktail umbrellas or glace cherries, she noticed, which was frankly a pity, and took some of the fun out of the whole thing.
In fact, it all seemed to have become a very serious business. Around her, people were studying menus and asking knowledgeable questions about ‘botanicals’ and ‘process’.
Meanwhile, Jennifer’s friend Liz was poking at a strand of thyme in her vodka and lime, and muttering “next time, let’s just get two glasses of white . . .”
“That will be €45,” the waiter said.