Summer solstice arrived last week inviting Midsummer celebrations to mark the longest day of the year. It’s a big day on the Swedish calendar as they celebrate the height of summer across the country, so what better way to get into the spirit than an evening at the Rekorderlig Midsummer House! A pop up bar hosted by the Swedish cider brand that promised chilled cider, refreshing cocktails and Swedish style hot dogs in the sunshine.
I took Lucinda along for the evening and we made our way over to Victoria Park where Rekorderlig have popped up and opened their doors. As Victoria Park is pretty huge, I spent the first few minutes concerned that I’d confused Bonner Gate with one of the many other gates, but we were quite confident that we were in the right place as we got closer.
Enter and you’ll find a Scandinavian styled interior which opens out into the garden, plenty of space to sit and chat or stand and mingle.
As you would expect the bar menu offered the range of Rekorderlig ciders and unique cider cocktails, you could get beer too but I was sold on the cider and cocktails long before I got there.
I ordered the Midsummer Martini – Vanilla, Gin, Rekorderlig Apple and Blackcurrant with a twist of lemon. Lucinda ordered the Svenska Kopp – Fresh Strawberry, cucumber and mint with Rekorderlig Strawberry and Lime, vodka and elderflower.
Both were really refreshing. I think I actually enjoyed Lucinda’s more than my own as it had more flavour but I was surprised how the cider added a nice twist and a different way to enjoy two of my favourite drinks together. They could easily be recreated at home.
We like our food as much as our drink so we were glad when the Swedish hot dogs were circulated by the friendly hosts.
I was apprehensive about a hot dog with prawn salad but it worked well and I liked the wraps more than the buns. They had other toppings during the evening and later we tried the lingonberry and cucumber relish.
After satisfying our appetite we grabbed an Apple and Blackberry cider each and enjoyed the sunshine and our green surroundings. It really was a pretty perfect evening for a midsummer event.
Swedish mixologist Joel then took us through one of their cocktails using the new Rekorderlig Passionfruit. I’m sorry I can’t tell you exactly what was in the cocktail, I was highly entertained by the cocktail shaking he called ‘the Abaltross’.
After having a small sample of his cocktail, which like the other cocktails was really refreshing, we decided to head back to the bar for a drink.
Neither of us could resist the idea of champagne so we both went for the Rekorderlini – Champagne, Rekorderlig Pear and Chocolate garnished with a cherry.
If I’m honest I would probably switch the champagne for cava or prosecco, purely for the fact that I enjoy champagne more on it’s own. That’s not to say this didn’t taste good though!
As the sun went down the bar ebbed and flowed and the down tempo music added a great relaxing but upbeat atmosphere.
We had one more cider for the road, I went for Orange and Ginger (which might be my favourite of the range as it’s quite similar to ginger beer) and Lucinda had a Wild Berry. Then we set off out into the sunset to return to South West London.
A fun evening where I discovered that cider is just as refreshing a drink in a cocktail as on its own. Fingers crossed they return in the winter again as I have a feeling they know a thing or two about creating a good mulled cider.
Midsummer House is open until 5 July 2013 over two slots, 12-5pm and 6-11pm, tickets are £10 each. Unfortunately it looks like the event is sold out at the moment but I understand they had planned to release a very limited number of tickets on the door, and if you keep an eye on the Facebook and Eventbrite page something may just come up!
Have you got tickets to go to the Midsummer House? How did you celebrate summer solstice last week?
I was invited to the press launch of the event and received complimentary entry and drinks. As ever all opinions are my own.