The Jonathan Strange…

NB; It’s gonna be a lot of cocktailpost for a while, as I try to catch-up with stuff I’ve posted on Instagram

Two magicians shall appear in England. The first shall fear me, the other shall long to behold me.

It is one of my all time most beloved reads, Jonathan Strange&Mr Norrell, with it’s Austen-era framework and magicians at the center of it(those are a few of my favorite things). To say nothing about the whole story and world described in the footnotes, the fact that it’s set in Baskerville and all the beautiful illustrations. And Byron turns up. I have a tattoo based on the cover, used a broken copy to make lampshades with the illustrations and I have created cocktails for several of the characters (might make more when I reread it again. Because I will, probably several times).

Well, Henry, you can cease frowning at me. If I am a magician, I am a very indifferent one. Others adepts summon up fairy-spirits and long-dead kings. I appear to have conjured the spirit of a banker.

Jonathan Strange ends up a magician seemingly by accident. It isn’t chance but foretold in a prophecy, he just doesn’t know it. In his defense he did try several other careers first ,without any success.

The first spell he attempts, a spell to know what my enemy is doing presently, contains dried thyme,lavendel and roses. I felt it had the makings of a syrup. To that I added the grappa he drinks in Venice (I won’t go into detail as I  want this post to be spoiler-free). Mixed that up with some lemon juice  and a dash of rhubarb-bitters(something I think I picked up in “The book of English magic” actually but it’s related). Abracadabra! A savory cocktail with a kick.


The Jonathan Strange:

Spell based-syrup;

2 dl water

3 dl caster sugar

0,5 msk dried thyme

1 msk dried lavender

0,5 dl dried rosebuds(can be excluded in worst case scenario)

1 msk rosewater

1. Bring sugar,water,thyme,lavender and rosebuds to the boil.

2. Let simmer for 5-10 minutes.

3. Using a sieve separate the flavourings from the syrup and add the rosewater. Let cool before pouring into a clean bottle. Will keep in the fridge approx. 2 weeks.

The Jonathan Strange; yields 1 cocktail

5 cl grappa

1,5 cl spell-based syrup

2 cl freshly squeezed lemonjuice

1 egg white

for serving;


Rhubarb bitters

  1. Shake the ingredients in an ice filled shaker until cool.
  2. Pour into the glass and add 2 dashes of the bitters on the foam.

The syrup ends up tasting more of rose and thyme, not in an unpleasant way mind you, and excluding the lavender could render it void of magic. On the other hand if you treat your enemy to a few of these you already know what he is up to( and that old saying goes “keep your friends close and your enemies closer”).






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