I had a secret, which was quickly discovered as soon as I walked into the door of Ateliers et Saveurs in Vieux (Old) Montréal. I am not fluent in French. Unbeknownst to me when I was booked for the class, all classes at Ateliers et Saveurs are 100% in French. Which in reality makes perfect sense as Montréal is located in Canada's official French province, Quebec.
A baby in all sense of the word (I'm at the level of maybe a 3 or 4-year-old) I prepared myself for a new challenge. When you're in a new place you really should do as the locals do. After all it's fun, you'll learn a lot and in terms of these classes there's nothing better than hands-on group fun to start off your evening.
Seven nights a week the friendly instructors are ready and waiting to give you a memorable evening. As we walked into our classroom, which was perfectly decorated to match the Tiki Ambiance theme of the evening, I smiled to myself in slight terror realizing I was the minority in a room filled with Québécois women my age.
Our instructor was a young mixologist from France who was not only charismatic but made the class as memorable as possible through his fun professionalism. We were given a quick overview about mixology, the base of making a good cocktail, and the types of ingredients we would be using over the next two hours to create three Sailor Jerry rum-based cocktails.
We started the evening off with a banana based cocktail, and as cliché as it sounds we made them in mason jars. But the thing about mason jars, which you may not have even thought of, is they double perfectly as both a shaker and a glass.
FUN TIP: When it came to measuring our ingredients properly the easiest way is to count at medium speed - 2 seconds for 1/2 oz, 4 seconds for 1 oz, etc.
'BANANA ISLAND' RECIPE
In a Mason Jar, pour in 1/2 oz lemon juice followed by 1/2 ounce Malibu Rum
Add 1 oz Sailor Jerry Rum, followed by 1/2 oz banana liquor
Finally add 2 oz of pineapple juice, followed by 5 ice cubes
Add the lid and shake well for 8 to 10 seconds
**To make it even more fun you can turn on Taylor Swift's 'Shake It Off' while you do this**
Open the lid, garnish with cut strawberries and enjoy!
In between each cocktail lesson we were given 30 minutes and a little snack. Initially I was wondering how the class could possibly be two hours, but this is when I made the connection. You obviously can't make and enjoy cocktails without a little socialization.
Cocktail number two was a fruity and spicy martini which swapped out the banana for coconut and orange. Not only was the drink a little fancier, it definitely tasted less sweet. So for me, it was a little easier to drink. Plus we got the cutest little metal shaker to create it in!
In your shaker add 1/2 oz lemon juice followed by 1/2 oz Malibu Rum
Add 1 ounce Sailor Jerry Rum to the mixture and then 1/2 oz of coconut syrup
Top it off with 2 oz of orange-mango juice and add 8 ice cubes to your shaker
Place the lid on top and shake for 8-10 seconds
**VERY IMPORTANT TIP: Do not smack the lid on top of the shaker to close. When you shake to mix the ice will expand and a too tight lid can result in your shaker exploding in your hands and your drink being all over the table instead of in your glass!**
When done shaking pour the entire contents into a martini glass
Garnish the drink with a skewer of raspberries and you're done!
This time our snack was a shot glass of gazpacho. Which yes was a technically refreshing pairing with our martinis but I, unfortunately, am not a fan of this Andalusian soup.
The third cocktail of the evening went back to the more fruity side with the new additions of passion fruit, mango, and grenadine - and it was also back to the mason jar! This was definitely the most decorated drink and a perfect way to cap out the night.
'MESSAGE FROM POLYNÉSIE' RECIPE
Pour 1/2 oz lemon juice and 1/2 oz passion fruit syrup into your mason jar
**The thing about passion fruit syrup is it's THICK - so prepare yourself for this**
Add 1 oz Sailor Jerry Rum followed by 2 oz of both mango and pineapple juice
Place 5 ice cubes into your jar, twist the lid on, and shake for 8-10 seconds
Finish off the drink with 1/2 oz of grenadine (just enough so you can see it), a teenie tiny umbrella and colorful straw!
The snack for this last cocktail was probably my favorite! Light and flavorful we were treated to a coconut mousse dessert cup inside of a phyllo shell and garnished with walnuts, graham, and rosemary. It was one of the most perfect combinations of savory and sweet desserts I've had in a long time.
Ateliers et Saveurs is the perfect pre-game for a ladies-night-out, a birthday celebration or just a fun evening with friends.
The staff is super helpful and charismatic, and will always make sure you leave not only memories of a fun evening but with knowledge you can take with you. After all who doesn't like impressing their friends and feeding their FOMO fire?
Ateliers et Saveurs has locations in both Montréal and Québec City, both of which have an abundance of cooking and mixology classes. Whatever fits your fancy you can be sure that they have you covered!
Just don't forget all of the classes are in French so be prepared to brush up on a few cooking words and you'll be good to go!
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Content Creator, Traveler, Foodie, Amateur Photographer (and surprise!) Graphic Designer living in New York City. This website started in 2016 as a space to share my passion to live life to the fullest, make adventures a priority, eat all of the good food, drink all of the wine, and curate the beautiful photos that come along with it.