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The Christmas spirit is flowing in Brum; Cocktail bars are popping up all over the place. Here's Sanjeeta Bains' guide to the booziest cocktails in Birmingham.

Byline: Sanjeeta Bains'

WE'RE lucky in Birmingham to have so many cocktail bars popping up with a massive range of spirits - and bars finding original and quirky ways to showcase them. But there are still places you can get a cocktail that tastes more of fruit and sugar than anything else and this kind of thing makes us rage!

Sometimes you want a cocktail that properly tastes like alcohol - especially when you're paying upwards of PS7.50 for the privliege.

Helen Fielding, blogger at Positive Fridays, is dedicated in her quest for outstanding cocktails and "the boozier the better" is her motto. So naturally we knew she was the only person to compile our guide to the top five booziest cocktails in Brum.

"But remember these are very grown up cocktails to be appreciated rather than downed," says Helen. We'll demurely sip to that. Cheers! Tequila Mockingbird at The Lost and Found Ingredients: Aperol, lemon and orange juices cutting through thestrong tequila Price: PS7.50 Tequila is an ingredient which many people avoid after bad experiences. The punny name aside, this cocktail is a great reintroduction and it's served in a beautiful glass with a fun fruit garnish. Mint Julep at Bureau Ingredients: Bourbon, fresh mint, crushed ice Price: PS7.50 Bureau's cocktails are not stingy with the alcohol. The bar has a 1920s vibe which is perfect for sipping strong cocktails in. Although they have some great cocktail creations, I picked the classic Mint Julep, made with Bourbon and mint. The mint is squashed between the hands before it goes in the drink, releasing the oils so you get a good whiff of mint while you are drinking.

Game Over at Le Truc Ingredients: Wray and Nephew 63% White Rum, Fresh Lime, Mountain Dew Syrup, Absinthe Price: PS7.50 Le Truc have a fantastic cocktail menu with some drinks inspired by French culture and food. They add a European twist to this rum based cocktail by adding absinthe. Although this is a very strong cocktail, the well-chilled glass and the lime juice make it a surprisingly easy and refreshing drink. Take heed of the name though - this is one to end the night on!

Victorian Lemonade at The Victoria Ingredients: Gin, lemon juice, almond syrup, angostura bitters, absinthe. Price: PS6.50 Absinthe is another spirit people avoid but it's best served in a cocktail. The Victorian Lemonade is a brilliant introduction to absinthe as the spirit is swilled around the glass and then poured out, rather than being left in. You are still left with the strong, aniseed taste but it doesn't overwhelm the other flavours.

Blackberry Sidecar at Aluna Ingredients: Remy Vsop Brandy, Blackberry Liqueur.

Price: PS7.95 This is my personal favourite. A bit of a different one here as there is a strong fruit taste from the blackberry, but it complements rather than masks the brandy.

A great cocktail for winter evenings, with the delicious warming scents that makes me feel very Christmassy.

Martinez at Gas St Social Ingredients: Gin, maraschino, sweet vermouth, orange bitters When I asked the bartender at Gas Street Social for a cocktail that really highlighted a specific spirit, he went off menu and presented me with a Martinez - the precursor to the popular Martini.

A crisp, clean cocktail, this is less sharp and easier to drink than a Martini due to the addition of Maraschino.

This cocktail makes me feel very sophisticated as it's off-menu and it's served in a coupe glass.

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Dec 24, 2015
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