Premixed cocktails have really revamped their reputation over the past few years. Prominent mixologists, such as Mr Lyan (Ryan Chetiyawardana), have released their own extremely fine versions and have based entire bar menus around them. Bottled cocktails mean a consistent pour and flavour, and the opportunity to super chill liquids so you don’t have to dilute with ice.
Lockdown has also helped bring premixed cocktails into people’s home bars more. The thirst for a decent cocktail from an expert mixologist – a drink already made for you – has lead mixology fanciers to seek out new solutions. Now Italian craft cocktail company NIO has taken the concept of cocktails delivered to the door and reimagined it in a truly innovative way. NIO was founded by two friends, Luca and Alessandro, who wanted to create a set of cocktails that could be posted through a letterbox and Needs Ice Only to get ready – no complicated bar equipment or ingredients required.
They worked with leading mixologist and head barman of Drink Kong, one of the World’s 50 best bars, Patrick Pistolesi, to create a menu of 14 cocktails. Known as the “king of Rome”, Patrick Pistolesi has mixed a selection of classic and Italian-inflected cocktails including a Garden of Russia, an elderflower twist on a vodka sour, a Gin Proved, in which Tanqueray is mixed with rose petals, almonds and orange Curaçao, and the Boulevardier, a Bulleit Bourbon version of a negroni with vermouth, Campari and angostura bitters.
NIO cocktails are delivered in pouches in beautifully designed sleeves, which look chic and, most importantly, fit through your front door. Boxes are available in sets of three (£19.50), six (£39) and nine (£58) and you can build your own box, or pick one of NIO’s collection boxes, themed on spirit, flavour profile or cocktail style. Not only are the cocktails extremely light and so take little energy to transport, the sleeves are also recycled and recyclable and all paper is obtained from responsible sources. NIO are also working on increasing the biomaterial used in the plastic pouches from 50 per cent to 100 per cent to make every part of their product sustainable.
Most exciting of all, the cocktails are delicious, made from the finest ingredients and take seconds to prepare.