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Cocktail hour at the Montpellier Brasserie

Robyn Morrison visits The Montpellier Brasserie to taste the new cocktail menu, combining original creations and classic blends with a twist

Set in the heart of Cheltenham, The Montpellier has built a reputation for its mouth-watering brasserie menu and is a firm favourite in the town for those looking to relax and enjoy a great dining experience in the art deco restaurant.

The brasserie, café and gallery celebrates its first anniversary in July and has launched a new cocktail menu created by head barman, Adam Barbary which promises to meet the high quality set by the imaginative cuisine with old favourites, as well as new and unusual creations. For those who prefer to sip on Champagne, I thoroughly recommend the fraise des bois fizz, a glass of Champagne with a side of wild strawberry liqueur to either blend together or sip separately at your pleasure. The strawberry liqueur sets off the Champagne in this unique deconstructed cocktail inspired by a traditional Kir Royale.

The Earl Grey Martini uses homemade Early Grey syrup shaken with Tanqueray, fresh lemon and an egg white to give it a silky texture. The cocktail is simply delicious, a zingy lemon sherbet flavour with only a hint of Earl Grey and a smooth finish. Where possible, The Montpellier infuses its own flavoured syrups for the cocktails and promises to introduce its own range of liqueurs including cranberry Armagnac and venison whisky once the flavours have matured in six weeks’ time. Good things come to those who wait.

The Montpellier has recently won a Civic Award for its sympathetic restoration, having kept some of the buildings original features. The art gallery upstairs makes a unique private dining venue for any occasion or business meeting, boasting stunning views overlooking Montpellier Gardens.

The atmosphere in The Montpellier is fabulous and brings a truly authentic experience of a French brasserie on the continent to the Cotswolds. Whether visiting to enjoy the dining or to relax and unwind with a refreshing cocktail, guests will be enthralled with the warm atmosphere and impressive flavours on offer.

The Montpellier Brasserie, 1-3 Montpellier Terrace, Cheltenham, GL50 1UR. Tel: 01242 228666. www.themontpellier.co.uk