Tasting our way through the city: Where to find Aalborg’s best cocktails
“Once upon a time on a regular Thursday, MyAalborg made a perilous journey into the city for a good cause.”
This is how our story begins one faithful evening when we decided to complete Tour de Cocktail in order to bring you a list of the best cocktails in Aalborg.
High standards and big ambitions
During the last few years, Aalborg has truly risen to the occasion when it comes to cocktail-making. It is no longer enough to serve drinks with a high percentage of alcohol and extravagant decorations – the taste needs to hit a homerun as well.
The level of ambition is clearly high, something you can both see and taste in the selection of drinks.
Several places in town have started marketing themselves on their accomplished cocktail-mixing skills and in this guide, we have tested the best of the best.
In cooperation with different bars we have chosen signature cocktails from their menu card that not only reflect their high level of standard but also is their pride and joy.
Which criteria the beverages need to meet and what even makes a good drink was left for them to decide.
We simply made ourselves comfortable and gulped down the experience.
Comwell Hvide Hus
A short walk from the city center you will find a place that can conjure irresistible drops in plenty.
The bar and restaurant located on the ground floor of Comwell Hvide Hus employs the two bartenders Sebastian Døssing and Kasper Wøldike who experiment with flavors on a daily basis – with great success one might add.
Classical drinks are nowhere to be found; Instead Comwell Hvide Hus presents a wide range of extraordinary and completely unique cocktails that excel in flavor.
The menu card often changes based on Kasper and Sebastian’s new ideas but when asked to pick their favorites, they did not hesitate:
NO. 2: Dark rum, acacia honey, fresh lemon juice with notes of thyme
When we heard that thyme was on the ingredient list all sorts of horrors flashed before our eyes but thankfully our skepticism was put to shame.
The fresh ingredients and the sweet elements joined in a lovely duet and although the taste of rum made itself noticed everything blended in perfect harmony.
The next cocktail in line – the “G & Tea” – made us plain curious because Sebastian revealed that it would be served in a teapot (hence the name we suppose).
G & Tea: Fresh green tea with gin, honey, and ginger
As soon as the cup reached our parched lips, we were ready to abandon Mojitos and Piña Coladas forever. This was nothing short of a stroke of genius!
The smell of green tea tied together the whole concept – and had it not been for the balanced taste of gin, we might have thought we were invited to a royal tea party.
Hotel Comwell Hvide Hus
We have had the pleasure of visiting the Mexican gastropub, El Mariachi, on several occasions.
In the evening, their tabletops are covered with crunchy totopos, homemade guacamole and burning salsa but as the night progresses the restaurant transforms into a festive pub, which serves Aalborg’s probably most forgettable cocktails.
We say forgettable because these cocktails are so strong that any memories you might have had of your night out will vanish into thin air.
If you ask the owner of El Mariachi, Claus Seier Carstensen, making cocktails is an artform. He has represented Nordjylland at several international competitions where he has managed to strike the balance between creativity and combining key ingredients.
His skills are evident when you look over the cocktail-card, which oozes of passion for the profession.
Claus’ goal is to “provoke the guests with experiences” and there is no where better to start than with his first cocktail:
Sour Apple Margarita: Olmeca Tequila Blanco, Green Apple Syrup, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a rim with both salt and glitter
When you order a drink at El Mariachi, there is no reason to fear it being watered down. The taste of strong liquor is noticeable to say the least but again Claus proves that he understands exactly how to compliment the alcohol – not hide it.
And a little glitter has never hurt anyone.
Berry on: Havana Club 7, wild berries, Martini Rosso and cranberry juice
Havana, ooh na-na! By the looks of it, this cocktail could camouflage itself as a sweet and innocent girly drink – but do not be fooled! One sip and you will be holding onto your sombrero!
El Mariachi Mexican Gastro Pub
Ved Stranden 1
Helmuth Bar & Kitchen
When planning our cocktail route there was no doubt in our minds that Helmuth had to be included.
Aside from offering a wide selection of wine, champagne and beer, Helmuth is especially known for their exquisite and exciting cocktails that are all developed specifically for the bar.
They also happen to be the winners of the City’s Best Cocktails at AALBORG AWARDS.
Helmuth changed owners in the fall but that has in no way lessened their passion for cocktails. Mathias Walther and Anders Strandhave have not made any major changes to the popular menu card yet but reveal that several exciting changes are underway.
This night we were served:
Pornstar Exotic: Havana Club 7 Year, Passoa, sugar syrup, passion fruit, pineapple, and lime juice
Although the name sounds a bit provocative, the drink itself was easy to swallow.
The taste was sweet, fresh, and summery – and therefore on the verge of being a bit dangerous if you forget your alcohol tolerance.
Gin O’Clock: Hendricks gin, Fiorente elderflower liquor, lemon, sugar syrup, and cucumber
When you visit Helmuth, you get to know a lot of new ingredients as well as how to mix them. Although this was our first time trying Gin O’Clock, it tasted like a legendary classic that should be served everywhere.
Cheers to Helmuth!
Helmuth Bar & Kitchen
During the day, Café Vesterå ranks as one of the city’s most popular dining options. Their burger even claimed second place when Gastromand ranked the best burgers in Aalborg.
But they are no one trick pony.
Once nighttime sweeps over the city, the café is transformed into an ultra-hot nightclub where the beat of electronic music and the sight of colorful cocktails will make your eyes glitter from pure excitement.
That is why there was no doubt in our minds that Vesterå should be saved for last as the icing on our intoxicating cake.
The cafés bar is known for experimenting with well-known classics but little by little they have introduced entirely new cocktails to the menu card.
This evening we got the chance to try a bit of both.
Miami Heat: Havana Club 3 años, slices of orange, cane sugar, mango liquor, lime juice, lemon soda, grenadine
If you are a regular at Vesterå, Miami Heat does not need much of an introduction. It has been part of their repertoire for years – and with good reason!
If you do not know what to order, this cocktail is a winner every time.
Next up was something entirely new.
As most people with just the faintest interest in alcohol knows, gin has seen quite the renaissance lately. A gin is not just a gin – and a tonic is not just a tonic. Far from it.
At Vesterå they have jumped the bandwagon as well and are offering five different versions of the popular drink.
Mrs. Marmalade G&T: Plymouth original gin, raspberry marmalade, paired with classic fever tree tonic
Gin and tonic is one thing but marmalade is something else entirely.
There was not a doubt in our mind that Mrs. Marmalade was worthy of a princess based on looks alone but what about the taste?
The revolutionizing garnish tasted surprisingly well.
It kind of felt like we were eating pancakes with jam – just without the pancakes … and with a bit (okay, a lot) stronger aftertaste.
But hey, that is nothing to sneeze at!
MyAalborg is sponsored by Port of Aalborg – bringing the city together