London is awash with Diamond Jubilee swag of all shapes and sizes—Fortnum & Mason is selling DJ marmalade for $11.25 and a DJ picnic hamper for $190—so it’s not surprising that famous restaurants have realized there is money, and a lot of it, to be made from the event. Rules, the venerable British restaurant that claims to be the oldest in London (it was started in 1798), has created a special cocktail menu with a clever Diamond Jubilee twist. Each of the 16 creations is tailored to one of the 16 nations that still retain the Queen as head of state. Suffice it to say that the drinks are a tad on the exotic side, given most of her remaining realms are located close to the Equator.
The Canadian drink is a positively pedestrian mix of “Crown Royal Whisky, Rosso Antico & Maple Syrup,” while Antigua and Barbuda goes wild with “Green Tea Liqueur, Hibiscus & Vintage Cremant.” I had the Queen of Saint Kitts & Nevis (Rinquinquin peach, Pisco and Champagne) and can report it is absolutely delicious. My friend was less than thrilled with her Belize, a melange of white port, Campari, Cinzano and Dubonnet.
One word of warning for all of those interested in tramping down to Covent Garden for a try: Rules’s prices aren’t cheap and at $20.75 a pop, its Diamond Jubilee offerings are certainly in the “lovely extravagant treat” category. Still, there is one very small graphic bonus for Canadians: The cover of the drinks menu features the Diamond Jubilee emblem created by the Canadian government. The waiter told me that Rules’s owner loved it and asked for permission to replicate it. So the evidence is in: we aren’t all lumberjacks and miners.