Bilbo’s Garden

Our resident photographer, Anthony Di Virgilio, doesn’t often get opportunities to create his own cocktail recipes. That’s because he’s always busy snapping photos for this blog and making our creations look their absolute best. Unfortunately, this leaves him little time for his own experiments.

Photos by ADV Photography

But when he does put his artistic mind to something, he comes up with something beautiful. He’s meticulous, detailed, and thinks things through. He knows the importance of finding balance – whether it’s in his photos or cocktails. To him, it’s important that his drinks are accessible.

His latest example is the Bilbo’s Garden – a beautiful cocktail that throws in every floral element you can imagine, while still remaining perfectly balanced. It gets his name from the Lord of the Rings character who had a beautiful garden outside his house in the Shire, the home of the Hobbits. Full disclosure: Anthony is a Lord of the Rings nut.

After several iterations, here’s the recipe he came up with:


1 ½ oz Hendrick’s Gin
¾ oz Giffard Lychee Liqueur
½ oz Split Tree Rhubarb and Elderflower Cordial
½ oz rose simple syrup
¾ oz lemon juice
2 dashes Kinsip Hibiscus and Rosehip Bitters
Garnish: rose buds or rose petals

In a cocktail shaker, add all the ingredients and dry shake. Add ice and shake vigorously. Double-strain into a chilled coupe and garnish with rosebuds or rose petals.

Rose Syrup

1 cup water
1 cup sugar
1 cup rose petals

In a pot over medium-high heat, add one cup of water, one cup of sugar, and one cup of rose petals. Stir lightly. At the first hint of a boil, remove from heat and let cool. Double-strain into a bottle or jar and refrigerate.

This is definitely a cocktail for floral lovers. Anthony was attentive with the recipe and worked really hard to produce a nuanced floral cocktail. He succeeded.

We served it at a recent birthday party for Anthony’s pet bird “Frodo” (Yup, I think he’s a Lord of the Rings fan…) and it was a big hit. People thoroughly enjoyed it, and for many, it was their first time trying a floral cocktail. They were amazed at how well the elements worked together.

Anthony may not have as many recipes as the other guys on this blog, but when he puts his mind to one, you know it’s going to be something that is creative, precise, and a beauty to behold.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to make myself a glass and watch the Lord of the Rings trilogy in its entirety.

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