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Diet Drinking

City’s top tipple experts reveal the secrets to a calorie conscious night out, create special cocktails that won’t show up on your waist

india Updated: Sep 20, 2011 16:12 IST
Rochelle Pinto
Rochelle Pinto
Hindustan Times

Want to carry on partying but scared of developing a beer belly? These tipple experts offered us a calorie counter to help keep those extra kilos at bay.

Gaev Mehta, restaurant manager at Shamiana, Taj Mahal Palace and Hotel, Colaba, explains that neat drinks are probably the best way to go. "Whisky drinkers mshould ideally drink it on the rocks or with water. It's the mixer in any drink that you should watch out for, since that's where the sugar hides. Opt for a martini or a margarita, which don't have mixers," suggests Mehta.

Shatbhi Basu, one of the city's top consulting mixologists, puts her money on vodka. "Basic clean vodkas are your best bets. They contain the least amount of additional flavour oils (congeners). Gin, whisky, brandy and rum are full flavoured and hence contribute to extra calories,” she says, adding, “Mix your drink with fresh juices or diet colas instead.”

Says Mehta, “Ask for vegetable juice in your cocktail as it has less sugar and more vitamins than fruit juice.”

Another key drinking tip is to never consume alcohol on an empty stomach. “That’s the worst thing to do,” insists Basu, adding, “It means quicker absorption of alcohol into the blood stream, as there’s nothing in the stomach to slow it down. You also tend to drink more as hunger overtakes, and every calorie will finally be stored in your body as fat.” Spicy food also speeds up metabolism. But as Basu warns, “There’s no escaping the calories in alcohol. And it’s unhealthy if consumed irresponsibly.”

Tipple tips
# Sip on water while you're out drinking. It helps keep the body hydrated, and will help minimise the chances of a hangover.
# Avoid creamy cocktails like Pina Colada, which have a deadly mix of cream, sugar and syrups.
# Opt for limewater with salt instead of lime cordial. Swap out sugar with honey. Avoid sugar-rich tonic water.

# Absolut Citron 45 ml
# Few mint leaves
# Fresh cucumber juice 60 ml
# Lime juice 5 ml
# A dash of sugar syrup

# Add ice cubes in mixing can (3/4th)
# Add 45 ml Absolut citron + mint leaves + 60 ml cucumber juice + lime juice + msweet syrup
# Shake mixing can and strain into martini glass.

Frozen Fruit Margarita

# 45ml tequila
# 15ml lime juice
# 5 fresh strawberries/half kiwi/peach
# 1 or 2 sachets or 3-4 drops of sweetener
# Crushed ice (8-10 ice cubes)
# Garnish: fresh mint leaves

# Rim the glass with salt.
# Put everything, crushed ice and all, into a blender or into a deep jug and hand blend (Braun 300 watts).
# Blend for 10-15 seconds till ice is slushy.
# Pour into rimmed and garnished glass.
# use white rum instead of tequila for a daiquiri - By Shatbhi Basu

Healthy Margarita

# 7 drops Worcestershire Sauce
# 3 drops Tabasco
# Pinch of ground pepper
# 10 ml lime juice

# Fill glass with Ice Cubes
# Pour in 90 ml Carrot Juice
# Top it up with 60 ml Vodka of your preference
# For the garnish add a carrot swizzle stick

First Published: Sep 20, 2011 16:03 IST