Skylight Bar talk about their special limited edition ‘Dame Judi Cocktail’, launched in support of the ‘Judi Dench Fund’ for Access to Drama Training

With both the Peckham (South East London) and Tobacco Dock (East London) Skylight Bar venues offering unique, panoramic views of their respective localities, they’re both the perfect venue for catching up with friends and loved ones, holding meetings or the perfect location for that much needed alternate setting if you’ve been working from home with their hot-desking facilities from £10 a day. From a choice of bottomless brunches, food and cocktails and live music, Skylight Bar – with their huts, booths and tables, Skylight Bar is a venue to visit. Celebrating a new edition to their cocktail menu, ‘The Dame Judi’ – named after the iconic actress of theatre and film and which is described as being ‘sweet and sharp with a full, rich finish from the Grand Marnier Cognac’, the new edition has been created not only to acknowledge the performer, but also to support access to drama training, with £1 from every sale going towards the Judi Dench Fund for Access to Drama Training set up in collaboration with renowned Peckham based drama school Mountview. We spoke to Skylight Bar who tell us more about the creative theatrical edition to their menu!

Hi Skylight Peckham, you’ve recently launched a special edition cocktail named after the legendary actress Dame Judi Dench. How are you feeling?

Delighted! Our special edition cocktail ‘The Dame Judi’ is not only named after an icon but a donation from every sale will go to the Judi Dench Fund for Access to Drama Training. The fund has been established to invest in initiatives that break down barriers to drama training. We are delighted and proud to be able to support this fund, and of course to have the renowned Dame Judi Dench’s blessing for the cocktail!

‘The Dame Judi’ cocktail has been developed to reflect the sophisticated elegance of Dame Judi, the cocktail ‘sweet and sharp with a full, rich finish from the Grand Marnier Cognac’. How have you approached creating the cocktail?

The drink is a take on the classic sidecar, topped with champagne. A Bond style Vodka Martini would have been an obvious choice, but this was not a drink named after Daniel Craig or his predecessors. The notes of the ‘The Dame Judi’ needed to be strong and sophisticated with an edge of sweetness. The complex profile of a sidecar with delicate richness of cognac offset with the acidity of lemon juice hit all the right notes. Dame Judi Dench has noted in a few interviews her fondness for Champagne so it seemed wrong not to incorporate it into the drink – we topped the sidecar with champagne, creating ‘The Dame Judi’.

£1 from every cocktail sold will go towards the ‘Judi Dench Fund for Access to Drama Training’ established by Mountview in 2020, helping to break down barriers to drama training. What inspired yourselves to partner with Mountview to support this?

Since opening, we have been committed to becoming an integrated part of the Peckham community. With Skylight occupying the top floor of Mountview, we are thrilled to support our neighbours and the Judi Dench Fund. Mountview is one of the UK’s leading drama schools with alumni including Olivier Award-winning actor Giles Terera (Hamilton), broadcaster Amanda Holden and 2020 Women’s Prize for Playwriting winner Amy Trigg. It’s an honour to be able to work so closely with them. The fund is committed to developing the very best theatre talent and giving them the support needed to excel at the very highest levels of the theatre industry. It’s exciting to think our cocktail will support the stars of the future.

Dame Judi Dench has given the cocktail her blessing, expressing, ‘I am very grateful to Skylight for the support of the Judi Dench Fund, and their shared commitment to ensure that access to the best training is open to everyone regardless of their background. The drink is a fun way to raise money and awareness, and the cocktail itself is, without bias, quite delicious.’ What does it mean to yourselves to have her support?

It’s very exciting! She’s a remarkable woman so it’s a great feeling to have her support, plus there’s not many places that can say Dame Judi Dench has called their cocktail delicious

5)    What does it mean to yourselves to be able to support your local community access the arts?

It’s a fulfilling feeling! Supporting the local community is what we’re about, the idea we could help shape someone’s life and career through a simple cocktail is wonderful. It’s also great we get to see the talent in action: our Open Mic Nights are growing ever more popular each Sunday, often with performances from Mountview students and West End alumni. Who knows, this initiative might help find someone as talented as Dame Judi Dench.

Questions by Lucy Basaba.

To find out more about Skylight Bar, visit here…

To find out more about the Judi Dench Fund for Access to Drama Training, visit here…

To find out more about Mountview, visit here…

Written by Theatrefullstop