Step 1: the inspiration

Think about something or someone you like, a theme (Easter), an occasion, a colour, art or anything that you are passionate about.

Step 2: The base

Choose the base spirit that can work and can hold that inspiration or theme together and wrap your cocktail around it.

Think of who would like to drink your cocktail - are you going to use a brown spirit like whisky, brandy or aged tequila, or a white spirit like vodka, gin or white rum which might appeal to a larger audience.

Step 3: The modifier

Pair your chosen base spirit with one or more fresh, exciting or seasonal ingredients. This will guide your base to your desired flavour.

It can be a liqueur or any flavoured spirits, or bitters and vermouth.

Talk to your vegetable and fruit supplier about what is available in season.

Support local - is there a local product like juices or syrups you can use?

Your choice of modifiers here will dictate which of the main category of cocktails your creation will fall into, for example, an aromatic or sour cocktail.

Step 4: Wow factor

Try to tease and get your other senses stimulated before even tasting the cocktail. 

Sense of sight - keep it relevant and part of the drink and inspiration. Edible flowers, smoke effects and special glassware can add impact.

Sense of smell – consider a cloud of aromatic smoke, a herb like mint or rosemary garnish, or a cocktail atomizer that you can spray on top of the drink - a lot of our taste comes from our nose after all!

Don't forget to write down the measurements of your recipe - this will help you tweak the proportions as you get to the finishing touches.

Step 5: What's your cocktail called?

Most serious bartenders and mixologists would struggle at this stage. It’s almost as difficult as naming your own child! I always go back to my inspiration or the theme.