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Courvoisier Cognac with an Age Statement

by Michael Orson     2. June 2011 15:33
Courvoisier

For the first time ever, one of France’s big Cognac houses has started putting age statements on its products. Courvoisier have begun labelling Cognacs just like we do in the whisky industry, where the number reflects the age of the youngest spirit in the bottle.

The new age statement releases give a real insight into Cognac, and it’s particularly interesting that Courvoisier should take this route, as the previous designations were very vague indeed. In fact, if you were to ask the average spirits drinker what the difference between a More...

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Categories : Cognac | News


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Bourbon Tasting

by Michael Orson     10. March 2011 14:39

Van Winkle Bourbon

After a busy few days meeting the great and the good from the whisk(e)y world, we were invited up to the London Cocktail Club for an astonishing bourbon tasting, led by Preston Van Winkle. All in all, it was the perfect end to the week.

Before we began the tasting, Preston talked us through the history of Van Winkle...

The company was founded by Preston’s great grandfather, Julian “Pappy” Van Winkle Senior. During the late 19th Century, Pappy worked as an itinerant salesman for W.L. Weller & Sons (a whiskey company based in Louisville, Kentucky), selling bourbon from a horse and cart.

In 1910, he bought the A. Ph. Stitzel Distillery (which made the whiskey for W.L. Weller), and with it he gained control of the W.L. Weller, Old Fitzgerald, Rebel Yell and Cabin Still brands – the four horsemen More...

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Beer and Whisky Pairing

by Michael Orson     30. September 2010 13:05
Pairing Beer and Whisky

A bit of Blighty…

Most whisky drinkers don’t just drink whisky. A lot of us enjoy a G&T, or a good cocktail, or a glass of wine, and everyone loves our nation’s faithful, honest quaff… beer.

After a hard day’s toil wondering why they didn’t make Microsoft Office work properly, nothing beats a good pint at your local, or an icy cold bottle of beer on the couch.

The only thing is a glass of single malt is great too. But which do you choose? - a glorious pint or a warming glass of whisky? More...

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Categories : Beer | Whisky


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Kilchoman Summer 2010 Release

by Michael Orson     24. September 2010 13:42
Kilchoman Summer 2010 Release

Kilchoman’s Summer 2010 release is in at last! This sprightly 3 year old was matured entirely in fresh bourbon barrels (which is a first for Kilchoman; the previous trio were all at least partially matured in sherry).

We’ve already reviewed the Autumn 2009 Release and Spring 2010 Release and we loved them both, so we’ve got high expectations for this one.

Here are our thoughts… More...

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Categories : Whisky


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Who loves Scotch Whisky the most?

by Michael Orson     14. September 2010 14:06
Navigating the sea of whisky

The Scotch whisky export figures for 2009 are in, and they make for very interesting viewing!

 

In the ultimate battle for supremacy, the pole position didn’t go to the UK, the Japanese or even the Americans. No, 2009’s greatest Scotch importers were the French. On average, each adult imported 2.45 litres of Scotch whisky… that’s 3 ½ bottles a year, which isn’t bad going for a country that makes some of the world’s very best brandies. More...

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Categories : Whisky | News


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Cocktail Making with a World Class Liqueur

by Michael Orson     5. August 2010 13:54
A green cocktail

A unique discovery was made some time ago in the world of booze; it was found that by mixing alcohol, sugar, and various flavourings of innumerable origin, a delicious concoction would be yours for the partaking. Safe in this knowledge, Edmond Briottet was founded in 1836 and the firm garnered a happy reputation thanks to its great success with Cassis and a variety of liqueurs. In fact, Briottet boasts a tremendous catalogue of liqueurs made with an extraordinary selection of fruits, nuts and even seeds!

 

We were naturally keen to stock as many as we could, so the other day a shipment arrived at the MoM underground lair. We watched it trundling along the mineshaft from the super-secret helipad and there, before us, was a veritable rainbow of créme de this, and liqueur de le bloomin’ that. More...

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Categories : Liqueurs


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A Decade of Ardbeg Whisky

by Michael Orson     23. July 2010 18:08
Ardbeg at The Worx

It’s been a decade since the inception of the Ardbeg Committee (officially founded on the 1st January 2000). It’s also been ten years since the release of Ardbeg 10 Year Old, so 2010’s a pretty momentous year for the distillery - we’re sure you’ll agree.

True to form, Ardbeg have been putting on some fantastic celebrations to mark their reaching double figures. We were lucky enough to be invited to one such shindig at The Worx last Wednesday, and we wanted to recount what turned out to be a cracking evening... More...

Cattier Champagne

by Michael Orson     20. July 2010 13:47
Cattier Champagne

One day we went on an expedition into our warehouse, looking to see what wonders and secrets it might hold. It’s a dark, ominous place, with towering piles of boxes, creaking noises all around, and a creature known only as “the thing” – it lives on malt and the occasional placement student…

Kitted out in leather jackets and fedora hats, we’d reached the farthest corner of the building (we’d only been this far once – when scaling the north face of Mount Talisker, a leaning tower of Island malt). Pushing a curtain of cobwebs aside with a bullwhip, our jaws dropped. Before us there stood a good-sized pile of our house champagne, Cattier Brut, covered in dust.More...

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Categories : News | Wine


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Jefferson's Bourbon

by Michael Orson     19. July 2010 12:57
Jefferson’s Bourbon

With some great new products in, we decided to a do a quick tasting. We now stock a couple of Jefferson's bourbons, and this morning we put the eponymous whiskies through their paces.

Both were Gold Medal winners at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition and both are produced by small batch distiller McLain & Kyne (notable as one of few Americans distilleries to spell whisky in the Scottish style - sans the 'E').

Both are also available as 3cl samples too...More...

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Categories : Drinks by the Dram | News | Whisky


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Buy a sample of the Glenfarclas 40 Year Old Scottish Classic

by Michael Orson     14. July 2010 14:10
Glenfarclas 40 Year Old Scottish Classic

Glenfarclas added a 40 year old to their core range this year. A bold move like this is testament to Glenfarclas’ incredible stocks, and most distilleries would struggle to maintain production of a core range 40 year old bottling.

It was set apart from the year’s other high end releases by two factors. One was quality; we’ve sung its praises before so we won’t go into too much detail, but suffice to say it’s a stunner! The second factor was price; most whiskies in this age range (particularly from stalwart premium distilleries like Glenfarclas) retail at a minimum of a grand. Amazingly, you can find Glenfarclas 40 at just £289 (from us of course!). More...

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