"Hip hip hooray – new product day!
All the world was heard to say,
Because they knew with certainty,
Mulled wine was ‘fixed’, eternally..."
Ah mulled wine. The most Christmassy of drinks. Head and shoulders even above Eggnog. There’s really nothing like it to warm the cockles, instil a sense of bonhomie, and usher in the festive season properly.
Following on from The Negroni and The Scottish Gold Rush, we’re now entering Master of Cocktails’ third week – how time flies!
Each week you can follow along on Sunday evenings via twitter (#MasterofCocktails) and, in fact, from now on we’ll be letting you know what you’ll need for the following week, making it even easier.
(You can find next week's ingredients at the bottom of this blog post.)
Last night, we made one of my all-time favourites cocktails: The Last Word. These are just awesome. If you haven’t ever tried one then, frankly, we feel sorry for you. Fortunately, you can remedy this terrible state of affairs by following the simple instructions below...
Another week, another set of awards results announced! This time from the International Wine & Spirits Competition (IWSC), “the premier competition of its kind in the world”. (I know, I know, they can’t all be the best - and they do indeed have similar sounding names – but this is another one of the really, really BIG competitions. Important stuff.)
As well as the usual Gold, Silver and Bronze medals, there are also Gold Outstanding and Silver Outstanding Medals at the IWSC, with a huge score of 90-100 out of 100 required for a Gold Medal and Gold Outstanding Medals only being awarded at the judges’ discretion! Welcome to big school!
Hot on the heels of our success at the Off License News Drinks Retailing Awards, the World Whiskies Awards 2013 were presented last week at the Waldorf Hotel in London, and, erm, we cleaned up again*.
I’m not going to re-hash the recent blog post I wrote about our success at the OLN awards, but suffice it to say, there’s a reasonable-length post here about the innovations and initiatives we’ve launched in the past 12 months. It’s well worth a read if you’ve not already.
So – Summer’s here. Sort of. From time-to-time. When it’s not flooding or what-have-you.
With this in mind, Professor Cornelius Ampleforth has turned his attention to perhaps the most quintessentially British drink that there is – the Summer Fruit Cup.
Now – it’s worth noting that there are several other cups on the market, from the Ubiquitous Pimm’s, through several distillers’ own recipes (Chase is rather good – coming soon – watch this space) to the really rather excellent Sipsmith. There was one thing that the Professor had deemed to be missing from all of these concoctions though – pure, distilled Madness*. More...
I’m going to relay to you two phrases that I’ve uttered over the last few weeks which have genuinely made me chuckle maniacally to myself for about 5 minutes.
The first is unrelated to this post, but I think very pleasing anyway – “Look – all I need is for someone to find me a consignment of Fresh Sloes - how bloody difficult can that be” (incidentally, if anyone knows where I can get hold of a consignment of Fresh Sloes, there’s a bottle of something nice in it for you).
So – we’ve been doing our Drinks by the Dram whisky sample service for almost a year now, and in that time have decanted ‘loads’ of 700ml bottles into 30ml samples.
700 divided by 30 is 690, so even if one is slightly generous with the 30ml measure, there’s still going to be a little drop or two left over.
My original plan (and I thought it was a darned good one) was to save all of this up, and make some awesome cocktails at the staff Christmas party, or maybe do something at the directors’ joint birthday party, but it turns out that “a little drop or two” multiplied by “loads” is about 37 full-sized bottles-worth.
Even we aren’t that thirsty. More...
We hope you’ve had a wonderful Easter! It’s been a very eventful past couple of weeks for everyone, and we’ve certainly had more than our fair share of barbeques, cocktails and general revelry (there was some kind of wedding on at the weekend, apparently).
In other news, we have some new products to announce (for real this time, this isn’t another April Fool), and we’re sure they’ll be the topic of much enjoyment, discussion, and possibly even a little controversy.
Are you a single malt drinker of discerning tastes? Do you have the cocked eyebrow and furrowed brow of a whisky aficionado of esteem and worldliness?
Well, we regularly cock our eyebrows and furrow our brows (as evidenced by the photo of the devilishly charming Sir Roger Moore below).
We also find that most whisky liqueurs are too sweet for our liking. And are often made with cheap grain whisky, instead of top quality single malt. Eurrghh! This will not do!
So we decided to do something wholly unthought-of – we created a whisky liqueur for the single malt connoisseur.
This was much, much easier said than done though, in fact this liqueur has been literally months in the making. More...
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...