Ah Champagne, synonymous with celebration and good cheer. To find out what we get up to with Champagne, read on.

Imbibe 2018: What goes on at the UK’s biggest booze trade show

Imbibe Live: You might have heard of it. You may even have been along to it. It’s one of Europe’s top drinks trade shows where trends are spotted and ideas shared. Want to know what you’ll be drinking next? Our Henry headed to Imbibe 2018 to find out…

There’s always a moment when I first arrive at a trade show where I feel like a rabbit in the headlights. I am sure this would happen to me at Photocopier Expo but at Imbibe Live, one of Europe’s largest on trade shows, I was particularly overwhelmed with the bibulous possibilities on offer. Thank heavens then for Pol Roger, which had a quiet tent offering bacon sandwiches and its vintage 1999 Champagne – just the thing at 10 in the morning. While I nibbled, chairman of Pol UK, James Simpson, told me about a stash of ancient bottles that they had just discovered in a cellar that collapsed 118 years ago. Apparently they are in great condition. I am now waiting for an invite out to Epernay to try one. Watch this space.
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Categories : Gin, Irish Whiskey, Vermouth, Whisky, Wine
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CO2 shortage: What’s going on with my fizzy drinks?!

All week there have been doom and gloom reports of CO2 (carbon dioxide) shortages affecting everything from our beloved summer pints and G&Ts to soft drinks and beyond. But what’s actually going on, and should we be stockpiling all things fizzy? We investigate…

The CO2 shortage just got real yesterday as in a statement Coca-Cola announced it will be “temporarily pausing” some of its fizzy drinks production. This is a problem that has been bubbling up (sorry!) all week, with all kinds of stories and rumours that without carbon dioxide there might be no beer, which combined with the hot weather and some sort of football tournament going on in Russia, could lead to anarchy on Britain’s streets and, possibly, the end of civilisation as we know it.

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Categories : Beer, News
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The Importance of Light Strike Awareness Day

Have you heard of Light Strike Awareness Day? If not, Henry is here to give you the low-down…

Today, the 21st June, the longest and potentially sunniest day of the year, is Light Strike Awareness Day. What, you didn’t know? Well, I’ll grant you it doesn’t have quite the same level of recognition as Movember or British Sausage Week, but if you’re a rosé drinker in particular (and these days who isn’t) then you should be paying attention.

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Categories : Wine
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The Nightcap: 8 June

Jack Daniel’s-maker Brown-Forman lines up a new CEO, World Gin Day hype aplenty, and fizz in space? It can only be The Nightcap!

It’s Friday and the world’s most eclectic round-up of booze newses is back for another week! We’ve got a whole host of hot-off-the-press product launches, bar happenings galore and incoming CEOs up our sleeves. But first, let’s look back on the week that was…

While we were all recovering from the mega week-and-a-bit of Fèis Ìle 2018, Annie was bar flying-it-up at Artesian as the renowned bar team unveiled a new menu. Then, on Tuesday, she hightailed it over to The Zetter Townhouse to check out its partnership with cocktail maestro Tony Conigliaro… It’s a hard life.

On Wednesday, we had a look at your top 10 gins across Master of Malt to make what we think is a cracking list of must-tries ahead of World Gin Day (it’s tomorrow, team! Perhaps there’s just enough time to sneak in a next-day delivery…). Sticking with a theme, yesterday Adam caught up with Alex Kammerling, who just happens to have released a Kamm & Sons gin! Good timing, right?!
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Categories : American Whiskey, Cocktails, Gin, News, Scotch Whisky, Tequila, Whisky, Wine
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The Nightcap: 11 May

Folks, it’s Friday! And it’s been another busy one in the world of drinks. Thank goodness then for The Nightcap, a handy round-up of boozy goings on in one easily sippable digestif!

This week we have news of a rather exciting Game of Thrones/whisky tie-up, awards galore from Spirit of Speyside, a bold new bottle design and a Tabasco sauce update. Oh yes!

But first, we must recap the week that was, and for us on the UK it was a short one after the Early May Bank Holiday! So after a Monday snooze, on Tuesday we caught up with Cara Laing, director of whisky at independent bottler Douglas Laing, as the family-owned company marks its 70th anniversary. Then it was all about The Glenlivet on Wednesday, as the Speyside distillery revealed the results of a dabbling in Cognac cask finishing. We also checked in with the team at Scarfes Bar, London – the new recent history-inspired menu is sure to be a hit.
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Categories : American Whiskey, Beer, Cocktails, Irish Whiskey, News, Scotch Whisky, Whisky, Wine
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Master of Cocktails – The Go Lightly

Master of Cocktails The Go Lightly

Well hello there cocktail chums. Time for a drink? If you check your watch, you’ll see that it is indeed #MasterofCocktails-o’clock – what perfect timing!

This week we’re making a little something I robbed from the St Germain website. It’s a ‘Go Lightly’ recipe, and it is *delicious*. We’ll of course be using St Germain’s excellent elderflower liqueur, and I’ve also gone ahead and amended the recipe a bit to make it more of a long drink.

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Categories : Absinthe, Cocktails, Liqueurs
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Master of Cocktails – The Magic Number

Master of Cocktails The Magic Number

Greetings all. Anyone fancy a drink?

We’re making a cocktail using Champagne for this week’s #MasterofCocktails – it’s The Magic Number recipe. It’s not a ‘Champagne cocktail’, as that’s a thing in its own right. This is a variation on a recipe I nicked from the Kamm & Sons website. Variation only in quantities, not ingredients. It’s a great showcase for the Kamm & Sons British Aperitif – which is sort of bittersweet. Closest comparison would probably be Campari.

Anywhoo – this really is a very easy-to-make drink, and is a break from the Christmas tradition of ‘all the Champagne’.

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Categories : Cocktails, Gin
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Master of Cocktails – The Champagne Cocktail

Master of Cocktails Champagne Cocktail

An incredibly simple drink this week, which is so often fucked right up by one stupid ‘ritual’. Sugar Cubes. I saw a cocktail this week from some place in London which they’re claiming is the world’s most expensive (at £8888) and from the looks of it, even at nearly £10k, you get a load of idiotic sugar-sludge in the bottom of your glass.

Using a sugar cube instead of sugar syrup not only makes a nonsense of the ‘as served’ concentration of sugar as more and more will dissolve as the drink is consumed, but even worse, it provides hundreds upon hundreds of nucleation points (the sugar granules), which are pretty much guaranteed to knock all the fizz out of champagne. Not exactly ideal for a Champagne Cocktail recipe, eh? So, for that reason we’re going to be using sugar syrup like a non-mental person.

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Categories : Cocktails, Cognac
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Master of Cocktails – Tangerine 75

Master of Cocktails Tangerine 75

We hope you were all able to enjoy a little time with the family, some nice pressies and plenty of bread sauce over Christmas, now it’s time to look towards New Year. That, of course, is all the excuse you should need to indulge in a little mid-holiday excess! This week’s #MasterofCocktails recipe is therefore a festive twist on the French 75 – tasty, refreshing and indulgent.

A good party drink this as we reach for the Champagne and wish good riddance to 2013!

It’s been a quite the year here at Master of Malt though (I’ll probably do a round up at some point), and we’ve also celebrated the arrival of many, many tiny humans, with babies seemingly popping out all over the business like Champagne corks on New Year’s Eve!

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Categories : Cocktails, Gin
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Cattier Champagne

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…

Categories : News, Tasting Notes, Wine
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