Drinks by the Dram revealed their selection of spirit-filled Advent Calendars for 2016 last week, all of which you can pre-order right this very second! Every calendar contains 24 different handmade wax-sealed 3cl drams, one behind each window, so you count down to Christmas while exploring spectacular whiskies, gins, rums, tequilas and more.
Tag: New Release
Before we get started, yes, we know. We’re banging on about Christmas and it’s not even Halloween yet. Most of us at MoM Towers are only just putting the finishing touches to our costumes – this year I’m changing it up from my usual Beastie Boys ‘Sabotage’ cop and going as a horse with Jake. He’s kindly volunteered to be the back half (but he doesn’t know that yet).
However, the Drinks by the Dram Christmas Crackers were recently put up for pre-order and now we can’t but feel all Christmassy and whatnot. Just look at these handsome little rascals! Don’t expect to find any tiny rulers, giant plastic paper-clips or ridiculously easy puzzles here, oh no. These Christmas Crackers are filled with award-winning spirits and liqueurs!
So – it’s about that time again – new batches, and replenished batches of some absolute crackers from That Boutique-y Whisky Company.
First up – spoiler alert – we do have a new batch of both the Port Ellen, and Brora. I’ll understand if you want to stop reading for a bit and take care of a small (okay – large) transaction.
We’ve also got some brand spanking new lines though – 2 single malts and a blended malt (which after the editor’s choice award in the most recent edition of Whisky Magazine), should see some interest piqued…
This range was born almost 6 months ago with the release of the initial ‘Reference’ Blended Malt Whiskies I, II, and III, and have received some lovely reviews from all over the web – not least of which from Serge of Whiskyfun who rated the initial batch from 83-88 points.
The theory is initially simple – we took 4 components (2 blended malt and 2 single malt), and as the range progressed from I to III, the proportion of older whisky went up. This was designed to give us all an insight into the way that age affects whisky.
Today, however, is where it all really starts to get fun.
Cocktails galore! Not just on the blog though – these ones below will come right to your door. Not only are we bringing you Bramble Bar’s signature Affinity Cocktail as of today, but we also recently launched the 2014 vintage releases from The Handmade Cocktail Company. The latter including new additions as well as totally re-specced versions that have been improved significantly with even finer ingredients (no mean feat). These are exciting, tasty times, my friends.
First things first – Bramble Bar in Edinburgh. It’s awesome. For a while now they’ve been creating barrel-aged and bottle-aged Affinity Cocktails, which they serve at the bar in individual bottles for you to pour out yourself. (They’re pre-chilled and don’t require dilution.) We’re rather partial to a couple whenever we visit – it’s a perfect mix of Speyside single malt whisky and top quality vermouths (technically a red quinquina and a dry vermouth).
It’s hard to believe, but the original Rumbullion! hasn’t even been with us for 3 years yet.
Initially launched in November 2011, and followed by a punchier Navy-Strength version late in 2012 (you’ll want to click on that one – it’s got explosives in it), it felt like high time we stepped up and produced a super-premium version.
With this in mind, development and sourcing work for this ultra-aged expression began over 2 years ago – it’s taken us this long to find a reliable source of exceptional, superbly-aged Caribbean rum that fits and compliments the flavour-profile of the original offering.
Well these have certainly been a wee while coming, but all good things, etc…
Truth is, I’ve sort of forgotten that any other type of whisky other than ‘peated’ exists given our recent exploits, but looking back at these labels reminds me that yes. They do indeed exist, and if memory serves, many of them are delicious.
Let’s start with the very first Blended Whisky ever produced by That Boutique-y Whisky Company; Blended Whisky Number One.
So – cocktail bitters then. The salt, pepper, Worcestershire Sauce and Encona of the Cocktail world. Cocktail seasoning if you will.
This new, and tremendously exciting launch sees the phasing-out of the Master of Malt bitters range in favour of this new, improved and super-exciting range of cocktail ingredients. Why the change though?
Sit down children, and I shall tell you a story all about standardisation, Rapid-Maceration, the effects of Gravity on particle-suspension, oil-solubility and swearing:
Doesn’t really take a huge deal of explanation, this one, does it?
What we’ve gone and done is take a range of delicious single malts, and finished them for a touch over 3 months in specially commissioned, 50 litre, First-Fill Sherry casks.
Traditionally known as ‘Octave Casks’, these smaller-than-average maturation vessels give a significantly greater surface area to volume ratio, meaning more cask-influence, and more of that superb rich, Christmas-cakey deliciousness that we all know and love from heavily-sherried whiskies.
Considering that the Knockdhu distillery was founded over 100 years ago in a land brimming with peat, they’ve certainly taken their sweet time bringing out some peated whisky in the shape of the anCnoc Peaty collection. What have they been doing with all that peat all this time? Hoarding it in case Islay ever runs out? Using it to run some very slow trains? Dirt clod fights?
In actual fact, back in 1894 when Mr. John Morrison and his cohorts first started producing whisky at the Knockdhu distillery up near Aberdeen, a location chosen for its proximity to the Great North Railway line and the abundance of barley, peat and springs of Highland water, the malted barley was indeed dried using peat-fired kilns. They were making peated whisky all the way back in the 1800s!