Chelsie Bailey Takes The UK Crown In Monkey Shoulder’s Ultimate Bartender Championship

Monkey Shoulder - Ultimate Bartender Championship

Monkey Shoulder’s Ultimate Bartender Championship’s (UBC) UK winner has been crowned, with Chelsie Bailey from Red Light bar in Bristol taking this year’s title. Bartenders up and down the country had their skills put to the test – with the 2017 competition seeing entrants quizzed on everything from pouring and nosing, to stock take and tray service.

Chelsie fought off tough competition from over 100 entrants who battled their way through heats in six cities – with the last heat taking place in London on Sunday 14th May. Despite the outstanding efforts of entrants from all areas of the country over three months, it was Chelsie that proved she indeed has the “skills to pay the bills”.

The Ultimate Bartender Championship will now bring together all the global winners at this year’s Tales of the Cocktail – the world’s premiere cocktail festival. Chelsie, along with other winners from around the world will enjoy an all-expenses paid trip to New Orleans, where they will have the opportunity to network with the industry’s most influential personalities and other UBC winners from across the world.

“There is no doubt that it was a hard-fought battle – but it is amazing to see Chelsie win for the UK and head off to Tales of the Cocktail this Summer – it’s going to be epic! UBC is intended to challenge the best bartenders across the UK, and the stiff competition this year proves that it is doing just that” commented Grant Neave, Monkey Shoulder brand amBADASSador.

The UK leader board can be viewed here: http://ultimatebartenderchampionship.com/local-leaderboard

Full details of each round can also be found at: http://ultimatebartenderchampionship.com/challenges.

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William Grant & Sons UK’s Brand Ambassadors Host The Highland Festival 2016

Team Balvenie Bootcamp
Following the success of last year’s inaugural Highland Festival, William Grant & Sons UK hosted round two at Haggerston Park on Sunday 21st August. The UK’s top bartenders battled it out to win an immersive trip to Scotland hosted by Lesley Gracie, Master Distiller of Hendrick’s Gin, and UK Ambassador, Ally Martin.

This year saw nine teams compete for the title, with Team Reyka coming out on top, winning the crown and a once in a lifetime prize. “My team did me proud and consistently outclassed in the series of random challenges. They are a great group and I can’t wait to celebrate with them.” – Joe Petch, Reyka Vodka UK Ambassador. Team Reyka included Aidan Bowie from Dandelyan, Russell Burgess from Loves Company, Dan Bovey from B@ONE Bristol, Anna Sebastian from The Beaufort Bar at The Savoy, Aaron Masonde from Oblix at The Shard, Alastair Fraser from Little Bat and Iain McPherson from Hoot the Redeemer and Panda and Sons.

The competitors were faced with new and exciting games including Dash and Grab, Bootcamp Challenge and Last Man Standing along with 2015 favourites, The Ramos Fizz Cocktail Relay and Tug of War. Participants and spectators were kept well nourished by the awesome team at Patty & Bun, with the iconic Sailor Jerry Air Stream bar serving up cocktails from across the William Grant & Sons UK portfolio including the Hendrick’s Cucumber Collins and the Sailor Jerry Highland Vice. The Reyka Vodka ‘make your own’ Bloody Mary station made a comeback and Señor Scoop cooled everyone down with their adult ice creams.

Matt Sayer, Senior Prestige On-Trade Manager, William Grant & Sons UK, commented: “After the success of the 2015 Highland Festival, we had no other option but to bring it back, this time bigger and better! It’s the perfect setting for bartenders to enjoy their day off and for our ambassadors to engage with the on-trade, showcasing their brands in a fun and informal setting.”

Anna Sebastian, from Beaufort Bar at The Savoy, commented: “What an amazing day! Seeing so many people from our industry, from all over the UK come together was pretty special. Seeing old friends and making new ones, it’s events like this that bring us together and make a good industry great. Thank you to the William Grant & Sons UK team for such an organised and well-executed event.”

· Team Glenfiddich, led by ambassador Mark Thomson
· Team The Balvenie, led by ambassador James Buntin
· Team Hendrick’s, led by ambassador Ally Martin
· Team Monkey Shoulder, led by ambassador Grant Neave
· Team Sailor Jerry, led by ambassador EmmaLi Stenhouse
· Team Reyka, led by ambassador Joe Petch (2016 Champions)
· Team Disaronno, led by ambassador Rod Eslamieh (2015 Champions)
· Team Wood’s, led by Rum Specialist Stephen Rutherford
· Team Ancient Reserves, led by Whisky Specialist Alwynne Gwilt

The London Sessions Have Been Busy

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… But in a good way. Yesterday they held their 13th session, the fourth in New York, with Monkey Shoulder and Dale DeGroff. They almost thought about skipping straight to 14 incase it was unlucky, but it turned out to be one of the best yet. They were there, and they still watched it online after. You can too, right here.

1caa6cd9-9a8b-48a6-a38c-e254110c53bcTuesday they presented with ‘the nicest man in the business’ Mr Lyan, photos here, and a couple of weeks back they were graced with the presence of the formidable Simon Ford with Fords Gin. Click for photos.

Wednesday they were at Dead Rabbit for the launch of their new menu. And if you wanna know how Sean, Jack, Jillian and Richard create a menu – from the ideas, illustrations, design and drinks, then stay tuned – we’ve asked them a lot of questions and we’re writing it up for Difford’s Guide. Their next session is TBA real soon. As always, keep an eye on their social media for more news!

William Grant & Sons UK Hosts Pilot ‘Winner Takes All’ Regional Cocktail Challenge Championing Bartenders

WTA winners

William Grant & Sons UK held an event at Reading based cocktail bar RYND last week, encouraging up and coming talent, outside of the capital, to showcase their skills. This first national Winner Takes All cocktail competition showed some amazing bartending talent whilst at the same time saw some of the William Grant & Sons UK portfolio of brands featured in original and inventive cocktails.

38 bartenders, grouped into 12 teams showcased their cocktail making skills and were judged by William Grant & Sons UK brand ambassadors from spirit brands: Sailor Jerry, Monkey Shoulder, Reyka and Disaronno. They were judged on the quality of their cocktail making skills from accuracy, to creativity and style. Participating bars competed for a complete back bar of spirits from the William Grant & Sons UK portfolio.

The competition focused on four unique challenges: The ‘Speed Sour’ led by Disaronno ambassador Rod Eslamieh, the ‘Twisted Martini’ hosted by Reyka ambassador Joe Petch, the ‘Saturday Night Simulator’ concocted by Monkey Shoulder ambassador Grant Neave and the ‘Sailor Jerry Tiki-Off’, presented by Sailor Jerry ambassador EmmaLi Stenhouse.

Congratulations to the winning team: Matt, Matt and Colette from B@ONE in Reading, took home the entire back bar full of the William Grant & Sons UK portfolio. With the winning team based in Reading, where the competition was hosted, the prize didn’t have far to travel.

Joe Petch, William Grant & Sons UK Reyka Brand Ambassador, who led the competition, commented: “I started my career in Reading so for me this competition was really an opportunity to bring together like-minded bartenders from around the country – away from the usual capital city focus – and showcase some great up & coming talent. We saw some genuine originality from the participants using some of the William Grant & Sons UK brands: Monkey Shoulder, Reyka, Sailor Jerry, and Disaronno.

“The competition was a great success and was thoroughly enjoyed by competitors and spectators alike. This is an event we will definitely be doing again.”

A Night Of Living Ventures In The Suburbs

Hale Bar and Grill

Guest writer Keeley Watts experienced once of my spirit evenings a few weeks back. Take a look at what she thought of the expressions I had on offer;

Most drink related events in the North West tend to take place in Manchester City Centre. This is great for me as I live there so can just wander out but I know friends who live in the suburbs really struggle to get to some of them. Quick to recognise this was The Drinks Enthusiast who joined forces with Hale Grill for a spirit tasting with a difference.

We started with a chat about what spirits we liked and disliked. Lucky for me I had tried all the spirits Dave brought to the tasting but it was lovely to listen to others in the group who had never been to an event like this.

Dave started with Grey Goose vodka and the fascinating story of Sidney Frank. Frank was responsible for the promotion and development of Jagermeister in the States which, was huge, and decided he wanted to hit the market currently enjoying Absolut vodka. He was originally beaten by Belvedere being recognised as a premium brand. Not deterred he upped his game and decided to search for a brand in France rather than the more traditional vodka producing countries of Russia and Poland. He found an excellent base in winter wheat which gives the vodka a smooth and light taste ideal for sipping.
The product has ‘slow legs’ in the glass showing no sugar has been added. On the nose are notes of butter and almond with this buttery taste coming through on the palate. It is sweet and smooth; so unlike any other vodka I have tried.

Up next was a personal favourite of mine, Portobello Road gin. Now I like gin, this isn’t a secret. But then it comes to a sipping gin I prefer something smooth and slightly sweet with no spikiness. That is exactly what you get from Portobello Road which was brought to us by Jake Burger, Gerard Feltham and Paul Andrew Lane. Juniper is quite heavy on the nose as is lemon anise and liquorice. The liquorice is prominent on the palate too which is likely to be thanks to the cassia bark, coriander and nutmeg used in the distilling process.

A whiskey followed with Monkey Shoulder. I’m not a fan, the flavours just don’t work for me but if you are thinking of trying whiskey for the first time, this is definitely one to start with. It is a blend of whiskeys from Speyside and other none whiskey drinkers in the room described it as incredibly drinkable. Dave had a few converts on the night!

Last but most definitely not least was Old J spiced rum. Formulated by Tom Hurst in 2009 who tried 60 varieties to find the perfect blend, this rum is delicious. Butterscotch and slight honey aromas on the nose yet toffee, vanilla and lime are prevalent on the palate with a gentle spice kick.

Hale Grill has launched their new summer cocktail and invited us to try one of two cocktails featured. I chose the honeyed rum daiquiri which blends honey, lime and Old J spiced rum. A classic this is slightly sweet with the lovely toffee flavours coming through from the rum. I also got to try the apple, mint and raspberry cosmopolitan as other guests ordered this on the evening. Stoli raspberry, Cointreau, mint and apple juice gives a fresh twist to the classic cosmopolitan whilst the mint provides a lovely freshness.

A thoroughly enjoyable evening and a feast for the senses, it was really interesting to hear what beginners thought of the spirits neat. All are readily available at your favourite bar in the City but this just goes to show that you don’t need to venture too far to get your fix.

Spirits and Cocktail Masterclass at The Hale Grill

Hale Bar and Grill

Guest writer Rowan Molyneux attended one of my spirit based events last week, taking advantage of learning about some of the venues most favourite spirits to offer;

On a grey Tuesday afternoon, I hopped on a train heading out of Piccadilly towards a part of Greater Manchester I’d never explored before. Well, technically Greater Manchester, though being just on the outskirts, Hale feels far more like Cheshire, darling.

My trusted wingman Ruby and I were off to The Hale Grill, part of the Blackhouse family, for ‘The Spirit of Hale’: an evening of tasting spirits and mixing cocktails. It’s a hard job, but someone’s got to do it..! Rocking up at the venue, it immediately struck me as somewhere I’d love to bring the in-laws. Classic, good quality décor, a warm welcome, and a relaxed atmosphere; yet all of these paled in comparison to the Portobello Road gin and Fever-Tree tonic which was handed to us on arrival, garnished with an elegant curve of lemon zest. These guys know how to do things right. Already a fervent Fever-Tree convert (I have been known to wax lyrical to my long-suffering friends about the importance of good tonic water), Portobello Road gin was new to me, but I soon discovered how its soft citrus sweetness worked perfectly in this simple drink.

Before long, we were invited upstairs to the private dining room, where nibbles were served: chicken satay skewers, extravagantly tentacled calamari, little fishcakes and remarkably tasty spring rolls. This glorious array would have rather derailed most groups, but we had our eyes on the prize – a tantalising array of bottles lined up at the front of the room. We were told that we were going to sample four spirits, each available at the bar downstairs.

A Drinks Enthusiast-led tasting session, Dave poured us all a generous slug of Grey Goose vodka, and gave us a brief history of the brand. Only widely available in the UK since 2001, this French vodka was the brainchild of Sidney Frank, who wanted to create a premium vodka, sippable and luxurious. Frank decided on France as the origin of his vodka, touring distilleries and wineries – it’s alright for some, eh? – and thoroughly immersing himself in the alcohol culture which has such a long and excellent pedigree. Grey Goose uses soft winter wheat, which gives it a smooth, creamy quality. Those of us who are familiar with drinking cheap supermarket voddy (oh, those heady student days!) will be delighted to know that Grey Goose does not have the harsh burn which many of us are familiar with, instead lending a delicious warmth. Members of our group with particularly well-trained palates identified a hint of fresh green apple, accompanied by a suggestion of almonds and butter. Though I’m no sommelier, I put all of my palate training to the test, and thought I got a faint sense of dried apricots hidden away in there. All in all, a delightful vodka, and one I hadn’t experienced before.

For our second spirit, we took a trip back to our earlier g&t, this time sampling the Portobello Road No 171 London Dry gin without the Fever-Tree tonic. In addition to the pre-requisite juniper, Portobello Road featured lemon peel, bitter orange, orris root, liquorice, angelica root, nutmeg, cassia bark, and coriander seeds. A pleasantly citrus-forward gin, the liquorice adds depth but is not intrusive, and the coriander rounds it all off with a slightly peppery finish.

Next up was Monkey Shoulder, a blended whisky. The unusual name comes from an injury (thankfully, now confined to history) frequently suffered by workers shovelling grain all day, whose repetitive lifting motion would lead to a one-sided stoop. Charming! The whisky itself was smooth and light, intended as a gateway to the whisky world. Sweet in a typical Speyside fashion and very accessible, this whisky launched in 2005 and has been converting non-believers ever since. I’ve been assured that it absolutely sparkles in a cocktail.

The last of the spirits, we came to a particular favourite of mine: Admiral Vernon’s Old J Spiced Rum. Technically a rum-based spirit, as it only weighs in at 35%, it is nevertheless outstanding in its category. So full of vanilla, toffee, honey and cinnamon, this sweetness is balanced by the ever-present lime. A historical character, Admiral Vernon enforced a reduction in the strength of the rum ration received by his crew. When the men complained, he implemented the addition of lime and spices, to create a deliciously palatable drink which more than made up for the loss of ABV. Perfect with all of your standard rum mixers – rum and coke, rum and ginger, rum and Ting, rum and milk! – this remarkably versatile spirit works with them all. Their newly launched overproof version, Tiki Fire, 75.5%, rocked my world the other week at the Northern Restaurant and Bar show. Keep your eyes peeled for it in bars around town.

Four spirits sampled, and lots of fascinating info absorbed! But the night was not over yet. We trotted downstairs to the bar, where we were presented with a choice of two cocktails: An Apple, Mint, and Raspberry Stoli Cosmopolitan, or an Old J Spiced Rum and Honey Daquiri. Well, Ruby and I decided that the only sensible thing to do was order one of each and share. The Cosmo was beautifully delicate and freshened by the mint, while the Daquiri was remarkably piquant, its potentially heavy sweetness lifted by a whole load of lime. Some of our group even decided to step behind the bar and mix their own cocktails under the expert eye of the bartender; a highlight of the night, and an experience which The Hale Grill actually offers to the public in their Cocktail Master Classes.

Ruby and I also decided to explore the cocktail menu a little further; well, it would have been rude not to! I ordered a Black Forest Martini which was possibly the most decadent cocktail I’ve ever had – the cream float layered over a sea of deep purple fruit liqueurs was insane – and Ruby decided on the Sloe Gin Crush. How can you say no to a combo that involves sloe gin, elderflower and passionfruit? Both were elegantly presented and tasted fantastic. If these cocktails are tempting you, get a new skill under your belt by learning to make them yourself! You can book in on a Cocktail Master Class in a private area of the restaurant and practice making your choice of classic cocktails in a lighthearted environment, under the expert tutelage of professional bartenders.

The Hale Grill are currently in the process of revamping their cocktail menu for the summer months, bringing in some light, refreshing, seasonal treats, and for those of you who fancy something hoppy, they have a frequently rotating beer menu, featuring some of my old favourites – Thornbridge Wild Swan, anyone? They also have an extensive wine selection for you grape fiends.

Thanks to Kerry of The Hale Grill for her hospitality, and to Dave for talking us through a great selection of spirits. A fantastic evening, and one sunny afternoon I’ll definitely be making the short train ride back out to Hale to sample their new summery cocktails. Cheers!

Liqueur Coffee Tasting Notes

liqueur coffee

Right around the time of Lu Lin Tea’s contacting me, I noticed another brand on Twitter going by the name of Liqueur Coffee. They haven’t been around for long but I wondered how instead of seeing how cocktails and coffee mix together, but coffee and spirit mixing in general aka liqueur coffee’s that you would find on any bar menu. Intrigued to see how versatile the Liqueur Coffee range were, I asked for a few samples and began experimenting.

Liqueur Coffee Fairtrade Organic Java

Rich nose with a slight earth aroma coming through. Bold flavours of damp earth mix with hints of spice on the palate to create a long finish.

With Locke’s 8yr – Ripe, fruity nose with the spice of the coffee more dominant. Rather strong yet light on the palate with a perfume feel.
With Baileys – Deep, bold and creamy on the nose with a velvet texture on the palate. Earth notes come through slowly.

liqueur coffeeLiqueur Coffee Vincenza

Light and creamy on the nose with a fresh, smooth citrus finish on the palate.

With Monkey Shoulder – Fresh citrus zest on the nose with a slight sharpness. Smooth palate with a kick in the middle, but returns to a light lingering finish.
With Havana Club 7yr – Very light and fruity on the nose with a well-balanced palate and a hint of vanilla near the end.

Liqueur Coffee Blue Mountain Blend

Sharp, strong nose of sweet fudge, with the sweetness carrying onto the palate, and bitter malt coming through.

With Monkey Shoulder – Fudge notes with subtle citrus aromas on the nose, a more well-rounded palate with the sweetness coming though more.
With Locke’s 8yr – Dry fruit scents on the nose with a strong flavour of fresh malt on the palate that created a lingering finish.

Personally, the Vincenza seemed to be the most versatile when it came to the blending with spirits. Cream liqueurs I’d recommend to float on top (i didn’t within my experiment) but all three were great on their own, with Blue Mountain Blend my favourite.

As you can imagine, these can be easily recreated at home, and I’m sure you’ll even start to see Liqueur Coffee in a cafe near you soon.

Check out the rest of the photos via my Facebook page.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

Manchester Whisky Club Review – March

Manchester Whisky Club

March is nearly at an end, and last night we could say the same for the third instalment of Manchester Whisky Club. Catering for those who want to meet up regularly for a chat with like-minded whisky fans, and a couple of drams to of course chat over.

Held at the Lass O’Gowrie, the third meeting had a theme compared to last months Tomatin led evening. Club founder Andy brought along with him 5 blends to do battle in the aptly named ‘Battle of the Blends’.

I too brought with me two more blends in the form of Monkey Shoulder and Chivas Regal 12yr. So without further a do, lets see how they all fared –

Monkey Shoulder – 40%

Soft fruit nose with hints of citrus and vanilla. Smooth on the palate with a slight spice lingering. Sweet toffee flavours mix with the vanilla nicely to create a long finish.

Chivas Regal 12yr – 40%

Punch of fruit and honey on the nose with lots of fresh notes. Well rounded fruit and nut flavours on the palate, with a slight spice lingering near the end. A very long finish that warms.

Manchester Whisky Club
Manchester Whisky Club

Tweeddale 12yr – 46%

Light notes of vanilla and toffee on the nose, with the palate a heavier wood and herbal blend, although lightens off near the end. Hints of spice and salt linger.

Black Bull 12yr – 50%

Sweet aromas of sherry and molasses, with hints of fruit following. The palate enjoys a kick at the start, with treacle and green fruit flavours creating a lingering after-taste. Slight dry spice also.

Compass Box Spice Tree – 46%

Fruit aromas on the nose with a rich, spicy flavour igniting the palate that evolves into a lively well-rounded after-taste.

Sheep Dip – 41.8%

Toffee and chocolate powder aromas on the nose with an underlying sweetness that develops. Rather smooth and soft on the palate with a slight kick near the end of marshmallow. Short.

Feárr Cuideachd – 40%

Our very own Manchester Whisky Club blend from Whisky Blender. Strong, sharp nose of green fruit that carries over onto the palate. A slight spice with an herbal flavour coming through. Lingering finish.

A rather delightful collection showcased, with the Black Bull 12yr being a surprise favourite for me. Great to try the Monkey Shoulder, Compass Box and Chivas Regal again, as well as the workings of the Whisky Blender. 

Next month will be the ‘Old and Rare’ evening where according to Andy, we will ‘crack out the history books and look at some more mature and rare bottlings over the course of the evening’.

Join Manchester Whisky Club here or follow them on Twitter at @MCRWhiskyClub and Facebook.

Check out the rest of the photos of the first meet via my Facebook page.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Monkey Shoulder Tasting Notes

Monkey-Shoulder

Everyone has their opinion, but when it comes to a blended whisky, opinion is very much divided. It’s more down to stigma I think, and the fact that many pubs and bars back in the day only really stocked the blends because they were cheap and satisfactory. These days however, they are so much more. Blends have now been branded as superb, exciting, and even one has been targeted towards that fickle age group of trends in young adults.

Monkey ShoulderMonkey Shoulder came to light in 2005 from the family of William Grant & Sons. Experts in whisky themselves, they are home to such names as Glenfiddich and The Balvenie, with the Kininvie Distillery in Dufftown, Scotland the location of William Gran & Sons blended malts alongside fellow blend Clan Macgregor.

The adventure of Monkey Shoulder and the following it has gained stems from the selection of three of the Speyside’s malts and mature them in ex Bourbon barrels. The length of maturation is unknown, but Malt Master David Stewart will choose the best 27 batches and start the blending process after testing each one. Once blended, it is further aged before being bottled and stamped with the signature metal monkeys.

Speaking of the monkeys, how did the name come about?

Monkey Shoulder refers to a temporary injury suffered to the malt men who turned the barley by hand. Of course, these days the injury has been consigned to the history books, although William Grant & Sons still having a malt floor.

So how does the Monkey fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Monkey Shoulder – 40%

Soft fruit nose with hints of citrus and vanilla. Smooth on the palate with a slight spice lingering. Sweet toffee flavours mix with the vanilla nicely to create a long finish.

A tried and tested cocktail also brings out the Monkey Shoulder superbly –

Monkey Manhattan
Monkey Manhattan

Monkey Manhattan

Glass – 

Martini / Rocks

Ingredients – 

50 ml Monkey Shoulder
25 ml Sweet Vermouth
1 Dash Angostura Bitters
2 Dashes Angostura Orange Bitters
10 ml Grand Marnier

Method –

In a mixing glass, stir all the ingredients together until ice-cold. Strain into an ice-cold Martini / rocks glass. Garnish with a lemon wedge & fresh cherry.

Two great ways of enjoying this blend. Monkey Shoulder is a mainstay when it comes to an introductory whisky. Perfect for those who have never tried or want to get into whisky, but don’t want to ruin their experience by heading for something harsh. Monkey Shoulder ticks all the boxes, so give it a go!

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The Briton’s Protection Review

The Briton's Protection

Classed as Manchester’s best bar for whisk(e)y, The Briton’s Protection has got it all. On the corner of Great Bridgewater Street, the outside decor gives it a traditional pub feeling, and with hanging baskets from every window, it oddly doesn’t look out-of-place nestled in Manchester. Once you step foot inside you enter the long bar area where your greeted with a smile by both barman and customers. On my most recent visit, I of course opted for a whisky, but they do have other varieties available including Guinness, Staropramen, Strongbow and Carling on tap, and a range of spirits including the new Kraken spiced rum and Monkey Shoulder. Wines are available as well as ales including Tetley, Beartown and Angel Tears.

The Whisk(e)y range

As mentioned, my most recent visit I opted for a whisky. You are handed the whisk(e)y menu (something that has never happened to me before!) and can browse through their quite stunning selection. You can scan there backbar that includes the Scotch Glenfiddich range and Johnnie Walker, the Irish Jameson’s as well as American Jim Beam, Makers Mark and Knob Creek but the menu indicates some little gems that you can miss. Their selction also includes a Czech and Welsh whisky which im going to have to go back and try. I went for a Dalmore 15yr (check out my tasting notes on the Dalmore 15yr here – https://drinksenthusiast.wordpress.com/2011/08/08/dalmore-whisky-masterclass-review/ )

Whilst sipping on The Dalmore, I couldn’t help but notice they have a certificate hanging predominantly on the bar with the words ‘Whisky Bars of the World 2011’. I couldn’t agree more! With nearly every whisk(e)y available, you will surely find something that will take your fancy, and if not, the barman seem more than capable in offering you their advice which although probably mandatory in the job description, always makes you feel a more welcomed.

If your ever in the Manchester area, this is one of the must-see places on your to-do list and when you can pick up a Glenfiddich 21yr for just £7.50, even Jamie Milne, the Glenfiddich UK Ambassador, is pleasantly surprised!