Emily Says . . . . ‘The Espresso Martini’

Espresso Martini

In her third feature under ‘Emily Says . . .’, the voice to the Manchester bar scene in Emily Puckering looks at the ever faithful Espresso Martini;

A cocktail that has never gone out of fashion: the Espresso Martini. A simply timeless concoction of vodka paired with espresso, this number is the go-to at the bar for a little ‘pick me up’. But how did this infamous creation come about in the bartending scene?

Rumour has it that the Espresso Martini was created in the early 1980s by London bartender Dick Bradsel whilst working at the Soho Brasserie. According to Dick himself, the story goes that a famous female model visited the bar and asked him to get her a drink that will ‘pick me up then fuck me up’. Not a request a bartender gets every day, that’s for sure! The Espresso Martini was born after Dick put together some vodka and sugar with a shot of espresso from the bars shiny new espresso machine. Revolutionary.

The growing popularity of the espresso machine in the 1980s spurred along the name of the Espresso Martini. Even to this very day, this timeless little number never fails to make an appearance in the life of a bartender. Whether it is being enjoyed as a post-dinner treat or fuelling a late night, there is always a suitable time for the Espresso Martini.

In my four and a half years of bartending, I’ve come across several different recipes in making the perfect Espresso Martini. Here is the recipe I personally have found to truly shake up something beautiful:

Glassware –
Martini

Ingredients –
1 bar spoon of fresh honey
25ml sugar syrup
25ml Café Patron XO
50ml Belvedere Vodka
1 shot of espresso

Method –
Pour all ingredients into a boston glass. Add ice and hard shake to ensure a thick head on the finishing product; the Espresso Martini is all about the foam! Double strain into a chilled martini glass.

Garnish – three single coffee beans.

The addition of fresh honey truly gives a smoother touch to the Espresso Martini, complimenting beautifully the smooth finish of Belvedere vodka.
Usually, the usage of any coffee liqueur is suitable in the creation of this particular drink. I, however, feel that the use of Patron’s own coffee tequila, Café Patron XO gives an exclusive touch, and certainly brings out the caffeine kick that we coffee lovers are looking for. For those true coffee enthusiasts, however, the replacement of Café Patron XO with a double espresso will work just fine.

A cocktail that one can truly not go wrong with, and a cocktail that will never go out of style: The Espresso Martini, here to pick you up… then fuck you up.

Neptune

Neptune

“Many are the ships wrecked due to Neptune’s wrath. Drink to his better nature and pray that his storms are stilled”.

I do love a good marketing slogan! They capture the brand in one or two sentences, and with the above coming from Neptune rum, you don’t half expect something to blow you away! With this, Neptune has arrived to the UK shores like a breath of fresh air, offering up a rum that is distilled and aged at the renowned Foursquare Rum Distillery within the former 17th century sugarcane plantation in Barbados.

Launched after the first bottle run in May 2017, Richard Davies has created a liquid that mixes both pot and column still variations before being aged within American bourbon oak barrels for a full 3 years. Neptune is then transported to the UK at 63% abv before soft water added to reduce its strength down to 40% abv and caramel to enhance the colour before bottling.

It’s already picking up some fanfare in the awards world, winning Silver in both the Spirits Masters in 2017 and New York World Wine and Spirits, plus picking up a Gold Medal at the China Wine and Spirits Awards earlier in the year.

Question is though, how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Neptune – 40%

A light, tangy note of fresh banana, vanilla and subtle citrus. A soft kick of caramel comes through to the palate, followed by  ripe green fruits, scented orange oils and a fresh lick of molasses. A long, thin finish that makes you grab the bottle for another.

A great Barbadian rum on its own, but how about a variation on the Manhattan for a twist on your rum experience?

cocktails-1Neptune’s Due

Glass –

Martini

Ingredients –

60 ml Neptune Rum
15 ml Sweet Vermouth
2-3 Dashes Angostura Bitters
Maraschino Cherry

Method –

Pour all ingredients into a mixing glass with ice, stir well and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a Maraschino cherry.

One for the rum collection for sure, versatile and you’ll be in love with the story and label. ‘Drink it on a boat’ sort of rum!

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2018. 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.

 

Emily Says . . . . ‘Budvar Hoptails’

The Budweis Mule

In her second feature under ‘Emily Says . . .’, the voice to the Manchester bar scene in Emily Puckering looks at Budvar Hoptails: The Budweis Mule;

The beauty of mixology is having the freedom to mix whatever one likes in order to create the perfect drink. And who says one must stick to just spirits in this art?
The art of mixing beer with classic cocktail ingredients is ever growing in the bartending industry today. More and more concoctions are being created, all with the one compound in common; beer. Whether it’s a lager, a pale ale or even a cask, beer is the key ingredient in creating something rather special in the competitive world of mixology.

You don’t have to be a qualified beer guru to have heard of Budweiser Budvar, one of the world’s most famous beer brand. Most commonly known for its infamous pale lager, Budweiser Original, the Budvar brand dates back centuries; all the way back to 1265 to be precise. The town České Budějovice of Czech Republic was founded by Ottokar II, the King of Bohemia, and was granted many important privileges; one of which being able to brew beer. And so the story begins.

The year of 1872 welcomed the export of beer from České Budějovice to the United States, strongly spurred along by millions of Czech locals relocating to the states for a better life; and bringing their thirst for beer with them!
Since then, Budvar has become a global sensation. And it is this global popularity that has introduced Budvar Hoptails; a platform that showcases the greatest beer cocktail creations that bartenders across the world have created.

The Budweis Mule 2

The Budweis Mule: a fiery twist on the classic Moscow Mule.

Glass – Tankard

Ingredients –
2 dashes of Angostura Bitters
Fresh lemon thyme
Fresh ginger
15ml sugar syrup
20ml lemon juice
15ml Cointreau
30ml Tanqueray Export Gin
Bottle of Budweiser Budvar Original

Method –

Firstly, muddle in the lemon thyme and ginger with the sugar syrup and lemon juice in a boston glass – in order to achieve the best flavour! Add the Angostura bitters, Cointreau and Tanqueray and shake hard with plenty of ice.
Single strain over cubed ice, and top with the bottle of Budweiser Budvar Original. Garnish with a lemon thyme sprig and lemon zest.

This exclusive creation was stirred up by Jonah Robertshawe. Coming all the way from Sydney, Australia, Jonah has brought his Australian expertise to Manchester’s bartending scene, where he currently resides at The Botanist. From taking part in the Budvar Hoptails national competition, Jonah’s creation earned himself a name in Budvar and the sales of the Budweis Mule in Botanists across the country, and here is what he has to say about his concoction:

“I’ve always been a big fan of the Moscow Mule style cocktails, but I wanted to work with the flavour of the saarz hops in the Budvar using complimentary spirits, which is the Tanqueray gin, which are then backed up by the citrus notes of Cointreau.”
“However, I didn’t want to stray too far away from the classic Moscow Mule. So rather than ginger beer, I paired together fresh ginger and lemon thyme so the essential flavour of the Mule wasn’t lost”.

The fiery essence of the ginger beautifully complements the bitter-sweet bite that the drink delivers. Rather than sticking to the traditional Mule spec by using vodka, Tanqueray Export gin has been used purely for its floral aroma, which balances the hoppy and fragrant Budweiser Budvar perfectly.
An admirable creation from Jonah Robertshawe, The Budweis Mule offers a tantalising and sensual drinking experience, and certainly something that will be very hard to come by anywhere else.

Credit and copyright:
Budvar Hoptails
Budweiser Budvar Original
The Botanist

Emily Says . . . . “Liqueur de Coquelicot”

Poppy & Pomegranate Martini 2
New to Drinks Enthusiast, a voice to the Manchester bar scene in Emily Puckering, a bartender by heart who looks at the ever growing love of spirits, cocktails and beer. Her first post under ‘Emily Says . . .’ for the site looks at Liqueur de Coquelicot;

The French family firm that is Maison Briottet has been producing its world famous liqueurs since 1836, and has truly left its mark upon the liquor industry today. Initially beginning as a wine establishment, Briottet became famous for their creation of Crème De Cassis; the universal go-to blackcurrant liqueur. As the years went by and their business expanded, Briottet began the production of flavoured liqueurs and fine spirits.

Now, in 2018, Briottet sells its fine products across 26 different countries and holds a range of over 61 liqueurs, 8 eux de vie and 4 fine spirits. It has become the bartenders ‘go-to’ in flavoured liqueurs, particularly in mixology.

Briottet have truly pushed the boat out with their exclusive Liqueur de Coquelicot; a poppy seed infused liqueur. The wild poppy flower comes from the subfamily Papaveroidease, of the family Papaveracease. Putting aside the technical talk, the poppy liqueur offers a crisp yet subtly sweet taste, initially created as a pre-dinner drink to be mixed with a sparkling wine.

In fact, the poppy flavour originates and is inspired from a French confectionery from 1872, back when the master confectioner Desserey started making poppy flavoured pastilles. They very quickly became a speciality of Northern France, which heightened the popularity of the poppy flower in the world of food and drink.

A fresh and tantalising mixture of the poppy flower, Liqueur de Coquelicot offers the perfect balance between subtle dry notes, alongside a kick of sweetness; making it the perfect counterpart in the art of mixology.

Poppy & Pomegranate Martini
Liqueur de Coquelicot features beautifully in the Poppy & Pomegranate Martini; an exquisite creation from The Botanist.

Glass – Martini

Ingredients –
25ml Egg White
15ml Lemon Juice
7.5ml Basil Sugar Syrup
25ml Pomegranate Juice
15ml Absolut Raspberry Vodka
15ml Briottet Framboise
15ml Briottet Coquelicot
Garnish – Viola Flower

Method – Pour all ingredients into a Boston glass, hard shake, then go on to double strain into a chilled martini glass.

The Poppy & Pomegranate Martini delivers a beautifully crisp drink, with complimentary notes of the sweetness of raspberry and the bitter-sweet aromas of pomegranate. Egg white is the key ingredient in achieving the silky texture, which truly makes this cocktail such a delight. The presence of Liqueur de Coquelicot makes this number the perfect pre-dinner cocktail.

A truly beautiful concoction from the Briottet family, and one that will surely be seen much more in the world of mixology.

Pick up a bottle of Liqueur de Coquelicot for your drinks cabinet.

Image Copyright: Nick Whitby at The Botanist, New World Trading Company 2017

Edinburgh’s Leon Black Announced UK Winner Of Bacardi Legacy 2018

171121_BacardiLegacy_DSC1979.jpg
28 participants from 10 countries competed in the Northern European finals of the BACARDÍ Legacy Cocktail Competition in Amsterdam. Leon Back from Edinburgh’s Panda & Sons was announced the UK winner with his drink ‘The Queen Street’, and will go to the world finals in Mexico for the chance to be crowned global winner of one of the most prestigious cocktail competitions in the world.

BACARDÍ, the world’s most celebrated rum, invited bartenders from all over the world to participate in the competition. Every year BACARDÍ takes this opportunity to seek out cocktails that stand a chance of becoming genuine classics, like the legendary Daiquiri or Mojito.

28 participants from 10 countries took part in the Northern European finals for a place in the grand finals. One bartender was selected from each of the participating countries to go to the world finals in Mexico, to be held in the spring of 2018. In other words, the participants in these ‘national’ finals only competed against bartenders from their own country, but they did so in an inspiring international context, rubbing shoulders with counterparts from nine other countries.

It was not entirely coincidental that Amsterdam was chosen as the host city of the Northern European finals; the city is well on its way to becoming one of the world’s most important cocktail hubs.

The ten bartenders who secured their ticket to the finals in Mexico yesterday are:

Leon Back / Panda & Sons (UNITED KINGDOM)
Erik van beek / Bar27 (NETHERLANDS)
Didier van den Broeck / Dogma (BELGIUM / LUXEMBOURG)
Harald Gröbl / Mark’s New York Bar (AUSTRIA)
Kacper Dylak / Cinchona (SWITZERLAND)
Carl Wiman / Himkok (NORWAY)
Henri Halonen / Liberty or Dead (FINLAND)
Carl Marcus Erlandsson / Hay Market (SWEDEN)
Anthony Barry / Cask (IRELAND)
Damien Guichard / Velvet (GERMANY)

20171018_0681

Since it was created in 2008, the list of honour for the BACARDÍ Legacy Cocktail Competition has done more than simply put a series of cocktails by some of the world’s best bartenders into the spotlight. It has also become a genuine network of talented people, all connected by a unique contest in which camaraderie always counts for more than the will to compete.

Leon’s winning recipe for ‘The Queen Street’ cocktail can be found below:

50ml Bacardi Carta Blanca
25ml Fresh Lemon Juice
20ml 1-1 Sugar syrup
20ml Martini Ambrato
2 dashes Celery Bitters
Spritz Islay Whisky

Shake all ingredients with ice, double strain and serve straight up in a Nick & Nora Glass. Spray with a spritz of Islay whisky on the side of and top of glass

Swedish Victory In The Chairman’s Reserve Mai Tai Challenge 2017

Group

The last two weeks has seen me embrace my favourite rum brand more than ever with a trip to St Lucia for the Chairman’s Reserve Mai Tai season. Hosted at Capella Marigot Bay Resort and Marina, the 5* venue became the hub for a host of international and island based bartenders for several days, welcoming with a Chairman’s Reserve Spiced Ice Tea upon arrival and offering the relaxed and chilled vibes St Lucia is famous for.

The aim of the Chairman’s Reserve Mai Tai season is to culminate in a combined final of winning efforts from across the world from the last year, paired with St Lucian counterparts to crown the ultimate Mai Tai team and recipe. Representatives include the United Kingdom, USA, Spain, France, Portugal and Sweden, who each won their respective national heats to earn their way to the final.

After being inspired by a tour of St Lucia Distillers within the Roseau Valley, spiced rum talks from local producers, and an insightful chat on all things tiki by the renowned bartender and owner of Spirit of Tiki, Georgi Radev, culminating in the paired teams having the opportunity to experience the Castries Market in the capital city and pick up some local and home-produced ingredients and vessels, ready for the evenings finale.

Mai Tai

With 5 judges, including myself and Alva Preville (Taste of the Caribbean winning bartender in 2010 amongst his host of accolades), each paired team had to create a twist on the Chairman’s Reserve Mai Tai, using their inspiration from their trip so far, whilst also showing off teamwork and producing to us all a display that would be worthy of the top prize!

With magic tricks and crowd chants for showmanship, it all accompanied serves such as the ‘Sop It To Me Baby’ by 3rd place winners Anthony Guaetta (Twin River Casino, USA) and Daniel Francois (Capella, St Lucia) that saw Chairman’s Reserve Spiced mixed with the 6th edition of 1931 rum, a homemade spiced liqueur and Key Lime juice. Second place had the ‘Chairman’s Spiced Intellect’ presented by Andrew Turner (Milk Bar, UK) and Ron Hillar (Capella, St Lucia). They shook up a blend of their homemade spiced syrup, Chairman’s Reserve Forgotten Cask, lime juice, pineapple juice, Angostura bitters and a dash of Chairman’s Reserve Spiced, complete with a pineapple, ginger and rosemary garnish.

presentation

The winning drink though? It was the ‘Helen of Tiki’ by Sharam Mohebbi of OGBG Bar & Restaurant in Sweden and his St Lucian counterpart Stephen Peter. Mixing Chairman’s Reserve Original and Chairman’s Reserve Spiced with Caribbean sherbet, ginger spice and passion fruit plus freshly squeezed lime, it won the judges plaudits! Earning them a cash prize, trophies and a trip for Sharam back to St Lucia, and Stephen to Sweden, plus local television coverage, it’s meant a truly well-deserved effort from both the winning team and all participants in placing them on the map when it comes to the Mai Tai cocktail!

Look out for the 2018 Chairman’s Reserve Mai Tai season as more countries become involved with the challenge, as well as plenty of opportunities to experience a variety of Mai Tai twists, or indeed you can create Sharam’s and Stephen’s today!

Winning Cocktail
‘Culture Paradise’


40ml Chairman’s Reserve Original

30ml Chairman’s Reserve Spiced
30ml Caribbean Sherbet
20ml Ginger spice & passionfruit
20ml Freshly squeezed lime

Shaken over ice and served within a bowl or goblet. 

For more information on St Lucia, visit here.
Learn more about Chairman’s Reserve by visiting here.
To experience Capella Marigot Bay Resort and Marina, visit here.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. 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.

National Calvados Week Returns For 2017

Pere Magloire Bottle Lineup
The Père Magloire National Calvados Week, in association with UK creator Emporia Brands, returns Monday 16th October 2016 until the Sunday 22nd October 2017, taking place within bars and retailers across the UK, including London, Birmingham, Newcastle, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

For some, Normandy’s lush green pastures reach their ultimate expression in the region’s famed cheeses and rich dairy butter. We all know that it’s always been about the Calvados. The magical alchemy that transforms green apples into golden nectar, it produces apple brandy as soft, fresh and pure as the beguiling French countryside from which it’s born. The week long celebration marks the harvesting of the delicious apples for the production of Calvados. During National Calvados Week over 100 bars, shops, supermarkets and independent off licenses, including London based Swift, Merchant House, Baranis, German Gymnasium and Plotting Parlour.

Other venues and highlights for the week include such Edinburgh stalwarts as Panda & Sons, Heads & Tales, Voodoo Rooms, Bramble and The Bon Vivant, as well as Glasgow based The Finnieston, Porter & Rye and Drugstore Social. 45 West in Leicester are also showcasing their serves, as well as Jekyll & Hyde in Birmingham, Alvino’s in Newcastle and Last Chance Saloon in Nottingham amongst others.

Meanwhile, participating Waitrose stores will be running an in-store price promotion for the month of October, seeing Père Magloire VSOP 50cl with 20% off. Scotland are covered by Drinkmonger and Royal Mile Whiskies in Edinburgh, plus independent stores across England including Riddles Emporium in South Manchester, 23 Wine & Whisky in Leicester and Fenwick’s in Newcastle. We’ve also partnered with The Drink Shop, who are offering 20% off all Père Magloire products throughout National Calvados Week.

Highlights of the week involve the Telegraph Aperitifs and Digestifs evening that kicks off the celebration on Friday 13th October, TimeOut London are also hosting an evening of Père Magloire to launch the promotion within MASH London, exclusive for their members, and John Lewis on Oxford St and Soho Whisky Club, both in London, are also getting in on the action with their own tasting evenings.

In addition, Fever Tree, Franklins, Fentimans, Double Dutch and Peter Spanton No.1 Tonic are the principle sponsors for this year’s signature serve, promoted within all participating venues across the UK, the Père Magloire and tonic;

50 ml Père Magloire VS
Topped with chosen Tonic Water
Fresh Ice (at least 4 big cubes)
Slice of Fresh Apple

Using a large wine glass or a tall, slim glass, add the ice first then pour in the Père Magloire VS, followed by the Tonic Water. Cut a full slice of apple and drop into the glass.

A promotional video has also been commissioned by Emporia Brands, the exclusive UK importer of Père Magloire and National Calvados Week, which aims to see people coming together from across the UK to enjoy Calvados. To view the video, head to http://www.nationalcalvadosweek.com/press

Denmark’s Jeppe Nothlev Claims The 2017 Tahona Society Cocktail Competition Title

Sweet Effort, winning cocktail at The Tahona Society Cocktail Competition 2017
Altos Tequila has crowned Jeppe Nothlev, from bar Helium in Copenhagen, Denmark, as the winner of The Tahona Society Cocktail Competition 2017. Nothlev impressed the judging line-up with his Sweet Effort cocktail, crafted from Altos Plata Tequila, which represents a balance between the history, culture and ingredients of Denmark and Mexico.

Sweet Effort crafted by Jeppe Nothlev of Helium bar in Copenhagen, Denmark:

Ingredients:

50ml Altos Plata
10ml Pedro Ximénez Sherry
30ml rhubarb syrup
30ml lime juice
Dash of egg white
Grapefruit lemonade

Method:

Mix the Altos Plata, Pedro Ximénez Sherry, rhubarb syrup, lime juice and egg white, shake and pour into a highball glass and top with grapefruit lemonad
Bringing to life the sustainable values at the heart of Altos Tequila, Nothlev reduced wastage by drying and crushing the spent rhubarb and mixing it with salt to craft a garnish and then sprayed an infusion of Altos Plata and used lime husks on top to pack an additional Tequila punch.

Nothlev commented: “It has been a hard-fought competition over the last week, so it’s a great honour to have been crowned the winner of The Tahona Society Cocktail Competition 2017. Coming to Mexico and learning about its street food culture, Altos’ sustainable values and, of course, Tequila has been a life-changing experience and it has made me a stronger bartender, which I hope the judges saw in my final creation, Sweet Effort. This experience has given me so much inspiration for the coming year and I can’t wait to begin spreading the word about Tequila, Altos and The Tahona Society.”

After winning his local The Tahona Society Cocktail Competition heat in Denmark in August, Nothlev travelled to Mexico to compete with 24 other finalists from countries including the USA, Colombia and Belarus and claimed victory after a week of challenges that tested participants’ cocktail creativity, ability to blind-taste Altos Tequila and presentation skills. As a prize, Jeppe Nothlev has become The Tahona Society Global Ambassador and will be given the opportunity to host educational The Tahona Society programmes for fellow bartenders around the world in the coming year.

Second place was awarded to Egor Kozlovsky , from Minsk (Belarus), while Ana Milena Alzate and Aj Snetler, from Bogotá (Colombia) and Cape Town (Africa) respectively, were awarded joint third place. For the first time ever, the top four will return to Mexico next year to craft a limited edition Altos Tequila bottling with Maestro Tequilero, Jesus Hernandez.

Now in its seventh year, The Tahona Society is the world’s leading Tequila education programme. The 2017 competition challenged bartenders to craft a new and innovative cocktail that championed Altos Tequila’s sustainable values while appealing to fans of the growing Mexican culinary and street food revolution. To assist their preparation for the finale and career beyond the competition, contenders were schooled in various areas key to running a modern, successful bar business, such as sustainability and global drinks trends, hosted by leading figures in mixology including Kelsey Ramage, ex Dandelyan bartender, spokesperson for her own Trash Tiki project and winner of The Tahona Society Cocktail Competition 2016.

The Tahona Society Cocktail Competition judging panel boasted some of the world’s leading Tequila and cocktail influencers, including Dré Masso, who co-created Altos Tequila in 2009; leading London bartender, Simone Caporale; Mexican ingredients aficionado, Jorge Fitz; renowned Tequila author, Alberto Navarro; and Kelsey Ramage.

Head judge, Dré Masso, remarked on the overwhelming talent of the entrants in The Tahona Society Cocktail Competition 2017 final: “It has been a privilege to bring together such an outstanding and passionate group of bartenders and watch them compete for this year’s The Tahona Society Cocktail Competition title. In the end, only one bartender could win and we chose Jeppe as he demonstrated imagination and a clear link to Altos Tequila’s values of brotherhood and sustainability – congratulations Jeppe!”

Haig Club

Haig
Haig Club was released with much fanfare after the collaboration with footballer David Beckham and British entrepreneur Simon Fuller, with many taking it as a swipe to ‘outsiders’ who attach their name to a brand to make quick cash, whilst others looked at it as a great opportunity to shed light on a brand and category that has some elements that need a 21st Century update to its customer audience.

It’s with this that I take a closer look and see if the hype is worth its name.

The House of Haig itself is built on nearly 400 years of distilling heritage and can trace its whisky producing roots back to the seventeenth century in Scotland. In 1824, John Haig established Scotland’s oldest grain distillery, Cameronbridge, and is said to have perfected the art of producing Grain Whisky in continuous Coffey and Stein stills.

Haig Whisky quickly rose to become one of the most successful and popular Scotch whiskies in the world before falling into decline some 30 years ago as it left the Haig family ownership and was passed through a series of multinational drinks companies. In 2014, Diageo launched a new Haig whisky to add to the existing old guard whisky stable of Haig Gold Label, Haig Dimple and Haig Pinch blended scotch whiskies; Haig Club, an expression utilising a unique process that combines grain whisky from three different cask types.

But how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Haig Club – 40%

Light butterscotch and fudge on the nose, with a slight hint of tropical flesh fruits coming through. Subtle notes of vanilla, butter and toasted oak on the palate, with a hint of coconut and tropical fruit provide a long, slightly dry finish.

A great flavour profile to enjoy on its own, or indeed within its signature serve;

Haig CLub - New Old FashionedNew Old-Fashioned

Glass – 

Rocks

Ingredients – 

60 ml Haig Club
10 ml Sweet Vermouth
2 dashes orange bitters

Method – 

Build by adding cubed or hand cracked ice in an Old Fashioned glass or tumbler. Add Haig Club and pour in 10 ml of sweet Vermouth. Drop in 2 dashes of orange bitters and garnish with a lemon twist and cherry and serve with a glass stirrer for the drinker to dilute.

The inspiration for the name Haig Club can be found in archive materials dating back to the 1920’s, in which Haig Whisky was advertised as “The Clubman’s Whisky”. Last year also saw the release of the Haig Club Clubman, the different in it being matured exclusively in American ex-bourbon casks. Either one a good call for your drinks cabinet, and its versatility means you can create a decent drink, whether cocktail or mixer. To be fair, I’d enjoy it on its own, it works!

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. 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.

Skin

Skin
German gins are seen as some of the best around, with Monkey 47 leading the way in how we can approach the category. With this, Skin gin has made a splash here in the UK since its launch by Martin Birk Jensen in March 2015, and its striking packaging and different ‘skins’ that can be produced have caused many a stir in the right direction. But what about the liquid itself?

Produced in the ‘Altes Land’ (which translates as ‘Old Country’), just outside the German city of Hamburg, seven botanicals are chosen to enhance Skin gin; unique Moroccan Mint, citrus peels of orange, pink grapefruit, lime and lemon, juniper and Vietnamese coriander. Each botanical is individually distilled on a wheat based neutral spirit in a ‘Anisateur’ within an old copper still, in order to obtain close to 100% of the essential oils they contain. The essences are then blended by hand and bottled.

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

Skin – 42%

Bold, fresh mint bursts through, followed by the pink grapefruit and the wax of lemons on the nose. Incredibly soft on the palate, with a slight menthol note flowing gently. Lime, the subtle hint of coriander, and the orange peels blend well for a long, fresh finish.

An incredibly fresh gin to enjoy, and one that would stand up well within a classic gin and tonic;

Skin Gin and tonicSkin Gin and Tonic

Glass – 

Wine / Goblet

Ingredients – 

40 ml Skin Gin
1 bottle Thomas Henry Tonic Water

Method – 

Stir over ice and garnish with orange peel.

A great gin to enjoy over summer, and with the different skins available, as well as their navy strength option, it’s a fantastic addition to any drinks cabinet.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. 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.