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Master of Malt Blog

Category: News

The Nightcap: 5 June

On the Nightcap this week there are more virtual booze activities, a new fascinating dram from Glen Moray and the smashing of a world record… It’s Friday once again! Apparently,…

On the Nightcap this week there are more virtual booze activities, a new fascinating dram from Glen Moray and the smashing of a world record…

It’s Friday once again! Apparently, today is National Doughnut Day 2020 in the United States and many American doughnut stores will be offering free doughnuts today. This is all the excuse I need to help myself to some baked goods. If you’re not reading this edition of The Nightcap with a freshly-prepared doughnut or pastry of any kind, then you should remedy this situation as soon as possible. Also, you should have something boozy to hand, it is the weekend!

On the MoM blog this week we kicked things off by declaring that deals of the day on the weekend were officially back on, then Nate Brown triumphantly returned to explain why The American Bar at the Savoy is still one of the world’s finest bars. Annie then tasted three distinctly different drams made with peat sourced from all over Scotland before turning her attention to The Rum With No Name… Henry, meanwhile, spoke to Mark Harvey from Chapel Down about English wine, COVID and more, before exploring the history behind the terrific – and trademarked – Dark ‘n Stormy cocktail and kept the rum theme going by making the delicious Salcombe Whitestrand Rum our New Arrival of the Week.

We’d also like to say congrats to Akash Kumar, who won last week’s virtual pub quiz! Thank you to all who entered, the answers to last Friday’s quiz are listed below, as always. For those who fancy their chances at besting this week’s edition of the MoM pub quiz, it will be on our blog from 5pm as always.

The Nightcap

You can pick up the Madeira Cask Project right here

‘Hidden treasure’ now on sale from Glen Moray

When Dr Kirstie McCallum took over as head of whisky creation at Glen Moray last year, her first task was tasting the inventory. Tough job. One of the things she found in Warehouse 1 was seven European oak hogsheads that had been seasoned with sweet Madeira and then filled in 2006 with new make. She described the find as “hidden treasure” and decided that this nearly 14-year-old whisky was so special that it should be bottled on its own. The result is the Madeira Cask Project, the latest bottling to join the Curiosity Range. She commented: ‘Single malt whisky matured in Madeira casks has been prized in the industry before, but typically the casks have only been used to ‘finish’ more conventionally matured whisky. That’s what makes this new expression so very special. Our new make spirit has been slowly mingling with the luxuriously sweet flavours of Madeira for nearly 14 years, giving a depth of flavour and an intense character that couldn’t otherwise be created.” Having tried a little dram, we couldn’t agree more. It’s loaded with banoffee pie, cooked pears and dark chocolate with a finish that goes on for a good half an hour. Only 1468 bottles have been filled and for such a rare, special whisky, the price is not outrageous, around £65. Even better, it’s just arrived at Master of Malt

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With your ticket comes a festival tasting pack to accompany the session

The First Scottish Rum Festival Goes Virtual 

This year was due to be the very first Scottish Rum Festival in Edinburgh. Well, if you thought certain worldwide events were going to hold back the distillers, you’d be mistaken. For its first year, it’s going virtual! Get your diaries out and clear Friday 24 July for trade delegates and Saturday 25 July for public ticket holders for some rum fun. Public tickets are £34.95 and you can nab one here. You can expect a delicious selection of talks, tastings and more through a series of live streams with Scotland’s leading rum distillers and blenders. Plus, with your ticket, you’ll be sent a festival tasting pack to accompany the session! Among the many names you’ll find Brewdog Distilling Co., Ninefold Distillery, Glasgow Distillery Co. and Deeside Distillery. “We’re now entering an exciting time for the country’s growing rum scene, to be explored by consumers and producers alike,” said James Withers, CEO of Scotland Food and Drink. “The Scottish Rum Festival will showcase the new wave of distillers and blenders that are putting Scotland firmly on the global rum map, while raising money for a vital cause.” A fiver from each ticket will also be donated to The BEN, Scotland’s drinks and hospitality charity. A little something to look forward to!

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Highlights of the auction include this rather spectacular 1963 Bowmore

Rare bottles go under the hammer for the Drinks Trust

Regular readers will know that we love a good auction story at Master of Malt, Macallans going for £1000s, that sort of thing. But auction stories are even better when there’s a good cause involved. From 7-16 June a cellar-load of rare wines and spirits donated by members of the Worshipful Company of Distillers will be going under the hammer on Whisky. Auction with all the proceeds going to the Drinks Trust. Money that’s especially needed in this incredibly difficult time for the drinks and hospitality industry. Highlights include a 1963 Bowmore, a 1973 Glenrothes and a private label Highland Park 1990 bottled in 2015. Rum lovers will drool over a whole barrel of 1998- distilled Caroni and there are some pretty fancy wines too such as a Drouhin Chambolle Musigny Les Sentiers 1990. Alongside all the swank there’s plenty of interesting bottles for those with shallower pockets. You can preview the whole mouth-watering selection here. So open your wallet, dust off your credit card and get bidding. It’s all for a good cause. 

The Nightcap

Make sure you’ve got some delicious beer on hand to #cheerstobeer

Beer Day Britain goes virtual on 15 June

On Monday 15 June, Britain’s National Beer Day was supposed to take place, where the nation comes together to celebrate the fabulousness of the humble brew at pubs, breweries and beer festivals. Like many other things this now isn’t possible, but also like many other things, it’s been moved to the virtual realm instead! From pub quizzes to virtual tastings, there will be a whole load of online events to join in with, all leading up to the annual National Cheers To Beer at 7pm. “The public has been so supportive of their local breweries during lockdown and Beer Day Britain is a good opportunity to celebrate the love they have for their favourite beers,” said Jane Peyton, beer sommelier, writer and instigator of Beer Day Britain. “But it is also a chance for pubs to get involved and remind everyone of the warm welcome and unique atmosphere that awaits when they can reopen to serve that much-longed-for pint.” This will be the sixth year of the celebration, so pour yourself your favourite brew and get involved, not forgetting the all-important #cheerstobeer toast!

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Some record-breaking friendly faces

And finally. . .  Manchester Gin sets new World’s Biggest Gin Tasting record

Manchester Gin had a pretty good week, smashing a world record and raising an awful lot of money for vulnerable homeless people during the pandemic. The “Stay Home” tasting experience was live-streamed on Manchester Gin’s social channels on Saturday and an incredible 1,856 people, including Phillip Schofield, turned up, smashing the existing record which stood at 796 drinkers to become the ‘World’s Biggest Gin Tasting’. Best of all, the brand, who are offering 20% off online orders to NHS staff and key workers, donated 20% of profits to Big Change MCR, raising a cracking £2,778. Founders and master distillers, Seb Heeley and Jen Wiggins, led the session which explained how they create their award-winning range. “Seb and I were beyond thrilled to learn that we had in fact beaten the existing World Record and raised £2,778 for charity,” said Wiggins. “Manchester and the rest of the UK are a resilient bunch who, even in these most difficult of times, have come together and raised a fantastic amount of money for charity, all whilst raising a glass and having some much-needed fun”.

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Pub Quiz Answers

1) In ‘Escape (The Piña Colada Song)’, aside from the eponymous cocktail what other drink does the singer mention?

Answer: Champagne

2) Which 80s pop star released a rose wine last year called Hampton Water?

Answer: Jon Bon Jovi

3) Calvados brandy is made from which fruit?

Answer: Apple

4) The Beefeater Distillery is in which London borough?

Answer: Lambeth

5) In ‘Family Guy’, what is Peter Griffin’s favourite beer?

Answer: Pawtucket Patriot

6) In the film ‘13 Going on 30’, what cocktail does Jenna Rink order when she says: “I’ll have a ——. Not virgin. Wanna see my ID?”

Answer: Piña Colada

7) In “Brideshead Revisited”, Charles Ryder and Rex Mottram drink two Grand Cru Burgundies over dinner in Paris?

Answer: Montrachet and Chambertin Clos de Bèze

8) Production of sherry is concentrated between towns which form what shape when lines are drawn between them?

Answer: Triangle

9) Which cult film is this quote from: “What? You think a first-class girl can’t drink?”

Answer: Titanic

10) In ‘The Big Lebowski’ which supermarket chain does the Dude visit to buy his White Russian ingredients?

Answer: Ralphs



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The Nightcap: 29 May

It’s a vintage week on the Nightcap for the last Friday in May, including an Ardbeg aged in New Zealand Pinot Noir casks, a vineyard mosaic, and buckets and buckets…

It’s a vintage week on the Nightcap for the last Friday in May, including an Ardbeg aged in New Zealand Pinot Noir casks, a vineyard mosaic, and buckets and buckets of rosé.

It’s been a short week with the Bank Holiday on Monday, but that hasn’t stopped the booze news from pouring in. That was a pun which was not intended but greatly appreciated. If you’re looking to find out what’s been going on, we’ve got another edition of The Nightcap coming your way, packed full of the latest stories from the drinks world. Dig in.

On the MoM blog this week we launched two competitions, one with the fab folk at Goslings Rum and the other being a Father’s Day special with Tobermory Distillery. Speaking of the upcoming celebration, Adam selected some sublime spirits to give yourself a head start on Father’s Day, or you might consider the funky and fruity joy of Dunderhead Rum, our New Arrival of the Week. Annie returned to uncover Grenada’s best-kept secret and take a closer look at Langley Distillery, before Henry made a cocktail that marries New York and Ireland.

We’d also like to say congrats to Kostas Stavropoulos, who won last week’s virtual pub quiz! Thank you to all who entered, the answers to last Friday’s quiz are listed below, as always. For those who fancy their chances at besting this week’s edition of the MoM pub quiz, it will be on our blog from 5pm as always.

The Nightcap

We welcome any more Kylie-based puns you have

Where the wild rosés grow

Another day another missed opportunity in naming a celebrity pink. Last year it was Jon Bon Jovi declining to call his wine ‘Jon Bon Rosé’ in favour of the baffling ‘Hampton Water’, now it’s Kylie’s turn. The pint-sized pop star has just launched pink and it is not called ‘Where the wild rosés grow’ after her 1996 hit with Nick Cave. Instead, it’s called simply ‘Kylie Minogue Rosé.’ Boring! It’s a Vin de France (i.e. not from a specified viticultural area); the press release says it’s made from “Carignan and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes sourced from the sun-drenched southern French Coast.” It will only be available from 450 Tesco stores and retails at £9. Kylie herself commented: “I have a great passion for rosé and have loved working for the last two years on developing Kylie Minogue Wines. Working with the brilliant team at Benchmark Drinks we have created a rosé that I am truly enamoured by, it’s fresh, light and the perfect pink.” Benchmark Drinks is the team behind Ian Botham’s, really rather good, range of wines, and there’s talk of other Kylie wines to come including later this year a Côtes de Provence rosé. We should be so lucky. 

The Nightcap

We’re open to Ardbeg sheep-based puns too

Ardbeg Day goes online

Fèis Ìle might off this year, but that doesn’t mean that Ardbeg fans have to miss out. Especially as this year marks the 20th anniversary of the formation of the Ardbeg Committee. Tomorrow, 30 May, there will be a two-hour programme of tastings, games, and entertainment based around the just-released limited edition Ardbeg Blaaack, which was matured in New Zealand Pinot Noir casks. Distillery manager Mickey Heads said: “We were looking forward to marking Ardbeg Day this year with our dyed-in-the-wool fans here at the Distillery, and at celebrations around the world. Sadly, global events overtook us. However, we’ve put our heads together and come up with a back-up plan to keep our Committee Members entertained, safe at home. I’ll be shepherding the Ardbeg team in an online extravaganza instead expect tastings of some much-loved whiskies, fun, blether, and maybe even a few Blaaack-inspired surprises.” You can join in the Ardbeg Blaaack Whisky Trials from 7pm BST on Ardbeg’s Facebook page. So tune in, and don’t forget your sheep-based puns. Oh, and if you want to get hold of a bottle of Ardbeg Blaaack, don’t worry, it will be baaack in stock soon. Sorry. 

The Nightcap

Rosé Prosecco is on the way, folks!

Rosé Prosecco is coming! 

More pink news just in: Rosé Prosecco is now officially a new DOC category, approved by the Italy’s Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies’ National Wine Committee and all! There are a few things producers will have to adhere to in order to label their wine Prosecco DOC Rosé, such as the grape varieties (Glera and 10%-15% Pinot Nero), a second fermentation and residual sugars, among a few other things. Oh, and it has to be pink. Duh. Stefano Zanette, president of the Prosecco DOC Consortium thanked “all those who have contributed to obtaining this important result, in a moment particularly tough for the wine industry.” The Consortium’s estimates predict up to 30 million bottles of Rosé will be produced each year… We’d better get drinking! 

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There’s everything you need in here to help you open your business after lockdown

100 Day Playbook created for return of hospitality industry

We’re slowly edging towards a period where pubs, restaurants, cafes and more can begin to reopen, which is delightful news. However, relaunching after so much time in lockdown won’t be easy and the hospitality industry could use all the help it can get. That’s why it’s great to see initiatives like the 100 Day Playbook, a marketing and communications guide, be unveiled this week. The playbook comprises over £150,000 of insider knowledge, advice and insight, as well as best practice on branding, marketing, PR, digital and social in order to offer businesses the best possible chance to tackle reopening in a post-COVID19 world. It was created by a collective of agencies and consultants including KAM Media, Fleet Street Communications, ME:MO Media, Smithfield, Supersonic Inc, 2 Forks, DataHawks, Bums on Seats, Wireless Social, Feed It Back, Studio Nomad, and was requested over 300 times ahead of its launch on the 27th May. The 100 Day Playbook is now available at www.100dayplaybook.com and will be free for all operators, although everyone that downloads the booklet will be encouraged to donate to charity Hospitality Action. “This project is about hospitality’s best agencies and brightest marketing minds coming together to really support our venues, brands and businesses in getting back on their feet, and getting as many guests as possibly back into their venues when they reopen” says Mark McCulloch, founder and CEO of Supersonic, who spearheaded the 100 Day Playbook project. “I’m so pleased to be sharing this with our industry and look forward to how businesses incorporate some of insight, methods, tips and tricks we’re sharing.”

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The stunning discovery could date back to the 3rd century AD. Credit: Comune di Negrar di Valpolicella/Facebook

And finally… Roman mosaic floor found under Italian vineyard

Have you ever lifted up some carpet or moved an old piece of furniture and found something cool? I’ve had the typical experience of finding some money. A friend of mine found a tiny crab behind a kitchen unit once, which was pretty rad. I think it’s safe to say that a recent discovery in Italy tops all of this, however. A perfectly-preserved ancient Roman mosaic floor dating back to the 3rd century AD was unearthed in an Italian vineyard. Archaeologists had first found the site in a hilly area above the town of Negrar di Valpolicella near the city of Verona in 1992, but it was later abandoned. A team from the Superintendent of Archaeology, Fine Arts and Landscape of Verona returned to the site last October only to have the pandemic halt their progress. Archaeologists were able to resume work this month after Italy eased its lockdown restrictions and discovered the beautiful mosaic just a few metres beneath a row of vines at the site of an ancient villa. “After countless decades of failed attempts, part of the floor and foundations of the Roman villa located north of Verona, discovered by scholars a century ago, has finally been brought to light,” authorities from Negrar di Valpolicella wrote on the town’s Facebook page. “The superintendent will now liaise with the owners of the area and municipality to identify the most appropriate ways of making this archaeological treasure, which has always been hidden beneath our feet, available and accessible.” The town will now work to ensure the stunning floor can be seen by the public, officials said, but they warned: “The result will not come soon and significant resources will be needed.” 

The Nightcap

Pub quiz answers

1) Which of these cocktails is not mentioned by name in The Great Gatsby?

Answer: Martini

2) How many bottles of champagne make up a magnum?

Answer: Two

3) In which European city did Harry MacElhone open Harry’s New York Bar in 1923?

Answer: Paris

4) What is the name of “Pawnee’s Sickest Nightclub” in Parks and Recreation?

Answer: The Snakehole Lounge

5) How many times does Kendrick Lamar say the word “drank” in his song Swimming Pools?

Answer: 32

6) In Champagne, which of these designations is the driest?

Answer: Brut

7) Which barrel is the biggest?

Answer: Pipe

8) What cocktail did Anthony Bourdain describe as a “hell broth”?

Answer: Negroni

9) Whose mother is erroneously thought to have created the Manhattan cocktail?

Answer: Winston Churchill

10) A Caipiroska is a version of Brazil’s national cocktail the Caipirinha made with what spirit?

Answer: Vodka

No Comments on The Nightcap: 29 May

The Nightcap: 22 May

We’ve got another smashing edition of The Nightcap to take you into the long weekend. All the week’s top booze stories in one handy chunk.  It’s always pretty hard to…

We’ve got another smashing edition of The Nightcap to take you into the long weekend. All the week’s top booze stories in one handy chunk. 

It’s always pretty hard to predict things. Even just coin flips are tough to get right every time, and there’s only maybe about two outcomes. I’m not sure many people could have predicted how this year was going to go. It’s a bit like taking a sock full of coins, throwing them in the air and trying to predict which one a magpie will swoop in from the window and steal to buy itself a bag of Jelly Babies. However, you could easily have predicted that we would have another edition of The Nightcap, packed with bite-sized bits of booze news, for you to peruse this Friday! Enjoy!

On the MoM blog this week, we invited you to join our celebrations of all things Islay, in light of the absence of a certain huge whisky festival, on Instagram Live! As today is World Paloma Day (have a great one, guys!), we made Mexico’s favourite cocktail the slightly fancy way, while our New Arrival of the Week was a delightful limited edition fino. Elsewhere, Ian Buxton returned to present a story of great wealth and the Scotch whisky industry, while Henry was given a lesson in the complexities of sherry cask-ageing by the fab folk at Tamdhu. Annie then shared some industry top tips for drinking mindfully during lockdown before enjoying four simple and delicious Scotch whisky, Cognac and vodka-based cocktails courtesy of Moët Hennessy.

Congratulations are in order for Alex Priest, who was the victor of last week’s virtual pub quiz! A huge thanks as well to all those who entered and if you’re curious to see all the answers to last Friday’s quiz, they’re listed below. For those who want some more boozy brain teasers or some sweet, sweet discounts, this week’s edition of the MoM pub quiz will be on our blog from 5pm as always.

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We’re big fans of the 2020 edition of the Redbreast Dream Cask

Redbreast’s new Dream Cask is here!

Regular readers will know we’re pretty keen here at Master of Malt on Redbreast Irish whiskey, in all its many forms. That’s why we’re so excited about the launch of the third limited-edition Dream Cask earlier this week. It’s made up of liquids no younger than 28 years from ex-bourbon casks, an oloroso sherry butt and a Port cask, all brought together and finished in a ruby Port cask. The whiskey was bottled at 51.5% ABV. Master blender Billy Leighton commented: “It’s more than three decades since my predecessors went to the Douro Valley and hand-selected the cask which would become Redbreast Dream Cask 2020. I’m delighted to be able to share its creation with whiskey lovers around the world. Blender Dave McCabe added: “Because a Dream Cask is not constrained by volume, we have great licence to select a unique expression with a bold flavour which couldn’t be replicated in a permanent offering. Thankfully, Billy and I were in absolute agreement that this was the right time to release this year’s Dream Cask.” We were given a little taste and we have to say that we were absolutely knocked out: it’s beautifully creamy and spicy with notes of butterscotch, cooked apple, ginger and walnuts, but what really comes through is cherry: fresh cherry, cooked cherry and then on the finish, the lingering taste of cherryade. Top stuff Midleton! So how do you get your hands on this dreamy release? Well, first you’ll need €490, and then you need to go to Redbreast’s private members’ club, The Birdhouse, where you can take part in a ballot that runs from Monday 25 May until 14:59 (GMT +1) on 2 June for a chance to buy a 500ml bottle. There are 921 available. Good luck!

The Nightcap

The new initiative from California’s Wine Institute should brighten up your Zoom meetings

California wine country comes to Zoom

The team here at MoM has just discovered the joy of changing your background on zoom. It’s brilliant, your friends will think you’re in a tropical paradise or floating in space, and there’s no need to rearrange your bookshelves to remove all those old Jeffrey Archer novels. Now wine lovers can look as if they’re exploring the vineyards of Napa rather than in a semi in Surbiton thanks to a new initiative from California’s Wine Institute. Simply download a jpeg from the link here , go to the menu on the bottom left and click virtual background, and then upload your very own wine wonderland. There are loads to choose from and more available from Visit Napa Valley, the Sonoma Valley Visitors Bureau, Visit Temecula Valley, Visit California, and Discover Buellton. Amaze your friends! Brighten up dreary marketing meetings!

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Happy 20th anniversary!

The Glencairn Glass celebrates 20th anniversary

While 2020 may resemble what the Mayans predicted 2012 would be for most of us, for the family-owned and award-winning Scottish crystal company Glencairn Crystal Studio it’s a special anniversary. That’s right, it’s been 20 years since it created its iconic Glencairn Glass. The glass, which was designed by the brand’s founder Raymond Davidson, has become the definitive whisky glass around the world today over the last two decades, with over 3 million being sold each year, across 140 different countries in every corner of the globe. The brand boasts clients such as Liverpool FC, BP, Brown-Forman, Cunard, Diageo, Houses of Parliament and Scottish Parliament, Muller, Google and the majority of the Scottish whisky manufacturers. The Glencairn team have marked this momentous anniversary by launching the Glencairn PodGlass series: a series of podcasts with Davidson and guest appearances by some renowned and respected names like Richard ‘the nose’ Paterson. The brand will also release new versions of the Glencairn glass, launch a fundraising initiative with the proceeds going to the company’s chosen charity partners and open the new expanded Glencairn Crystal Studio site in East Kilbride, which incorporates a refurbishment and a substantial new build on the original Glencairn site to cater for expanding demand – all built by local businesses. Glencairn is also encouraging whisky lovers to follow @TheGlencairnGlass and share their favourite stay at home Glencairn moments with the tag: #beathomewithGlencairn. For more info, go to: http://www.glencairncrystal.co.uk/ or https://whiskyglass.com/.

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Noble sentiments from winner Bréagha Wolfgang, though the skeletal hand is a bit ominous, don’t you think?

Fernet Branca coin winner announced

The winner has been announced in the Fernet Branca coin competition and it’s Bréagha Wolfgang of Draffens cocktail bar in Dundee! As we’ve mentioned on the Nightcap before, the competition has been going since 2010, and every year Fernet Branca picks a design to be made into a coin to be distributed among bartenders. There’s even a game that they can play with the coins. In these incredibly difficult times for the hospitality industry, it’s not surprising that a design has been chosen with a positive message (see above). Wolfgang commented on her winning entry: “My coin design was inspired by reflecting on the tough times and stress we all go through in this industry and how incredible it is that our communities support and lift each other during those times. The ‘cheers’ around the edge of the coin is about seeing each other as an equal part in life, drinking to new friends and to those we’ve lost along the way which I think defines our industry well. Winning this means a whole lot to me, getting given a Fernet coin was such an incredible relief after working so hard for so long and now having my very own coin design! That’s something I will never forget the feeling of.” Poppy Croft, Fratelli Branca brand manager, added: ‘Launching the Fernet Branca Coin Design Challenge just after lock-down was something I felt needed to happen, then more than ever, to show solidarity and support to the incredible bartenders in the UK who, at that point, had literally no idea of what was ahead. Bréagha’s design really stood out, reflecting the camaraderie of the industry in the face of stark adversity, a truly well-deserved win and I’d also like to congratulate all the runners up for their incredible designs,we hope to raise a Fernet with them all soon!” Here’s hoping.

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The Cold Brew Espresso Martini

And finally… Cocktail Porter delivers cocktail kit to your door

The lockdown is an ideal time to work on your cocktail-making skills, but ideally, you wouldn’t have to leave the house to get your hands on the perfect ingredients. Cocktail Porter may well have a solution for the budding bartender trying to stir and shake in the comfort of their home. Since 2018, it has delivered over 500 cocktail boxes a month to the Australian market and it’s now arrived in the UK. From the 18 May 2020, it has been delivering craft cocktail boxes from Global Drinks Agency Sweet&Chilli (you may know them as the guys that brought us the fab Nine Lives cocktail bar in London Bridge) containing individual recipes, bottles of spirits, infusions, cordials, home-grown garnishes, infused tonics and bespoke barware to fill out our drink trolleys. Each cocktail in the collection is designed by professional bartenders and the first collection features the ingredients to create a Passionfruit Margarita (Don Julio Blanco Tequila, fresh passion fruit, fresh limes, passion fruit-infused syrup and dehydrated limes to garnish), an Elderflower ‘Le Fizz’ Spritz (Grey Goose Vodka, St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur, Double Dutch Soda Water, fresh lemon and with organic Persian rosebuds to garnish), the Whisky Highball Collection (Johnnie Walker Black Label Whisky, Belvoir Farms ginger/lemon & mint/elderflower cordials, Double Dutch soda water and dehydrated lemons & candied ginger to garnish), Cold Brew Espresso Martini (Ketel One Vodka, Kuka’s Cold Brew Espresso, Conker Coffee Liqueur, simple syrup and Halo Raw organic dark chocolate to garnish) and a Seville Orange Negroni (Tanqueray Flor de Sevilla, Campari, sweet vermouth with orange to garnish). It should be stressed, these are not pre-batched cocktails, you do have to do some work yourself. Each cocktail is available in The Petite Kit (£45, 6 serves) and The Porter (Full Size) Kit (£85, 17-20 serves) and if ordered by 3pm will be delivered the next day, while live hosted masterclasses on YouTube will show you how to stir things up whilst staying safe at home. Order from the website: cocktailporter.co.uk

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Pub quiz answers

1) What Champagne brand is Beyonce drinking in 2013 banger Drunk in Love?

Answer: Armand de Brignac

2) Which sweet wine is known as ‘the king of wines, the wine of kings’?

Answer: Tokay

3) Which lager refreshes the parts other beers cannot reach (according to the ad campaign)?

Answer: Heineken

4) Which brewery serves a beer known colloquially as ‘man in the box’ in its tied pubs?

Answer: Sam Smith’s

5) In Breaking Bad, which spirit does Gus Fring lace with poison and gift to the Cartel?

Answer: Tequila

6) What is the pub called in Shaun of the Dead?

Answer: The Winchester

7) What counts as a ‘hole in one’ in pub golf?

Answer: Downing a drink

8) Rapper and singer Post Malone launched a wine brand this week. But what style is the wine?

Answer: Provence rosé

9) Single Pot Still whiskey can only come from which country?

Answer: Ireland

10)   In the book ‘The Silence of the Lambs’ what wine does Hannibal Lector eat with fava beans and someone’s liver?

Answer: Amarone


No Comments on The Nightcap: 22 May

The Nightcap: 15 May

It’s the eve of World Whisky Day and there’s no better way to prepare yourself for all its boozy brilliance than with a read of another fantastic edition of The…

It’s the eve of World Whisky Day and there’s no better way to prepare yourself for all its boozy brilliance than with a read of another fantastic edition of The Nightcap…

It’s another Friday, and that means another edition of The Nightcap! Tomorrow is World Whisky Day, so if you’re looking to go into it with a brain full of booze news, you’ve come to the right place. Your internet browser. It’s also a good place to go if you’re looking to find out facts about rare species of birds or get into arguments with strangers about what counts as a soup. Of course, you’ll have to visit other websites for that – although we will say that people who think chilli con carne is a soup should reconsider their stance because it’s absolutely not a soup and they’re wrong.

On the MoM blog this week we announced the good news that That Boutique-y Whisky Company has ensured we can still enjoy World Whisky Day together thanks to its World Whisky Summit, which is sponsored by us! We also launched a flash sale (which ended this morning) containing booze from England’s largest wine producer, Chapel Down, before Annie took a peek behind the scenes at Two Drifters’ planet-friendly production process, Adam learned the story behind the Pearse Lyons Distillery and Ian Buxton returned to deliver the second part of his investigation on private cask sales. Elsewhere, Henry enjoyed five minutes in the company of John Little, of Smooth Ambler fame, a deliciously herbaceous Cachaça-based concoction and a bitter bottling from top vermouth producer Carpano.

Once again we’d like to say a huge thank you to all those who entered our virtual pub quiz last Friday and salute the winner, Conal Wright. We sincerely hope you enjoy your £25 gift voucher! The answers to last week’s edition are listed below and for those who want a chance to get their hands on the prize or just test their boozy knowledge, the MoM pub quiz will be on our blog from 5pm as always.

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Whisky makers Tomer Goren, Dhavall Gandhi and Michael D’Souza – what a trio!

What’s happening on World Whisky Day…

Wondering how to celebrate World Whisky Day tomorrow (Saturday 16 May)? Well, luckily you’re spoilt for choice, as there’s all sort of fun to get involved with! We’re pretty stoked to be involved with the rather exciting Boutique-y Whisky World Whisky Summit, with quite the lineup of industry greats kicking off at 7pm. Then, if you want to gain some worldwide whisky knowledge, England’s Lakes Distillery has partnered up with Israel’s Milk & Honey and India’s Paul John Distilleries for another virtual celebration at 5pm! You’ll be greeted by Dhavall Gandhi, Tomer Goren and Michael D’Souza,  distillers at each respective distillery, exploring the influence of location on whisky maturation. What a trio! Tune into the Lakes Facebook page for all the goods. Royal Salute has also got in on the act with a series called ‘Behind the Kingdom Doors’, a live stream series that discusses three different topics in style and luxury, taking place over the three weeks. It kicked off this week with a live whisky tasting hosted by master blender Sandy Hyslop and whisky blogger Alex Robertson on Wednesday. Coming up next is a Polo & Lifestyle session hosted by Hyslop and polo star Malcolm Borwick on the 20 May, followed by Around The World With Royal Salute, hosted again by Hyslop and Nathan Wood, prestige whiskies brand ambassador, on the 1 June. What’s more, if it’s a challenge you’re looking for, Whyte and Mackay are hosting a series of online events featuring Jura whisky, and special guests including World Whisky Day founder, Blair Bowman! Head over to the Big Fat Online Whisky Quiz at 7:30pm where none other than Gregg Glass will make an appearance, if you want to test your knowledge. Happy World Whisky Day, folks!

The Nightcap

Cocktail hour is back, but this time it’s virtual!

The Cocktail Hour is back… and it’s virtual 

Though the circumstances that have led to this are less than ideal, we bring you cheerful news: the cocktail hour is back! The last time the cocktail hour was at its peak in Britain was the roaring ‘20s, so it looks like we’ve come full circle. We’ve got some fun cocktail facts for you from a survey by Bacardi for World Cocktail Day (which was this Wednesday, 13 May), which revealed that more than half (53%, if you want numbers) of the Britons asked believe that the cocktail hour has made a comeback in recent weeks, though this time, of course, it’s online. What’s more, it’s not just any old tipple they’re whipping up, with 43% revealed to be experimenting with drinks, and the Mojito taking first place as the number one lockdown serve. Nearly a third are getting real fancy and fishing out their cocktail glasses and shakers, too! Could we be expecting another cocktail renaissance? The good news is that over a quarter of those surveyed said that they will continue hosting virtual cocktail hours with friends and family beyond lockdown. Cheers to that!

The Nightcap

Congratulations on your double win, Dave!

Double win for Dave Broom at the Fortnum and Mason awards

In what will be a popular move in the world of booze, it was announced last night that Dave Broom has won Drinks Writer of the year at the annual Fortnum & Mason Food and Drink awards for his words on whiskymanual.uk. Rather than the usual riot of B list celebs, A-grade champagne and Claudia Winkleman, that normally makes up the awards, it was done online, though still with Claudia Winkleman, obviously. It was a double celebration for Broom as his film, The Amber Light, won the best programme too. Well done Dave! Other winners include the nicest man in food Tom Parker-Bowles as Restaurant Writer of the ear for his column in the Mail on Sunday, Rachel Roddy got the Cookery Writer gong for her mouth-watering Italian food column in the Guardian and we were particularly pleased to see Just the Tonic by Kim Walker and Mark Nesbitt pick up Best Debut Drink book. Congratulations to all the winners and fingers crossed that next year we will be allowed near enough to other people to have a proper party.

The Nightcap

The vineyard features a small quantity of a ‘secret experimental variety’…

Pig hotel man plants vineyard in the South Downs

Imagine you have founded a group of acclaimed upmarket country hotels around England. What’s the next challenge? A racehorse? A football team? A crack at the America’s Cup? Well, the choice was easy for Robin Hutson, he’s long championed English wines in his Pig hotels, so rather than any of the above, he’s just planted his first vineyard in the South Downs. It’s located by Madehurst Lodge which will be the next Pig to open sometime next year. This two-acre south-west-facing site has been planted with Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and a small quantity of a ‘secret experimental variety’. Oooh, mysterious! Hutson enlisted the help of some of his winemaking chums including Ian Kellett from Hambledon Vineyard in Hampshire and Charles Simpson from Simpsons Wine Estate in Kent. He’s unlikely to see any fruit until 2022 and wine may take even longer depending on whether he makes still or sparkling. Apparently he hasn’t decided yet. Hutson commented: “I can’t wait to taste that first glass, albeit a couple of years away yet. The investment further endorses our complete commitment to home-grown, to local produce and to local contractors.  We will post regular updates from the vineyard as we progress. Wish us luck!” Good luck!

The Nightcap

Gautier Cognac 1762

And finally… Sotheby’s auctions one of the world’s oldest surviving Cognacs

Sotheby’s certainly know how to put together an auction and it’s latest online sale is no exception. The auction, titled Distilled – Iconic Samaroli, Dalmore 62 and The World’s Oldest Cognac, comprises of 216 lots and is estimated to bring a combined total in the region of £1.1 million. The headline item has to be the oldest vintage Cognac ever to be sold at auction, a bottle of Gautier Cognac 1762. Only three bottles of this vintage still exist, having been held in the same family for generations with their original labels attached. It’s the last and largest of these remaining bottles, known as ‘Grand Frère’, or the ‘Big Brother’, that will feature in Distilled and is expected to fetch between £80,000-160,000. Should your bid prove victorious, you’ll also get to enjoy a bespoke experience at Maison Gautier, courtesy of the distillery. Some people have it all. “The Gautier 1762 is renowned and revered across the world as a Cognac that transcends the world of spirits collecting. This bottle represents not only an example of pre-phylloxera viticulture but also of early cask maturation from the dawn of Gautier’s production and even precedes the French Revolution. This bottle contains a distillation not only of superb brandy, but also of Cognac’s history,” commented Jonny Fowle, Sotheby’s spirits specialist. Alongside one of the world’s oldest surviving Cognacs, there’s the aforementioned collection of Samaroli goodies, which comprises of 55 bottles, including three of the legendary Bowmore Bouquet 1966 (estimated at £40,000-55,000 per bottle). Sotheby’s also has two bottles of The Dalmore 62 Year Old which are estimated to fetch £75,000-100,000 each and its first-ever collaboration with a rum distillery. A cask of Dictador’s 1980 single vintage rum will go on sale with the bidding starting at £50 with the proceeds being donated to the Dictador Art Masters Charity Fund to develop an art gallery within the Colombian Jungle, an anchor point for the conservation of the area. The Distilled auction is open for bidding from the 14 to 28 May.

The Nightcap

Pub quiz answers

1) Which classic cocktail is mixed up on a train in Some Like It Hot?

Answer: Manhattan

2) Where was the inventor of the modern carbonation process, whose name is on bottles to this day, born?

Answer: Germany

3) What does Kesha brush her teeth with in the song Tik Tok?

Answer: Jack Daniels

4) In the Friends episode “The One Where Ross is Fine”, which cocktail is Ross drinking?

Answer: Margaritas

5) The founder of which distillery was famous for packing a pair of pistols to deter criminal distillers?

Answer: Glenlivet

6) In the film Sideways, Miles says, “I am not drinking any f**king —–”. What wine does he say?

Answer: Merlot

7) Which fictional character said “I love Scotch. Scotchy, Scotch, Scotch. Here it goes down, down into my belly.”? 

Answer: Ron Burgundy

8) What is Captain Jack Sparrow’s favourite drink?

Answer: Rum

9) Which whisk(e)y does Rihanna drink in her song Cheers (Drink to That)?

Answer: Jameson

10)  This year which Champagne house opened some recently-discovered bottles of wine that were buried when a cellar collapsed in 1900?

Answer: Pol Roger


No Comments on The Nightcap: 15 May

Boutique-y Whisky marks World Whisky Day with Summit

Mark the diaries, folks – this Saturday is World Whisky Day, and our friends over at That Boutique-y Whisky Company are marking the occasion with the first World Whisky Summit! …

Mark the diaries, folks – this Saturday is World Whisky Day, and our friends over at That Boutique-y Whisky Company are marking the occasion with the first World Whisky Summit! 

Grab the tasting glasses and ready the laptops. Saturday 16 May is World Whisky Day! Bars may be closed but that won’t stop us coming together to celebrate. thanks to our pals at That Boutique-y Whisky Company, we can gather through the medium of the World Whisky Summit – with Master of Malt as a sponsor!

world whisky day

Boutique-y Dave Worthington and Sam “Dr Whisky” Simmons will host the shenanigans from 7pm BST, which essentially takes the form of a panel discussion with an array of awesome distillers, writers and influencers. 

Confirmed faces include Angela D’Orazio from Mackmyra, David Vitale from Starward, Andy Watts from James Sedgwick Distillery, Becky Paskin from Our Whisky, Dave Broom from The Whisky Manual, drinks writers Joel Harrison and Neil Ridley, and our very own editor, Kristiane Sherry. Check out the full line-up here!

There are just 100 places available in the Zoom webinar, so if you want to be actively involved, you need to register here with haste. Happy to just sit back with a dram? The whole shebang will stream on That Boutique-y Whisky Company’s Facebook page, too.

What are you waiting for? See you on Saturday!

Cotswolds 3 Year Old (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

No biggie, this is just the first ever batch of Cotswolds single malt to be bottled by the Boutique-y folks! The 3 Year Old has been distilled with locally-grown barley, as is all Cotswolds whisky, and is full of toffee apple, grapefruit citrus and warming spices. Plus, you can admire the sunny distillery through the wonders of the awesome Boutique-y label!

Säntis 10 Year Old (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

It’s all fruitcake, chocolate and baking spices in this Swiss single malt from Säntis! Independently bottled by That Boutique-y Whisky Company, of course, after a decade of ageing. This is the very first batch from the distillery in Appenzell, with the label paying homage to a rather iconic super spy…

Slyrs 3 Year Old (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

The inaugural batch of Bavarian single malt from Boutique-y, distilled by Slyrs in Schliersee! It seems only appropriate that the label holds a traditional Oktoberfest scene, with a few whiskies among the beer. Expect oodles of crème brûlée, spice and fruity sweetness in this one.

World Whisky Blend

A blended whisky specifically designed to be mixed! That Boutique-y Whisky Company’s World Whisky Blend takes whisky from all over our home planet to create the versatile expression. It’s just as wonderful neat as it is when mixed, with honey, orchard fruit and baked crumble, so it’s sure to be a crowd-pleaser.

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The Nightcap: 7 May

The Nightcap is early this week thanks to the Bank Holiday, but it’s filled to the brim with plenty of boozy news for you to enjoy. Now, we know what…

The Nightcap is early this week thanks to the Bank Holiday, but it’s filled to the brim with plenty of boozy news for you to enjoy.

Now, we know what you’re thinking. “Goodness gracious, a new edition of The Nightcap? But it’s Thursday!” Well, you see, there’s a Bank Holiday tomorrow, so you’re getting your weekly helping of Nightcap glory a day earlier. You could read it again tomorrow if you fancy keeping to some sort of schedule. It won’t be any different, but it will be Friday. That’s something.

On the MoM blog this week Henry introduced some delicious new Balvenie as part of the Stories range before joining the ranks of Bond, Ernest Hemingway and all kinds of famous explorers by embracing the tropical delights of the Mojito. Adam then cast an eye on crème de cassis, while Annie sat down with bartender Oskar Kinberg from Hide and explained what defines a spirit as ‘single estate’. Once again we’d like to say a huge thank you to all those who entered our virtual pub quiz last Friday and an even huger congratulations to the winner, Rohini Mathur. The answers to last week’s edition are listed below and you can look forward to another round of tricky boozy trivia tonight at 5pm.

The Nightcap

The Campbeltown whisky festival experience goes online for the first time!

The Campbeltown Malts Festival goes online

For the first time ever the Campbeltown Malts Festival will take place online. Glen Scotia Distillery has unveiled plans to offer its programme of events on the distillery’s website following the cancellation of the Campbeltown Malts Festival 2020, which had been scheduled to run from 19-21 May. From the 18 May, you’ll be able to take part in virtual distillery tours, a historical Campbeltown walking tour and a video tasting of Glen Scotia’s core range. Charles MacLean will also be on hand to introduce the tasting of Glen Scotia’s 2020 Festival Edition, the Glen Scotia Limited Edition 14 Year Old Tawny Port Finish, which has been released this month. There’s even a dedicated festival playlist collated by the organisers of the Mull & Kintyre music festival. But the highlight is surely the fact that the dunnage warehouse tasting will be available outside the distillery for the very first time. Master distiller Iain McAlister will host the session, which many consider the pinnacle of their Campbeltown Malt Festival experience. This year’s theme is The Casks of Campbeltown, and comes with an accompanying tasting set, The Glen Scotia Dunnage Tasting Box. 200 of these will be released in the UK ahead of the festival, while a further 1800 tasting boxes will be distributed around the world. Each contains five 25 ml samples along with password access to a specially created tasting video also hosted by McAlister and are available here. For more info visit www.glenscotia.com/festival

The Nightcap

You’ll receive vials of whisky so you can enjoy the experience of a nosing and tasting session

The Whisky Ambassador launches online classroom

The Whisky Ambassador has adapted its renowned training course in order for it to be enjoyed while at home. The Glasgow-based company’s new online programme features live tuition and, where possible, each participant will also receive a delivery of vials of whisky to their door in order to enjoy the experience of a nosing and tasting session. The course concludes with an exam, including a blind tasting which, if passed, is recognised with an industry-accredited qualification. Bob Wenting, ambassador for the Scotch Malt Whisky Society, will deliver the first virtual classroom in The Netherlands on 9 and 10 May, ahead of the global roll-out of the scheme. A second course has also been confirmed in Canada on 9 and 10 June. “The Covid-19 pandemic has stopped traditional face-to-face and experiential training in its tracks, but we have identified that the appetite for skills development is at an all-time high,” said Jo Graham, The Whisky Ambassador managing director. “With day-to-day life not as we know it, we are all continuing to adapt the way we go about our business, both personally and professionally. People across the world are keen to use lockdown as an opportunity to learn new skills or explore new interests – but crucially, without compromising on the quality of learning they would have normally been afforded.” To book, you should visit: www.thewhiskyambassador.com/courses-training/ and you can also email train@thewhiskyambassador.com for more info.

The Nightcap

10% of sales proceeds will be donated to Mind charity in the UK, and CASA in Porto

Churchill’s Port announces ‘Fortify a Friend’ initiative

Churchill’s Port has launched a new initiative to encourage Port fans to support separated loved ones with a free bottle of the good stuff. The ‘Fortify a Friend’ campaign has the aim of bringing friends together and funding mental health outreach. To get involved, UK consumers can purchase a six-bottle case of premium port from Churchill’s website or a mixed case of Churchill’s Port from the online Bar Douro Bottle Shop and the brand will do the rest, by sending a complimentary bottle of port to a nominated friend, who you think could use some support and/or fortification. The gifted bottles will come with a personalised note with the campaign illustration sending cheer to a friend and 10% of sales proceeds will be donated to Mind charity in the UK, and CASA in Porto, providing mental health support to vulnerable groups in isolation. These contributions will be put directly to use at this moment, to fund emergency mental health calls in the UK and providing meals and mental health support to the homeless in Porto. “In these times of isolation, many of us can feel alone in our struggles,” said Zoe Graham, director of sales and marketing for Churchill’s. “We wanted to do something positive to address this in our own way since Port is all about connection. At our best, we brighten spirits and bring people together. That’s not essential, but right now it seems like a good idea.” You can purchase your Port right here

The Nightcap

We love to see the industry coming together in tougher times.

Introducing, 50 Best for Recovery

The organisation behind The World’s 50 Best Restaurants and The World’s 50 Best Bars has launched a joint campaign called 50 Best for Recovery! It aims to provide financial relief for the hospitality industry throughout the pandemic, as well as resources for coming out the other side (whenever that may be). The launch comes after the sad news that the event programme for The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2020 (originally due to take place in Antwerp in June) has, like many events, been postponed until 2021. The programme is composed of a few elements. Firstly, the 50 Best Recovery Fund, launched with the founding donors S.Pellegrino & Acqua Panna and Perrier, aiding the survival and eventual revival of restaurants and bars. Then, there’s the 50 Best ‘Bid for Recovery’ auction in June, a fund-raising initiative offering gastronomic aficionados the opportunity to bid for top-notch experiences from the restaurants and bars featured on the 50 Best lists! It’s no surprise that there’s an online presence too, with 50 Best Recovery Hubs, a source of advice, information and creative inspiration. We love to see the industry coming together in tougher times. Check it all out over on their Instagram!

The Nightcap

Miles Beale,  Nightcap regular and CEO of the WSTA

And finally… It’s back to Brexit for the WSTA

With the hospitality industry reeling from the effects of a Covid lockdown with no end in sight, the Brexit wars of last year seem a long time ago. Not for Miles Beale from the WSTA. The transition period ends on 31 December and he has written to Michael Gove setting out ways the Government can help the UK’s £50 billion drinks industry when we leave the EU’s regulatory framework in 2021. The general idea set out on a new website called Trade 21 should be to make trade as frictionless as possible and make sure any new regulations do not hinder the industry. Proposals include: a two year implementation period for labelling changes; suspend import certificates on all wine temporarily; remove unnecessary regulation that stifles innovation, and the UK should join the World Wine Trade Group. Beale commented: “While we stand fully behind the Government’s aim of securing a comprehensive future partnership agreement with the EU, many of the outcomes we are proposing are not dependent on securing a deal nor would there be any loss of negotiating capital if the Government were to support UK businesses now in the ways we suggest.” He went on to say: “By committing to act now, the Government would provide a welcome boost to the sector in these unprecedented and uncertain times. The wine and spirit industry is in a good position to take advantage of the new opportunities leaving the EU presents, but if the Government doesn’t deliver it will be venturing into a new trading landscape with its hands tied behind its back.” Let’s hope the letter doesn’t disappear into Gove’s already rather full in-tray. 

The Nightcap

Pub quiz answers

1) What percentage of corn is required to classify a spirit as bourbon? 

Answer: 51%

2) Which of these isn’t a cider apple?

Answer: Foxton’s Surprise

3) What condiment is used in a Breakfast Martini?

Answer: Orange marmalade

4) Which member of the Royal Family described Chateau Palmer as ‘holy Palmer’s kiss’? 

Answer: George IV

5) Who wrote the Savoy Cocktail book?

Answer: Harry Craddock

6) The family of Charles Tanqueray, founder of the eponymous gin brand, were originally from which country?

Answer: France

7) The ship the Cutty Sark was built to transport what? 

Answer: Tea.

8) Which island produces wines which are thought to be the longest-lasting? 

Answer: Madeira

9) Which former music industry mogul launched his own brand of rum in 2008?

Answer: Chris Blackwell

10) Which of these isn’t a grape allowed in Champagne? Semillon

Answer: Semillon

No Comments on The Nightcap: 7 May

The Nightcap: 1 May

Pinch, punch, it’s the first of the month! What better way to welcome its arrival than with a healthy helping of boozy news. It’s the Nightcap! Hey, it’s May! Everyone,…

Pinch, punch, it’s the first of the month! What better way to welcome its arrival than with a healthy helping of boozy news. It’s the Nightcap!

Hey, it’s May! Everyone, look! It’s May! Though it might be hard to keep track of the days of late, a new month is definitely here and we can bid farewell to what was perhaps the longest April. Or what felt like the longest April, at least. We are welcoming this new month in the best way we know how – a new edition of The Nightcap! Would we have done a new edition of The Nightcap today even if it wasn’t a new month? Totally, but sometimes things line up great like this.

On the MoM blog this week, Ian Buxton returned to discuss the often murky past and present of private casks sales, we counted down the best drink advertisements of all time and Adam reminded us that the cancellation of the Spirit of Speyside Festival shouldn’t stop us from enjoying the best Scotch whiskies the region has to offer. Our Cocktail of the Week was a fluffy, deliciously creamy and super simple creation that Annie turned our attention to before she grabbed a quick chat with the co-founder of James Eadie, Rupert Patrick. Elsewhere, Henry spent his week looking into the story behind delightful creations such as a very special dry vermouth from Piedmont and an ultra-premium gin from Kenya, although he did thankfully leave enough time to celebrate Cinco de Mayo with Casamigos Tequila. Oh, and best of luck to all who entered our new competition with our wonderful neighbours, Greensand Ridge Distillery.

Speaking of which, we’d like to say a big thanks again to all those who entered our virtual pub quiz last Friday and congratulations to our winner Moa Nilsson! That £25 gift voucher can be put to good use at MoM Towers on any number of delightful drinks, including that Jaffa Cake Gin everyone keeps talking about… The answers to last week’s quiz are listed below, while this week’s edition will launch at 5pm here, so fix yourself a tipple and keep your eyes peeled on the MoM Blog!

The Nightcap

Lockdown drams and jigsaw, the new Netflix and chill?

Glengoyne releases custom jigsaw puzzle

With many of us on the search for ways to spend all this new-found spare time, Glengoyne Distillery has come up with a potential solution: a limited-edition jigsaw puzzle. Created to be enjoyed as the perfect companion while savouring a good dram, the 500-piece puzzle features a special painting by John Lowrie Morrison (Jolomo), entitled ‘Spring Blossoms at Glengoyne Distillery’. The celebrated Scottish artist spent weekends painting at the distillery during his student years attending the Glasgow School of Art.  Glengoyne’s jigsaw, which is available through the brand’s online shop, is priced at £10 and £1 from each purchase will be donated to drinks charities The Drinks Trust and The Ben. “Many of us are obviously finding ourselves with more time on our hands right now, and time has always played such a big role in our whisky-making at Glengoyne,” says Katy Muggeridge, senior brand manager for Glengoyne. “We hope this limited-edition jigsaw will provide fans of our whisky with some special at-home entertainment during a difficult time, as well as offering a special keepsake from one of the nation’s leading artists.” The puzzle, which will be available, while stocks last, with any 70cl bottle of whisky purchased on Glengoyne.com, also features 10 Wonka-esque golden jigsaw pieces. Those lucky enough to stumble upon them will win a pair of tickets to a Glengoyne Wee Tasting Tour, redeemable once the distillery re-opens to visitors.

Woodford Reserve unveils homage to Kentucky Derby

Woodford Reserve embraced its sentimental side this week by releasing a music video as a homage to the delayed Kentucky Derby. The song, titled ‘My Old Kentucky Home’, features Kentucky cellist Ben Sollee playing solo in the Derby Winner’s Circle at a vacant Churchill Downs, where Derby 146 was scheduled to run this Saturday. The Kentucky Derby has been postponed for just the second time in its 146-year history (1945 was the first time, unsurprisingly) due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and is not set to run on the 5th of September. The Kentucky-based bourbon brand, who is the presenting sponsor of the Kentucky Derby, has also chosen to mark the history and tradition of the event by announcing its Kentucky Derby at Home celebration, which will take place tomorrow (2nd May). The programme features a live tasting and toast, as well as a demonstration on how to make the perfect Mint Juleps by Woodford Reserve master distiller Chris Morris. For those not from Kentucky or not really interested in horse racing, the images of the Twin Spires, vacant stands, track and starting gate may not move you, but it’s worth pointing out that for many in the state the Derby isn’t just a sporting event, but a celebration of Kentucky. “Now more than ever, we need to be connected to each other,” Morris explained. “This beautiful rendition of My Old Kentucky Home keeps the tradition and pageantry of the Kentucky Derby alive during these hard times.”

The Nightcap

The fantastic cause is worth donating to if you haven’t already.

The Drinks Trust fundraising reaches £1 million

The news these days appears to mostly be bad. Just this week it was announced that Imbibe Live 2020 has been postponed to 5-6 July 2021 (the full statement is here). However, we’d prefer to focus on the number of people and organisations who are working tremendously hard in the name of good causes. The Drinks Trust is one of those who are making a difference and the community organisation for the drinks industry has revealed it has raised just over £1 million to support individuals who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The “Your Round, Help Your Trade” campaign has raised this amount thanks to £650,000 in generous donations and numerous fundraising initiatives and a further £350,000 from business partners either renewing or renewing at a higher level. The Drinks Trust has been supporting over 350 ongoing beneficiaries since the beginning of March and has recently completed the COVID-19 Emergency Grant fund, enabling it to provide 1750 beneficiaries with a one-off financial grant of £250 primarily assisting those who are facing a loss of earnings. In the weeks ahead the organization will launch a new initiative which “will assist members of the drinks industry to live a constructive and healthy life in these times of uncertainty, isolation and distance from an otherwise social and community-orientated industry”. The Drinks Trust also thanked those who have supported its good work, allowing that none of this would have been possible without the generosity and support from all areas of the drinks industry. “We are so grateful to absolutely everyone who has responded so quickly at this difficult time,” said CEO, Ross Carter. “We hope to work with you all on an ongoing basis to ensure that we continue to provide support for all drinks industry professionals. The Drinks Trust supports drinks industry people”. You can donate to this superb cause here.

The Nightcap

Salcombe Gin’s online service allows you to create your own bespoke gin.

Salcombe Gin launches Virtual Gin Schooling programme

It’s another bank holiday weekend soon (yay!), and gin is a tipple on many people’s minds. You may have been one of the people planning to visit the beautiful waterside Salcombe Gin distillery and its awesome gin school. Well, clearly that’s not essential travel (as much as we would like to kid ourselves), but luckily the distillery has brought its experience to you! Dubbed the Home-Gin-Schooling programme, it’s a virtual gin school experience, with three options to choose from. Through a live video with a member of Salcombe Gin’s distilling team, you can either create your very own new gin recipe, or if you’ve visited the gin school before, you can recreate that. Your tasty creation will then be posted to you complete with personalised labels, a copy of the recipe and a serving suggestion. You can also get your pals (virtually) involved with the virtual gin school, with the full experience of a distiller guiding you through each step of the process. Up to four households can tune-in and co-create the gin, which will then be made into four 70cl bottles which are presented in wooden boxes. You can check it all out here, and get those creative juices flowing!

Russell Swallow, he’s spent some time in Berlin

And finally… Big Drop Brewing brings the pub gig to your living room

Here at Master of Malt the thing we miss about the before times is going to the pub: cold beer, warm friends and hot music, there’s nothing better. To help us through the pain of lockdown, Big Drop, the delicious (yes really, genuinely delicious) zero alcohol beer people, has come up with Big Drop Living Room Pub Gig. Every Sunday between 4-5pm (BST), a top musician will entertain you via the magic of electronic jiggery-pokery. Coming up this Sunday 3 May, it’s Russell Swallow who, as you can probably tell from his publicity photo melds “the British singer-songwriter tradition with ambient Berlin soundscapes”, according to the press bumf. Go to Facebook or youtube to find out more. There’ll be a new act every Sunday from now until the pubs reopen. Please let that be soon.

The Nightcap

Pub quiz answers

1) Which brand of champagne do Rick and Ilsa (Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman) drink in Paris in the film Casablanca? 

Answer: Mumm

2) Typically, what kind of vessel is a Moscow Mule served in?

Answer: Copper mug

3) What’s the minimum number of ingredients need to make a cocktail?

Answer: Two

4) Which country does the grape variety Malbec originate from?

Answer: France

5) What does it mean to ‘dry shake’ a cocktail?

Answer: Shake without ice

6) What’s the only distillery within the town of Elgin?

Answer: Glen Moray

7) Aeneas Coffey, inventor of the eponymous still, was from which country?

Answer: Ireland.

8) What’s the only Scottish distillery to make both single malt and single grain whisky?

Answer: Loch Lomond

9) In the production of Port, you would add aguardiente. . . 

Answer: Before fermentation, during fermentation, after fermentation

10) A member of which band described their 1972 American tour as the “cocaine and Tequila Sunrise tour”? 

Answer: The Rolling Stones


No Comments on The Nightcap: 1 May

The Nightcap: 24 April

Another one of those week thingies has passed, which means it’s time for another edition of The Nightcap! A week has passed since the previous edition of The Nightcap found…

Another one of those week thingies has passed, which means it’s time for another edition of The Nightcap!

A week has passed since the previous edition of The Nightcap found its way to the MoM Blog, which means that it’s about time we don our nightcap hats and get a new one sorted. Please note that “nightcap hats” are very different from actual nightcaps that you might see people wearing on TV shows about people in the early 1900s you know, those really long, typically stripey hats that match the person’s pyjamas. Never really got how those were supposed to help you sleep… Anyway, our nightcap hats are metaphorical, and every contributor’s hat is different in their mind. For example, mine is a comically large cowboy hat concealing a comically small cowboy hat underneath it. Yee-haw!

On the MoM blog this week, we launched a new competition with Kingsbarns Distillery, continued our series on top-fives by looking at the best boozy songs and then concluded our virtual reality tours of great distilleries by visiting Aberfeldy and Royal Brackla. Henry got the lowdown on St. George’s Distillery to mark the patron saint of England’s day, while Sam Smith did some exemplary analysis of the perfect snack & spirit pairings (check out that graph, folks). Our Cocktail of the Week was the brilliantly named The New Yolk, a bourbon-based twist on the Brandy Alexander that Annie enjoyed before she cast an eye on the ‘world’s most innovative distillery’. Adam then recommended six tremendously tasty rums and introduced Bombay Sapphire‘s first-ever flavoured gin: Bombay Bramble.

Once again we’d like to thank all those who entered our virtual pub quiz last Friday, scroll to the bottom for the answers. Not that Ewan MacFall needs to see those, because he won last week’s quiz and has got himself a £25 gift voucher to use at MoM Towers. There’s another quiz coming later this evening. Metaphorical thinking caps at the ready!

The Nightcap

Oktoberfest usually attracts around 6 million visitors a year

Oktoberfest 2020 is cancelled

Bad but unsurprising news came out this week as the Bavarian state government confirmed that it had taken the decision to cancel the two-week-long Oktoberfest. The famed 210-year-old German beer festival was said to pose too big a public health risk, which is understandable. Munich’s mayor, Dieter Reiter, called the decision a “bitter pill”. GlobalData, a data and analytics company, has crunched the numbers to demonstrate how much of an issue this is for the beer industry. “This is a further blow to the beleaguered beer industry, which is already reeling from the effects of the lockdown. In many areas, the sector has seen the virtual disappearance of around half of its market, with the closure of all pubs, bars and restaurants,” says Kevin Baker, head of beer & cider research (great job title by the way). “According to GlobalData’s COVID-19 Market Impact Model, global beer and cider volumes are expected to decline by around 7% between 2019 and 2023, compared to a previous forecast of 3% growth over the same period. The virus and the attendant lockdown have had a profound effect on consumer behaviour”. Baker did go on to say that “While there are clearly significant challenges for the industry, especially in the short term, companies and brands can also take advantage of the opportunities, such as a renewed interest in local and trusted brands.” Well, that’s something to hang your (Tyrolean) hat on at least. Perhaps you can do your bit by indulging yourself and topping up your beer supply.

The Nightcap

Introducing: Hearts & Crafts Sauternes Cask Single Malt Whisky

The Cotswolds Distillery releases Hearts and Crafts Single Malt Whisky

It was a good week for new drink launches, as Havana Club announced the release of Tributo 2020. But you might not have realised amid the pandemic of it all that yesterday was St. George’s Day. The Cotswolds Distillery made the most of the occasion by announcing the first release in a series of single malts called Hearts & Crafts, inspired by the arts and crafts movement. Hearts & Crafts. Nice. The series will consist of yearly limited editions, each presented in a gift box with a different William Morris pattern. Morris, one of the leaders of the arts and crafts movement that emerged in mid-19th century Britain, had a summer house in the Cotswolds. The first whisky from the collection is the Sauternes Cask Single Malt Whisky, which is the distillery’s first-ever European oak cask expression. We were fortunate enough to get a sample and were very impressed. Think crème brûlée, cinnamon, and honey, but with plenty of peachy fruit and a nice punchy 55.2% ABV to keep you on your toes. It’s every inch the luxury drop as it should be for £74.95, available exclusively from the distillery with only 1,680 bottles available. There won’t be anymore after that, folks! If you don’t manage to pick up a bottle, there’s plenty of Cotswolds deliciousness right here, and you can always look to future Hearts & Crafts releases which will be seasoned with casks that held Pineau de Charentes, Calvados, rum, Port, Madeira, Banyuls, vermouth and more.

The Nightcap

The Batch No. 1 Pearse Irish Whiskey Collector’s Edition set was signed by the late Dr. Pearse Lyons

Pearse Lyons Distillery auctions rare whiskey collection 

In an effort to support the healthcare professionals and frontline workers battling the COVID-19 crisis, Pearse Lyons Distillery in Dublin has decided to do its bit by auctioning off a set of rare whiskey to raise money. On offer is The Batch No. 1 Pearse Irish Whiskey Collector’s Edition set, a four-bottle collection signed by the late Dr. Pearse Lyons, founder of the distillery and Jack O’Shea, master distiller which includes The Original, Distiller’s Choice, Founder’s Choice and Cooper’s Select whiskies. Proceeds from the highest bid will be donated to the St. James’s Hospital Foundation, which funds resources for doctors, nurses, researchers and staff. “My father knew better than anyone that good whiskey brings people together,” said Dr. Mark Lyons, president and CEO of Alltech and son of Pearse Lyons. “What better way to unite even at a distance than in support of our healthcare professionals? This auction reflects the humanitarian spirit of Pearse Lyons Distillery and of Pearse Lyons.” The virtual auction began last Friday 17 April at 5pm (Dublin time) but bids can still be made until Sunday 26 April at 7pm right here.

The Nightcap

UK bartenders must create a cocktail with any of the three Corte Vetusto mezcals

Corte Vetusto launches cocktail competition: The Cut Above Challenge

David Shepherd of marvellous mezcal brand, Corte Vetusto, has decided to do his part to support the UK bar industry. Shepherd has gone and launched the Cut Above Challenge, with the name evoking the mantra of master mezcalero Juan Carlos Gonzalez Diaz, to create a cut of mezcal so fabulous it invokes the spirit of previous generations, known as el Corte Vetusto or… the ancient cut! No biggie. So, what’s the challenge? UK bartenders have the mission to create a cocktail with any of the three Corte Vetusto mezcals Espadín, Tobalá and limited edition Ensamble II. The drinks can’t just speak for themselves though, the submissions must include why the serve is a cut above! Entries are to be sent through the @VetustoMezcal Instagram, or emailed to david@vetustomezcal.com with the full ingredient list, method and serving suggestion, along with the Cut Above justification. Entries will be judged by David Shepherd (of course), with help from Eduardo Gomez, director of Tequila & Mezcal Fest, and Josh Linfitt of Propping Up the Bar. There are five prizes to be won, with the winner claiming £250 and the three bottles from the Corte Vetusto range. The entry deadline is Thursday 7 May 2020, and we can’t wait to see what the bar community comes up with! 

The Nightcap

James Hocking: man, wine merchant, award-winning amateur horticulturalist

And finally… James Hocking Wine branches out with free plants during lockdown

Even if you can’t leave the house during lockdown, James Hocking Wine will bring the outside to you! The wine importer will now deliver plants along with local wine orders, free of charge. While this may seem  bit random, Hocking is not only a top wine merchant but also an amateur, award-winning horticulturalist, and had been preparing a selection of vegetables for entry into several shows around the U.K. These have sadly been cancelled, but on the bright side, Hocking now has a plethora of plants that need new homes! Local customers in South Hampshire can request anything from sungold cherry tomatoes, San Marzano tomatoes, Marconi sweet peppers and Apache chilli to arrive alongside their wine (link to website here). To help the beloved veggies flourish, customers will also be supplied with a small bottle of “Hockings Tomato Feed”, a secret formula created by James that is said to be responsible for many a Best in Show. Fancy some top Californian wine and a dose of foliage? This’ll have you covered. Maybe it’ll even spark a green thumb or two!

The Nightcap

Pub quiz answers

1) What is considered to be Ernest Hemingway’s favourite cocktail?

Answer: Daiquiri

2) Which spirit are you most likely to find a worm in the bottom of the bottle?

Answer: Mezcal

3) What animal is responsible for the majority of agave pollination?

Answer: Bats

4) Which of these grapes is NOT allowed in the production of Armagnac?

Answer: Sauvignon Blanc

5) What gives vermouth its characteristic taste?

Answer: Wormwood

6) Stout originated in which city?

Answer: London

7) In Raymond Chandler’s The Long Goodbye which drink does Philip Marlowe prefer to a Martini?

Answer: Gimlet.

8) What flavour do ants give when distilled?

Answer: Citrus

9) To be classed as Rhum Agricole a rum must be. . . .

Answer: Distilled from cane juice

10) Rapper Snoop Dogg is famous for sippin’ on what spirit and juice?

Answer: Gin

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The Nightcap: 17 April

Easter Monday might have made this a shorter working week but there’s still a good helping of boozy news to get stuck into. It’s The Nightcap! If you’re looking to…

Easter Monday might have made this a shorter working week but there’s still a good helping of boozy news to get stuck into. It’s The Nightcap!

If you’re looking to head into the weekend with a brain full of news from the world of booze, you’ve come to the right place – it’s The Nightcap! If you wanted to go into the weekend with a brain full of badger facts, you’ve also come to the right place: badgers are part of the Mustelidae family, meaning they’re related to wolverines. The word “badger” is thought to come from the French word for someone who digs, “bêcheur”. Probably because they’re good at digging. OK, enough badger facts. Time for the booze news!

On the MoM blog this week we were delighted to announce that Glenlivet Spectra has arrived exclusively at MoM HQ. Elsewhere, Annie took us inside the archives at Irish Distillers and then cast an eye on four botanical bottlings that capture the essence of their local area, Jess gave us some top tips on how to have the perfect virtual tasting and Henry mixed a cocktail that made its name back in the golden age. Adam, meanwhile, led us on VR tours of GlenDronach and BenRiach Distillery and recommended some incredible whiskeys from across the pond as well as five films that feature a drop of the good stuff. Oh, and don’t forget there’s still to enter our competition to win a VIP 2021 trip to The GlenDronach distillery!

Once again we’d like to thank all those who entered our virtual pub quiz last Friday and say congratulations to the winner, Richard Hales! He’s won himself a £25 gift voucher to put to good use at MoM Towers and if you like the sound of that, you’ll be pleased to know this week’s edition (link here) will go live at 5pm tonight. You can also find the answers to last week’s quiz if you scroll down to the bottom.

Now, let’s get on with The Nightcap!

The Nightcap

Happy International Kümmel Day!

Kümmel ye faithful!

Today is the big one, bigger than British Pie Week, more exclusive than World Whisky Day, it’s International Kümmel Day! The second-ever and it celebrates 170 years since Ludwig Mentzendorff decided to import his kümmel, which was made in Riga at the time, to the UK (it’s now distilled in France). The British seemed to have fallen for kümmel’s caraway-scented charms immediately. It was particularly popular among golfers who used to refer to it as ‘putting mixture’ but every drinks cabinet would have had a bottle, there’s no better cold weather-pick-me up. Now this classic schnapps is undergoing a revival as bartenders around the world discover it’s peculiar charms. Such luminaries of the drinks world as Simon Difford, Richard Godwin and Alice Lascelles have all come out as members of the Kümmel cognoscenti. You can mix it or just enjoy it neat with ice. So dig out a bottle or buy one and all this week give kümmel some online love with the #mentzendorffkummel hashtag. 

The Nightcap

Say hello to Jameson Hosts!

Jameson supports global bar community online with Jameson Hosts

Jameson has gone and launched an online platform to bring the international bar community together in these strange times. Say hello to Jameson Hosts, an online space where the bar community can come together to share their experiences and knowledge through the wonders of video! What’s more, Jameson is those who create videos for the platform financially, with the content covering all sorts of topics from cocktail masterclasses, wellbeing, career coaching and whiskey tutorials, as well as advice from bar teams around the globe about how they’re adapting to the new challenges imposed by the pandemic. It’s looking to the future too, covering how businesses can better equip themselves for when they (eventually) reopen. “The global bar community has dedicated its life and career to the service of others.  Now, more than ever, this community needs a new place to come together and share inspiring stories, real-world guidance and encouraging words to help each other overcome the challenges they face today and those that lie ahead,” says Brendan Buckley, international marketing director at Irish Distillers. “We hope this will offer both practical and emotional support through this challenging time and we very much look forward to celebrating with all our hosts at Midleton soon.”

The Nightcap

The awards take place on the 18th – 20th September, assuming we can do things by then

Glencairn sponsors Scottish crime writing awards

Everyone’s favourite whisky tasting glass company Glencairns has teamed up with the Bloody Scotland Crime Writing Festival to sponsor two awards. The big one is The McIlvanney Prize named after William McIlvanney who pretty much invented the hard-boiled Scottish detective genre in a brilliant trilogy of novels: Laidlaw, The Papers of Tony Veitch and Strange Loyalties. Without McIlvanney there would have been no Rebus and no Taggart. The winner will receive a prize of £1000, a Glencairn Crystal Decanter and nationwide promotion in Waterstones. Glencairn will also be sponsoring The Bloody Scotland Debut Prize consisting of £500 and a Glencairn Star Trophy. Kirsty Nicholson from Glencairn commented: “As a Scottish family-owned company we are excited and proud to be involved with such prestigious prizes that both celebrate and reward such a rich and talented tradition as Scottish crime fiction. Like Scottish crime writing, the Glencairn Glass is uniquely Scottish with a truly global appeal. We look forward to a great working relationship with Bloody Scotland and would like to wish all the authors who have entered the best of luck.” Festival director Bob McDevitt added: “It’s great to see that in this time of great uncertainty, the Bloody Scotland prizes have attracted another great crop of Scottish crime novels for readers to escape into. I’m also really pleased to welcome Glencairn Crystal on board as a sponsor of the prizes this year and look forward to working with them in the future.” The awards will take place during the festival 18th – 20th September. If we’re allowed out then.

The Nightcap

The cocktails are made with Bacardi spirits, including its signature rum, Bombay Sapphire Gin and more

Bacardi and Deliveroo Editions delivering cocktails to your door

Bacardi and Deliveroo Editions have joined forces in a bid to break lockdown boredom and support local bars in London and Manchester while their doors are closed. The ‘Cocktails at Home’ initiative will ensure that you can still enjoy your favourite cocktails by delivering them straight to your door. More than 120 bars in London and Manchester in the UK began to offer the service yesterday and new bars and cocktails will be added every two weeks over the next two months. To order you can simply head to one of the following links: Whitechapel, Bermondsey, Manchester. The initiative has focused on smaller, independent bars that have no corporate backing and the cocktails will be made with Bacardi spirits, including its signature rum, Bombay Sapphire Gin, Grey Goose Vodka, Martini vermouth and Patrón Tequila. “Our strong relationships with bars and bartenders in the UK is incredibly important to us and as we face the current challenges together, we’re doing all we can to provide the support they need,” says Amanda Almond, managing director for Bacardi, UK and Ireland. “We have 158 years’ experience of overcoming the crises and coming out fighting, and through our Raise Your Spirits initiative, we intend to do exactly that for our on-trade partners.” So, if you fancy a Cubano with Bacardi Ocho from Kwānt, a Rosy Life with Patrón Tequila from Artesian or Lychee Martini with Bombay Sapphire Gin from Filthy 13, you know what to do!

The Nightcap

Gin O’Clock has become a regular highlight of the lockdown for people

And finally… Gin, crisps and ready meals keep the nation’s spirits up during lockdown

As the UK collectively feels the effect of the government-imposed lockdown, you won’t be surprised to hear that people are finding collective comfort in gin, crisps and ready meals. According to proquo ai’s Covid-19 brand impact monitor, folks looking for ways to enjoy a ‘big night in’ have turned to brands like Hendricks, whose products have surged in popularity helped by the goodwill generated when it repurposed some of its production facilities to make hand sanitiser. Gin O’Clock has become a regular highlight, with one respondent saying: “I never used to drink gin but now I have a little on the weekend. Me and the neighbours have started buying different flavours, and we meet up and have a social-distancing gin tasting night.” Unsurprisingly, mixers have also benefited from the trend, with Fentimans, Fever-Tree and Schweppes all attracting new customers and as cocktails go hand in hand with a salty snack, premium crisp brands are also gaining in popularity with new users. “Our platform gathers people’s feelings towards brands 24/7 so it’s been fascinating to see the immediate impact of Covid-19 and related lockdown on public perception,” says Jim Brennan, managing director of proquo ai. “People are not only changing their daily routines, but are also interacting with brands they wouldn’t normally use outside of a crisis. Brands that understand what people need at this time – and work to meet these needs – will ultimately be the ones which succeed.” If you’re looking for a tasty new gin to indulge in, we have a few right here.

The Nightcap

Pub quiz answers


1) What is Beyoncé ‘sippin’ with no chaser’ in 2016 hit Formation

Answer: Cuervo

2) What was Jack Daniel’s real name? 

Answer: Jasper Newton Daniel

3) What was John Lennon’s favourite cocktail? 

Answer: Brandy Alexander

4) What is Dr Dre’s gin brand of choice? 

Answer: Hendricks

5) Which Craft Beer producer also produces Lone Wolf Gin?

Answer: Brewdog

6) Which late comedian shares his last name with the profession of fabricating barrels? 

Answer: Tommy Cooper

7) What drink does Carrie Bradshaw attempt to order at McDonald’s alongside her cheeseburger and large fries in Sex and the City?

Answer: Cosmopolitan

8) Jean Martell, the founder of the Cognac house, came from which island? 

Answer: Jersey

9) Which country is famous for making rum in wooden stills? 

Answer: Guyana

10) Do London dry gins have to be made in the UK capital?

Answer: No

No Comments on The Nightcap: 17 April

Tune in to our live tastings on Instagram!

Mark the diaries, folks! Team Master of Malt is taking to Instagram for a series of live tastings. And we want you to join us! Here at MoM Towers, there’s…

Mark the diaries, folks! Team Master of Malt is taking to Instagram for a series of live tastings. And we want you to join us!

Here at MoM Towers, there’s little we love more than exploring a flight of delicious spirits. But in the current challenging times, it’s not like we can saunter off to a good bar with some good friends and treat ourselves to a dram or three of something new. But! We can harness the power of Instagram Live and share some of our favourite tipples – whiskies, gins, rums, and more. So that’s what we’re doing on Monday and Wednesday evenings!

Here’s the crucial info. It is all going down over on our Instagram page, so make sure you’re following @masterofmalt. Unless otherwise specified, we’ll hit that Live button at 7:30pm. We’ll also pop a handy countdown timer up in our Story in the run-up, and you can tap that to set a reminder too. Watch out for the notification, or just head over to our Story at the specified hour where you’ll find us ready with the drinks (sometimes with a guest..!).

Here’s what we’ve got coming up. We’ll update this page as soon as we’ve got news of more tastings, so do keep checking back. Grab yourself a tasting set, drams or bottles, and play along!

May live tastings

Up until 30 May, we’re celebrating all things Islay with our Instagram Live tastings! Here’s a brief run-down, the full details of each session can be found over on our dedicated Islay tastings blog post.

Friday 22 May 7:30pm: Character of Islay Whisky Company

Grab a glass of something Islay and join us as we discover the whiskies across the full Character of Islay Whisky Company range!

Saturday 23 May 8.30pm: Lagavulin

Distillery manager Colin Gordon is joining us for a Q&A chat over a dram. Get your questions ready and get involved!

Sunday 24 May 6pm: Bruichladdich

Head distiller Adam Hannett is on-hand to answer all our Bruichladdich questions! We’ll have a dram of The Classic Laddie ready to accompany.

Monday 25 May 8.15pm: Caol Ila

Pierrick Guillaume, Caol Ila distillery manager, joins us for a catch-up over a dram. Get your questions ready for him!

Tuesday 26 May 1pm: Laphroaig

We’ve got a lunchtime Laphroaig 10 Year Old tasting with distillery manager John Campbell! He’ll be taking your questions and generally having a chat, too.

Wednesday 27 May 1pm: Bowmore

This time it’s David Turner taking the lunchtime guest slot when we talk all things Bowmore over a dram of the 12 Year Old.

Thursday 28 May 10.30am: Kilchoman

It’s an early doors full tasting with distillery founder Anthony Wills! The line-up features Kilchoman Machir Bay, Loch Gorm 2020, the new Am Burach, 100% Islay 9th Edition, and the official Festival Bottling!

Friday 29 May 5pm: Bunnahabhain

Global brand director Derek Scott has something special lined up for us. A tasting of Bunnahabhain Toiteach a Dhà, Bunnahabhain 25-Year-Old, and Bunnahabhain 2003 Amontillado Finish, usually only available from the distillery!

Friday 29 May 7:30pm: Jura

Gregg Glass takes us full a pretty comprehensive Jura complement: Jura 10 Year Old, the brand new Jura Red Wine Cask, Jura Seven Wood, Jura 212, and Jura Time and Tide.

Saturday 30 May 3pm: Ardbeg

It’s Ardbeg Day! Brendan McCarron, head of maturing whisky stocks for Ardbeg (and sister distillery Glenmorangie) is stepping in for Mickey Heads to take us through Ardbeg 10, An Oa and Blaaack.

June live tastings

On 1 June, we’re off on an agave adventure with Corte Vetusto Mezcal. 3 June sees us get innovative with all things Whisky Works when we’re joined by Gregg Glass. And then Friday 5 June it’s the turn of Deanston. All three take place at 7:30 BST. Mark the diaries – more details coming soon!


The Nightcap

Join us for some terrific tastings over on Instagram!

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