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Cinnamon Liqeur – Smirnoff Gold

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013
New Smirnoff Liquer
Summer Blues or Winter Warm Up


Summer is fading to a distant memory but you can hang on to that Summery feeling with this tall drink made from Smirnoff’s new liqueur. With a hint of warming cinnamon however, this liqueur is also useful for warming up when the cold inevitably hits!

Apple Bite Gold:

Mix Smirnoff Gold with apple juice and lemonade and serve in a tall glass with ice = Instant Summer Feeling!

Buy Smirnoff Gold Here

Taste Of The Orient – Opihr Spiced Gin

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013
Bottle of Spiced Gin
Taste The Orient


Here at Drink Finder our resident gin lovers have been raving over this little beauty! Opihr spiced gin using spices sourced from the east so why don’t you discover the exotic intensity of The Orient for yourself. And if you’re worried about supporting the UK economy and think this is imported, then you’ll be glad to know it’s produced by G&J Distillers, England’s oldest producer of high quality gin!

Buy your spiced gin here.

Christmas Wine & Spirits Show 2011

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

We are holding a tasting of over 150 different wines, whisky, rums, liqueurs and other spirits.
A tasting not to be missed:

Thursday, November 3rd 6.30pm -9pm

The Falmouth Beach Hotel
Gyllyngvase Beach, Falmouth, Cornwall.

Tickets £10 per person*
Refundable when you place an order for £40 or more on the night.

Entrance by ticket only.

Tickets available on 01326340226

Vermouth – not just Martini!

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

Vermouth is a fortified wine, flavored with aromatic herbs and spices (“aromatized” in the trade) such as cardamom, cinnamon, marjoram and chamomile.[1] Some vermouth is sweetened; unsweetened, or “dry” vermouth tends to be bitter. The person credited with inventing the vermouth recipe, Antonio Benedetto Carpano from Turin, Italy, chose to name his concoction “vermouth” in 1786 because he was inspired by a German wine flavoured with wormwood, a herb most famously used in distilling absinthe.

Today popular brands are Noilly Prat, Dolin, Lillet, Dubonnet, Martini and Cinzano.

Irish Poteen or Potcheen

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

Irish Poteen is a separate and succinct spirit category that has been produced for several centuries and for nearly the last 300 years has been referred to as Ireland’s Moonshine whiskey. During the period 1666 until recently, in various forms it has been illegal to sell it in Ireland. It was not until 1997 that all restrictions were lifted and it could be sold on the mainland in Ireland.

Whilst within the last 10 years several illicit stills were producing limited quantities, the raids carried out by the Garda (Irish Police) have reduced this to a few. With the recent discovery of dead rats in some of the mash that has been confiscated, few people will now drink illegal poteen, despite the substantial saving on the Irish Excise Duty!

Irish Poteen in its legal form over the past decade, has achieved world-wide acceptance, as a separate category of Irish Spirit. There now remain only three family-owned Irish Poteen brands. Knockeen Hills is recognised internationally, as the Irish premium deluxe brand, being either triple or quadruple-distilled and has won over 10 major awards at the International Wine and Spirit Competitions.

History of Grappa or Pomace

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

The origins of this brandy are unclear but it is generally accepted that yesteryear’s thrifty peasants were responsible ; they did not wish to see any part of any crop wasted. It is unlikely that it was much of a business proposition and was probably drunk by those who made it and best used to keep the winter chill at bay. The Italians—who refer to it generically as grappa—assert that it was conceived at their hands ; there is evidence of distillation by the Moors in 9th century Salerno and while this is by no means definitive proof it certainly gives credence to the Italian’s claim.

Arguably, until 25–35 years ago, the majorit y of Italian winemakers seemed more interested in quantity than quality. In these instances grapes were crushed with a view to maximise the yield of must, which resulted in oily, almost bitter pomace. Poor quality pomace led to poor quality grappa, which led to this Italian spirit’s crude reputation. For many years now quality has been the goal for most Italian wineries ; wines are now typically from lower vineyard yields, handled more carefully, pressed more gently and frequently are single varieties. The pomace available to the grappa producer today is lighter, more fragrant and aromatic as are the resultant grappas. Additionally, the increased popularity of varietal wines has led to a trend toward varietal grappas.

Acquavit e d’Uva Also known by many brands names, such as Most, Ue, Prime Uve—normally the highest quality and most aromatic spirit produced by each company.

Grappa di Vitigno Grappa of a single grape variety ; most of Italy’s pomace brandies come from the north where good acidity is virtually resulting in better quality distillates. The grapes used are those that prevail in the sub –regions from Piemonte in the north-west to Friuli in the north- east. These include among many others : nebbiolo, moscato, prosecco, pinot grigio, cabernet, merlot and ramandolo.

Other grappas Sometimes presented as the grappa of a special wine region ; e.g. Grappa di Barolo, in this instance the pomace has come entirely from grapes used to make Barolo. Or, grappa with a link to a famous vineyard or wine estate—here the brand name of the estate or the wine is an important indicator of the perceived quality

Vodka – more than just potatoes!

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

What vodka is made from was initially determined by what was grown in the various producing regions of the world. This helped determined regional style of vodka according to the produce used to make it.

WINTER WHEAT Prevailed in Sweden and some parts of Russia giving vodkas of delicacy with undertones of aniseed and a subtle, layered, almost textured, creaminess. Such as Stolichnaya, Absolut and Russian Standard.

RYE The grain of choice in Poland and other parts of Russia giving more pungent vodkas with a distinct peppery kick on the finish ; they have a subtle nutty middle palate with good body. Such as Chopin rye vodka, Wyborowa,

BARLEY & OATS Impart a smooth, nutty character to the vodka.

CORN Used in the USA and other countries,often when the distillery also produces whiskies.

Mixed grain A blend of different grains whose sum is, in the opinion of the producer, greater than the total of the parts.

Potatoes New to Europe at the time that these traditions were springing up ; however, by the 19th century special high-starch varieties were grown near the Baltic Coast for the purpose of making vodkas ; they have a rich, oily creaminess and are full-bodied. Such vodkas as Luksosowa, Chase vodka, Cold River vodka.

Molasses Obtained from sugar cane or sugar beet and used in neutral and inexpensive vodkas.

Grapes Wine rectified through distillation until almost all of the initial character has been lost. Such as Ciroc,

Vodka falls into two main categories, plain and flavoured, the later can have many different ingredients which all impart different flavours to the neutral spiri

Popular flavours are:

Lemon , Limmonaya or Cytrynowka Traditionally made from lemon peel, leaves or a combination of both

Pepper, Pertsovka , or Pieprzowka Made with anything from black pepper to chillies

Blackcurrant , Kurant Made with blackcurrants

Others from Russia and Poland include:

Žubrowka Flavoured with bison grass and then bottled with a single glass blade in each bottle

Jarezebiak Flavoured with rowanberries

Krupnik Flavoured with honey and spice

Starka Flavoured with sweet wine, brandy, port and sometimes the leaves of apple and pear trees

Žytnia Flavoured with apple and plum spirits.

Cachaca – what’s in it?

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

Cachaça pronounced (ka-sha-sa) is a spirit made from fermented sugarcane juice. It is the national drink of Brazil, but has become very popular here in the UK, especially its signature cocktail the Caipirinha. Cachaça can have an Alcoholic strength of between 38% vol and 54% vol.

Cachaça differs from rum in that most rum is made from molasses. Use of molasses allows for the use of the byproduct of sugar production and a smaller still but has the taste affected by heating. Cachaca can be classified as a “rhum agricole” which is rum produced directly from cane juice. The taste is different from rum though, with its flavours more reminiscent of tequila with earthy, etheral flavours, aromas of balsam, cinnamon and oak..

Cachaca has two main types unaged (white) and aged (golden). Today many smaller producers (Beija Flora , Abela, Germana) create handcrafted, artisan cachaças.

Traditional caipirinha is made with cachaça, sugar, and crushed limes, served over ice. It is always muddled (crushed with a masher or the blunt end of a wooden spoon). Make sure to muddle in a shaker or a sturdy, non-breakable glass. You can also try replacing lime with about 1/2 cup of fresh tangerine, star fruit, passion fruit, peach, pear, pineapple, plum, orange, mango, grape, guava, figs, etc.

Popular Cachaca’s in the UK are Sagatiba, Beija Flora, Brasilla, Velho Barreiro and Germana.

What is Gin or Geneva..?

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

Gin or Geverer is a spirit whose predominant flavour must be juniper . Although several different styles of gin have existed since its origins, gin is broadly differentiated into two basic legal categories. Distilled gin is crafted in the traditional manner, by re-distilling neutral spirit with juniper berries and other botanicals. Compound gin is made by simply flavoring neutral spirit with essences and/or other ‘natural flavorings’ without re-distillation, and is not as highly regarded. The minimum bottled alcoholic strength for gin is 37.5% ABV in the E.U., 40% ABV in the U.S.

Some would argue that the ideal is between 40–55 % abv as below this a gin is unable to hold its flavours and the complexity and balance are thus adversely affected.

There are several distinct styles of gin:

Old Tom Gin is a botanically-intensive and lightly sweetened style of gin that consequently delivers a balanced and mild undertone which results in a subtle and distinctive gin experience.

Genever or Dutch style sweet gin is full bodied, malt based spirit that was introduced to the Netherlands in the 16th century. The popularity spread so quickly that it soon was hailed as Hollands national drink, just as it remains today.

Plymouth gin is another style which has a distinctively different, slightly less-dry flavour than the much more commonly available London Dry Gin, as it contains a higher than usual proportion of root ingredients, which bring a more ‘earthy’ feel to the gin, as well as a smoother juniper hit

London dry gin remains the most popular style, which is a type of distilled gin. In addition to the predominant juniper content, London dry gin is usually distilled in the presence of accenting citrus botanicals such as lemon and bitter orange peel, as well as other combination of spices such as, Angelica, Anise, Cardamom, Cassis, Coriander, Ginger, Lemon peel, Liquorice, Orange peel, Orris root and Paradise grains. London dry gin may not contain added sugar or colorants, water being the only permitted additive

The explosion of new gins on to the market has seen some quite unusual additions to the classic recipe with such botanicals as sencha tea – Beefeater 24, Blue berries and blackberries – Brockmans gin, Rose petals and cucumber – Hendricks Gin, Edlerflower and blue Iris – Blue Zephyr Gin are but a few of the wonderful new gins available.

Liqueurs – why so sweet?

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

Probably the oldest of all high-strength alcoholic beverages they were originally the preserve of monks who produced them primarily for medicinal purposes. The first record of a liqueur belongs to Kummel in 1575 ; made with caraway seeds as an aid to digestion. Some liqueurs sold today still retain their ancient heritage and their recipes are often closely guarded secrets. In some instances they are not even written down but passed on by word of mouth from one generation to the next, while with others, the holders of these secrets refuse to fly on the same plane as one another.

It is important to make a distinction between liqueurs and spirits even if this distinction can on occasion become somewhat blurred. A liqueur is a spirit that has been sweetened and flavoured, whereas natural sugars are fermented into alcohol and subsequently distilled to make a spirit.

In order to make a liqueur, one needs something with which to sweeten the spirit—generally sugar or honey—and something soluble with which to flavour it. The character of a liqueur will always come from these flavouring agents rather than from the base spirit.

There is diverse range of liqueurs, which can be broadly categorised as follows :

Fruit e.g. cherry and apricot brandy such as De kuypers, cherry brandy.

N.B. Despite their nomenclature these are not actually brandies at all ; they are by definition liqueurs. The real cherry brandy is Eau de Vie de Kirsch.

Crèmes Notably Crème de Cassis. Or Creme de Mure, Creme de Mrytille, Creme de Abricot etc.

Citrus e.g. triple sec, curaçao, Blue Curacao, Cointreau and Grand Marnier.

Mixed & single herb or flower (petals, seeds or roots) e.g. caraway, mint, aniseed, violet, rose and bitters, which have more than 100g / litre of sugar and anise. Popular liqueurs in the category are Wolfschmidtt Kumel, Benedictine, Parfait amour, Chartreuse.

Beans & kernels e.g. cocoa beans, coffee beans, vanilla pods, nuts. Creme de Cacao, Kahlua, Tia Maria Grand Marnier Navan and Frangelico are a few examples.

Creams e.g. based on Irish whiskey, brandy, toffee, peppermint, such as Baileys, Dooleys Cream, Aamrula and Coole Swan.

Mistelles Fresh fruit juice with its fruit distillate and a minimum of 100g / litre sugar if classified as a liqueur ; the addition of high-strength alcohol prevents the juice from fermenting whilst stabilising the character and natural sugars of the fruit. Containing no wine, yet sometimes erroneously referred to as wine spirit liqueurs ! e.g. Pineau de Charentes from Cognac, Floc de Gascogne from Armagnac, Pommeau de Normandie from Calvados and Ratafias—which nowadays refers to French grape-based