Amaro is an Italian herbal liquor commonly consumed as an after-dinner digestif. It usually has a bitter-sweet flavor & varies between 16 to 40%abv. Amaro is typically produced by macerating herbs, roots, flowers, bark, and/or citrus peels in neutral spirits or wine alcohol.
Commercial bottlers trace their recipe or production to the 19th century. Recipes often originated in monasteries or pharmacies. Amaro is typically consumed neat, sometimes with a citrus wedge, on ice or with tonic water. Amaro is made by soaking herbs and botanicals in a hydroalcoholic solution in order to macerate. Commonly, the base picked is a neutral spirit with an abv that is between 45 and 65% abv. Most Amari are not aged, however, there is an exception, Amaro Nonino is aged for 5 years in oak barrels. Common herbs and botanicals used are Gentian, Angelica, Wormwood, Liquorice, citrus peel, cardamom, thyme, juniper, anise, rhubarb, and cinchona.
An aperitivo is an alcoholic beverage usually served before a meal to stimulate the appetite and is therefore usually dry rather than sweet. Common choices for an apéritif are vermouth; champagne; pastis; gin; rakı; fino, amontillado or other styles of dry sherry (but not usually cream or oloroso blended sherry, which is very sweet and rich); and any still, dry, light white wine. Aperitivos were already widespread in the 19th century in Italy, where they were being served in fashionable cafés in Turin, Rome, Genoa, Florence, Milan and Venice. Apéritifs became very popular in Europe in the late 19th century. There is no single alcoholic drink that is always served as an apéritif. Because it is served before dining, the emphasis is usually on dry rather than sweet, as a general guideline. In Italy, vermouth or wine may be served as the aperitivo. Martini, Aperol Spritz, Select Aperitivo, and Campari with soda are also popular aperitivo drinks of choice.
Vermouth is a fortified wine, invented in Piedmont in 1786 by Antonio Carpano. It must be made with at least 75% of white wine sweetened and flavored. Min abv 15.5% max abv 22%.
Minimum sugar content 14gr/100ml for sweet and white vermouth and minimum sugar content 12gr/100ml for dry. Spices and herbs commonly used are wormwood, chamomile, star anise, cinnamon, gentian, cloves, saffron, and coriander. The most popular vermouth varietals are Sweet, Dry, Bianco.
Liqueurs have a rich heritage as medicinal elixir: even before sugar reached Europe, elixirs from complex blends of herbs and secret ingredients were being made to cure any and all illnesses (Chartreuse). Liqueurs are typically quite sweet; they are usually not aged for long after the ingredients are mixed, but may have resting periods during their production to allow flavours to marry. Most liqueurs have a lower alcohol content (15–30% abv) than spirits, but some contain as much as 55% abv such as Green Chartreuse. The name liqueur originates from the Latin word liquifacere meaning to liquefy. Some liqueurs are prepared by infusing certain woods, fruits, or flowers in either water or alcohol and adding sugar or other items. Others are distilled from aromatic or flavouring agents.
In case of Cointreau, the liquid contains a combination of bitter, sweet & fresh orange peels in its recipe. The orange peel, once selected are steeped for 24hrs in the sugar beet neutral based spirit and distilled to make an extremely concentrated spirit base. The liqueur is then combined with sugar & pure water & bottled at 40%ABV. Cointreau contains 1/3 the sugar of other triple secs in the market.
Licor 43 infuses ripe citrus fruits with selected botanicals and macerates it in a mixture of alcohol, water and sugars, allowing it to steep and release flavours and essential oils. Once the flavour has been achieved, the macerate is aged from 6 to 9 months to allow the flavours to further mellow and harmonise.
Disaronno is made from 17 different herbs & apricot kernels, not almonds and The Reina family has closely guarded the secret formula for centuries, passing it from one generation to the next.
Tia Maria uses Arabica Coffee, Jamaican Rum and Madagascar Vanilla in its recipe, producing a delicious coffee liqueur which is lower in sugar than rival brands & dates back to the 17th Century.
The Town of Cognac dates back 2000 years with grape cultivation dating back over 1500 years, from the time of Roman Empire.
The House of Remy Martin was founded in 1724 and in 1738 King Louis XV granted Remy Martin the exceptional right to plant new vines.
Remy Martin prides itself on using grapes from the two most sought-after regions, Grande & Petite Champagne. Remy Martin created the Fine Champagne Cognac category in 1927 stipulating the liquid used must contain a minimum of 50% Grande Champagne grapes.
Paul Emile Remy Martin registered Louis XIII as the most prestige’s Cognac in the world in 1874, 150 years after the Remy Martin house was established. Louis XIII comes from the most sought-after cru, the Heart of Cognac: Grande Champagne.
Grande Champagne was deemed the best Cru of the Cognac region as it produces a more aromatic, intense form of grape. “Champagne” is not to be confused with “French Champagne” (such as Verve etc.), the word describes the landscape & chalky soil of the region.
The white wine used in making cognac is often referred to as dry & acidic, which is perfect for distillation and ageing of quality Cognac. After the grapes are pressed, the juice is left to ferment for 2–3 weeks, with the region’s native, wild yeasts converting the sugar into alcohol; neither sugar nor sulfur is allowed to be added.
Distillation takes place in traditionally shaped Charentais copper alembic stills, the design and dimensions of which are legally controlled. Two distillations must be carried out; the resulting eau de vie is a colourless spirit of about 70% alcohol. Once distillation is complete, cognac must be aged in Limousin oak casks for at least two years. It is typically put into casks at an alcohol by volume strength around 70%. As the cognac interacts with the oak barrel and the air, it evaporates at the rate of about 3% each year, slowly losing both alcohol and water. This phenomenon is called locally la part des Anges, or “the angels’ share”.
The age of the cognac is calculated as that of the youngest component used in the blend. The blend is usually of different ages and from different local areas. This blending, or marriage, of different Eaux de vie, is important to obtain a complexity of flavours absent from an Eaux de vie from a single distillery or vineyard.
Each cognac house has a master taster, who is responsible for blending the spirits so that cognac produced will have a consistent house style and quality. Baptiste Loiseau is the 5th Cellar Master at Remy Martin and he trained under Pierrette Trichet, Remy Martin’s 4th Cellar Master who retired in 2015.
The earliest records of the distillation of alcohol are in Italy in the 13th century, where alcohol was distilled from wine. The art of distillation spread to Scotland and Ireland no later than the 15th century, as did the common European practice of distilling “aqua vitae”, spirit alcohol, primarily for medicinal purposes. In America, whisky was used as currency during the American Revolution; George Washington operated a large distillery at Mount Vernon. In 1823, the UK passed the Excise Act, legalizing the distillation, and this put an end to the large-scale production of Scottish moonshine.
The base ingredient for single malt is barley. Once the barley is ready to be used, it is placed into a steeping tank or Saladin box. The barley is steeped in water. Steeping is wetting the barley to hydrate the grain which initiates germination. Germination can take up to 6 to 7 days depending on the maltster & the distillery climate & barley type.
Floor Malting was the traditional way of producing malt for brewing before the Industrial Revolution. It was largely a manual process, and today floor malting is considered a niche artisanal practice.
The modern way of drying the barley is by kilning. The desired grain moisture level is around 4 to 5% and it can take anything from 36 hours to 5 days. The barley is now ready for crushing into grist & then onto mashing. Mashing re-awakens the enzymes in the grain, in order to extract the sugars from the grain.
Fermentation is when the yeast becomes active & eats the sugars in the wort, this, in turn, causes two by-products alcohol & carbon dioxide. Fermentation time can vary between whisky & style of distillery.
Distillation is the process of separating alcohol from water in the fermented mix… turning a 7 to 9% ABV wash into a higher-proof spirit. In the process the still will separate the alcohol from the water, the alcohol will rise as a vapor and once it starts to cool will condense back down as a liquid.
Once the new make spirit has been created, it is then transferred to the barrel.
Maturation contributes 60% to 80% of the overall flavour, depending on the producer & house style. Before the spirits are filled into casks to age, they are usually diluted to below 65% ABV. All casks are porous, allowing the spirit to evaporate which is necessary for maturation. Good casks that have been well cared for can last for up to 50 years or longer.
Finishing is the popular term for transferring a matured whisky to a second cask, perhaps one that previously held port, sherry, Madeira, wine or any desired spirit or flavour.
The Scottish Whisky Association (SWA) uses the following division of regions: Highlands, Lowlands, Speyside, Campbeltown & Islay.
Highland Whiskies were renowned for flavours of heather and honey, with 47 distilleries located within the region.
The Spiritual home of Macallan Whisky is Easter Elchies House, built in 1700 from locally quarried sandstone for Captain John Grant. Roderick Kemp purchased the Macallan Distillery in 1892 renaming it to R. Kemp Macallan – Glenlivet. He refurbished the distillery & established its direction of only using Spanish oak sherry Casks. More recently, a new distillery was completed in June 2018. Built to further cement its position as the world’s leading single malt Scotch whisky and giving the greater capacity to meet future demand for the brand. The Macallan philosophy rests on six pillars:
- The Spiritual home of Macallan Easter Elchies
- Unusually small Spirit Stills producing a distinctly rich, fruity, new make spirit
- The Macallan carefully selects the finest quality spirit from the stills to ensure they create the best whisky. This finest cut ensures we produce our signature mouthfeel & fruity aroma & flavour (Viscous mouthfeel)
- Exceptional oak casks – the Macallan spends more on sourcing, crafting & seasoning its casks than any other malt whisky.
- Natural Colour -The rich range of colour’s in the Macallan whisky range is drawn only from the wood.
- The Peerless spirit – one of the world greatest spirits.
The Orkney Islands are the home of Highland Park Whisky. Located in 16km from the northernmost reaches of the Scottish mainland, on the cusp of the North Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. There are around 70 islands which make up Orkney, with only 17 of them being permanently inhabited.
Highland Park has been distilled at Kirkwall on the Mainland since 1798, on the same site as Magnus Eunson’s original illegal still at High Park. The Highland Park distillery lies almost in the Arctic Circle on a latitude of 58.9847 degrees North, roughly the same as Anchorage, Alaska, closer to Oslo in Norway than London in the UK.
Orkney climate is temperate, varying from 2°C in winter to 16°C in summer, perfect for a long, even-paced whisky maturation. For over 220 years, Highland Park Distillery smoked its own barley over 4,000-year-old peat cut from Hobbister Moor. Completely woodless, this dense heathery peat burns slowly to create a complex floral aroma that delivers the intensely balanced smoky sweetness found only in Highland Park.
Highland Park is one of seven distilleries still using traditional malting floors, turning each batch of malt by hand, in what is a physically demanding process. First the barley is steeped in the mineral-rich water from the Crantit spring, before casting it to the malting floor to slowly germinate. When it is ready, the barley is placed in kilns where the aromatic peating process begins.
The Lowlands currently contains 6 whisky distilleries with 5 more currently in development, which was renowned to be light in character & colour.
The Speyside region is regarded as the whisky triangle containing 51 distilleries, all of which are known for flavours such as apple, pear, vanilla & honey.
Glenrothes Distillery was established in 1879 in a quiet corner of the Speyside region. The Glenrothes estate is situated next to the burn of Rothes & divided by a river itself. Glenrothes is a hands-on whisky distillery, from the people in the mashing room and the still house, to the warehouse workers & master of whisky maker. Everyone contributes their passion for whisky and a common goal. What makes Glenrothes different are the Sherry seasoned oak casks. Almost 90% of the casks held on site have contained sherry, a wine made from white grapes grown in the region of Jerez in Andalusia Spain.
Campbelltown is a unique region, once holding around 30 whisky distilleries & calling itself the whisky capital of the world. Campbeltown was renowned for whiskies containing brine like characteristics.
Islay contains 9 working distilleries with Port Ellen still to awaken. Islay is located within the inner Hebridean islands & was always regarded as the fire breathing dragon of all whisky regions, containing smoke.
The Bruichladdich distillery was built in 1881 by the Harveys who also owned the Yoker & Port Dundas distillery to provide a backbone to the grain whiskies that they owned. In modern times, the distillery was revived by Mark Reynier in 2000 and eventually sold to Remy Cointreau.
Jim McEwen was appointed a Head Distiller and has produced the first spirit in 2001. Bruichladdich are the biggest employer on Islay with more than 100 people working across the business. Bruichladdich is currently run by Allan Logan (Distillery Manager) & Adam Hannett (Head Distiller & Assistant Manager) Adam was trained by Jim McEwen.
Bruichladdich currently source barley from 19 Islay farms, 6 mainland Scotland farms & 3 farms in Orkney. Bruichladdich produce its whisky from many different varieties of barley including Concerto, Propino, Laureate, Publican & Oxbridge & mature its whisky in 18 active warehouses containing around 74,000 casks – 50% Bruichladdich, 40% Port Charlotte & 10% Octomore.
Irish blended whiskey is defined by the Republic of Ireland's Department of Agriculture as a blend of two or more different whiskey types, either pot still, malt or grain whiskey.
Single Pot Still Whiskey on the other hand must contain a minimum of 30% each of malted and unmalted barley, giving the distiller some room for creativity when making his blend.
Single Malt whisky (or whiskey) tends to be drier in flavour, whereas single pot still has a richer texture, often with a light spiciness and apple or pear fruits.
Bernard & Rosemary Walsh founded the company of Walsh Whiskey in 1999, with strong family ties to barley growing & distilling.
Single Malt - Malt Whiskey from a single distillery, distilled from fermented mash made exclusively with malted grain.
Single Grain - Single grain whiskey from a single distillery, made from cereal grains other than just malted barley, including corn wheat & unmalted barley.
Single Pot Still - Single pot still is made by a single distillery from a mix of malted & unmalted barley distilled in a pot still.
Australian Single Malt Whiskies
Currently there are 36 distilleries in Tasmania with a total of 293 distilleries in Australia as of late 2020. The Nant estate was established in 1821, located 350 metres above sea level in the central highlands of Tasmania, the whisky is said to age in an environment with reduced air pressure which helps the spirit to move around the cask more freely. For over 200 years the Nant estate has been growing 100% Australian grown barley.
American Single Malt Whiskies
For centuries, single malt whiskey has been considered solely the domain of Scotland. Now, Westland is leading the emergence of an entirely new category of single malt whiskey. The Pacific Northwest climate is ideally suited for the production of single malt whiskey. Washington contains two of the best barley-growing regions in the world, and remarkable water is sourced from the Cascade Mountains. Westland is renowned for its 5 malt barley build in which drives its full flavour & character.
Blended Malt Whiskies
Naked Grouse is a blended malt, a whisky with fun written all over it. Scotch should be accessible to everyone, blended malts certainly do that, if that means striping off & jumping into a Loch to send a message then so be it.
Crafted from some of the world best single malts such as The Macallan, Highland park & Glenrothes, Naked Grouse is a blend of only single malts that are placed back into first fill sherry casks for a minimum of 6 months to harmonise.
Rum used to be categorised as Light, gold and dark, however, rums today are undergoing a complete reclassification as they explain cask types & move more toward the whiskey consumer. Premium rums are made to be consumed either straight or on the rocks whilst light rums are often preferred in cocktails.
Mount Gay Rum is the oldest documented rum in the world, with a deed that states on Feb 20, 1703 there was a working copper pot still located in St Lucy in the north of Barbados. Barbados is a tiny island located in the East of the Caribbean and is the home of rum.
The beverage has famous associations with the Royal Navy and pirates in movies. It has also served as a popular medium of economic exchange. The first distillation of rum in the Caribbean took place on the sugarcane plantations there in the 17th century. Plantation slaves discovered that molasses could be fermented into alcohol. Then, the distillation of these alcoholic by-products concentrated the alcohol, producing the first modern rums. Most rum is produced from molasses, which is made from sugarcane.
Yeast and water are added to the base ingredient to start the fermentation process. There is no standard method used for rum distillation. While some producers work in batches using pot stills, most rum production is done using column still distillation. The ageing is commonly performed in used bourbon casks but can be performed in other types of wooden casks or stainless steel tanks. The ageing process determines the colour of the rum. When aged in oak casks, it becomes darker, whereas rum aged in stainless steel tanks remains virtually colourless. Due to the tropical climate, common to most rum-producing areas, rum matures at a much higher rate than is typical for whisky or brandy. After ageing, rum is normally blended to ensure a consistent flavour, the final step in the rum-making process.
The grades and variations used to describe rum depend on the location where rum was produced.
Dark rums, also known by their colour, such as brown, black, or red rums, are classed a grade darker than gold rums. They are usually made from caramelized sugar or molasses. They are aged longer, in heavily charred barrels, giving them much stronger flavours than either light or gold rums.
Flavoured rums are infused with flavours of fruits, such as banana, mango, orange, pineapple, coconut, starfruit, or lime. These are generally less than 40% ABV (80 proof). They mostly serve to flavour similarly themed tropical drinks but are also often drunk neat or with ice.
Gold rums, also called “amber” rums, are medium-bodied rums that are generally aged. These gain their dark colour from ageing in wooden barrels. They have more flavour and are stronger-tasting than light rum.
Light rums, also referred to as “silver” or “white” rums, in general, having very light citrus flavours. Light rums are sometimes filtered after ageing to remove any colour. Their milder flavours make them popular for use in mixed drinks, as opposed to drinking them straight.
Premium rums, as with other sipping spirits such as Cognac and Scotch whisky, are in a special market category. These are generally from boutique brands that sell carefully produced and aged rums. They have more character and flavour than their “mixing” counterparts and are generally consumed straight.
Spiced rums obtain their flavours through the addition of spices and sometimes, caramel.
Most are darker in colour and based on gold rums. Among the spices added are cinnamon, rosemary, absinthe/aniseed, pepper, cloves, and cardamom.
Rum is extensively used in cocktails such as Cuba Libre, Daiquiri, Pina Colada and Mojito. It is used in a number of cooked dishes as a flavouring agent in items such as rum balls or rum cakes. It is commonly used to macerate fruit used in fruitcakes and is also used in marinades for some Caribbean dishes.
The red volcanic soils in the region of Tequila are well suited for growing the blue agave. Agave grows differently depending on the region. Blue agaves grown in the highlands Los Altos region are larger and sweeter in aroma and taste. Aside from its geographical distinction, tequila is differentiated from mezcal in that it is made only from blue agave. Tequila is served neat in Mexico and as a shot with salt and lime around the world. It must have between 35 and 55%ABV.
The spirit was first produced in the 16th century near the location of the city of Tequila, which was not officially established until 1666. A fermented beverage from the agave plant known as pulque was consumed in pre-Columbian central Mexico before European contact.
Sierra Tequila’s distillery was built on the grounds of a 200-year-old hacienda. The distillery is in the centre of Guadalajara, the capital of Jalisco with over 125 employees working at the distillery & over 200 in the fields.
Planting, tending, and harvesting the agave plant remains a manual effort, largely unchanged by modern farm machinery and relying on centuries-old know-how. Jimadores harvest the agave (pina) and transport it to ovens where they are slowly baked. The baked piñas are crushed by either a stone wheel or machine to produce aguamiel the sugar water from Agaves. The extracted agave juice is then poured into either large wooden or stainless steel vats for several days to ferment, resulting in wort with low alcohol content. The wort is distilled once to produce what is called ordinario and then a second time to produce clear “silver” tequila. Using at least two distillations is required by law. From there, the spirit is either bottled as silver tequila, or it is put into wooden barrels to age, where it develops a mellower flavour and amber colour.
Sierra Silver is Unaged and bottled directly after distillation. (aged up to 2 months). Sierra Reposado is matured for nine months in toasted oak barrels, which gives it its shimmering golden color. Reposado is the favorite variety of tequila among Mexicans, with more than 65% agave sugars contained within each bottle, this being more agave sugars than the industry average in the mixto tequila reposado category
A variety of cocktails are made with tequila, including the Tommy’s Margarita, Classic Margarita & Paloma. Margarita uses tequila, Cointreau, and lime juice though many variations exist. Also, a number of martini variants involve tequila, and a large number of drinks are made by adding fruit juice. These include the Tequila Sunrise and the Matador.
It is composed primarily of water and ethanol, but sometimes with traces of flavourings. Traditionally it is made by distilling the liquid from cereal grains or potatoes that have been fermented. Since the 1890s, standard vodkas have been 40% ABV.
Vodka is traditionally drunk “neat” or “straight”. It is also used in cocktails and mixed drinks, such as the Vodka Martini, Cosmopolitan, Vodka Tonic, Screwdriver, Greyhound, Black, or White Russian, Moscow Mule, Bloody Mary, and Caesar.
The gin production and consumption in England took off when King William banned all French imported liquors.
The government allowed unlicensed gin production & at the same time imposed a heavy tax on all other imported goods due to Catholic & Protestant battles. This created a market for poor-quality grain that was unfit for beer production and thousands of gin shops sprung up throughout England, a period commonly known as Gin Craze.
There are three types of Gin:
Compound Gin which is a macerated gin with no second distillation. A gin produced by steeping botanicals in ethyl alcohol only, without redistilling. Both natural and artificial flavouring may be used, with no restrictions on additives such as colours and sweeteners.
Distilled Gin which is re-distilled with botanicals after maceration. A gin which has been produced by steeping botanicals in ethyl alcohol and redistilling the resulting macerate.
London Dry which is the same as distilled Gin however less sweet. This is a variety of distilled gin made in a traditional still by re-distilling ethyl alcohol in the presence of all-natural flavourings used.
There are also five main styles of Gin: Genever, Plymouth, Old Tom, London dry and New Western.
Genever, also known as Jenever or Dutch Gin, Genever most closely resembles the style of gin produced in 17th century Holland and is distilled from malted grain mash similar to that used for whisky.
Plymouth Gin, unlike ‘London’ Dry Gin, refers to the location of production, as opposed to the style of gin. By law, Plymouth Gin must be produced within the city walls of Plymouth. Plymouth Gin has a strong naval heritage and has traditionally been popular with sailors.
Old Tom Gin refers to a style of slightly sweetened gins that were popular in 18th century England. In later years, the sugar syrup would occasionally be flavoured with orange flower water.
London Dry Gin was first created in the 19th century and has grown to become the most popular style of gin today. It should be noted that ‘London’ relates to the style of gin and not the geographical location of the distillery.
New Western or New Age Gin is the new wave of gins being released that focus less on the traditional juniper botanicals and more on unique or regionally-specific botanicals. Some US producers are attempting to have this recognized formally.
The Finsbury Distillery was founded in London by Joseph Bishop back in 1740. Today, as then, Finsbury is distilled using a unique mix of botanicals including juniper berries, exotic fruits, and a host of herbs and spices according to a complex method handed down from the 18th century. Truly, representative of the London Dry style preferred both internationally and in Great Britain, it is a particularly fine and restrained gin. Produced at the Langley Distillery near Birmingham, Finsbury draws on the pedigree of one of the oldest unbroken family involvements in gin distilling. Boasting a unique family recipe of esoteric botanicals with which this great London gin is created, Finsbury represents the accrued knowledge of 300 years’ experience.
The Botanist Gin is a progressive exploration of the botanical heritage of the Isle of Islay. 22 hand foraged local botanicals delicately combined with nine berries, barks, seeds, and peels during an achingly slow distillation.
For this, The Botanist use nine of the classic gin aromatics – Orris root, cassia bark, coriander seed, etc. – and augment these with a heady harvest of 22 local botanicals, hand-picked by expert foraging team from the windswept hills, peat bogs, and Atlantic shores of the Hebridean island of Islay. The result: a highly distinctive, complex, floral gin with an outstanding finish and impeccable provenance. In an age of re-badged industrial gins, the Botanist stands out as a truly artisanal, small-batch, hand-crafted labour of love and distiller’s art.
Martin Miller's Original Gin is a pot-distilled premium gin containing 10 botanicals, cucumber distillate & Icelandic Springwater. Two separate distillations are created & combined together to impart a unique balance of citrus and juniper, Martin Millers is 40% ABV.
The origins of brandy are tied to the development of distillation. While the process was known in classical times, it was not used for significant beverage production until the 15th century. In the early 16th century, French brandy helped kickstart the cross-Atlantic trade when it took over the central role of the Portuguese fortified wine due to its higher alcohol content and ease of shipping.
Brandy is distilled from the base wine in two phases. In the first, a large part of water and solids is removed from the base, obtaining so-called “low wine”, basically a concentrated wine with 28–30% ABV. In the second stage, low wine is distilled into brandy. It is usually produced in pot stills (batch distillation), but the column still can also be used for continuous distillation.
After distillation, the unaged brandy is placed into oak barrels to mature. Usually, brandies with a natural golden or brown colour are aged in oak casks (single-barrel aging).
After a period of aging, the mature brandy is mixed with distilled water to reduce alcohol concentration and bottled. Some brandies have caramel colour and sugar added to simulate the appearance of barrel aging.
Brandy is traditionally served at room temperature from a snifter, a wine glass, or a tulip glass. It is added to other beverages to make several cocktails; The Sour, the Brandy Alexander, the Sidecar, the Daisy, and the Old Fashioned. It is used as deglazing liquid in making pan sauces for steak and other meat. It is also used to create a more intense flavour in some soups. Brandy is a common flavouring in traditional foods such as Christmas cake, brandy butter, and Christmas pudding. Also, it is used to flambé dishes such as crêpe Suzette and cherries jubilee while serving.
St Remy is exclusively harvested from the most prestigious French vineyards such as Burgundy, Champagne, Rhône Valley, Languedoc Roussillon, Loire Valley, Bordeaux, and Beaujolais to get the perfect aromatic richness.
Each French wine’s unique features are genuinely revealed in the wines eaux-de-vie ensuring the smoothness and authenticity of St-Rémy.
Grappa is an alcoholic beverage: a fragrant, grape-based pomace brandy of Italian origin that contains 35 to 60% ABV. The flavour of grappa depends on the type and quality of the grapes used, as well as the specifics of the distillation process. Grappa is made by distilling the skins, pulp, seeds, and stems left over from winemaking after pressing the grapes. It was originally made to prevent waste by using these leftovers.
The Francoli family traces its Italian heritage back to Campodolcino, a small alpine village close to the Swiss border. Originally started by Luigi Guglielmo in 1875, the Francoli family has been officially distilling grappa for five generations, although the family tradition dates back even further. Luigi Francoli Grappa is renowned for being one of the smoothest Grappas produced in Italy. Since 1951, Distillerie Francoli has expanded into one of the most illustrious Grappa distilleries in Italy.
Cachaça is a distilled spirit made from fermented sugarcane juice and it is the most popular spirit among distilled alcoholic beverages in Brazil. Outside Brazil, cachaça is used almost exclusively as an ingredient in tropical drinks, with the caipirinha being the most famous cocktail.
Cachaça, like rum, has two varieties: unaged and aged. White cachaça is usually bottled immediately after distillation and tends to be cheaper. It is often used as an ingredient in caipirinha and other mixed beverages. Dark cachaça, usually seen as the “premium” variety, is aged in wood barrels and is meant to be drunk neat.
Cana Rio Cachaça comes from the house of Fazenda Soledade in Rio state, a Brazilian family enterprise established in 1827, and has been producing premium cachaça ever since. Only fresh sugar cane juice is used for making Canario Cachaça. For the distillation process, the heart of the fresh, green sugar cane - the best and crucial part of the plant - is carefully separated from the rest before being pressed within 24 hours to produce fresh sugar cane juice, which is first fermented and then distilled. The water used for this comes from a mountain spring, which is constantly monitored to preserve its pure, clear and soft quality.
The result is the 40% vol. alcohol Canario Cachaça, characterised by a tangy-fresh, restrained sugar cane note and its mild, pure and harmonious flavour.