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Wood work... how distillers changed their barrel policy

01-03-2010 | Category: Spirits & Cocktails Opinions

Improved wood management among distillers has had a big impact on quality in recent years. Dave Broom takes us into the mysterious world of charring, first-fill and Quercus alba to tell us how they’ve done it

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Still Life: Dave Broom examines American whiskey's struggles in the UK market

01-03-2010 | Category: Whisky / Whiskey Opinions

Pondering some of the smaller mysteries in life, Dave Broom attempts to solve the thorny problem of American whiskey in the UK and its relative unpopularity beyond ‘Jackncoke’

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Top Guyana : Putting the Caribbean country back on the rum-lover's map

01-03-2010 | Category: South America Rum & Cachaca Opinions

The time has come to put Guyana firmly back on the rum-lover’s map, says Alice Lascelles, as she heads off to South America in search of adventure

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Soul singers... bartenders should learn to communicate their passion

01-03-2010 | Category: Spirits & Cocktails Opinions

It’s time to ditch the jargon, and start speaking from the heart, says Nick Wykes

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Once upon a time in Mexico: The origin of the Margarita

01-03-2010 | Category: Tequila Tastings Opinions

Once upon a time in Mexico... someone invented the Margarita. Or did they? Naren Young attempts to untangle the history of this iconic tequila cocktail and trawls the world for modern spins on an international bestseller

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In the shaker: Getting creative with cocktails

11-02-2010 | Category: Spirits & Cocktails Opinions Wines

Zany Wine House... Wine-based cocktails

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Wacky rices: a new Sake Sommelier course

11-02-2010 | Category: Spirits & Cocktails Opinions Business Japan

The Sake Sommelier Association has just launched its first course for aspiring saké sommeliers. Richard Woodard wrestles with hunchbacks, soy sauce and Japanese symbols to give it a taste-drive

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I like big butts: The finest Sherry cocktails

11-02-2010 | Category: Spirits & Cocktails Spain Opinions Sherry

The bartenders of old were fully aware of sherry’s huge potential as a cocktail ingredient. Time, says Naren Young, that you let Jerez’s finest shake its bounty once again

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Top of the class: Cocktail masterclasses can be a real money-spinner

11-02-2010 | Category: Spirits & Cocktails Opinions Business

Cocktail masterclasses can be a great extra money-spinner – and a clever means of inspiring both new-found respect and discernment among your customers. So sit up, pay attention, and 50 lines for anyone who interrupts, says masterclass guru Alex Kammerling

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Gold out the barrel: Small Batch Bourbons

10-02-2010 | Category: Opinions Bourbon

Single barrel and small batch are bourbon’s way of fighting off super-premium competition from other spirits categories. Good ol’ boy Dominic Roskrow goes behind the hype to tell you how to get the most out of Kentucky’s finest

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In the line of fire - Shots are taking the brunt of 'binge-drinking' fears

05-02-2010 | Category: Spirits & Cocktails Opinions

In today’s temperance-style war against binge drinking, shots and shooters are caught in the firing line. Gregor de Gruyther jangles his spurs, lights a cheroot and joins the gunfight

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The Rotary Club: A machine that can make any flavoured vodka instantly

05-02-2010 | Category: Vodka Opinions

The amazing machine at the back of London’s Harvey Nichols Stoli bar is rewriting the mixology rule book. Chris Losh goes on the trail of the mince pie martini

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The Vodka Revolution: Vodka's popularity is growing

04-02-2010 | Category: Vodka Opinions

Once regarded as unfashionable and unsophisticated, Eastern European vodkas are now winning the hearts of vodka drinkers in search of a bit more taste and intrigue. Geraldine Coates reports on their growing popularity

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Step away from the lime, sir... Exploring the possibilities of cachaca

29-01-2010 | Category: Rum & Cachaca Opinions

Cachaça is a must-stock for any serious bar, but isn’t it time to move the spirit away from making endless caipirinhas? Nushi Surtani packs her G-string and sambas off to São Paulo to find out what the boys from Brazil do with their national spirit

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The Good The Bad & The Agave: Gregor de Gruther On Tequila

28-01-2010 | Category: Tequila Opinions

Whether he’s wrestling with spiky leaves or laughing at wrestlers, Imbibe’s bartender-at-large, Gregor de Gruyther, finds plenty to whet his appetite – and his back bar – on his maiden trip to Mexico to learn about all things tequila

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