Naturbrennerei Engel Rote Beete & Oaxaca Innside

The district of Rottal-Inn in Lower Bavaria is an unquestionably attractive region for the inclined spirits enthusiast. That’s where you’ll find the Engel Naturbrennerei (natural distillery), which is run by Austrian-born Manuel Engel. In addition to eau-de-vies (in Germany these are differentiated in Brände and Geiste) liqueurs and gin, non-alcoholic aperitifs are also produced there and offered for purchase. Manuel Engel relies as far as possible on the regional card and produces his products from fruit and vegetables from the region, although raw materials from Austria, Italy and southern France are also used. In my article today, I would also like to approach one of his products – and a very exciting one to be honest. Read More

Starward Left-Field & Starberry Root

Recently, I had the honor of participating in an online launch event for a single malt whisky. However, this was not simply a presentation of a spirit, but the event also offered the opportunity to exchange ideas with David “Dave” Vitale, the founder of the Australian Starward Distillery, about his new product, the Starward Left-Field Single Malt Whisky, and to listen to his thoughts on the product. However, that was not everything. Read More

Lantenhammer Williams, Lantenhammer Waldhimbeer and two cocktail ideas

Anyone who has been reading this blog for years will have noticed that I have repeatedly spoken out in favor of the diverse possibilities and great potential of fruit eau-de-vies (in German: Brände & Geiste) behind the bar. And I’m not just saying that, I really mean it, because the most widespread branch of the distiller’s craft in Germany often has a lot of innovation to offer (in addition to tradition, of course). Moreover, their products are usually of high quality. And indeed, my personal first “spirits tasting” was one that was closely linked to fruit eau-de-vie. Read More

Gin 8 & Hops Die Last

It’s been a long time since I wrote about a gin here on the blog whose botanicals included hops. And until today, hops are not really a common ingredient in the production of a gin, although I have quite positive memories of my first experience of this kind. Today again, I have a gin in front of me that states already unmistakable on the bottle itself: I am a hop gin! A German hop gin which is made with Bitburger Siegelhopfen to be precise.

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Aluna Coconut Rum & Paradise Flip

Long ago – back then this blog was still very young – I wrote about a rum infused with pineapple and thus introduced the category of flavoured rums as a topic here early on. Since then, some spiced rums have been reviewed, various Falernums (or Falerna, whatever) and some sweet rums, where one may well argue about the extent to which they are not actually spiced or flavoured rums as well. What I have not yet discussed here, however, is a flavoured rum specifically flavoured with coconut. And that’s exactly what I’d like to finally do. Read More

Plantation Barbados 2011 & Flor de Barbados

Today I am pleased to be able to once again taste a rum from the Plantation series and use it in a drink. It is the Plantation Barbados 2011, which comes as a One-Time Limited Edition and there are only 24 casks from which this rum was filled into bottles. Since I have written about Plantation Rums very often in the past and have already gone into the background of the brand several times, I want to go directly into medias res today. Read More

Rhum J.M VSOP & The Trénelle Cocktail

I simply can’t deny a certain, personal pleasant anticipation with some types of spirits. Of course, I know what I like. Nevertheless, I always try to pursue a review approach striving for objectivity, which I will also not give up today. That said, I really do like Rhum Agricole downright, I’ve tried a few products from the manufacturer that today’s Rhum Agricole comes from so far – and I’ve liked them. It would be really surprising now if it would be a flop. But well, you never know. Read More

Radius Dild Akvavit & the Dilly-Dally Cocktail

In all my years of blogging, I have of course also tried rather odd or quirky spirits. Most of the time they belong to categories far away from what you’re used to (like baijiu for example), but that’s not necessarily the case, as today’s article will surely show. Because for the bottle in focus today, a visit to a country neighbouring Germany is enough: Denmark. Read More

Bumbu (Spiced) Rum & 100 Year Old Cigar

Yes, there are those articles that you go into with mixed feelings. And today, exactly this is the case because it was hardly possible for me in advance not to hear some of the echo calls that the two bottles I’d like to review today have triggered. In some rum forums, both bottles are highly praised – especially by sweet rum drinkers, others see them rather critically and still others have published damning reviews. I am talking about the Bumbu (Spiced) Rum. Read More

Santo Grau Cachaça & The Caneflower Cocktail

And again, today it will be about Cachaça. In my last article, I already referred to the differences between the Cachaça Espírito de Minas and the Magnífica de Faria Cachaça (which I reviewed before this one), but if you missed all that, I recommend you take a look at the two articles here. Because when I will dedicate myself in the following to the Cachaça Santo Grau, cross-references will appear there again, which will show a comparison to the other two Cachaças. But one after the other! Read More

Cachaça Espírito de Minas & Macunaíma

Today I will continue with another Cachaça. If you should have opened this article completely isolated and do not know what continues here, I want to refer briefly to my last article about the Magnífica de Faria Cachaça. There I briefly announced that I wanted to devote myself more closely to some cachaças, which I will do now. If you are looking for basic information about cachaça, you should also have a look at this article. However, let’s talk about today’s bottle: the Cachaça Espírito de Minas. Read More

Magnífica de Faria Cachaça & The Apotekose Cocktail

Finally, the time has come again and I dedicate myself to a topic I wanted to write about for quite a time now: it’s about Cachaça! The “Brazilian rum”, which actually is not rum (although it is not so far from it), enjoys (to my great satisfaction) a certain and increasing popularity in Europe and ultimately also in Germany. However, of course there is still a lot of room for improvement, because mostly it is still the old top dog Pitú, which can be found in the spirit assortment of most bars (which makes it more or less the counterpart of the famous tequila with the red plastic hat in its segment). If I can help to change that even further with my article, all the better. Read More

Normindia Gin & The Diki Diki Gin Gin Cocktail

Who is familiar with this blog will probably also know the name Coquerel. Because in the distillery Coquerel some really excellent Calvados are made, which I have reviewed not so long ago and also tested for their bar potential. Now I have but again two bottles from the distillery Coquerel in front of me, however you won’t find this name prominently on the label. Instead, there is the title Normindia. Read More

Urban Gardini – a Martini twist for the modern gardener

I have to start this article with a confession: I’m a big fan of mate lemonade – more precisely the classic, Club Mate, which is very famous here in Germany (most other manufacturers are simply too sweet for me). And of course I know about the evolution from the so called “hacker’s soda” to “hipster’s soda” and what other epithets there might be for this very polarizing drink. I am convinced that part of the polarization is simply caused by the slightly bitter, earthy taste, which one would not expect in a lemonade. However, for anyone who has tried real mate tea, the note in a bottle of Club Mate can at best be described as a nuance. Anyway, today I tried again to use mate flavor as a cocktail component. Read More

Chairman’s Reserve Legacy & the Luau Grog

It is not without reason that Saint Lucia Distillers is always written in the plural. Even if the phrase “Saint Lucia Distillery” can also be found throughout the web, it is actually the Distillers, because it is a distillery merged of the two former distilleries Dennery Factory and Geest. The merging took place in 1972. Both distilleries had been in existence since the 1800s, or even before in the case of Geest Distillery. And if the name should sound familiar to readers of this blog, it may be because the Admiral Rodney Rum is also made there. Read More

CO’PS Kaffee-Kolanuss-Likör & the Cop Chiller Cocktail

It’s not so long ago that I wrote about a coffee liqueur here. And today the focus is again on one, but this time not from the other side of the world, but from the capital Berlin. It is created by Finn and Jan, two chefs who felt obliged to create their own coffee liqueur based on natural ingredients, which should not only act as ingredient for mixed drinks, but also be a flavorful wake-up call as a neat liqueur. The result is CO’PS Kaffee-Kolanuss-Likör (Coffee Cola Nut Liqueur). Read More

18 US craft distillers introduce themselves

A few weeks ago, I received a package with 18 small samples of spirits in a very attractive presentation. Behind this marketing offensive is the American spirits umbrella organization DISCUS (Distilled Spirits Council of the United States), which wants to promote various spirits from small American craft distillers on the European market. And since I like the idea and am in principle a friend of maximum diversity, I would like to write a small article about it here, too. Read More

Mount Rigi & Mountain Whisper

In the Swiss distillery Distillerie Mount Rigi of the 30,000-inhabitant city of Zug in the canton of the same name, no big words are spared. On the website it says: “Finest Swiss Alpine aromas, boldly and freshly embellished with pure Kirsch. Mount Rigi goes wonderfully with tonic water, together with beer, spritzed on rosé wine, as a cocktail mixer or simply pure on the rocks. Always different in taste and aroma, the Flavor of the Alps is an enrichment to the purist Kirsch – Mount Rigi is the new Swiss aperitif”. That’s what I’d call a self-confident announcement. Read More

From the Brew Kettle: Strandhase Pale Ale & Strandhase Lager

I have to admit: it has been a really long time since I wrote my last article about beer here. But instead of justifying this time span, I’d rather do something about it and publish another beer article. The journey leads me to a beach in Düsseldorf. The Stadtstrand (city beach) Düsseldorf, to be precise. Because there you can buy the Strandhase Pale Ale and the Strandhase Lager (Strandhase means as much as beach bunny), which are the names of today’s bottles. Read More

El Rayo Tequila – made for Tequila & Tonics

It’s been quite a while (almost 4 years) since I mentioned a Tequila & Tonic highball in my article about the Spiced TNT Cocktail (the Spiced TNT is basically nothing else but an upgraded version of this highball or long drink). At that time, Tequila and Mezcal was discussed everywhere as the new thing in the (European). And indeed Tequila and Mezcal have become more popular and even better known. Even if they did not become as popular as some expected, above all, the quality awareness has increased a lot. Read More

La Hechicera Serie Experimental No.2 & Plátano de la Bodega

Today I have a special bottle in focus, which only recently saw the light of day. I was very excited in advance, because I could not really imagine in which direction it would go in terms of taste. My expectations oscillated somewhere between delicious and terrible, which is simply because infused rum doesn’t always have to lead to a delightful result – and especially in combination with bananas, spirits quite often drift off into unpleasant realms. Today we are talking about the La Hechicera Serie Experimental No.2. Read More

Starward Two Fold & Robby goes to Sydney

In a recent article I wrote about a really remarkable coffee liqueur from Australia. The fact that this liqueur comes from Australia didn’t make me sit up and take notice – I just accepted it. Now that the bottle I want to review today also comes from Down Under is simply a coincidence. Although perhaps one that shows: You’d better have Australian spirits on your future lists. Read More

Siglo Cero Pox and the Pox Negroni

Today it is all about liquid Mayan medicine! Yes, you’ve read correctly, we are dealing with a very unusual distillate from Mexico, which means as much “medicine”. We are talking about Pox (spoken: Posh), a schnapps from Mexico distilled from yellow, red, black and white corn, wheat and sugar cane. In fact, I had never heard of such a distillate before writing this review – and I’m certainly not alone in this. Read More

Scheibel Premium Plus Ingwer Royal – Gingergold & White Ginger Negroni

Ginger spirits are not necessarily at the top of a typical bar repertoire list. Nevertheless, you will come across recipes that call for them from time to time. Especially the King’s Ginger, produced by Berry Bros. & Rudd, has been the supposedly most common ginger-based liqueur for many years. Ultimately, however, there are not only liqueurs, but also ginger eau-de-vies or – in the broadest sense – ginger spirits, which all differ from each other. And today I would like to take a closer look at a very interesting ginger spirit from Scheibel, which is limited to 2000 bottles. Read More

Mr. Black Cold Brew Coffee Liqueur & Trinidad Cocktail

Coffee liqueurs are indeed a real phenomenon (for me personally, they are in fact a phenomenon in multiple ways)! In general, it must be stated that they have become a permanent element behind every bar and hardly anyone who really wants to build up a serious stock of bar ingredients can avoid a coffee liqueur. Considering this fact, it is even more astonishing that usually only a few brands are mentioned in this context, especially Kahlua from Mexico, which is probably best known for its part in a White Russian. However, the world has also long since started moving in the coffee liqueur segment. Read More

Ginraw Barcelona Gastronomic Gin & Maretini

Just recently, I started an article about a bottle of gin with some thoughts about bottle designs. And actually this seemed quite natural considering the really nice outward appearance of the Lind & Lime Gin. However, also today I could start my article with very similar words, because once again I have a gin bottle in front of me that stands out without any doubt. In view of the really large and competitive gin market, which is entered by new bottlings on an almost daily basis, the design, which has always been not insignificant from a salesman’s point of view, seems to gain even more importance. Read More