Champagne of the Week – Louis Roederer Cristal 2008

WORDS KEN GARGETT Don’t let anyone tell you differently. 2008 is a truly great vintage for Champagne. Some have claimed it is the best since 1996, or even 1990. It might even surpass those two and challenge the brilliant 1988. Like the great ’88, which snuck under the radar in its youth, this is a…

HOW TO: Cafe Cerise

If you like the Espresso Martini, you will love the Cafe Cerise. With only four simple ingredients including the Nitro coffee, this coffee cocktail will really impress your guests as your next dinner party. Glass: Wine glass Ingredients: 10ml MONIN Cherry 40ml Vermouth 10ml Vodka Top with Nitro Coffee Method: All ingredients to mixing glass…

‘Champagne of the Week’ – Bollinger Grand Année 2008

WORDS KEN GARGETT The evidence has been building for some time. 2008 is one of the greatest vintages seen in Champagne for many years. Aficionados will argue over just where it fits in the overall scale of things, and which compare, but for me, it looks like it might be the best since the scintillating…

HOW TO: Rhubarb Ramos

SPONSORED POST Here’s some inspiration for a twist on the classic Ramos Gin Fizz. Did you know, the Ramos Gin Fizz was created in 1888 by Henry Charles Ramos at his bar the Imperial Cabinet Saloon on Gravier Street in New Orleans. Originally called the New Orleans Fizz, it is one of the cities most popular drinks. This cocktail is…

Spirit of the Week – Wolfburn Distillery ‘Langskip’ Single Malt

WORDS KEN GARGETT The emergence of a new Scottish distillery, even if it is a resurrection of an old one, will always attract attention, especially when they hit the ground with an array of cracking malts and make a real splash on the show circuit. The original Wolfburn Distillery was founded back in 1821 but,…

Wine of the Week – Shaw and Smith Sauvignon Blanc 2019

WORDS KEN GARGETT It seems like yesterday that the news of Michael Hill Smith and Martin Shaw, winemaker cousins, commencing their own operation in the Adelaide Hills hit the front page. Terrifyingly, it was 30 years ago and the wines to celebrate that milestone have just landed. Back in 1989, Michael had just become the…

Two Tequilas You Need to Try

WORDS KEN GARGETT Tepid as rain off a rusty roof. One of my more favoured descriptions of tequila. Fair to say that I am perhaps not the most avid fan of this Mexican spirit. And yes, a bad experience, about which nothing should be put in print. The Eagles’ ‘Tequila Sunrise’ is not my favourite…

Wine of the Week – Craggy Range ‘Le Sol’ Syrah 2016

Craggy Range, in the Gimblett Gravels region of Hawkes Bay on the east coast of New Zealand’s North Island, is one of that country’s premium wine producers. What is a little bit different about Craggy is that, although they make very fine examples of both, they have not built their reputation on the leading Kiwi varieties of Sauvignon Blanc…

Cocktails in a Can

Crafting cocktails at home has never been so convenient. The newly formed cocktail innovation company Curatif have created two canned cocktails. Joining forces with leading craft distilleries, Four Pillars Gin and Archie Rose Distilling Co., they have developed – the Four Pillars Negroni and Archie Rose Espresso Martini. Curatif has perfected the flavours and textures,…

Top Five You Need to Try – Chateau la Nerthe

WORDS KEN GARGETT Fans of fine Rhone wines will be delighted to learn that the highly respected Chateauneuf producer, Chateau Le Nerthe, has returned to our shores after several years absence. Commercial director, Christophe Bristiel, who took over the role from his father a decade ago, was in town to show that the wines have…