Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The Liquorists Gincident

Here's a list of things I love...

Eye contact with other peoples' dogs
Videogames from the nineties
Wild Turkey bourbon
The films of Steven Seagal
Cheese & onion crinkle mini cheddars
Listening to Stewart Lee
Meat & Potato pie with mushy peas and gravy
Thinking about whether or not Walter White is a bad person
Henderson's Relish
Living in Levenshulme
Ham salad sandwiches with salad cream, beetroot and boiled egg
Attempting to have reasonable conversations with lunatics on Twitter
Chip butties with chinese curry sauce and loads of vinegar
Remembering a time when I was immune to hangovers
Eating too much Red Velvet Cake
Over researching where I'm going to eat when I go on holiday
Watching people cook food before I eat it
Poking fun at Jamie Oliver while also admiring him
Ordering way too much food in restaurants
Viennese fingers
Eating so much food that I need to go and have a lay down
Croissants in France
The feeling after you've eaten too much wasabi and the pain fades away
Pabst Blue Ribon despite my allergy to it and the fact that it doesn't taste that nice
When genuinely nice, happy people serve me in a restaurant

That's it.  Everything I love.  No wait, I also love getting on a boat in the sunshine and drinking gin with The Liquorists.

We've had past successes with The Liquorists.  They absolutely know what they are doing in the business of helping punters explore premium cocktails and liquor whilst also having a great time.  It was an easy decision when they asked us to come along to their Gincident boat trip.  The basic gist is that during a delightful barge trip from Deansgate locks to Trafford and back you get to sample 5 gins, 5 gin cocktails, hear the history of gin and wolf down some fodder.

If the trail hadn't started with a classic G&T I'm not quite sure what would have happened, possibly a Wild West style bar room brawl.  Luckily that was the first drink plopped in to our sweaty mitts.  Luckily it was also brilliant as they had used Martin Miller's gin combined with Fever Tree tonic.  QUALITY GIN + QUALITY TONIC = SHIT HOT G&T.  You might think that the second part of that equation is not quite as important as the first half but let me tell you that if I think of the top three G&Ts I've ever had in my life I might not be able to tell you which gins they were but I can tell you every single one of them had Fever Tree tonic in them.  Lovely stuff.

Let's have a chat about this fodder now.  I've always been impressed by the food they knock out back at 22 Redbank HQ either pre or post trail and so I was quite excited to get a greater selection from their in house (boat) chefs.  I was not disappointed.  The juniper cured salmon was a triumph, so good Jules procured another plate from the table next to us (there was 2 of them and 6 of us).  I could have happily stuck my face in the couscous with ham hock had it not been such a civilised atmosphere (at that moment, later on it might have gone down OK).

Back to the booze, first cocktail up was Hogarth's Fizz.  Yep, this one worked a treat.  A fizzy, syrupy glass which reminded us of the Peruvian's favourite cocktail Pisco Sour in texture featuring one of our trusty favourite gins Plymouth.  At this point I would say we were feeling refreshed and full of food as well as the spirit of adventure.

A short history lesson about deadly diseases and why gin and tonics saved the humans from certain extinction (no jokes) and we were looking down the barrel of our next cocktail named Message Gin A Bottle (if you don't get the joke say it again in your head and think of Sting).  So the first thing to say about this bad boy is that they had gone to some trouble to create it which included purchasing the equipment needed to produce and bottle their own home made soft drinks.  Even without the added Martin Miller's gin I'm sure their ginger beer would have been a winner.  With the gin you've got a little bottle of zing.  Served in a little brown paper bag it also instils in you a sense that it's okay to get a bit raucous...

From a mentality of sitting on a park bench drinking out of a brown paper bag to a delightful cocktail called Sitting In An English Garden.  Incorporating Bloom Gin alongside an elderflower version of the Fever Tree tonic we mentioned above.  Much like many gin cocktails this was light and refreshing which is good because it leaves you feeling light and refreshed but also bad because it in the pursuit of refreshment you could easily knock back pint after pint of this business.

From there we went on to Blossom Will Be which was easy on the eye and easy on the palate.  A solid infusion of white wine, mint syrup, lime juice and G'Vine Gin.  It's a cocktail that a mum would like, and me, I liked it too but mums would definitely like it.  This is the cocktail you should roll out the first time the lady friend's parents come round for a bite to eat.  This is the cocktail that would put you in good stead with your future mother in law.

The next cocktail was really the main event for us.  Liquorists crew member Jamie Jones was recently crowned the world's best gin bartender.  Say that again out loud, this man is the king of gin.  There is no other man or woman on this planet who can bend gin to their will as skilfully.  Therefore I was quite excited to taste a version of the cocktail that won him that honour called La Floraison D'Etre.  It was a very lovely cocktail which really tasted like no other I'd experienced before, this was probably something to do with the quite exotic ingredients of olive oil and pink peppercorns combined with a variant of the G'Vine Gin we had imbibed previously.  It was sumptuous.

As always when you go out with the Liquorists you are guaranteed a few things.  You will have a good time.  You will experience a range of premium spirits.  You will learn something (if you want to).  You will not suffer a hangover.  Once again they delivered on all of the above.

The Gincident runs until the 7th September and we would hardily recommend that you get yourself booked on.

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