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Essential Booze

October 15, 2020

Whilst Gin will always be our first love,  there’s a lot of brilliant Australian booze out there that simply doesn’t get enough praise at all.

When at home entertaining, don’t be that person with the liquor cabinet full of Campari, Kahlua and Frangelico… Invest in quality booze from quality purveyors – it’s critical and we’re embarrassed for you if that is the extent of your liquor cabinet.

Here are our favourites:

Marionette Dry Cassis

Made from Tasmanian blackcurrants, this is essentially Ribena for grown-ups! It’s tarter than traditional cassis and delivers a juicy punch of ripe blackcurrants with half the sugar content of the French original. We know it’s not raspberry, but we love this in our Clover Club cocktail.

Marionette also makes an Amaretto to die for. Made from almonds from a family farm on the Murray and macerated with a lick of golden syrup and a dash of salt. Marzipan characters of Goulburn Valley apricot kernels, held over from Marionette Apricot Brandy and Muscat from Australia’s fortified-wine heartland Rutherglen rounds out this classic cocktail staple.

We are obsessed – and it goes perfectly in a Gin Amaretto Sour!

White Possum Naked Dark Cacao

Dark and delicious chocolatey goodness – nuff said! Well, maybe not, because there is so much more to this bottle of heaven. This is a bittersweet concoction of organic fermented cacao, a selection of earthy roots and a good measure of tangy yet floral lilly pillies.

You’ll get generous wafts of dark chocolate interlaced with floral notes and hints of raisins and golden syrup. We love this in our Espresso Martini’s.

Imperial Measures Distilling Ruby Bitter ‘Aperitif’

IMD is creating magical stuff, but this is something else. It’s their take on an Amaro (you know, that stuff you put in a Negroni?). Consisting of 12 interwoven botanicals creating a complex bitter-sweet balance. Ruby Red Grapefruit, Gentian, Rhubarb and Ginseng harmonise to offer an earthy citrus-driven palate.

Time to toss out your Campari and try this in your Negroni – you can thank us later.

Regal Rogue Daring Dry Vermouth

I have a Gin friend who once told me about a handsome bloke who invited her back to his place for a nightcap, claiming he made the best Martinis in town. Being a Gin-thusiast, she agreed to join him. It wasn’t until she saw him reach for a half-empty, dusty and unrefrigerated bottle of Cinzano. Needless to say, she had ‘one of those emergency calls from a friend who’s cat had gone missing’ and she left in a flash.

A Martini is only as good as its Vermouth. It’s the ultimate cocktail builder and at its best, it’s delightful to sip on its own, naked.

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