Archive | February, 2017

Whisky Tasting at Milroys of Soho with The Quarry

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Whisky Tasting at Milroys of Soho with The Quarry

Posted on 22 February 2017 by Chris Ford

In the office here we love whisky and we love pretty much anything HBO does.
From the Sopranos to Game of Thrones and The Wire they know how to put together a drama so we of course said a big YES PLEASE when HBO invited us down to whisky bar Milroy’s of Soho for a evening of whisky tasting to celebrate the DVD / Blu-Ray release of HBO’s latest show Quarry.

You may ask what does this have to do with the show? Well the main character, a Vietnam vet, is rather partial to a drop hence the theme of the evening.
Milroy’s of Soho was founded over fifty years ago by John ‘Jack’ Milroy in 1964. Now it’s owned and run by whisky lover Martyn Simpson, who would be our guide for the evening ahead.
I confess I’m no expert in whisky. I like what I like and am constantly learning, So I think what I liked most about Martyn’s approach to the tasting was he made clear there was no right or wrong answer for what makes a great whisky – it’s all down to personal taste.
He for example said he doesn’t get on with the Jack Daniels range which I have always quite liked, especially the Single Barrel, our tastes are constantly developing and changing. Martyn himself started off drinking Bells in his youth.

So here’s everything we tried:
Kavalan, a port cask finished single malt from Taiwan (the closest Martyn could get to Vietnam explaining that while Vietnam do make whisky it really isn’t very good!)
Next we moved on to Kentucky USA via Blanton’s single barrel bourbon, notable by the model horse on the bottle cap, because the distillery is next to a racecourse.
Then to the familiar grounds of Scotland we tried the Glenfiddich 21 Year Old Gran Reserva – a notable change of pace from the bourbon and most enjoyable it was too. I think this was my second favourite of the evening.
European Bourbon Rye Association – cask strength, single barrel bourbon rye, this one was a bit too strong for me, maybe one day I will grow to appreciate it but I think most of the room was in agreement with me.
We finished back in Kentucky with a with a sour mash from Michter’s called, possibly my favourite of the evening. In fact I think I shall be seeking out a bottle of this one!

If you are looking to experience something like this yourself Milroy’s have regular tastings in their shop upstairs and also the excellent basement bar where this tasting took place. The staff are all very knowledgeable and have a passion for what they do, a rare thing indeed.

Milroys of Soho can be found at 3 Greek St, Soho, London W1D 4NX
A bit about Quarry

Quarry stars Logan Marshall-Green as Max Conway is a disillusioned Vietnam War veteran who returns home to Memphis in 1972, only to find rejection by his loved ones and demonised by the public. With whisky only friend he is approached by a mysterious man known only as The Broker, he is drawn into a network of killing and corruption that spans the length of the Mississippi River.

Quarry is out now on DVD and Blu-Ray and having watched it this weekend I can thoroughly recommend it.

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New Trailer for ‘MINE’ released

New Trailer for ‘MINE’ released

Posted on 17 February 2017 by Chris Ford

The trailer for the new Armie hammer movie ‘MINE’ has just dropped and it looks like a must see , check it out ..

After an assassination attempt goes wrong, Sergeant Mike Stevens (Armie Hammer, Nocturnal Animals, The Man from U.N.C.L.E) finds himself stranded in a sub-Saharan desert in the middle of a mine field. Tired, alone, and bereft of all resources, Mike must battle his inner psychosis and draw on every part of his military training to face the ultimate test of survival.

MINE is a must-watch for all action thriller fans and is released on BD, DVD and Digital Download from 17th April 2017. Pre-order now:

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A Beery Australia Day

A Beery Australia Day

Posted on 16 February 2017 by Chris Ford

I think I first heard of Australia Day a few years ago when I happened to be in the local pub on the 26th January and Fosters were offering the glory of a corked hat in exchange for the purchase of some of their bland, uninteresting lager that no-one in Australia actually drinks (or, I’m sure, wears those hats)

So with the above taken into account, I confess I’ve never been that bothered about Australia Day. But last week Honest Brew shot me over an email asking if I wanted to try some Australian beer in celebration of said holiday?  Well I think you know what I said!

Fosters, XXXX and VB being my only real past ventures into the beer of Australia it’s been an interesting experience.  Honest Brew offer a mixed case of 12 beer freshly off the plane from Down Under (via their warehouse) to your door at £41.90. Quite reasonable, considering how far they have traveled.

Highlights from the case for me are the Pirate Life IPA which comes in at a nice strong 6.8% reminding me of what Punk IPA once was. Honorable mentions also go to the Stone & Wood range which I’m seeing more and more over London. Only last night I enjoyed a pint of their pale ale in the Draft House in Old Street,  much to my delight.

So if you are looking to try the tinnie to celebrate Australia Day, I can thoroughly recommend this case from Honest Brew. And their cases in general – as who can really argue with good beer delivered to your door?


Australia Day takes place this year and every year on the 26th February , get your Honest Brew case here.


*Disclaimer – Honest Brew did send me some free beer but my love of beer and opinions are my own.


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Stage V Clinger Cigar Holders

Stage V Clinger Cigar Holders

Posted on 15 February 2017 by Chris Ford

The simplest designs often solve the most frustrating problems and one problem I’m sure every cigar smoker like me has had is your fine Habano rolling around or blowing off the table when you rest it in between puffs.

this problem has often plagued me when I’m sitting in a pub beer garden here in London, these places dont tend to have ashtray with deep enough grooves to accommodate the average cigar and the result means I’m always at risk of  losing it and as we know cigars arent cheap!

Often when hunting for a solution to a problem I find someone has already  done the work for me and I’m very pleased to say the Stage V Clinger Cigar Holder does so perfectly.

The clinger does exactly that, it clings to any metal surface (in my case the leg of the pub table) with strong magnets and the slightly flexible v-shaped prongs hold your cigar in place perfectly.  What if your table doesnt have a metal surface I hear you ask?  fear not as the clinger also comes with a handy velcro strap meaning you really can set this up anywhere thus earning a coveted spot in my work bag along with my lighter and cigar caddy.

For more info on the Stage V Clinger and to purchase head over to


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Goose Island  Announce 312 Day

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Goose Island Announce 312 Day

Posted on 14 February 2017 by Chris Ford

Back for the second year in London, beer lovers get your credit cards at the ready as Chicago based brewers Goose Island have announced details of their 2017 312 Day.

Goose Island 312 Day

Beer lovers will get the chance to try some of Goose Island’s best beers including 312 Urban Wheat Ale, which is inspired by and named after the city of Chicago’s dialing codeOther Goose Island classics like Honkers Ale, Green Line and Goose IPA will also form part of the 312 Day beer line-up. Howard’s Meat Co., whose background is rooted in the smoking pits of Austin Texas, will create a one-of-a-kind BBQ brunch specially crafted to pair with the beers.

312 Day has been held in Goose Island’s native Chicago for five years and is designed to celebrate 312 Urban Wheat Ale – inspired by the city’s dialing code (312) and for the second year running Goose Island bring the event to Londons Shoreditch.

As well as beer and food revelers will be entertained by music from the fantastic Frank Turner as well as support from one-man blues band Son of Dave and Brixton brass 8-piece, Brasstermind.

The event takes place on Sunday 12th March and tickets are priced at £10 and are on sale now from Eventbrite. All ticketholders must be over 18.

Goose Island 312 Day

Each ticket-holder will be granted one complimentary glass of Goose Island 312 Urban Wheat Ale upon entrance. Doors will open at 2pm and will close at 7pm.


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Three Valentines Day cocktails

Three Valentines Day cocktails

Posted on 09 February 2017 by Chris Ford

Yes men that day is fast approaching and you need to be prepared! This year we thought we would do something a bit different and create three Valentines cocktails for you to enjoy with that special someone in your life or if you are single why not treat yourself and your mates!

The Clover Club

Ingredients :

2 Parts Bulldog Gin

0.75 parts Lemon Juice

0.25 Parts Grenadine Syrup

1 Egg white

Method :

Shake all the ingredients without ice in a shaker, then add ice cube into the tin and shake again.

Double strain into glass and garnish with a raspberry.

English Daiquri

Ingredients :

50ml Hoxton Gin

20ml Creme de cocao white chocolate liqueur

20ml Lemon juice

Dash of sugar syrup


Shake together with ice and serve through a strainer , garnish with a twist of lemon peel.


Red Tempest

Ingredients :

1.5 oz Crystal Head Vodka

0.5oz Amaretto

1oz fresh orange juice

2oz soda water

0.5oz Monin wildberry puree

0.5 Monin exotic citrus syrup




Stir in shaker with ice until all ingredients have dissolved. Top with Soda.

Garnish with blackberries and serve.


English Daiquiri


50ml Hoxton Gin

20ml Creme de cocao white chocolate liqueur

20ml lemon juice

Dash of sugar syrup


Shake together with ice and serve through a strainer.

Garnish with a twist of lemon peel.

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Topping up the booze cabinet with 31Dover

Topping up the booze cabinet with 31Dover

Posted on 01 February 2017 by Chris Ford

I’ve recently developed something of a Whisky buying habit, and while my collection grows by a modest one bottle a month it often decreases in equal measures due to consumption! With Christmas just over I found the need to stock up a bit, and while I normally just go to the supermarket I thought I’d give online a go and this is how I found 31Dover.

31Dover attracted me as they are a bit of a one-stop shop for all things quality booze, from beer to Whisky and Champagne, even Barware they seem to have it covered, that combined with a promised speedy service I decided to give them a go, and I couldn’t be happier.

Nikka from the Barrel

I try to broaden my horizons with each bottle purchase and thought this time I’d see what Japan had to offer on the Whisky front opting to try a bottle of Nikka from The Barrel, not only had I heard good things in the past , I also am attracted to new shiny toys and this one came with a really cool bottle shaped Hip flask, I just had to have it.


The Ordering process was really straight forward, I placed my order at around midday and I really pleased to report this beauty has arrived the following morning, can’t beat that for service eh?


you can pick up the same set I ordered here,  Cheers!




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