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Spirited Gift Guide

Media release 7 December 2005

Spirited Gift Guide

If you’re stuck for gift ideas these holidays, why not ensure success and give the gift of premium spirits?

A perfect gift for the men in your life could include premium spirits such as Bourbon, Scotch, Cognac or Rum.

Bourbon’s popularity has been helped by its immense versatility and mixability. Lending itself to being combined with mixers like cola or dry, Bourbon is also widely used as a base for a variety of cocktails. For those with more traditional taste, Bourbon can also be savoured neat, on the rocks or with a little water.

Scotch Whisky remains one of New Zealand’s favourite and best selling spirits and with Christmas just around the corner, there’ll be plenty of happy males in good Scottish spirit.

When it comes to Scotch there are single malts and blends. As the names suggest, single malts are the product of a single distillation and a single distillery, while Scotch blends are a combination of grain whisky (made from un-malted barley and other cereals) with single malts, sometimes from different distilleries.

Cognac has traditionally been enjoyed as an after dinner drink. These days however, Cognac is a drink that can be savoured at anytime and on any occasion. There are many styles of Cognac and XO (Extra Old) aged in wood for a minimum of six and a half years and sometimes older are the luxury end of the market. Cognac is increasingly popular as a refreshing aperitif mixed with water, cola, tonic water or ginger ale.

Rum is also a favourite and “estate bottled” styles would please most connoisseurs.

For the ladies, a deluxe bottle of Gin or Vodka might fit the gift list. Gin is New Zealand’s number one selling white spirit and partnered with tonic, and a wedge of lime or lemon, you have a G&T – the perfect summer drink!

The simple sleekness of Vodka is enjoying popularity as the drink of choice. Ideal on its own or with company, quality vodka should be enjoyed chilled, but not frozen, so you can still taste its character and enjoy its aroma. The unobtrusive nature of Vodka also makes it an ideal mixer. Combine with a coffee liqueur for a Black Russian, with orange juice for a Screwdriver, with tomato juice and Tabasco sauce for a Bloody Mary, or with Dry Vermouth for a Vodka Martini.

As the holiday festivities start warming up, the Distilled Spirits Association of New Zealand wants to spread the message that the pattern of drinking, not the nature of the drink, is what’s important.

Thomas Chin, Chief Executive of the Association says “there is no one beverage of moderation, only a practice of moderation. A pub measure of spirits contains around the same amount of alcohol as a glass of wine or beer - one is not more potent than the other”.

So although ‘tis the season to be jolly, always remember to enjoy your beverages responsibly and in moderation.


© Scoop Media

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