The Best Virtual Drinks Tastings
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The past few months we’ve seen new levels of creativity in the food and drink industry, as bars, restaurants and brands adapt to the new normal. One new trend that’s emerged is virtual drinks tastings, which involves bottles being sent to your door ahead of a live digital experience. Here’s our pick of the bunch, from a tour of one of the country’s most famous gin distilleries to champagne tasting on Instagram.
Coupette x Bacardi Mixology Masterclass
Spritz season is upon us, so now’s the time to learn the tricks of the trade. Tune into Coupette’s Instagram channel on 25 June for a 30-minute tutorial from Coupette’s bar manager Andrei Marcu and Bacardi’s Global Head of Education and Mixology, Joe McCanta. You’ll learn how to make four delicious summer spritz recipes – perfect for enjoying al fresco this summer. 25 June, 6.30pm.
Established in 2010 in the South Downs of Sussex, Rathfinny is a big player on the English sparkling wine scene. Purchase one of their bottles online and you’ll be sent a tasting booklet, which can be used during one of their live Instagram tastings. The next one is coming up on 25 June, hosted by brand ambassador Rob Buckhaven. rathfinnyestate.com
67 Pall Mall
The private members club ‘founded by wine lovers, for wine lovers’, 67 Pall Mall has launched The Virtual Club, a series of thrice-weekly virtual wine tastings to be enjoyed from home. Tune in every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday via Zoom for an online masterclass and meeting with some of the club’s top sommeliers and winemakers – then open a bottle, and enjoy. 67pallmall.com
They might be temporarily closed, but Hawkes are bringing the taproom to you. The Bermondsey craft cider-makers and connoisseurs have introduced Hawkes TV, a brand-new YouTube channel dedicated to all things cider. Order in your ciders, then tune in to founder Simon Wright’s tasting session, where he’ll be discussing how to make cider at home, giving virtual tours of the Hawkes cidery and more. Visit wearehawkes.com for the tasting schedule and tune in via youtube.com.
Mayfair wine and spirits boutique Hedonism is a wine lover’s haven, featuring over 6,500 high-end wines from all over the world. Delve inside with one of their hour-long virtual wine tastings: you’ll have a Classic or Hedonistic box delivered direct to your door, then participate in the live tasting of three to four different wines alongside other attendees. From £150. Classic box tastings will take place each Friday at 6pm, with Hedonistic box tastings taking place at 7.30pm. hedonism.co.uk
Keen to learn more about your malts and drams? Renowned Soho shop Milroy’s is running Zoom tastings, during which you’ll be guided through a selection of the finest and most interesting whiskies from their specialist store. There are two options to choose between: Introduction to Whisky and Premium Whisky, both of which last around an hour and provide insight into the world of whisky while challenging your palate. From £35, shop.milroys.co.uk
Californian winery Vérité is offering private virtual tastings of its fine wine with top sommelier Dimitri Mesnard via Zoom. Dimitri has a wealth of experience in the wine world, having worked as a sommelier at numerous prestigious spots across the country. He moved to the UK in 1996, starting out at Raymond Blanc’s two Michelin star restaurant and hotel, le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, and going on to work for boutique hotel group Hotel du Vin. During the tasting you’ll have the chance to taste the highly-revered trio of Vérité wines: La Muse 2014, La Joie 2014 and Le Desir 2014, all of which can be ordered through Hedonism Wines beforehand. The trio of Vérité wines – La Muse 2014, La Joie 2014 and Le Desir 2014 – retails at £1,020. Purchase the trio and you can book a complimentary tasting at hedonism.co.uk
Experience the outdoors indoors with the new immersive virtual gin tasting from Warner’s, which takes gin lovers on a tour of their famed Northamptonshire distillery. Participants will have the chance to see inside both the 200-year-old barn, where the distillery is located, and the beautiful botanical gardens, as well as find out about Warner’s conservation programme – and, of course, learn how to make delicious cocktails. The first tour will kick off on World Gin Day (13 June), followed by a second on Father’s Day (21 June). £40 for a tour package including a personalised box of Warner’s Gin and paired tonics, warnersdistillery.com
Virtual Cocktail Making With Mixology Events
Mixology Events is taking its award-winning classes online, offering sessions with expert mixologists every Wednesday and Friday. Participants will receive a professional cocktail making kit prior to the masterclass, with all the ingredients and equipment needed to mix up classic cocktails at home including premium spirits, mixers and fresh fruit. £70pp, mixologyevents.co.uk
Chateau De Pommard
Transport yourself to Burgundy’s famous wine road La Route des Grands Crus with Chateau du Pommard’s guided wine experience. Led by the estate’s wine advisors, you’ll be taken on a immersive trip through the beautiful wine region while gaining insight about wine making techniques and the region’s terroir. To get the full experience, you can have crates of wine delivered beforehand. chateaudupommard.com
The Finest Bubble
Missing that Friday night post-work drinks feeling? Pubs may be closed, but you can get involved from home with The Friday Bubble Instagram Live class, hosted every Friday evening by champagne delivery expert The Finest Bubble. It’s a chance to learn all about the good stuff, with the option to buy the Champagnes beforehand so you can taste along. Free, Instagram