Wow, what a summer we’ve had! Though the temperature has died down a little, it’s still very much summer and we even have another Bank Holiday coming up – so it’s time to get the BBQ back out and start buying those essential Bank Holiday drinks. Not sure what to go for? Here are the best gins, wines, ciders and subscription boxes I’ve tried this summer. Cheers!
Gin is truly the drink of 2018, and flavoured gins are here to stay! For a fruity G&T, go for a Gin Liqueur from The Lakes Distillery: Elderflower is sweet and refreshing, but the Rhubarb and Rosehip is my favourite, and at 20% they’re less alcoholic than most gins (so you can have more, right?).
For a traditional ‘pink gin’, opt for Gin Lane’s Victoria Pink Gin which is full-bodied and floral but not as sickly sweet as some other pink gins.
If you’re not a fan of fruity gins, then try Gin Mare, a Mediterranean gin distilled from olives, thyme, rosemary and basil. I think this is my favourite gin – I like to have it with slimline tonic and a sprig of fresh rosemary, but it pairs very well with Mediterranean tonic. It’s also great to include in a Sangria Nostrum cocktail.
If you’re looking for a more portable gin and tonic, fancy a drink for the train or are planning a picnic, then pick up some gin and tonic cans from Franklin & Sons (who make the BEST premium mixers) and the popular Portobello Road gin.
Up your cider game by trying out a cider subscription box from Crafty Nectar. Putting the ‘ooh la la’ into cider, each box includes the best artisan and craft ciders delivered to your door every month. If you like cider I highly recommend trying this brand out; every bottle I tried was superb and nothing like the mainstream cider you find at the pub. Special shout out to the Angioletti Rose with Blueberry cider, an Italian craft cider that must have been created in Heaven.
Spanish wine specialists Marques De Caceres make quality, refreshing, light and easy to drink wines perfect for the summer months. I have to admit I flew through these bottles; if you enjoy wine from Rioja and Rueda then these are some of the best. In the UK they can be bought from Drinks Supermarket so you can buy in bulk for a discount.
This summer I’ve really enjoyed trying out wine subscription boxes. The above image contains the two bottles I received in the My Vitibox package. From France, this incredibly impressive brand has a range of subscriptions available including Palace Weddings (for fab food and drink pairings), Passion Red (the BEST reds – as seen above), Invitation to Travel (wine from all over the world) and Vineyard Nuggets (award-winning wines). Starting at 20 euros a box, you’ll get one or two quality wines, a tasting guide and a small gift.
For a wine subscription box that goes the extra mile, check out Clara Wine. Tailored exactly to your taste, a sorting-house style quiz will place you in a wine tribe – and you’ll receive wines that match your tribe, plus maybe one from your second or third tribe, as it’s good to be adventurous. You get three bottles of wine in this box, so more than usual, and you can choose either all red, all white or mixed cases. Each wine comes with a little information card so you can have your very own wine-tasting without worrying about your level of knowledge. I drank these wines with my family and we had a lot of fun discussing the wines and guessing the flavours.
Of course, no drinks round-up is complete without my favourite: Le Petit Ballon. Every single delivery I’ve had from Parisian wine subscription brand Le Petit Ballon has been incredible; the quality has been maintained throughout and I get so excited whenever I see the logo on the box. One of the best aspects of this subscription is the informative gazette, filled with interesting facts, recipes and tasting notes.
Finally, if you fancy something a little unique, then I implore you to try this Black Ginger Rum by Jamaica Cove. A gingery spiced rum, it tastes incredible with coke or ginger ale – this didn’t last long the last time I had friends round!
Have you tried any of these?
*Some products were gifted to me for review*