Happy hour has got nothing on this.
Love your beer, wines and spirits? Head on down to Temple Cellar’s first-ever craft bonanza, ALT MKT. Not only will there be masterclasses, live music and delicious grub from now till 18 November, tasting sessions (12 to 3 PM and 5 to 8 PM) will see vendors showing off their favourite bottles for all* to enjoy. It’s gonna seem daunting at first, but we did the dirty job for you and narrowed down 7 craft spirits and wines to start you off.
*Remember to purchase your tickets here to skip the queue, take home a complimentary tasting glass and get 20% off bottles purchased at event.
2016 Brash Higgins ZBO Zibbibo, Riverland
We expect no less from the boisterous winemaking ‘yank’ Brad Hickey. He adds a funky touch to the ancient grape variety, Zibbibo a.k.a. muscat of Alexandria, by allowing a natural flor (yeast) to form a protective layer atop the wine. The ‘free run’, siphoned off in Spring and combined with pressing, presents a spicy palate of ginger and cumin, mixed in with tropical fruits and herbs. Just as its label suggests, the ZBO an explosive wine that has loads of offer. Available at the Burnt Ends Cellars.
Kabaj Rebula 2011, Slovenia
From the country that gave us Melania Trump comes the grape called Rebula, dubbed the queen of the Brda (the region). Orange wine refers to a wine-making style where the grape skins are left in contact with the fermenting wine, giving it an orange hue. While the taste is usually oxidative with loads flavour, it is coupled with a texture you’ll either love or hate. A particularly well made orange wine, the Rebula 2011 ($58.70 f0r public; $52.20 for ticket holders) is juicy and appetising, despite ending with a Chinese tea-like dry tannic finish. Worth checking out to learn more about orange wines. Available at the Amphelia.
Koval Oat Whiskey, Chicago
Koval is no stranger to using unique grains to create perculiar whiskies, most of which have garnered a cult following. The oat ($142.20 for public; $126.4 for ticket holders) is, as its name suggests, made completely of organic oats. A light, easy-going dram that gets more interesting with every sip. Think breakfast oats, topped with a dollop of cream and sugar. Available at Liberty, American craft spirits.
Melbourne Moonshine Apple Pie Moonshine, Melbourne
What’s a pumpkin spiced latte when you’ve got an Apple Pie Moonshine ($94.90 for public; $84.30 for ticket holders)? Popping open the bottle reveals an enticing nose akin to a warm apple pie. All that cinnamon and cloves are more subtle on the palate, adding just enough interest to the saccharine spirit. If you’re in the market for a festive crowd-pleaser, grab a couple bottles of this moonshine, ginger beers and/or lime, and you’re all set. Available at Spirits and Penance.
Sunday Punch Pandan Gimlet, Singapore
Two classics, one fantastic tipple. Known for bringing bespoke bar experience straight to your homes, Sunday Punch surprises again with their Pandan Gimlet ($65.20 for public; $57.90 for ticket holders). The soft fragrance of the pandan invites you in for a sip, revealing bright lime flavours and spice of the gin. On the sweeter side, it would do amazing with some ice and soda water. Just in time for Christmas parties. Available at Sunday Punch.
Poor Tom’s Gin, Sydney
If the salacious label (by Amy Donaldson and Iara Sayo Inomata) hadn’t piqued your interest, this unique take on a London dry will have you coming back for more. It presents a clean, delicate flavour of green apples, flowers, lemon myrtle and strawberry gum. Yes, strawberry gum, specifically.
Despite its link to a childhood candy, Poor Tom’s Gin still a dry gin and not at all sweet. You could very well have this gin on its own, with a cube of ice. Though, the distillers suggest serving it as a classic gin and tonic, topped with a strawberry. Available at Spirits and Penance.
Timboon Port Expression Whisky, Victoria
Perhaps my new go-to for introducing naysayers to the wonders of whisky. The Timboon Port Expression Whisky ($176.90 for public; $147.70 for ticket holders) offers a gratifying blend of oak, dark cocoa, oranges, honey, light spice and mint, all before leading up to a juicy, tart finish. Perfect as a daily dram. Available at Spirits and Penance.
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