One of the most beautiful things about navigating the wide world of booze, is that it provides a ...Read More...
One of the most beautiful things about navigating the wide world of booze, is that it provides a unique, intimate and culturally significant insight into the place and people who made it. It can feel like you’re being let in on a little secret, a potion that perhaps no one else might experience. A point in time, where you can transport yourself to forgotten times, ancient times, progressive times. Some of the oldest beverages in the world were spirits, the most ancient traces found in India that date back to 3000 BC. These simple drinks, made from rice meal, sugar cane, grapes and other local fruits, laid the foundation for pretty much everything that we drink today. It’s funny to think that drinking, say, something from Empirical Spirits – a complex concoction of pearled barley, pilsner malt and koji – would never have happened without its ancient counterparts.
It is a shame to think we might find ourselves sticking to what we know, mirroring our parents' gin and tonics, our first lover's taste for whiskey, tempering a memorable tie to a bar where we tried our first vermouth. But the world is WIDE and there’s so much to try, and given an insatiable thirst for new things, there is an incredible new wave of makers experimenting and creating new spirits. Even without this, the liqueurs and liquors that have been around for years are enough to keep you trying something new every week for the rest of your life.
You can make alcohol using nearly anything that has sugar in it. Rum is made from sugarcane, limoncello from lemons and neutral spirit, grappa from spent grapes, vodka from the humble potato. It’s a reflection of the surroundings, what could the locals work with to make something to drink? A country’s most vital and widespread crops have led to some of the world’s most interesting drinks: cacao fermented and distilled, pears grown in glass and surrounded in their own liqueur, wine trapped in barrels slowly ageing, surrounded by a forest’s worth of botanicals. Some of the oldest spirits we know, like Chartreuse, have recipes that have been kept secret for hundreds and hundreds of years, owned by silent monks. Amaro, vermouth, sherry, brandy, calvados, cachaca, green ants in gin, mistelles, shochu, eau de vie, vin jaune, raki, soju. At WINONA we take no prisoners when it comes to exploring the wide world of booze. We take a childlike delight (just kidding, over 18’s only) when it comes to consuming, offering a selection of spirits and liqueurs that reflect our interest in the natural world and experimentation. Sometimes it’s fun to pick a botanical you like, or you saw on a walk, and see if a part of the world shares your interest. Get ready for a journey that may just take the rest of your life.