Bar consultant and creator of Drinks Enthusiast, Dave Marsland, returns with all the latest behind the scenes news from Manchester's bar and cocktail scene. 

More Cocktail Awards for Manchester

It’s been cocktail creations dominating Manchester once again, as not one, but two of Manchester’s finest bartenders won themselves a trip to Fécamp in Normandy, the home of their winning cocktail base Bénédictine liqueur. Both Amir Javaid of Room and Tom Higham of The Liquorists impressed the judges at Epernay, even after their tie-breaking shake-off, so were both awarded the trip in a few weeks time alongside other regional winners. 

Rubbing (Monkey) Shoulders

Monkey Shoulder blended whisky has also made a couple of appearances these past few weeks, popping up at a malt food evening as well as the latest round of the Mullen Bartending competition. Local chef Iain Devine, aka The Drunken Butcher, held the latest in his themed evenings with dinner event specialists DineInOut as he hosted in his living room a group of inquisitive food lovers. Basing the night on malt, or to be more precise Manchester’s own Soreen malt loaf, he created several dishes incorporating the range of Soreen, and threw in a Monkey Old Fashioned and a dram of the whisky for each guest curated from my good self. Mullen Bartending however went down a different route and had eight of the Northern Quarter’s best go up against each other to produce the best Monkey Shoulder cocktail in probably the best venue to host such an event – The Whiskey Jar. Tusk were the overall winners, meaning they joined Simple and Apotheca as join first on the Northern Quarter league table with three points.

Getting boozy at MFDF 

The Manchester Food and Drink Festival arrived at the latter end of last week with a whole host of Manchester’s finest taking part to offer you their delights. I myself showcased a variety of gin brands to the public in the food producers marquee including G’Vine, Greenall’s, BLOOM and Sloane’s, whilst Apotheca and Bakerie have been selling a variety of wine’s, spirits and cocktails to the masses within the hub at Albert’s Square opposite the Robinson’s Brewery beer bar.

There’s plenty more to get your teeth into over the next week though, with master classes of food, to spirits showcased at The Liquor Market and Whisky Festival. See you there!