• Our pick of IWSC’s top liqueurs & sweet & fortified wines

    There is the classic Michael McIntyre sketch where he asks us to take pity on the jar of Five Spice that sits in so many kitchen cupboards but is rarely taken out to be used. Now think about all those bottles of liqueurs and sweet and fortified wines that are waiting patiently on your back bar to be sold and promoted. It’s time we gave them a bit more love and attention. Here’s our round up of the best liqueurs and sweets and fortified that stood out in this year’s IWSC competition.

    There is the classic Michael McIntyre sketch where he asks us to take pity on the jar of Five Spice that sits in so many kitchen cupboards but is rarely taken out to be used. Now think about all those bottles of liqueurs and sweet and fortified wines that are waiting patiently on your back bar to be sold and promoted. It’s time we gave them a bit more love and attention. Here’s our round up of the best liqueurs and sweets and fortified that stood out in this year’s IWSC competition.

    mm By December 22, 2020

    If you are looking to shake up your range of liqueurs and sweet and fortified wines in 2021 then you would do well to start here with our IWSC round up from this year’s competition.

    Sweets & Fortifieds

    Tokaji
    Mád, Late Harvest Tokaji, 2017


    RRP £19
    IWSC 97 Points

    An excellent example of a Tokaji nose with lovely dried apricot, honey, straw and lime peel notes. The palate is rich and ripe with lovely acidity and freshness. Loads of spice and real finesse. A benchmark for Tokaji.

    Icewine
    Peller Estates Winery, Andrew Peller Signature Series Vidal Blanc Icewine, 2017


    RRP £35
    IWSC 95 Points
    A wine of ethereal quality to cause solemn silence and rapturous gaiety. Layer upon layer of toasted brioche, rose petal and candied orange wax and wane in waves of deliciousness. Full, complex and buoyant with an extended, pure finish. Magnificent.

    Late Harvest Riesling
    Casas del Bosque, Noble Late Harvest Riesling, 2018


    RRP £13.49
    IWSC 91 Points.
    An aromatic and alluringly fresh style of Riesling, revealing plush peach and apricot. With notes of nut and orange marmalade, this shows depth, freshness, and life

    Port
    Sandeman, 30 Year Old Tawny Port, NV


    RRP £65
    IWSC 96 Points
    Delicate and refined aromas of tangerine zest and dried flowers. On the palate, a splendid combination of salty roasted almonds, dried apricots and light vanilla blossom. Lusciously sweet and smooth but still packing a good punch. Delicious

    Port

    Kopke, Colheita 2001, Port


    RRP £48
    IWSC 96 Points
    Warm, lifted nose of candied fruits and nougat. A hedonistic, intensely sweet palate of orange peel, raisins and succulent pineapple, balanced by a lovely acidic bite. The lightly savoury finish adds to the already impressive complexity. A supremely enjoyable wine.

    Sherry
    Harvey’s, Very Old Palo Cortado Blend Sherry, Medium VORS


    RRP £37.55
    IWSC 94 Points
    Expressive and rich aromas of figs and rum cake advance sleekly on to the palate along with a velvety concentrated array of dark fruits. Possesses vast epicurean length. Truly delightful.

    Sherry
    Lustau, San Emilio Pedro Ximenez Sherry, NV


    RRP £14.50
    IWSC 92 Points
    Intense dried sultana and Christmas cake aromas carry through to a soft, lusciously textured palate that oozes dark treacle, sweet raisins and plums, with hints of dried tobacco and nutmeg.

    Liqueurs

    Baiju
    Shanxi Xinghua Cun Fenjiu Distillery, Zhuyeqing Jiu 10 YO Baijiu Liqueur, China

    RRP £70
    Very complex, with wood and creamy notes, as well as spices and nuts. Spicy, meaty and earthy undertones with a bit of umami.
    IWSC 95 Points

    English Spirit
    English Spirit, Sambuca Liqueur, England


    RRP £38
    A classic style with a solid aniseed nose and complex aromas of caraway, black pepper and cinnamon. On the palate the sweetness is supported by the alcohol and flavours making this a lifted, sweet, bright and flavoursome example.
    IWSC 98 Points

    Liqueur
    Bristol Distilling Co, 77 Black Cold Brew Coffee & Vanilla Liqueur, England


    RRP £18
    Exotic fruit, vanilla, toffee and caramel with baking spices aromas on the nose followed by a well-rounded texture and nice complexity, which gives a good long finish to the liqueur.
    IWSC 92 Points

    Liqueur
    Distillerie Combier, Royal Combier Liqueur, France


    RRP £28
    Rich and complex impressions of herbal and bitter orange aromas. Good intensity on the palate where the liqueur finishes with a hot impression.
    IWSC 91 Points

    Liqueur
    Mozart Distillerie, Chocolate Cream Liqueur, Austria


    RRP £15
    Super rich, very intense and very bold; melted chocolate creates a rich and indulgent impression, leaving a mouth-coating texture and elegant and rich praline finish to this chocolate cream based liqueur.
    IWSC 95 Points

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