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DRINKS RETAILING AND MARKETING

@dramscotland

DRAM MAGAZINE September 2017 ISSN 1470-241X

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2017 AWARDS SPECIAL DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017

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DRINKS RETAILING AND MARKETING

WELCOME

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his is a bumper issue with all our 2017 Award winners. Finalists came from all over Scotland and although they may not have taken home a trophy I hope they all had a great time at the awards. To get to the last four in any competition is a feat in itself so congratulations to all concerned. Our Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Linda Johnston of Auchrannie Hotel & Resort and it was certainly well deserved. This month I also caught up with Bobsie Mullen to find out what he was planning for his newest bar Rab Ha’s, while Scott Fleming paid a visit to Brewhemia in Edinburgh - which he thought was amazing, as well as Spatch. Our drinks feature looks at Cocktails hopefully there are some facts there to share with your customers! Last but not least Donald MacLeod gives us his opinion on the recent Barclay Review into Business Rates.

CONTENTS September

2017

FEATURES

11 15 21 45

COCKTAILS

Some interesting facts to whet your appetite.

A REAL CHARACTER

Susan Young talks to Bobsie Mullen

AWARDS SPECIAL

All the winners and finalists.

DESIGN FOCUS

Brewhemia and Spatch both Edinburgh.

REGULARS Susan Young Editor susan@mediaworldltd.com dramscotland.co.uk

@dramscotland

/dram.scotland

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NEWS

All the news on pubs, bars, restaurants and hotels.

BRAND NEWS

All the latest brand news.

SUE SAYS

Straight talking from our very own Editor. DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 3


PARTICK WELCOMES CELINO’S Celino’s has opened its west end sister restaurant to its legendary Alexandra Parade venue, following two years of extensive building work. The new restaurant is located on the site of the old Comet store on Dumbarton Road, which has been vacant for over four years, and offers nearly triple the capacity of its East End sister. Celino’s Partick follows the same model as the restaurant in Alexandra Parade, housing a delicatessen as well as a 130 seat restaurant. Owner Claudio Celino told DRAM, “We have invested over £350,000 in the new venture, which is our first new outlet in over 50 years. He continued, “We realised that what we had in Alexandra Parade was a really busy wee business, and we were constantly having to turn people away. It made sense to us to open at the other

side of the city. We have the restaurant which showcases the food that we also sell in the deli, so people can try before they buy. We thought we’d initially see a drop in business in Alexandra Parade, but we haven’t, it’s been working out fantastically.” The deli opens at 7.30am, while the restaurant opens at 8am. The offering includes freshly roasted coffee and a good range of wine by the glass. Celino’s has an enomatic wine dispenser, which allows customers to taste all the wines that the restaurant sources before buying a bottle. Claudio says, “We have a very eclectic range of wines that we get sourced from Italy and some of them can cost up £200 a bottle so having the Enoround machine means they can taste 20ml, 50ml or 125ml before buying without compromising the quality.”

FUSION GROUP PARTNERS WITH JUNIPER FOR OLD CHURCHES HOUSE BRASSERIE Hillfoots based Juniper Restaurant has unveiled a new brasserie within Dunblane’s Old Churches House, part of the Denny-based Fusion Group. Juniper at Old Churches House, Dunblane opened in August, replacing the Dunblathian brasserie. The partnership sees managing director of Fusion Group, Alex McKie, join forces with TV chef Kenny Wilson, who with his wife Marie Claire have established an enviable reputation in a year for their bar and restaurant Juniper in Tillicoultry. Old Churches House was transformed into a cosy hotel, brasserie and events space in 2013 by Fusion Group. Speaking to DRAM, Alex McKie, said, “We are hugely excited to announce that Juniper has come to Old Churches House. It was very much a meeting of minds when, with our two existing businesses only operating a short distance away. We realised that it would be mutually beneficial to form a partnership. This not only breathes new life into our food offering as a busy hotel and events venue in one of the most vibrant “foodie” parts of Scotland, but also enables Kenny and Marie Claire to open a second outlet of their successful Juniper concept.” “They have created something very special at Juniper,” continued Mr McKie, “a restaurant which is as good, if not superior, to many top restaurants in Edinburgh and Glasgow. And they are very much championing their local food heroes with an impressive array of suppliers from right across the Hillfoots and Perthshire, which are showcased daily in Kenny’s creations.”

A ‘TOAST’ TO NEW WINE BAR The owners of Edinburgh venues Avocado and Printworks have launched Toast, a wine cafe in Leith, Edinburgh. Located in a former art gallery, Toast has 64 covers and opens from 8am serving locally sourced food and predominantly biodynamic and organic wines. Head Chef Lizzie Arber has relocated from London’s Garden Museum and is accomplished at providing vegan and vegetarian dishes which also compliment the venues ethical menu . Owner Zak Hanif commented, “Toast’s philosophy is to welcome everyone at all times. One table may be enjoying flat whites and cake, whilst the next are drinking craft beers, and another is sharing a charcuterie plate with a bottle of wine. The uniting factor is the unfaltering quality of everything we will be serving.” 4

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NEWS DRG OPEN THE CITIZEN The Di Maggio Restaurant Group was, as we were going to press, preparing to open its latest venture - The Citizen, on the site of The Trading House, at 24 St Vincent Place, which closed at the beginning of the year. The Citizen borrows its name from the iconic Evening Citizen, the first evening newspaper in Glasgow, which was based in the same premises. The Grade A listed building will house The Citizen Bar and Dining Rooms, with a capacity of 218 seats and will serve brunch, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner. Says DRG Director Tony Conetta, (above) “The Citizen Bar and Dining Rooms not only pays tribute to the glory days of the Evening Citizen newspaper but also celebrates the citizens of Glasgow.” He continues, “This project has been hugely enjoyable because it has uncovered incredible stories about the city and its people. From a public call-out for information on The Citizen newspaper, we’ve been inundated with fascinating tales, original photography and personal recounts. We’re really excited to showcase these stories, the workmanship and the artistry that has gone into both the décor and the menus, all of which pay homage to Glasgow and her citizens.” The Citizen also has a Editor’s Suite – which is more exclusive. It will serve afternoon tea, but it also offers customers and spirits companies the option to buy a safe box to store a special bottles of whisky. The Citizen will also be the very first bar in Scotland to serve Tennent’s Tank Lager. The lager will be served ‘brewery fresh’ from giant copper tanks behind the bar, the first time since it was last offered in the 1980s. Says Director Mario Gizzi, “This bar is more about the liquid than the food. Although you will be able to enjoy very high class pub grub here, we hope people will enjoy a drink without feeling the necessity to order food.”

MANORVIEW SETS UP PROFIT SHARE FOR STAFF Manorview Hotels & Leisure Group is to allocate 10% of its pre-tax profits to employees under the terms of a new profit share scheme called The Heartcount Fund. It will give two payouts to employees that have worked with the group for 12 continuous months - the first calculated from half-year profits and the second from full year results. The fund will be distributed in proportion to qualifying employees’ earnings and the first payment will be made in 2018. The concept has been introduced to staff via a series of workshops and there’s even a dedicated app called Iris,“an interactive communication portal incorporating a separate reward system”.

THE IVY TO LAUNCH IN SCOTLAND London’s iconic Ivy restaurant has unveiled plans to launch in Glasgow and Edinburgh. The Covent Garden based restaurant, which is owned by Caprice Holdings, has taken a 25 year lease with the investment group, Standard Life, which now owns the entire southside of Edinburgh’s St Andrew Square. The Ivy On The Square will occupy a 5,500 square feet corner unit at the site, and will seat around 130, with a bar and mezzanine terrace. The kitchen will be overseen by Sean Burbidge, the executive chef at The Ivy Collection, previously of Gordon Ramsay’s Pétrus restaurant in London. The group has also lodged plans to convert the Buchanan Street building in Glasgow currently occupied by the Nationwide Building Society when the company relocates to Argyle Street. The ground floor of the category B listed building will accommodate a bar and restaurant with a second restaurant on the first floor. The original Ivy restaurant in London’s West Street is celebrating its 100 year anniversary this year and boasts of a three-month wait for lunch and up to six months for dinner, however the group has said its Scottish counterparts will ensure people walking in off the street have a chance of service. The group said it will hold back a number of tables throughout the day and evening, a policy it said reflects its “dedication to local restaurants for local diners”.

Luigi Aseni, the owner of Boteco de Brasil and Mango, has acquired the freehold of his Glasgow building. Boteco de Brasil, which he opened seven years ago, is situated next to Maggie May’s, which was also sold last year to Stephen White and Oli Norman. The freehold – which is thought to have cost in excess of £1 million – was acquired from owner Colin Beattie. Aseni already holds the freehold for his Mango outlet in Glasgow, but leases his Edinburgh Boteco de Brasil from Caledonian Heritable. Speaking to DRAM, Luigi said, “I’ve wanted to have the freehold since I launched, and am always looking for opportunities to expand.” Stefano and Riccardo Cardosi have finally managed to open Pendulum Bar and Grill in Paisley after a raft of delays related to its historic Grade B- listed location. The building, which was originally the Arnotts department store, has been turned into a 120 seater restaurant. Renfrewshire Council part-funded the restoration through its regeneration fund, but the build was still plagued with delays which originated from the deterioration of the building. As a result they had to tear down the frontage of the building down and rework it. Paul Sloan has gone into business with Iain Donaldson and Kevin Campbell in Partick. The trio are opening a Thai-fusion restaurant on the site of the former Butterfly & Pig, which was most recently a Pizza bar and restaurant.

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BRAND NEWS

ALL THE L ATEST BRAND NEWS

Whisky GORDON & MACPHAIL ADDS BLADNOCH SINGLE MALT WHISKY TO PORTFOLIO Gordon & MacPhail, has become the sole UK distributor of Bladnoch Distillery’s Single Malt range. The range, which includes Samsara (no age statement), Adela 15 years old and Talia 25 years old, is presented in distinctive, contemporary prestige packaging, which is in-keeping with its modern flavour profile that displays traditional Lowland characteristics. The whiskies have been crafted by Bladnoch’s master distiller and blender, Ian MacMillan, who joined the distillery after its purchase by Australian entrepreneur David Prior in July 2015. Since then, Ian has carefully curated the expressions using the portfolio of whiskies available in the inventory. Bladnoch’s Single Malt range will be added to Gordon & MacPhail’s Exclusive Distributor portfolio. Stephen Rankin, UK sales director for Gordon & MacPhail, said, “It is an honour to be promoting Bladnoch’s range of Single Malts in the UK. There is a real shortage of premium, Lowland Single Malts on the market. The impressive packaging reflects its premium positioning and we are confident that there will be strong demand for the whiskies.”

THE GLENDRONACH DISTILLERY RELEASES ‘WHISKY FIT FOR A KINGSMAN’ The GlenDronach Distillery has released The GlenDronach Kingsman Edition 1991 Vintage, a unique collaboration with Marv films and Twentieth Century Fox to mark the release of ‘Kingsman: The Golden Circle’. The GlenDronach was personally selected by Film Director, Matthew Vaughn, for his new Kingsman film as The GlenDronach is his single malt whisky of choice. To create The GlenDronach Kingsman Edition 1991 Vintage, which marks the birth year of Kingsman agent Gary ‘Eggsy’ Unwin, only the finest sherry casks were selected by Whisky Maker Rachel Barrie. Unashamedly Highland and endlessly complex, this rare, limited release shares the Kingsman creed of impossible perfection built on unshakeable tradition. Film Director Matthew Vaughn said, “A Kingsman is smooth, elegant and packs a punch, as does The GlenDronach - so it felt like the perfect fit. I selected the 1991 vintage as it marks birth year of ‘Eggsy’, who is also known as Kingsman agent Galahad. It’s really special to get a limited edition vintage like this, and even more so as The GlenDronach is my favourite single malt whisky. I hope Kingsman fans around the world enjoy it as much as I do.” This rare limited edition will be available worldwide and can be purchased in speciality retailers across the UK from September.

JURA UNVEILS LIMITED EDITION Jura Single Malt Whisky has unveiled a new limited edition expression named One and All. It has been created in celebration of Jura’s community and the team of distillery workers who craft the awardwinning whisky. This celebratory 20 year old single malt assemblage, which is nonchill filtered and natural colour, raises a glass to the distillery team and island community who make the whisky what it is today. A must-have collectable for whisky fans, with the community at the heart of it, this small batch release (51% ABV – Cask strength) is available globally with an RSP of £120. The realities of living on a remote island in a small community means that everyone has to work together for the benefit of one and all. Nowhere is this bond stronger than at Jura Distillery. Graham Logan, Distillery Manager said: “There’s no better way to mark the distillery team’s dedication and craftsmanship, than by creating a limited edition expression in their honour – chosen by them. In tribute to their passion and tenacity - the shared spirit that each person brings to every last drop - this special whisky is the perfect dram to toast one and all. We can’t wait to hear what people think.”

BENRIACH RELEASES BATCH 14 CASK BOTTLING The BenRiach Distillery has released its Batch 14 Cask Bottling. The seven casks of both unpeated and peated malt reflect the distillery’s experimental approach to distilling and cask maturation. Batch 14 features first fill Oloroso sherry butts, port pipes, a first fill virgin oak cask, a first fill marsala hogshead and a Pedro Ximenez sherry puncheon. Whisky Maker Rachel Barrie describes Batch 14 as “an exciting and bold choice of casks,” adding: “The single malt whiskies selected in this most recent BenRiach cask bottling reflect the innovative and pioneering philosophy of The BenRiach Distillery when it comes to making exceptional Scotch whisky.”

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BRAND NEWS Cider

Beer

MAGNERS EMPLOYABILITY PROGRAMME LAUNCHES Magners has teamed up with the Celtic FC Foundation and the Tennent’s Training Academy for the Magners Employability Programme, which this year turns its focus to recruiting trainee chefs. The programme runs from Thursday 14th September to Friday 17th November and participants that graduate as entry level commis chefs will be guaranteed slots in kitchens around the country. Said George Kyle, Magners’ Head of Sponsorship, “Since we launched the Magners Employability Programme, we’ve helped dozens of people get back into work and have given them the confidence and skills to further themselves professionally and personally. Scotland’s Hospitality Strategy for 2020 has identified that there is potentially a shortage of chefs and we decided that the focus of the Employability Programme in 2017 should be on highlighting and helping to address this.” The Magners Employability Programme began life in 2015 and has guided 24 candidates into employment or further education since then. This year’s tailored programme will cover world food trends, food safety, foraging, menu planning and nutritional tips. Interested parties can apply via magners.co.uk/celticfoundation.

Rum SAILOR JERRY REVEAL LIMITED EDITION BOTTLE William Grant & Sons has unveiled a new limited-edition bottle design for its spiced rum, Sailor Jerry. The new bottle has been designed to reinforce the brand’s premium spirit status, heavy tattoo influence, personality, and to make a statement. The new design is an evolution on the clear glass bottle, showcasing a gloss-black concealed wrap and featuring prominent homages to the iconic tattoo designs of the late Norman ‘Sailor Jerry’ Collins. The hero bottle image is one of Norman Collins’ iconic designs the hula girl, reminiscent of his early tattooing days inking fellow soldiers and sailors at his legendary tattoo parlour in World War II-era Hawaii and establishing himself in history as the undisputed father of American old school tattooing. The bottle also features the brand’s famous anchor – a traditional symbol of stability which harks back to Norman Collins’ professional sailor roots.

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ERIC CANTONA PROVES THAT HE’S STILL GOT IT Ex-footballer supreme and faithful Kronenbourg brand ambassador Eric Cantona returns to the mythical land of Alsace for Kronenbourg 1664’s latest campaign ‘Le Scarecrow Suprême’. On a mission to protect the unique Strisslespalt hops used to make K1664, Cantona this time finds himself embodying a life size scarecrow who will stop at nothing to guard the hops from a swarm of pests and distractions. The campaign takes the form of a series of short films set in Kronenbourg’s birthplace and spiritual home Alsace, France. Playing on the idiosyncracies and eccentricities of the region, Cantona’s varied escapades demonstrate his dedication to the cause: K1664’s Taste Suprême. The social campaign will be served on Facebook and YouTube, and will also be available to watch on a bespoke branded Amazon landing page – one of the first brands to have built this in partnership with the retail giant. Ifeoma Dozie, beer brand director at brand owners Heineken said, “For the last six years, Monsieur Cantona has been bringing to life the eccentricities of the Alsace region, where we grow our wonderful Strisslespalt hops. And this is probably his biggest role to date!

TENNENT’S LAUNCH A HERITAGE BOTTLE Tennent’s Lager has launched the Heritage Series - a new range of bottles designs and packaging. The series is intended to echo the brand’s 130year history and draws inspiration from the original bottle and can designs. Alan McGarrie, Tennent’s Lager Head of UK Brand Marketing, said, “Our limited edition bottle pack provides a great platform for us to celebrate the history and character of Tennent’s Lager. DS Smith, the UK’s leading supplier of corrugated packaging, created the new packaging.


BIRRA MORETTI MAKES THE MOST OF SUMMER WITH FESTIVAL SPONSORSHIP ADVERTORIAL

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his summer, Birra Moretti was once again the official partner of Summer Nights at the Kelvingrove Bandstand. With a stunning line-up of entertainment on throughout the two-week festival, visitors were able to enjoy great quality beer and cider from HEINEKEN, with a standout Birra Moretti bar experience. Gerry White, from Regular Music, said: “Summer Nights is the Bandstand’s Flagship event of the year. There’s fourteen consecutive nights every August, with sell out shows. This year featured artists including Tom Jones, Texas, Brian Wilson, The Pixies and Hipsway, playing in the heart of Glasgow’s West End. It was important to us that this high profile premier event had a Premium Beer partner and in Birra Moretti we’ve found the perfect fit.” The brand, which is in fantastic growth in Scotland (+ 91% value and 99% volume MAT YoY1), served 31,680 pints across the festival. All 30,000 visitors to the Kelvingrove Bandstand were able to enjoy a perfectly served pint of Birra Moretti, while having an amazing experience and some delicious street food. HEINEKEN used the brand’s sponsorship to support customers in the local area, focusing on driving footfall into outlet and helping to increase volume sales through competition and event activations. Colin Barr, creator at Bierhalle, commented: “Ahead of the Summer Nights festival, we worked closely with HEINEKEN, and specifically the Birra Moretti team, to run a competition for our customers to win tickets

for the opening show to see Texas perform. We also installed a Birra Moretti mobile bar in the outdoor terrace, which allowed us to serve extra cold pints of Birra Moretti from a secondary bar. The results were fantastic - with over 700 pints of Birra Moretti sold in a few hours - and brilliant feedback from our customers who all enjoyed a great pint. All the support from HEINEKEN and Birra Moretti has been wonderful, helping me drive my business forward and bringing something new to my customers. I look forward to working with them closely in the future.” John Hutchison, Regional Sales Director West and Central Scotland at HEINEKEN, explained: “Summer Nights is fast becoming a West End institution and we are honoured that Birra Moretti is heavily involved with Summer Nights at the festival, as it allows us to delight consumers over 14 nights with perfectly served Birra Moretti. The festival also allows us to engage heavily with our On-Trade customers and consumers, offering VIP experiences for shows that sell out in minutes. “Through festival sponsorships such as this, we are raising awareness of the brand in Scotland and seeing fantastic results with both volume and value growth. Last year, Birra Moretti added 2.6KhL to the Scottish On-Trade2, far outperforming its closest competitor. Our advice is to stock Birra Moretti alongside a Classic Lager brand, to encourage your customers to trade up. Trading customers up from Classic Lager to Birra Moretti means you can charge a 32% premium for a pint3. If you’re interested in finding out more about stocking Birra Moretti in your outlet, do get in touch with your local sales rep or call 03458 787071.” 23

CGA 17/06/17 Scotland

For further information or images, please contact the HEINEKEN team at Publicasity: Tel: 020 3757 6800 Email: heineken@publicasity.co.uk

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The famous Buckfast Tonic Wine, or ‘Bucky’, has historically been supped in swing parks or up the back of the buses as a rite of initiation for Scottish teenagers, but is now becoming surprisingly popular as a cocktail ingredient! The brand have recipes for Buckfast versions of Negronis and Manhattans on their website and Glasgow bars such as Nice N Sleazy, The Hard Rock Cafe and Driftwood all offer Bucky cocktails. Driftwood in particular have won fame with their weird and wonderful concoctions, such as the ‘Bucky Slush’ and the ‘Buckdog’ - a combination of Buckfast and MD 20/20 (‘Mad Dog’).

CGA stats show that cocktails have become a part of everyday drinking in the UK, as evidenced by the fact that 30% pub restaurants sell them now, a market previously dominated by pints and pub grub! COCKTAILS are as popular as ever. Mairi Clark takes a look at a few interesting facts and some up to date stats on what’s hot.

The cocktail revolution and the boom in casual dining go hand in hand. Drinks giant Diageo announced last year that they’d spent 18 months developing a new range of cocktails specifically designed to be paired with food, having been encouraged by statistics such as the 10% of casual diners who preferred a cocktail as their main drink.

The Orkney Bluebell A family run business, Orkney Gin Company draws inspiration from a rich history of island tradition and folklore. Our award winning gins are meticulously hand-crafted in ultra-small batches using seven times distilled premium grain spirit and a blend of the finest botanicals from our shores and beyond.

Ingredients • 50ml Gin • 25ml Lime Juice • 25ml Crème de cassis

The days of a maraschino cherry and a paper umbrella are long gone, as bartenders have ventured into using vegetables and even edible flowers to decorate cocktail creations. The more obscure garnishes include frozen peaches, star anise and lavender. Frozen fruit is also being used.

• 2tsps Caster Sugar • Blueberries • Mint leaves

Method A new take on the classic Bramble. Shake the gin, lime juice and sugar with ice. Pour into a glass over ice and garnish with blueberries and mint leaves. Pour crème de cassis over slowly to create a gradient effect.

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The first known definition of a cocktail appeared in an 1806 Hudson, New York, publication called The Balance and Columbian Repository. It defined a cocktail as “a stimulating liquor, composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water, and bitters.”

Unfortunately you’ve just missed it if you were hoping to pop along, but Scotland does now have its own dedicated cocktail festival, and it lasts a full month! The first (and hopefully not the last) Edinburgh Cocktail Festival ran from the 4th of August to the 28th at a bevy of trendy venues including the Whistle Stop Barber Shop, Brewhemia and WestRoom.

The Margarita remains king of the US cocktail scene, as revealed by a Nielsen CGA report published in May. Tequila is the Margarita’s core ingredient and it’s the number one base liquor in the States, although vodka has climbed above rum into the number two position.

Citrus fruits taste different as they age, so they are best left out for four hours before using. Oranges, on the other hand, should be used fresh. Martinis were originally made with the base spirit of gin, but as vodka started to become more popular in the United States, vodka martinis emerged. It’s always best to ask a customer what base spirit they’d prefer. James Merchant-Wink, winner of DRAM’s Bar Apprentice 2017 has learned that preparation is key to cocktails. “Having everything ready before you put it into the shaker is a good step!,” he says. “Garnishes are great and I really like the new trend of edible flowers and different fruit, but at the end of the day, it has to serve a purpose and add something to the drink. 12

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Drinks that contain only spirits should be stirred in order to get the rich, crystal clear look of the drink. This includes the likes of Manhattans, Negronis, and — you guessed it — Martinis. So James Bond was wrong. If a drink contains citrus, eggs, dairy or cream liqueurs, it needs to be shaken in order to properly emulsify the nonalcoholic ingredients. This includes drinks like the Pisco Sour or the White Russian.

When he wasn’t writing some of the most lauded fiction and journalism of the 20th century, Ernest Hemingway was also an expert maker and enthusiastic consumer of cocktails. The American author and explorer had a special type of daiquiri - the ‘Papa Doble’ - named after him during his time in Havana, Cuba and once drank 17 of them in one sitting at the El Floridita bar. It was a fondness shared by his fictional creations, such as Martini drinker Frederic Henry from A Farewell To Arms.

The bible of cocktail bartenders is the Fine Art of Mixing Drinks by David Ambury, which was written in 1948. He was never a bartender but was a self-proclaimed ‘shaker upper of drinks for his guests’. His book was referenced by many of the celebrity bartenders such as Dick Bradsell, who was credited with reviving the cocktail scene in the 1990s.

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BARCLAY REVIEW GETS THUMBS DOWN THE BARCLAY REVIEW WAS PUBLISHED LAST MONTH. THE TRADE HOPED IT WOULD OFFER UP A FEW SOLUTIONS TO THE ISSUE REGARDING THE UNFAIR METHOLOGY CURRENTLY USED TO ASSESS LICENSED TRADE RATES. DONALD MACLEOD, OF THE GARAGE, HAS BEEN QUITE VOCAL WITH HIS REACTION TO THE REPORT IN THE PRESS. HERE’S WHAT HE HAD TO SAY IN THE DAILY MAIL.

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t had been hoped that the Barclay review would bring effective, radical change to a failing and unfair system. But, from what I can see, all this will do is close premises. At the beginning of the year the licensed trade and hospitality sector dominated the news as fear that of soaring business rates spread. Some faced rises of up to 400% with concerns jobs would be lost and businesses closed. Therefore it seemed likely this sector would play a crucial role in the conclusions drawn by the committee. But what was once front page news appears to have been relegated and ignored. I did not see a mention of the hospitality and licensed trade until page 116 of the 135-page report – under the title ‘Alternative valuation methodology for hospitality properties’. And that is not even the worst part. The review failed to address the fears raised by thousands of firms across the country and looks like a waste of time. The group claims that during the months spent on the review and meeting those set to be hammered by rates it ‘failed to identify any alternative method of valuation that would be acceptable to all in the sector. Far from the ‘disappointing’ outcome they say this presents, it is outrageous. The remit was not to find a solution that was ‘acceptable to all’, it was to build a fairer system. And this review has failed. It has completely missed the point. Our trade has been hammered by the revaluation. This is because licensed premises are rated on turnover, while other firms are assessed on size. We are now in a position that when the cap on rate rises is lifted after the one year promise, bars, restaurants, pubs, clubs and hotels across the country will be facing these hikes again. And we have companies in fear of having to cut back, lay off staff or even close their doors. They claim the report is a ‘roadmap. It’s the worst roadmap I’ve ever seen in my life. It goes nowhere for our sector. The trade has had meetings and tried to get our point of view across, but

we have been relegated to page 116 – an annex. That is pathetic. This report has shocked me, and most of my peers, who hoped our months of meetings and calls for change had been heard. Instead of listening to us they have sidestepped the issue and the licensed trade is being penalised by the rates system. I have said in the past that we are being mugged and this just feels like a nightmarish groundhog day that we have had no chance of awakening from. We asked for a radical overhaul, said change was needed to put everyone on a level playing field. But we have been ignored. I accept an attempt has been made to bring more transparency but there has been a failure to create a fairer system. There are thousands of businesses which are exempt from paying rates because of the Small Business Bonus Scheme – and this review has agreed that this should be limited. There are other recommendations which I welcome. The move to have revaluations every three years is positive. I also agree with the plan to have private schools, golf clubs and council arm’s lengthfacilities – such as leisure centres – paying full business rates. Another clause recommends allowing rates to be put on hold for 12 months for firms making significant investment in their properties -but there is no clarity on what this actually means. Companies will make a significant investment this year...and the year after and the year after if that staves off or reduces their rates bills. As a trade we must now discuss where we go next. Appeals against higher bills are already in, but these could take up to 18 months with assessors already dealing with thousands of requests. The review is like Monty Python’s 100 yard dash for those with ‘no sense of direction’ sketch – it is a road to nowhere. I really do fear for the whole sector. n DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 15


Perfection does not come about by accident Our passion for excellence drives us to continually develop new technologies to create the full range of delicious speciality coffees –from Ristretto up to Latte macchiato. Flexibly configurable coffee machines and accessories can be combined to create the perfect coffee solution with permanent water connection or sizeable watertank for any requirement from 30 up to 180 cups per day.

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In Hotel Restaurants and Bars In Barista Bars In Coffee Lounges To Cater for Employees In the Events Area In Office Floor Solutions

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WE8

XJ9 Professional


LICENSEE INTERVIEW

Bobsie and wife Angela

A REAL CHARACTER BY SUSAN YOUNG

I

’ve known Robert Mullen (aka Bobsie) since 1997 when he was running McPhabbs. By that time he was a veteran in the trade having started out more than a decade earlier as a dishwasher in Poacher’s Restaurant and Back Alley. He went onto to work in Chimmy Chungas, PJ’s, John Street Jam, The Firestation and The Couch and Slouch. But it was while managing Rab Ha’s in the Merchant City, for Colin McDougall in 1991 that things really started to come together. Bobsie tells me, “I was really lucky. We were all having a great time. In fact I would say it was all a bit crazy. We were young and we knew how to work hard and party even harder. I was also in a band called Giant – although I was never the best vocalist, and it was at the time of Del Amitri, Hue & Cry and The Bluebells. We all hung out, became great friends and partied. But luckily for me I met my wife to be, Angela, at Rab Ha’s. She reigned me in a bit and anchored me.” He admits that he was always a hard worker. He explains, “My family moved to Portugal when I was quite young and I moved into a bedsit, and I turned up late to a shift and my manager said ‘if you do that again you’ll be out the door.’ I got a fright because I knew that I

needed to pay my rent. Ever since then I’ve always worked hard at it – I also think that a shift always goes much faster when you are working hard. I believe if you work hard things always will turn out okay. I’ve kind of stumbled my way through and I’ve found that if I work hard I don’t tend to fall over.” He has certainly not fallen over. Bobsie has made some astute purchases over the years and some timely sales. It started when his business partner bought him out of McPhabbs in 1999 – he then spent a couple of years out of the trade before buying the freehold of Universal in Sauchiehall Street Lane in 2002. He sold that in 2007 and then he bought The Griffin in April 2008, which he then sold to Stephen White and Oli Norman in 2016. Today he has just taken over Rab Ha’s. Says Bobsy, “Angela and I have come full circle. It’s funny to think that after all these years I’ve finally returned to Rab Ha’s. In fact the first person I phoned when I did the deal was my old boss Colin. He said ‘You’re a ...nutter! But I love the fact I’m now an ‘Innkeeper because we have letting rooms – I inherited more than 80 bookings. I love it.” The couple are currently giving the pub a make-over. Says Bobsie, DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 17


CONTINUED “We are just restoring it – for a while I knew people by their bringing back the stone and wood drinks and not their names. In panelling, and brightening the fact sometimes I see a customer place up. We are re-instating the I haven’t seen for years, I can’t fire and downstairs we’ve painted remember their name, but I can and fixed the upholstery and such remember what they drank!” like. It will be an extension to the He likes the fact that he is just bar but we can also use it for about to be hands on again, private dinners and functions.” although he is also loving getting He likes the fact that they will in and about the refurbishment. be putting their stamp on it. He He explains, “Well I’ve kind of explains, “I like it when we create had 18 months off.” Although something new. For instance when we took over McPhabbs it was that is not quite true because for the last four years he has been called Bollinger. We sat on the doorstep of the pub and thought there managing the bars for Regular Music at the Kelvingrove Bandstand. is hardly any people going past here, so we knew we knew it was The ‘Summer Nights’ event takes place each year during the first two going to be hard. It was the time that everyone was opening theme weeks in August. Says Bobsie, “I’ve known Mark Mackie at Regular bars so we decided to do a Scottish theme – but the only theming for a number of years, we met through my music connections. I like was really in the name and the fact we served Haggis, and had a the fact that as a promoter Regular are happy for me to employ few whiskies. Then when Angela and I bought Universal it was for the right number of staff to do the job, and we also sell our beer at everyone - and it was totally our creation. We wanted to create a a sensible price. It’s been fantastic – but we don’t do all the bars place where everyone felt comfortable and it was a happy place. But throughout the year. Some people think we do, but we only do the when we bought The Griffin we realised that actually The Griffin is Summer Nights and it is good work for the 50 folk we employ. They owned by the people of Glasgow. Even thou’ we cleaned it up people get two weeks work and get to hear some great music too.” didn’t notice. But they noticed if we put the price of a pint up. It wasn’t Talking of music, Bobsie admits that he still likes to jam a bit, but our creation at all. But even so what he is really loving is looking we were there for nearly eight after his hotel customers. He years, and we sold it off market. says, “Despite the fact that they DO YOU KNOW FOR A WHILE I don’t really put anything up for are staying on a building site, I KNEW PEOPLE BY THEIR sale, they kind of sell organically.” they have all been great. I like DRINKS AND NOT THEIR He continues, “At Rab Ha’s we the hotel side of the business.” will be focussing on creating a Although his plans to turn a NAMES. INFACT SOMETIMES nice atmosphere. We will have townhouse in St Vincent Street I SEE A CUSTOMER I HAVEN’T decent service and decent food. into a boutique hotel have had SEEN FOR YEARS, I CAN’T Hopefully we will create a wee to take a back seat for the time REMEBER THEIR NAME, BUT I scene. I’m even employing two being. He tells me, “Right now I’m of my kids! He jokes, Angela and concentrating on Rab Ha’s and I CAN REMEMBER THEIR NAME, I make a good team... Angela will come back to that.” BUT I CAN REMEMBER WHAT is not a bad waitress ... and Angela and Bobsie live in Glasgow’s THEY DRANK! I need someone to wash my West End and also socialise Rober t Mullen blackboards!” Before continuing, there. Although he tells me if you “Angela and I will be waiting tables ask Angela “she’’ll probably say ‘we at Rab Ha’s, after all I am basically a professional waiter. In fact on my never go out!’” He adds, “We do go out locally to the likes of Caffe daughters birth certificate where it says profession we have Waiter Parma and Nick’s with the kids... we went for lunch at Gandolfi a and Waitress!I wish that it was considered a profession here, like it is couple of weeks ago. We also like to go on the odd culinary European in Europe. I remember going to France and Paris and all there were city break – in the last year we’ve been to San Sebastian where we ate all these middle aged men dress up to nines in their waiting outfits – at Kokotxa and we went to Copenhagen where we ate at Kiin Kiin. We they consider themselves professional waiters. But the craft of being also went to the fantastic street food hall in the harbour. Angela loves a good waiter is disappearing. You have big chains that get you to her spice and Benares in London gives her a much needed fix while order at the bar. They ask you for your table number... What waiters Munich also provided some necessary beer tasting hours with lots of do you know by name now? Not many. Angela and I used to go to research into the many different ways of serving up pork.” restaurant because maybe there was a particular waiter or waitress But these wee breaks may be on hold for a short time as Bobsie we liked, who’d give us great service.” and Angela concentrate on Rab Ha’s. I for one am looking forward I reminded him that I used to go to McPhabbs because I loved the to re-acquainting myself with one of my old favourites! It will re-open fact that he remembered our drinks. Bobsie laughs, “Do you know in September. n 18

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017


WHAT A NIGHT!

C

ongratulations to all our winners and finalists. Our judges raved about the quality of the finalists this year and in fact found it very difficult to make the final decisions but that’s where our mystery shoppers came in. They visited and they gave us their feedback and their scores together with the judges scores and the number of people who voted for the finalists online all counted towards the final conclusions. This year the buzz word was ‘experience’. It wasn’t just about the quality of the service and value for money, people were looking for that overall ‘feel good’ factor. And all our winners had this in abundance. Congratulations to Linda Johnston on receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award (see below) and to our Hall of Fame recipients:- Adele Montgomery of the Commercial Hotel, Designer Ranald MacColl and Linda xxxxxx of Costley & Costley. Of course I have to say a huge thank you to our

sponsors because, quite simply, without their support the awards would not happen. So thank you the BII, Bright Signals, Diageo, Disaronno, Flow, Wm Grant, Inverarity Morton, Kopparberg, Makar Gin, Molson Coors, Tennents, the Sunday Mail and of course our sister publications. Our Supplier Awards, which were presented at the start of the evening, were the result of an intensive telephone survey - and this year one of the key things that licensees outwith the city centres complained about was the lack of reps that they now see. I hope that over the next 12 months reverses! But customers were very complimentary when it came to companies that were delivering on service and price. Well done to the four winners. Heineken, Dunns, Inverarity Morton and Gordon & MacPhail. The Hilton Glasgow did an excellent job and our performers the IT Girls were fabulous.

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 19


20

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017


Lifetime AchievemeNt award

wiNNer LINDA JOHNSTON AUCHRANNIE Thirty years next year – this person co-founded a business on Arran with her husband. She thought that one of the best ways to achieve one of her ambitions – which was to have a swimming pool on Arran, was to buy a hotel. Today I don’t think there is one person in this room who is not aware of Auchrannie! Over three decades that passed since the hotel was first opened – it has grown to be an ecologically sound and sustainable business. It’s company ethos is very much about doing the best it can for Arran and its people. So much so that our recipient has been working towards changing the ownership of the hotel over to the employees. It will be the very first employee-ownership deal done in Scotland and the Trust that has been set up has at its very heart the

continuation of that same ethos. From its humble start as a 16 bedroom hotel the Aucharannie Resort has grown and grown. Today it is a four star establishment, with two leisure pools, a spa, 85 rooms, three restaurants, a play barn, and has just about the highest 5 star ratings on trip advisor of any hotel in Scotland. Linda Johnston will be the first to say that it is not all down to her. In fact she will say it is down to her team...and it definitely is. But without her and her drive and enthusiasm, her dogged determination and her foresight – simply Auchrannie and the Isle of Arran would not be the shining example of Scottish hospitality that it undoubtably is. They have a saying at Auchrannie – Awesome Auchrannie... I think Linda is pretty awesome herself.

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 21


Beer BraNd OwNer/ Distributor of the Year

John Gemmell (L) receiving his award from Colin Beattie

driNks wholesaler of the Year

Ken Smith presents Ian Cumming with his trophy.

We are delighted to be awarded The Scottish wiNNer Wholesaler of the Year 2017. To win for the th privilege!

wiNNer

fiNalistS BELHAVEN, MATTHEW CLARK, TENNENTS

Well done to all of the Inverarity Morton Wine finalists and a special note of congratulations Inverarity Morton Wine by the Glass A

fiNalistS DUNNS, GORDON &MACPHAIL, MATTHEW CLARK

We are delighted to be awarded The Scottish Bar and Pub Awards Wholesaler of the Year 2017. We To win fordelighted the third yeartoinbe a row is a are awarded The Scottish Bar and privilege! Wholesaler of the Year 2017. To win for the third year

Pub Awards in a row is a

privilege!

Well done to all of the Inverarity Morton Wine by the Glass Award finalists and a special note of congratulations to Vroni's this year’s Inverarity Morton Wine Well by thedone Glass Award to all winner. of the Inverarity Morton Wine by the Glass Award We are delighted to be toawarded Scottish Bar and Pub Awards We are delighted be awardedThe The Scottish Bar and Pub Awards finalists and a special note of the Year 2017. To win for the third year in a row is aof congratulations to Vroni's this year’s WholesalerWholesaler of the Year 2017. To win for the third year in a row is a privilege! Inverarity Morton Wine by the Glass Award winner.

privilege!

Inverarity Morton 7 Evanton Drive Thonliebank Industrial Estate Award Glasgow this year’s G46 8HL T: 0141 620 6100 E: sales@inveraritymorton.com W: ww

Well done to all of the Inverarity Morton Wine by the Glass Award finalists and a special note of congratulations to Vroni's this year’s done to allInverarity of the Morton Inverarity Morton by the Glass Wine by the GlassWine Award winner.

Well finalists and a special note of congratulations to Vroni's Inverarity Morton Wine by the Glass Award winner. Inverarity Morton 7 Evanton Drive Thonliebank Industrial Estate Glasgow G46 8HL T: 0141 620 6100 E: sales@inveraritymorton.com W: www.inveraritymorton.com @InvMorton

22

@InverarityMorton

Inverarity Morton 7 Evanton Drive DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 Thonliebank Industrial Estate

@Inverarity_Morton

@InvMorton

Inverarity Morton 7 Evanton Drive Thonliebank Industrial Estate

@InverarityMorton


food wholesaler of the Year

Susan Young (L) and David Wither (CR) present Jim Rowan and Julie Dunn

spirit braNd owNer/ distributioN of the year

Susan Young (L) and Denise West (R) congratulate Stephen Rankin

wiNNer

wiNNer

fiNalistS BIDVEST, BRAKES, REID,S

fiNalistS DIAGEO, MAXXIUM, WILLIAM GRANT,S

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Well done to all the Finalists and Winners in this year’s Scottish Bar & Pub Awards.

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01355 26 36 49 design@select-contract-furniture.com www.select-contract-furniture.com

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 23


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Using the natural ingredients, our distillers orchestrate every second of the distillation process; there are no short cuts to perfection. Every cask is hand-filled, hand-weighed and hand-stamped before maturing for many years in our traditional dunnage warehouses. Why do we make it this way? Because classic pre-1960s Speyside character: it creates a beautifully balanced with a light touch of smoke. Discover more

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fiNalistS

THE MYSTERY SHOPPERS SAID OF THE

customer service award

THE BOUDINGAIT CUPAR

wiNNer

The service was superb. It could not be faulted. Unusual and rare these days

THE CORNER HOUSE KILWINNING

Kostas Simos (L) Jo Graham, Chairman of the BII in Scotland (C) & Panos Dimou (R)

wiNNer

ATLANTIC BAR & BRASSERIE GLASGOW

GLEN LUSSET CLYDEBANK

Scotch Frost congratulate Atlantic Bar & Brasserie on winning the BII Customer Service Award. It is well deserved.

Scotch Frost is the leading supplier of frozen, fresh & ambient food products, drinks and packaging to the food service and specialist ethnic markets. Telephone 01698 810099 (Head office) email sales@scotchfrost.com

www.scotchfrost.com DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 25


social mediA award

couNtry pub of the year

Grant Gibson of Bright Signals pictured with Rosie Woolen of Manorview

Sylvia Forsyth of Critics Choice is pictured presenting Lewis McLellan with the award.

wiNNer MANORVIEW HOWWOOD

wiNNer THE OLD MILL INN PITLOCHRY

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE WINNER:

The amount of engagement that this company gets through its social media platforms is very encouraging. It uses video, and staff engagement to help spread its message. It has a house style and has very professional look and also uses original content.

fiNalistS BUZZWORKS LIFE, DRIFTWOOD, LISINI

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE WINNER:

This is a lively pub and restaurant which attracts all manner of customers from tourists to locals, foodies to music lovers. It ticked all the boxes. It also looked immaculate, its outside area too, and the staff, despite being busy, were efficient and friendly. fiNalistS THE GLEN HOTEL, LEADBURN HOTEL, UPLAWMOOR HOTEL

fiNalistS

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

wiNNer

This pub is very definitely at the very heart of the community. It adhers to the normal social responsibility practices including stocking nonalcoholic beers and ciders, but it also acts as the Village shop - providing necessities for locals - from fresh rolls to washing up powder... community events are a big part of what the pub offers and the owners have lots of plans to engage the community even further.

26

social respoNsIbility & comMuNity award

LORIMERS

BISHOPTON

STRAMASH EDINBURGH

Peter Risk of Diageo presents the award to Roy McIntosh

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017

wiNNer

THE CLOVENFORDS GALASHIELS

THE WAGGON INN KELSO


CONGRATULATES

THE CLOVENFORDS HOTEL, GALASHIELS

WINNERS OF THE DIAGEO AWARD FOR SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY AND COMMUNITY 2016

Peter Risk Senior, National Account Manager at Diageo, presents the Diageo Award for Social Responsibility and Community 2017 to Roy McIntosh

THE WORLD’S LEADING PREMIUM DRINKS COMPANY


mething and e ‘waitresses’ for so . I asked one of th ht ed to be nig e uff th ch ed so lov re We absolutely dancing! We we s up on the stage wa e sh te nu mi xt the ne e Boudingait involved- Fiona- Th

e enter tainment great night and th It was an absolutely ulous. It went by in The IT girls were fab was the highlight. ins-Vroni’s a flash- Emma Tomk

It was great- a really enjoyable night. I loved the food and the entertainment. The best part was the emphasis on the Cabaret theme. Simon Douglas- Whistlestop Barber Shop

oys ht. The b rilliant nig y enjoyed b a s a w It larl le particu great at the tab ls. It was ir G IT e th g in e e p se ith ople e table w to share th tegories and we n. er c a from oth h other o ering eac e h s c d ll n a u o were x an d H rr-The Fo Sarah Ba

It’ been fantastic winning The Pub Spy Award. It was really unexpected but has been a great boost for all the staff and we have had great response from customers. The event was very well run and well organised. The look of the room and the entertainment were really fist class. Ross Henderson- The Birds and Bees.

t was a brilli ant night. I thought th My team al e lady com so thoroug pere was ex hly enjoyed the top tab cellent. it. And I en le.” joyed the co mpany at Hugo Mills, Molson Coor s. 28

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017


night. “Another brilliant ss held the ste ho e th t gh Thou well and ra ult er night togeth ole event. wh e th ed lift ls gir her Well done.” Mor Colin Beattie, Oran

It was great “A brilliant night. le you don’t op to see lots of pe de functions tra at e se y normall the right t jus and there was The IT girls le. op pe of amount they got the d an were fantastic .” ng alo g vin mo night , Kopparberg Ann Nixon-Smith

and the “Good raz zmatazz py. You ap sn re we awards love it do it really well. I ve not ha o wh le when peop n.” wi e for be en be John Gemmell, Heineken.

the ank you again for Just wanted to th esday! Tu on t night again award and a grea am d an it e iat I very much apprec your ht was great and honoured The nig d. ge na ma ll table plan very we rks Colin Blair, Buzz wo

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 29


CONGRATULATIONS! – TO

THE BON VIVANT EDINBURGH – WWW.BONVIVANTEDINBURGH.CO.UK

WINNER OF THE SCOTTISH BAR & PUB AWARDS COCKTAIL BAR OF THE YEAR

THE ORIGINAL UNIQUE SWEET & BITTER TASTE OF DISARONNO MAKES THIS FAMOUS ITALIAN LIQUER RECOGNISABLE

ENJOY RESPONSIBLY


cocktail bar of the year

Graeme Muir, Business Account Manager, Wm Grant & Sons, pictured with Chris Ingles and George Terzakis

wiNNer BON VIVANT EDINBURGH

Susan Young, David Brown (R) and Alexander Riches of Saint Luke’s

wiNNer

SAINT LUKES & THE WINGED OX GLASGOW

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE WINNER:

dog frieNdly pub of the year

The mystery shoppers raved about the service. So much so they gave it a 5.5 out of 5. And the judges were equally impressed. The Disaronno Sour had the perfect balance and rather a unique serve. It's a classic and great cocktail bar.

fiNalistS BLUE DOG, PANDA & SONS, TIGERLILY

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE WINNER:

Not only did this pub have water for the dogs but it had ice-cream for them too. Dogs were welcome all day, every day and it was not just a pleasant environment, it was great for two-legged guests too. With a good menu for dogs and their owners too. fiNalistS THE 13th NOTE, THE FORTH INN, THE LORD OF THE ISLES

award for success

We are proud to supply the Auchrannie and Costley & Costley with locally sourced fresh fish and frozen goods.

Bill Costley (left) with Kevin Cairns of Gordon & MacPhail

wiNNer

BILL COSTLEY: COSTLEY & COSTLEY TROON

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE WINNER:

Since 1988 Bill Costley has been at the forefront of Scottish hospitality with his hotels, restaurants, pub and patisserie. He set standards not just in Ayrshire but throughout Scotland. He has recently embarked on a refurbishment of his key venues which include Lochgreen, Brig a Doon and Highgrove. The group currently turns over in the region of £14m and employs 350 plus staff. Bill, and his family and team, have ensured that Costley & Costley enjoys Success.

fiNalistS RAD HOTEL GROUP, MANORVIEW, SEAMILL HYDRO DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 31


32

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017


THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

bar appreNtice of the year

wiNNer

All of the Bar Apprentices were a credit to their employers but James Marchant-Wink of Rabble was keen, keen, keen. He showed an aptitude for learning, demonstrated a real appreciation of whisky for the first time and his enthusiasm for the course was tangible.

runners up

LEWIS MARSHALL ANCHORLINE GLASGOW

SHAUN McQULLAN BOCLAIR HOUSE HOTEL

BEARSDEN Mark Thomson and Jennifer Joyes of Wm Grant & Sons with winner James Marchant-Wink

wiNNer

JAMES MARCHANT-WINK

RABBLE

fiNalistS

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

wiNNer

This award-winning establishment has been promoting wine by the glass since it opened in 1995. The current Manager Maria has been there for four years and has grown her own knowledge substantially over the years. Customers are encouraged to try wine flights, and wine and food matching. It also has a great variety of wines to try and staff are happy to help you choose. The venue is a credit to owner Alan Tomkins.

wiNe by the glass

BUCCLEUCH ARMS MELROSE

ETIVE

TAYNUILT

Emma Tomkins of Vroni’s is congratulated by Toby Siguoin

wiNNer

, VRONI S WINE BAR

GLASGOW

SEAMILL HYDRO SEAMILL

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 33


iNdepeNdeNt bar of the year

Ann Smith-Nixon (C) presents the award to the Bag O’Nails team.

, wiNNer BAG O NAILS GLASGOW

New bar of the year

Liam Hughes, Chief Executive of the Glasgow Distillery Company (R) presents Billy Milligan and the Finsbay team.

wiNNer FINSBAY MILNGAVIE

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE WINNER:

The team behind this West End bar Bag O'Nails have created a buzzy venue which not only attracts people from further afield but locals too. They have created a bar that reflects its independent roots – its quirky and very popular and the staff are on the ball too. It's a good all rounder.

fiNalistS

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE WINNER:

Finsbay is memorable. It's popular with all ages, and it works very hard at being part of the local community. It wouldn't be out of place in a city centre, but it has found it's raison d'etre in Milngavie. It's worth going out of your way for.

FINSBAY, THE PARLOUR, THE WHISTLE STOP BARBER SHOP

fiNalistS CHELSEA MARKET, EMPRESS OF BROUGHTON STREET, VOYAGE OF BUCK

fiNalistS

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

craft beer of the year

wiNNer

Craft Beer may be on everyone’s lips these days but the Bier Halle was crafty before it was fashionable. But it is not just about the craft, at the Bier Halle it is about the quality of the beer too and the knowledge that the staff have to offer. Now it also has a large outside area which means that even more people can enjoy its massive selection of beer.

AKVA

EDINBURGH

BADGER & CO EDINBURGH

Hugo Mills, Director of Sales and Operations for Scotland for Molson Coors presents Colin Barr, Drew McColl and the team from the Bier Halle.

wiNNer

THE BIER HALLE GLASGOW

THE STRATHMORE GLASGOW

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 35


fiNalistS

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

wiNNer

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE WINNER:

casual diNiNg award THEANCHOR

This category was almost a dead heat, but then the mystery shoppers found themselves in total agreement – the food and the service at The Swan was impeccable. Not only that but the whole dining experience was a real pleasure.

BROUGHTY FERRY

EUSEBI

GLASGOW

Neil Macdonald of Open Ear (second right) and the team from the Swan Inn

wiNNer

THE SWAN INN EAGLESHAM

THE MILL INN STEWARTON

Congratulations to the Swan well deserved

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 37


fiNalistS

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

wiNNer

the

the pub spy award

The Birds & Bees was a standout. It was immaculate, with a super outdoor area too. It has been well maintained and is obviously very popular. It offers great food, a good selection of beers and spirits and wine too and is popular with all ages. A worthy winner of the accolade Pub Spy Pub of the year.

HOUSTON

THE SHIP INN

NORTH BERWICK

Brendan McGinty, Editor of the Sunday Mail, presents the Birds & Bees with the Pub Spy of the year award.

wiNNer

THE BIRDS & BEES

STIRLING

ST ANDREWS

wiNNer

You know when a renovation has worked when you see the venues sales go through the roof and that has certainly been the case for Angels owners Lisini. The new-look Angels and Harry's Bar have gone down a storm, and not only have the existing customers returned to enjoy the new-look, but many new customers have heard the news on the grapevine and are now regulars too. Well done to all concerned.

reNovatioN of the year CRUIZE

AUCHRANNIE

THE GROVE LENZIE

Scott Fleming (R) of the DRAM presents the Angels Hotel team.

wiNNer

ANGELS

38

THE WEST PORT

fiNalistS

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

THE FOX & HOUNDS

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017

UDDINGSTON

MAGGIE MAYS GLASGOW


fiNalistS

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

wiNNer

Hamilton's in Edinburgh offers the whole package – a real quality experience. From the cold Tennent's on offer to the food menu and general ambience. No wonder it is one of Stockbridge's most popular haunts. It's a winner with all ages and is equally appealing to men and women whether into their sports or into their cocktails. A real quality gem of a place.

teNNeNt’s quality award THE FORT HOTEL

BROUGHTY FERRY

MUNROS

GLASGOW

Paul Condron, Marketing Director of Tennent’s - Martin Luney, Sam Raynor & Colin Church of Hamilton’s

wiNNer ,

HAMILTON S

, SAINT LUKE S

EDINBURGH

Specialist Fit-Out Custom Joinery Steel Fabrication General Building Maintenance Design & Build

GLASGOW

Supplying the latest gaming machines, skill and quiz games, pool tables, jukeboxes and more to the license trade.

Congratulations to Angels in Uddingston on winning the accolade Renovation of the Year Now supplying

ice making machines and glasswashers!

OUR PRODUCTS We supply the latest gaming machines, skill and quiz games, pool tables, jukeboxes, plasma screen TV’s, CCTV, sound systems and more OUR SERVICE We deliver, install and maintain our products. You can rely on us to deliver excellent service and back up. Gambling commision approved

0141 420 1666

Visit our new website www.hughstirling.co.uk enquiries@hughstirling.co.uk

builders and shopfitting contractors

CALL US 0141 649 9922 EMAIL US info@newcoinautomatics.com VISIT US Unit 9, Shawbridge Street, Glasgow

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 39


fiNalistS

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

wiNNer

The Keys Bar makes whisky accessible to all comers with a range of over 300 whiskies. The coloured ribbon price bands let customers also make selections within their budget. Claire and the staff's enthusiasm is infectious and they are happy to give customers a free taste before they buy.

whisky bar ofthe year

ISLE OF ISLAY

THE CAVE, MELDRUM HOUSE HOTEL OLDMELDRUM

Lisa Clifford presents The Keys team

wiNNer

THE KEYS BAR

THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

THE BALLYGRANT

THE POT STILL

ST ANDREWS

GLASGOW

eNtrepreNeur of the year

wiNNer

Entrepreneurship is the process of designing, launching and running a new business or businesses... and Colin Blair and his family have got this down to a fine art. In the last two years they have opened three new places, another one is imminent and has continued to refurbish existing premies. They are without doubt the most entrepreneurial pub company in Scotland and at its helm is our Entrepreneur of the year.

David Wither (R) presents Colin Blair of Buzzworks with his trophy.

wiNNer

COLIN BLAIR

BUZZWORKS

DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 41


THE JUDGES SAID OF THE

pub of the year

wiNNer

The standard was extremely high this year but Saint Luke's & The Winged Ox is a worthy winner of the Sunday Mail Pub of the Year. The judges all loved the warmth of this innovative venue which certainly has a heart and soul. All customers are made to feel welcome especially dogs and music lovers and the judges loved it.

Allan Rennie CEO Daily Record & Sunday Mail, David Brown and the team from Saint Luke’s & The Winged Ox.

wiNNer

SAINT LUKE’S & THE WINGED OX

The Scottish Licensed Trade

Hall of Fame Joining our Hall of Fame this year are: Ranald MacColl (R) who has designed some of Scotland’s most iconic pubs – from Glasgow to Oban and Islay too. He is a bit of a legend in his own lifetime – and he certainly deserves this accolade. Our second recipient has been the backbone behind one of Scotland’s most successful hoteliers for some 28 years. In fact her family too has become involved with the company with her son managing one of the companies hotels. She is PA to Bill Costley and she too is a very worthy recipient... Linda Leckie... And finally the last award goes to a lady who has been running her pub for the last 30 years. She has seen it through several owners and when it was bought by Manorview 10 years ago, she became Steve Graham’s first official employee. He has a soft spot for her and so do we – Adele Montgomery … you are a star! Susan Young with Adele Montgomery & Ranald McColl

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@dramscotland

SUE SAYS

/dram.scotland

I

have to say the run up to our awards are exciting, exhausting and exhilarating all at the same time. Exciting because we never know what we are going to see, exhausting because there are a lot of pubs, bars, restaurants and hotels to check out, and exhilarating because when you get to a venue and it exceeds your expectations – it makes you proud to be part of this enterprising trade. And that was certainly the case this year. So well done everyone. The feedback from the awards ceremony itself has been very good. But what struck me was the number of people who said there was a lovely warm feeling in the room. This brings me back to our mystery shoppers because this year they kept talking about ‘the whole experience’. It wasn’t just about the service, or the food, cocktails or welcome – it was all about how they felt when the entered compared to to how they felt when they left. I hope that everyone that came to the awards had a great experience, because our mystery shoppers certainly did. Sometimes my social life collides with my business life – such was the case on a recent holiday to Mallorca. I was over for a friend’s 50th, who had flown in from Dubai... and James Mortimer and Lord Haughey were also guests as was Lisa Wishart from Lisini. So we all had an entertaining evening, great chat and good cocktails and James decided to take us a tour of the area the next day, which I’m happy to r e p o r t we survived! We popped into Nikki Beach for a wee noisy, but we nearly choked at the €1,100 Euro’s price tag on a 5l bottle of Rose! Maguluf really is a resort of two halves – the very cheap and very cheerful, and the very expensive and the ‘look at me’ brigade. Great to experience at least once in a lifetime! As many of you will know I firmly believe in reporting on positive initiatives in the trade – whether that be new places opening, investment in venues, or pro-active people. I won’t and don’t carry stories that are quite clearly a dig at another company or that present the trade in a poor light. That’s not my job, and if we can’t say positive things about the trade...who will? I think the job

of the DRAM is to promote the industry and support it. That does not mean to say that I wouldn’t campaign and do editorial on real issues ...such as rates. But I am too long in the tooth to get caught up in company politics. I popped into The Citizen, Mario Gizzi and Tony Conetta’s new place in Glasgow, just ahead of its opening. It pays homage to a newspaper that my father worked on back in 1959! I can’t wait to take him for a bite of lunch there when he is back from America. As you can imagine it looks great. Meanwhile they have got their Aparthotel on the go, a new development in St Andrews Square, Edinburgh, and there are another couple of other initiatives happening too. I don’t know where they get the energy! Glenfiddich are hosting a special Festival at their Distillery the weekend on the 10th and 11th September. They are transforming the “valley of the deer” into their very own festival with Twin Atlantic headlining on Sunday 10th and the Fratellis on Monday 11thSeptember. They are doing it to say a big thanks to the Scottish hospitality industry for the continued support of Glenfiddich and William Grant & Sons. So if you are one of the lucky ones to get an invite... enjoy! More next month. Talking of Wm Grant & Sons... they have just announced that UK Director of Prestige and Great-Great Granddaughter of William Grant, Kirsten Grant Meikle, has just relocated to the USA to take on the role of US Commercial Strategy Director. She will play a critical role in continuing to build the US’s Commercial Excellence platform, beginning with a focus in the Prestige arena. For the last few years she has been instrument in implementing transformational change within the UK business, leading several initiatives, including the development of its on-trade sales team, the implementation of a Customer Relationship Management system, and most recently, the creation of our UK Prestige Team. I wish Kirsten all the very best. I at least I now have someone, other than my brother to have a drink with when I’m in New York! DRAM SEPTEMBER 2017 43


1A Market Street, Edinburgh EH1 1DE

BREWHEMIA DESIGN FOCUS

S

ometimes the numbers say it all. North of £2 million invested, 29,000 square feet and more than 100 staff members quite simply, Brewhemia, the sprawling new multi-sectioned venue situated at the rear of Waverley Station, is a behemoth. It is not, however, a space that sacrifices style on the altar of spectacle. All of its five distinct sections are roomy, aesthetically pleasing and focused in on a specific form of alcohol, incorporating German, Czech, Italian, French and Scottish influences. The premises on Market Street have a rich history to say the least, having been home to The Scotsman print works and, more recently, Sportsters Bar and City Nightclub. Owners Castle Leisure Group closed the latter two last October and began the process of transitioning into Brewhemia - a shrewd move given the UK-wide decline of the nightclub and rise of the versatile late night bar, not to mention the need to adapt to the tastes of the tourists and cultural types that stream out of Waverley in their thousands every summer. General Manager Daniel Wylie told DRAM, “The direction of large nightclubs and what people were using them for was changing. That was and still is quite evident. We started thinking about how to make best use of the space, because it is 29,000 square feet and the biggest licensed premises in the city. Event spaces like The Corn Exchange are bigger, but in terms of bars there is nothing bigger.” To link the sections together and give Brewhemia an air of tradition a backstory has been developed telling the tale of Robert Stuart, a boy from Leith who travelled round Europe in the 19th century, taking in “the beer palaces of Prague, the Oktoberfest in Bavaria, the masquerade balls of Venice, the Moulin Rouge in Paris and then finally back home to Auld Reekie,” the idea being that the new

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BY SCOTT FLEMING

establishment is the work of his descendants. The first section, The Taproom, would be an impressive pub in its own right, and indeed Daniel says one of the difficulties is getting visitors to explore further and not bed themselves in! Encompassing a long curved bar, a large seating area and a mezzanine, The Taproom functions almost like a show flat, offering glimpses of what awaits further aside this cavernous space. It’s here that you’re introduced to the two standout gimmicks - the gold ‘Buzz For Bubbles’ buttons built into the tables, which allow customers to order Prosecco without moving an inch, and tank beer. Now this isn’t the only place with tank beer in Scotland - or Edinburgh for that matter - but whereas other venues have one or maybe two tanks, Brewhemia has a staggering six. The two in The Taproom are used to showcase the finest in local craft brewing - The Edinburgh Beer Factory’s Paolozzi and Stewart Brewing’s Jack Back. And just to show that sport hasn’t been completely removed from the agenda, Scotland rugby international Finn Russell had the honour of ‘tapping the tank’ at a special event. The food service runs throughout the day and features classic dishes presented in a cheeky way - lobster with Bloody Mary mayo, IPA battered haddock etc. There’s a nice variety of modern light fittings open cabinets full of wine and champagne on the wall above the bar. The next stop on the journey is The Caffè, and as that extra F suggests, this is where the Italian influence takes hold. Located just upstairs from The Taproom, The Caffè offers artisan coffee and takeaway food made in-house - until 5pm that is, when the lights go down and it’s transferred into a gin and prosecco bar. The Taproom and Caffè both lead into The Beer Palace, which combines the space of an aircraft hanger with the opulence of a


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DESIGN FOCUS: CONT ballroom and is the sort of room that requires a good 30 seconds’ open-mouthed gawping before you can actually sit down or order a drink. Split over two levels, it contains three bars, two private function rooms, a stage, a DJ platform and even a photo booth complete with comedy props. And there’s a reason it’s called a ‘palace’ and not a hall, as Daniel explained. He said, “The worry was that if you say ‘beer hall’ to people it conjures up long tables, steins, singing, lots of men, rowdiness. There are businesses that do that and are successful but it wasn’t right for us. We brainstormed hard to make sure our venue didn’t slide into that section of the market. We’re calling it a beer palace because it’s bigger, more decadent and more glamorous, and it’s female-friendly. “I’m happy to say that’s been borne out so far, the usage is couples, women, groups etc, they’re not at all fazed by the ‘beer’ in the title. It is an inclusive space. We want it to be somewhere a group of girls would want to come to on a night out. It may be a stereotype but as a sports bar it was very male-orientated and I didn’t want to recreate that.” The inspiration is Czech, not German, and accordingly two of the four beer tanks suspended either side of the stage contain Czech brand Pilsner Urquell. On the lower level, where the printing presses once stood, and the dance floor after that, there are now long wooden benches overhung by dazzlingly bright chandeliers. Below the main bar there’s white brickwork with thin strips of wood and above there’s a gold stripe with table numbers that illuminate when the Buzz for Bubbles buttons are pressed. Up above that is the stage, where everyone from brass brands to 46

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piano players and voice choirs do their thing throughout the week. The colour palette mixes smooth blues and creams with gleaming bronzes and golds and there are leather banquettes and comfortable booths ringed round the edges of the room. Designed in French and Scottish styles respectively, function rooms The Boudoir and The Bothy are close by to one another on the higher level, in the finest traditions of the Auld Alliance. The Boudoir, with its mirrors and lights beyond count, positively glitters, with silken seat coverings for revellers to sink into and a carpet that brings to mind interconnecting peacocks’ tails. The Bothy is more muted and homely, with high-backed chairs, a mantelpiece, a fireplace behind a glass screen and an extensive whisky selection. Lawrie Orr provided architectural services and consultants CRGP assisted on the project management side of things. Key players other than Daniel include new Head Chef Christopher MacDiarmid, formerly of Ghillie Dhu, and new Entertainment Manager Lauren Glass, formerly of Electric Circus. Daniel himself is a Geordie who first came to Edinburgh as a student and has since worked in pubs and clubs all over Scotland, from Dundee to Dumfries, before joining Castle and taking over Sportsters. He added, “Every city has been different. The mechanic is the same - you’re selling food, drink and entertainment - but it’s a challenge every time to work out what they want and how they like it.” Thankfully, now that he’s in charge of a venue that feels like a city in itself, that’s not as much of a concern anymore! n


Congratulations to all the winners of the Scottish Bar and Pub Awards 2017.

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DESIGN FOCUS

BY SCOTT FLEMING

SPATCH 3 Hunter Square, The Royal Mile, Edinburgh

T

he transition of burgers from grease-drenched guilty pleasures to gourmet restaurant fare would have been unthinkable 10-15 years ago, and there are signs that the same thing might be about to happen with chicken. If it does, we may well look back at Spatch, Merchant Leisure’s new eatery just off the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, as one of the real trailblazers. Wipe any thoughts of Nando’s or KFC from your mind - Spatch is a different breed, as the décor, the expansive craft beer selection and the chicken itself prove. Spatch’s birds are barn-reared, spatchcocked - hence the name - and charcoal fired on a custommade rotisserie, all right in front of your eyes in an open kitchen. The cooking method and kitchen design were both inspired by Merchant Leisure owner Jim Tullis’ holidays to Portugal, as Operations Director Arthur Mustard informed DRAM. He said, “The concept came from Jim himself. His favourite restaurant in Portugal does a similar spatchcock chicken grilled on charcoal coals, and once he’d seen it there he started trying to work out how to do it here. We looked into it and came up with the type of flame grill we needed, which was specially made for us by The Clay Oven Company down in London. The chicken is supplied by The Buffalo Farm and we worked hard with them to source Scottish chickens that were the right size. That was one of the main things, getting the right size of bird so that you get consistency. When you order it today it’s roughly the same size as yesterday, and the week before.” Newcastle firm Collective Design were behind the aesthetics, having also worked with Merchant Leisure on Burgers and Beer Grillhouse and The Newsroom in the Capital. Owner and lead designer Simon McIlwraith explained, “Arthur

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and Jim I’ve known for a number of years, so we had a good relationship with them. We’ve been quite in depth with this for a couple of years to get it to fruition, it wasn’t any one thing, or a written brief, it was a work in progress. It wasn’t the usual, sit down with a client, it was much more organic than that. And because of that we’ve been able to do something quite creative and I think that shows in the actual design. “The open kitchen was number one, THE most important thing. The theatre of that was important to us, and everything that followed after was secondary.” The restaurant has an outside area with tables and black wicker chairs looking onto Hunter Square and the Tron Kirk, a neat spot for sampling the atmosphere of the Edinburgh Festival and soaking up those rare glimpses of Scottish sunshine. The bar and that showstopping open kitchen can be found side by side on the left immediately inside the entrance, which is ringed by vintage Edison bulbs. The prime spectating spot for those wanting to monitor their chicken’s progress on the flame grill is the brown leather banquette running down the opposite wall. Sections of wood panelling and exposed brickwork alternate on the walls and there’s a nice variety of contemporary light fittings. The colours present could broadly be described as russet, but there’s also splashes of green in the form of potted plants on shelves. Arguably the coolest seat in the house is the table just off the front of the restaurant, bathed in red light emanating from a neon ‘SPATCH’ sign. The contrast is sharp with the section at the rear, where natural light flows in through windows and skylights. Ingredients like lemons and mushrooms feature in rustic, worn illustrations, the light fittings are reminiscent of greenhouse


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www.myrtlecoffee.co.uk 01592 874242 windows and there’s a series of five chalkboards showing every stage of the Spatch process - egg, chick, chicken, fully grown chicken, cooked chicken! Simon expanded, “The food has that Portuguese influence 100%, but we wanted to bring the chicken influence into the design. I don’t want to say ‘farmhouse’ as such, but we wanted to go somewhere organic enough that it was almost like your home kitchen. So it’s like a homecooked, good quality, wholesome chicken meal that comes from the farm and is fresh, and it was that understanding. “That was all part of the branding, hence why we’ve got the chicken icon. It was all about homecooking, good values, and hopefully that comes over. It’s dressed like a home kitchen, it feels like that, there’s some botanicals in there as well on the fabrics. We wanted people to feel cosy in there, it isn’t hard or harsh, it’s warm, it’s friendly, and that conveys what the clients are all about as well. They’re very passionate about their product and what they do.” When DRAM paid Spatch a visit it was alive with animated conversations in foreign languages, but the team behind the venue - including General Manager Nick Callaghan and Executive Chef Gregor Annand - are determined to make it a hub for locals and tourists both. “Purely by our location, the tourists are a big part of the business,” Arthur added. “But we believe that what we are doing is so good and so unique we will attract a lot of local customers as well. “The Royal Mile has got a bit of a reputation as a tourist trap and we’re trying to shake that off so that local people will be comfortable coming up to visit us and experiencing the chicken and the atmosphere. Tourists won’t necessarily be here tomorrow and you need people coming back over and over again. “So far it’s been great, we’ve been queued out the door, but the Festival has been on so I wouldn’t expect anything else! The reaction on social media and TripAdvisor has been tremendous, so we’re really pleased with that.” Spatch’s website proclaims the restaurant as “the best thing to happen to chicken since feathers.” We can’t attest to that bold claim, but it’s certainly crafted with passion and dripping with attitude - just like the food. n

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ROUND UP

SOME MORE PICTURES FROM OUR AWARDS. Photographers Peter Sandground and thanks to the Sunday Mail for additional photography.

DRAM DRINKS RETAILING AND MARKETING PUBLISHED BY MEDIA WORLD LIMITED UPPER FLOOR / FINNIESTON HOUSE, 1 THE STABLES YARD / 1103 ARGYLE STREET, GLASGOW / G3 8ND t: 0141 221 6965 e: news@mediaworldltd.com w: dramscotland.co.uk Editor Susan Young • Chairman Noel Young • Editorial Scott Fleming, Jenny McBain Advertising Sylvia Forsyth • New Business Lisa Clifford • Production Dougie Wagstaff • Admin Cheryl Cook Published by Media World Ltd. Subscriptions: DRAM is available by subscription for all other qualified persons involved in the Scottish Licensed Trade at the rate of £52 per annum including the DRAM Yearbook. The publishers, authors and printers cannot accept liability for errors or omissions. Any transparencies or artwork will be accepted at owner’s risk. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form without the written permission of the copyright holder and publisher, application for which should be made to the publisher. Articles published in this magazine do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the publishers. © Media World Limited 2017. Printed by Stephens & George Print Group. 54

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Thanks to all of our 2017 sponsors

Dram September 2017 - 325