Join us as we romp through 3,000 years of sherry history like some jolly, portly Tudor king. We'll chart sherry's progress from globetrotting, all-conquering Spanish icon to doddery laughing stock, and back.
Obviously, we had to hit Jerez in search of sherry. But our quest for world domination didn't end there. We also pounded Poland to find the truth about bland vodka, bashed Belgium until it gave up the secrets of its mysterious Lambic beer, decked Denmark for being home to the world's most prolific beer tasters and lamped Lebanon for making world-beating wine against all the odds.
Closer to home we drew some surprising conclusions from our own twisted taste test, let Iron Chef Martin Blunos loose on the Buckfast Tonic Wine and chatted with Irish comedian Ed Byrne about getting 'altered' - Fiji-style.
----------------------------- The Lager Issue -----------------------------
Hot Rum Cow is back, and we've got a hell of a round in. For this unashamedly populist issue, we bring you gallons and gallons of beer. Uppermost in our thoughts is lager – world-beating beer behemoth, insipid non-choice of the masses or a much misunderstood, complex and multi-faceted classic style. We bring you the lesser known story of lager's rise to world domination, from the frozen forests of Patagonia to the Great Exhibition in Paris.
We help you distinguish your Dunkels from your Dortmunders and we pit the best of British and American craft brews head-to-head in a re-run of The Revolutionary War.
Away from beer we've been set on fire by a shaman, serenaded by a porn star, shocked by the Eggnog Rioters and seduced by the most beautiful bottles in the world. After reading about that lot you'll probably need a drink.
How about vodka's rightful national drink, virgin's spit porridge, baby poo wine or an anti-malarial aperitif? Or what about Hot Rum Cow's very own beer, which we recently launched? The full story of our fruitful collaboration with Stewart Brewing is here too.
Come – stare in slack-jawed amazement into the thrilling neon future of booze.
This brave new world promises robot sommeliers, edible bottles, synthetic alcohol, genetically modified super yeasts and machines that vaporize your cocktails and blast them into your face. Sounds spectacular, doesn’t it?
You’ll learn what to do with your booze post-apocalypse, where wildlife is under threat from vineyards through climate change and how Bender the Robot (the perfect poster boy for the future of booze) would cure a hangover.
As exciting as the future is, we’ve always got time for the past too. We romp through the 3,000-year history of the wine glass, consider how Alexander the Great conquered all but the bottle and take lessons in anti-marketing from the Trappist monks of Saint Sixtus Abbey – brewers of the world’s best beer.
Oh, and let’s not forget the present – you’ve got to love the present. We interviewed the brains behind Café ArtScience, a new ‘no-boundaries think-tank cum restaurant’ in Boston, were introduced to the sweetly intoxicating world of advocaat in Belgium and investigated why so many bars are so keen to keep themselves a secret these days.