Picking your poison is a refreshing delight at 31dover.com, the e-outpost of luxury drinks trade provider Vanquish. Capitalising on its experience supplying drinking dens like the Chiltern Firehouse, the website ensures a top-quality service with a boutique-style personal touch for just about any alcoholic beverage you can think of, plus perfectly paired mixers.
For celebratory effervescence, there’s the champagne section, where big names such as Krug Grande Cuvée (from £117.50) sit alongside the British-made Gusbourne Brut Reserve 2010 (£27.95 for 75cl, first picture) sparkling wine. Elsewhere, the wine selection is a well-balanced mix of popular brands and boutique growers, from a Luc Belaire Rosé jeroboam (£169.95) to World’s End ‘If Six Was Nine’ Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 (£29.99). Made in limited quantities, the latter is part of a trio of wines from the producer of one of the most sought-after Saint-Emilions in the world, testament to 31dover’s commitment to finding and promoting new discoveries.
Every bottle on the site comes personally tested and recommended by its wine experts. “Every product is endorsed by us,” says David Elghanayan, CEO and co-founder. “We simply would not sell something if we didn’t think it was good enough.”
The beer, ale, lager and cider offerings are wonderfully varied, but spirits and liqueurs are where the fun really begins. Chase Smoked Vodka (£33.95 for 70cl) adds a real twist to a Bloody Mary. Craft gin is experiencing a wave of popularity and the site’s selection is overflowing with unusual options. Top picks include the handmade Monkey 47 Sloe Gin (£39.95) and Half Hitch Gin (£39.95, second picture), made in Camden with black tea and bergamot.
As for liqueurs, the 31dover.com team recommends Australian brand Regal Rouge Rosso Vermouth (£29.95 for 75cl, third picture), infused with pepperberry, wattleseeds, cloce, cinnamon and ginger, to be served on its own over ice with a slice of orange, while London-made Kamm & Sons Aperitif Bitters (£26.95 for 70cl, fourth picture) is a bittersweet spirit featuring botanicals including ginseng and grapefruit peels.
An accompanying blog provides serving recommendations on everything stocked, while the site also serves up advice on how to start your own bar and the ultimate serving accessories, such as the mirror-polished stainless-steel Bar Craft 3 Piece Cocktail Set (£29.95) or the traditional Mason Shaker (£39.95), inspired by the American South.
Throw in guaranteed next-day delivery for every order within the UK, and 31dover.com is truly raising the bar for online drinks providers.