Another excellent xmas concept by Master of Malt, following on from the whisky advent calendar (and then the vodka, two types of gin, tequila, cognac and rum advents), and various xmassy bottles including a mulled wine concentrate. I’ve reviewed a lot of different things in my time (believe it or not I was briefly the PC games reviewer for smutty lads mag Front magazine), this is the first christmas cracker though. I’ll give it my all though, as it might have whisky in it.
There’s six different drams in the crackers:
- Bathtub gin
- TBWC Arran batch 3
- Rumbullion! (reviewed here)
- Bathtub Gin - Sloe Gin 2014
- Professor Cornelius Ampleforth's Cherry Brandy 2014
Six xmas crackers, including a dram of booze, party hat, tasting note and joke, available from Master of Malt for £37.95
The packaging is reasonably premium. Good box, nice presentation, the crackers are held in place by little cardboard notches so they won’t move about.
The back shows some information about each of the drams inside the crackers.
The crackers themselves look neat, sturdy, expensive and have little ribbons round the waists (if that’s not the official cracker term for this, it should be).
In the hand, they’re made with thicker than normal cardboard, and are neatly assembled. I hope a machine made these, but I fear it may have been someone’s job.
Pulling the cracker is reasonably difficult, which will provide a satisfying “ooh isn’t this hard work” moment with your neighbour on sitting down to xmas lunch. Me and my seven year old son managed it on the second attempt. I’d say the pull strength was well judged.
On successful detonation, the crack was satisfyingly loud. The cracker itself broke at the designated point and the contents stayed inside the cracker.
The contents is a DBTD dram which has the hat and a card with the relevant tasting note wrapped round it with an elastic band (again, glad it wasn’t my job to assemble these). Unfortunately the quality of the note card and print is pretty low and the elastic band is a bit naff, although not out of keeping with the whole cracker thing. The tasting note itself is good as you’d expect, and the joke I didn’t understand – also traditional. The dram is a standard DBTB release, excellent/class leading 3cl split of a bottle of whatever.
The hat is a cut above the usual hat – good work Master of Malt! Here it is modelled by my bemused 7 year old while he continues to play on my iPad.
These are well made quite premium crackers with a gift I appreciate. I’m not up to speed with the price of “quite premium” crackers but my thinking is that these represent good value for money compared to the cost of the drams themselves, and would be a great opener for a bunch of people having xmas lunch who could then move onto the drinks after. Maybe you could swap them about if you weren’t happy with what you got – that’d be fun.
Thanks for the crackers Master of Malt!