I received an email from Angus Winchester’s mailing list today that has revolutionised my future tasting notes for this blog in a small but brilliant way.
For those of you who haven’t heard of him, Angus is a bona fide cocktail legend (he has no less than three drinks named after him). The guiding light of Trailer Happiness (London’s best rum bar), where he founded the Rum Club, Angus was one of the original International Playboy Bartenders and is now a globe-trotting drinks evangelist who, amongst many other things, works for Diageo as Global Ambassador for Tanqueray (he is working towards the title of Gin Genius) as well as spreading the cocktail word with his own bar consultancy, Alconomics.
In the course of his research, Angus has come up with what must be the best list of drink-related colours ever amassed. Now, I’ve never been one to talk about a whisky’s colour much, unless it’s particularly pale, dark or unusual (eg Green Elgin, which I now know is olivaceous), but I do love the English language and vocabulary, and anything that improves it gets a big thumbs up from this blogger (although obviously that doesn’t mean I’ll tolerate any comments from smart-arsed pedants about my own dubious grammar or syntax!).
From this day forth, any tasting notes that I do on here will have a bit more colour, to wit a descriptor from the below. In the face of such an outstanding piece of work it would be churlish not to. In fact, I love this list so much that I’ve christened it Colour Me Goodd (with apologies to readers of a certain age who had managed to forget about ‘I Wanna Sex You Up’).
aeneous shining bronze colour
albicant whitish; becoming white
amaranthine deep purple-red colour
atrous jet black
castory brown colour; brown dye derived from beaver pelts
citreous lemon-coloured; lemony
filemot dead-leaf colour; dull brown
ibis a pale apricot colour
icterine yellowish or marked with yellow
icteritious jaundiced; yellow
jacinthe orange colour
jessamy yellow like a jasmine
kermes brilliant red colour; a red dye derived from insects
madder a reddish or red-orange colour
melanic black; very dark
melichrous having a honey-like colour
nigricant of a blackish colour
ochroleucous yellowish white
puccoon dark red colour
pyrrhous reddish; ruddy
rubious ruby red; rusty
rufous reddish or brownish-red
russet reddish brown
sorrel reddish-brown; light chestnut
titian red-gold or reddish-brown
umber brownish red
vinous deep red; burgundy
vitellary bright yellow
xanthic yellow; yellowish
zinnober chrome green
Come on, what’s not to love? The above has been printed off and will reside just behind my monitor at work, where I can contemplate it while preparing for a tasting. My particular favourites are lutescent, melichrous, ochroleucous and spadiceous. Granted, I probably won’t get to use a few of them (in fact I hope I never have to use amaranthine and I’d be pretty freaked out if you gave me a kermes whisky) but I hope you’ll join me in doffing caps to Angus Winchester for producing something that makes the world a better place.
Let me know your favourite in the poll I’ve set up in the side-bar…