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Best alcoholic drinks 2020: From the top-notch gin to the finest champagne, we've got it covered

We've collated the year's ultimate alcohol offerings.

Best alcoholic drinks 2020: From the top-notch gin to the finest champagne, we've got it covered
Danielle de Wolfe
24 February 2020

Alcohol is a topic close to our hearts here at Shortlist - while always drinking responsibly, the team sample many a tipple to see if it's deserving to get on to one of our lists.

We spend a lot of our time tirelessly updating our alcohol shortlists across multiple categories, while you, the general public, have exercised your democratic right to vote and voiced your alcohol-based opinions loud and clear.

The result? This round-up of the best alcohol around right now.

We've looked at each of the key individual categories across the alcoholic spectrum and including the top-rated offering alongside the runner-up. The list features fizz (champagne, prosecco and sparkling wine), whiskey, gin, vodka, tequila, rum, beer and cider. Now, try telling us there's nothing that fits your requirements?

We've trawled our top guides - best gin, best whiskey, best tequila, best Vodka and best champagne are all worth a look in their own right - to provide you with a well rounded list.

Whether you're after some top notch gin or maybe some bubbles, here is a list of the best alcohol available now - as voted for by you, the public.

Best bubbles
Best bubbles
Lanson Black Label Non Vintage
£34.00
The perfect blend of price and quality, Lanson’s Black Label Non Vintage Blend incorporates floral notes with delicious hints of toast. With its rich straw colour and a citrus edge, this is a champagne that is ideal as an aperitif. With its rich honey notes, you’ll also be pleased to hear that it’s suitable for both vegetarians and vegans. Everyone’s a winner!
View now at Waitrose
Best bubbles (runner-up)
Best bubbles (runner-up)
Louis Roederer Brut Premier
£35.99
A steadfast champagne favourite, Louis Roederer Brut Premier is a culmination of wine from eight different harvests, made using all three varieties of Champagne grape from more than forty different plots. Now that takes some leg work. The reserve wines are matured in oak casks for between two and ten years before being added to Brut Premier varieties - and trust us, the taste is definitely worth the wait. With smooth hints of fresh fruit and hawthorn, the champagne also has hints of apple and pear, alongside blackberries, raspberries and cherries. It’s a fresh and elegant addition with deliciously fine bubbles.
View now on Amazon
Best gin
Best gin
Thomas Dakin (70cl)
£29.00
Thomas Dakin has a taste that isn't for everyone - and it's all to do with one of the 11 botanicals they use for the gin. It's uses horseradish that gives the drink a savoury kick in its aftertaste. It's quite a full flavour but mix it with something citrusy like a bitter lemon tonic or some orange peel and you have a lovely flavoursome taste. Interestingly, this gin's origins are found in Warrington but it is branded Manchester on the bottle. Given Thomas Dakin is opening up a new distillery in Manchester, we can forgive them.
View now on Amazon
Best gin (runner-up)
Best gin (runner-up)
Monkey 47
£39.83 (500 ml)
An incredibly fun gin that hales from the Black Forest in Germany. The name comes from the number of botanicals that go into this unique gin, and the fact it’s bottled at bedtime-inducing 47% proof. Palate-wise it’s complex (there are, also, pleasingly, forty-seven different tastes packed in there). Woody, spicy, fruity, and herby: it is pretty much everything a gin can be.
View now on Amazon
Best whiskey
Best whiskey
Glenfiddich - 21
£110.00
For something dark, rich and complex, the Glenfiddich 21 year old single malt is an excellent choice. The whisky is finished in Caribbean rum casks for an unusual character and a deep amber colour. There are layers upon layers of flavour and when you think it’s done, you’ll discover another. The rum cask gives notes of banana, vanilla, ginger, dried fruit and more. It’s also rich with oak and leather.
View now on Amazon
Best whiskey (runner-up)
Best whiskey (runner-up)
Old Pulteney - 12
£48.69
This is the standard Old Pulteney but don’t write it off based on that. This is a delicious 12-year-old single malt Scotch at a surprisingly affordable price. This multiple award winner offers an excellent balance of light delicate flavours like apple with a deeper, salty and spicy finish. Based in Caithness, it is produce from the most northerly distillery in Scotland.
View now on Amazon
Best tequila
Best tequila
Patrón Silver Tequila
£42.50
A premium offering with an equally premium price tag (we'd expect nothing less), Patrón has become known as something of a god among tequilas. With its citrus-infused aroma and light, peppery after-tones, Patrón use a unique distilling process to create what they describe as their signature “fresh agave flavour with baked agave undertones”. Produced at the Hacienda Patrón distillery in Jalisco, Mexico, the brand use 100% Blue Weber Agave to produce their world-renowned tequila.
View now on Amazon
Best tequila (runner-up)
Best tequila (runner-up)
Don Julio Blanco Tequila
£37.92
When you think of tequila brands, chances are the name Don Julio features somewhere on the list. An instantly recognisable name, Don Julio González founded the La Primavera distillery in 1942 where he forged this ultra-premium tequila using 100% agave. It even managed to claim the #1 tequila spot on a recent poll of the World's 50 Best Bars making it well worth a try.
View now on Amazon
Best vodka
Best vodka
Black Cow Vodka
£24.99
When it comes to vodka, if you're after the smoothest of the smooth, Black Cow Vodka from the heart of Dorset is a definite contender. Created using the same cows milk that also goes into making trophy winning cheddar, you can actually taste hints of cream on your tongue - its slightly bizarre in a delicious sort-of way. Perfect for making cocktails or creating refreshing long drinks, this is a vodka that's about quality over quantity.
View now on Amazon
Best vodka (runner-up)
Best vodka (runner-up)
Chase Original Potato Vodka
£31.87
Introducing Chase - a relatively new kid on the block, which was created in 2008 on a family farm. However, Chase is still a spirit to be reckoned with. Each bottle is made using 250 Herefordshire potatoes and it's batch-produced in a copper pot still called Fat Betty – and if that's not a reason to try it, what is? You'll be rewarded with a smooth, creamy vodka and an earthiness that's ideal for a grown-up vodka martini.
View now on Amazon
Best craft beer
Best craft beer
Lost And Grounded - Keller Pils - 4.8%
£2.50
As craft beers go, this Bristol-based brewer has created what has quickly become the go-to lager of the craft beer world. A crisp and clean beer that will quench your thirst any time you crack open a can thanks to the expert blend of German pilsner malt and three varieties of hops. Fun fact: Lost and Grounded's hand-drawn labels make a panoramic scene when you put them all side-by-side.
View now at Eebria
Best craft beer (runner-up)
Best craft beer (runner-up)
Siren - Broken Dream - 6.5%
£2.40
Now we don’t actually suggest you have this instead of your morning brew, but Broken Dream is a breakfast stout, meaning it has been brewed with oats and coffee. This is a thick and luxurious beer with a deep and complex flavour. As well as oats, there are six different malts including a smoked variety. There’s also lactose which adds to the body and flavour. Siren won CAMRA’s Supreme Champion Beer of Britain 2018 for Broken Dream.
View now on Sirencraftbrew
Best rum
Best rum
Mount Gay - XO - 43%
£33.00
Some rum is better taken without a mixer and Mount Gay, which claims to be the oldest rum distillery in the world with a deed from 1703, has created a corker. ‘XO’ stands for extra old and is a blend of different rums aged between seven and 15 years old. It’s dry and oaky on the nose, yet is fruity and slightly sweet in taste, then has a smooth finish. This is a rum for the whisky lovers, who should try it as an old fashioned.
View now on Amazon
Best rum (runner-up)
Best rum (runner-up)
Wood’s - 100 Old Navy Rum - 57%
£32.99
Navy rum must be at least 57% abv (alcohol by volume). Wood’s is one of the few rums you’ll find at this strength. Not only is it like drinking alcoholic toffee, it’s affordable too. If it’s too much for you neat, try using it in cocktails for a real depth of flavour and body.
View now on Amazon

If you ever feel the need, head to DrinkAware to find out more about the alcohol you are consuming.