BAIN’S CAPE MOUNTAIN WHISKYI’m rarely without Bain’s in my home bar. It’s local, it’s lekker, it’s inexpensive. Vanilla up front, with wafts of custard, more vanilla and cream on the palate with a hints of oak and banana, and finishing with a bit of citrus zest. PREFERRED SERVE: Neat, or in Old Fashioneds. NIHILO RUMWell, here’s a something great straight out of South Africa, adding to our rum revolution. Double cold-distilled, it’s smooth going down, with notes of naartjie and comforting Christmas cake. PREFERRED SERVE: Try it in a Hot Buttered Rum – wow! AUCHENTOSHAN AMERICAN OAK SCOTCH Easy drinking and unpretentious, this is a versatile whisky. It’s great for beginners, or for a pre-dinner tipple. Cheesecake on the nose, coconut peach on the palate and finishing with grapefruit toffee. PREFERRED SERVE: Marries well with a Whisky Sour. ROKU GIN I love this product for two solid reasons: it tastes good, really good, and at R299, it’s very well priced. The cherry blossom gives it a soft floral nose, while it’s smooth on the palate with a slightly spicy aftertaste. Love the Japanese botanicals too.PREFERRED SERVE: Perfect in a Martini, as it slides. MAKER’S MARK KENTUCKY STRAIGHT BOURBONBourbon, how do I love thee, and this is a goodie. Caramel on the nose, turning to a rounded nutty flavour when imbibed, leaving you with a mildly spiced butterscotch taste. PREFERRED SERVE: Neat. PORT CHARLOTTE 10YO SINGLE MALT SCOTCHThe scene that springs to mind while nosing this famously peated whisky is of a beach bonfire that’s being rained out while you’re huddled up – close to dying flames – sucking on saltwater taffy. The sweet marine flavours come through on the palate too, as well as soft lemon meringue pie that’s been seductively singed with a butane torch. PREFERRED SERVE: Neat.