Food & Drink Awards 2019

Page 84 LUXlife 2019 Food & Drink Awards Some people would argue that shopping online lacks the personal touch. Not so when you visit Master of Malt. For the staff here, providing excellent customer experience is the bare minimum you should expect when you visit their site. Relentlessly trying to make your spirit experience superb, we at LUXlife decided to catch up with them and find out what sets them apart from the rest. The product of three childhood friends, what was once a bricks-and-mortar shop has under- gone the most incredible transformation. Since its relaunch in 2009 as one of the world’s first purpose-built online spirits retail site, the team at Master of Malt have provided an exceptional service. Taking everything they disliked about shopping online, they ensured that their website found a solution to make for the best possible experience. The result is a business that takes full advantage of the ability to provide 24/7 customer service, that thoroughly engages with their spirit-minded shoppers, and that re-imagines how drinks retail is done online. With the simple mission statement of shortening the distance to amazing drinks, Masters of Malt represents a spirit-lover’s paradise. With over 3,000 whiskies, 1,500 gins, 800 rums, 500 vodkas and 300 beers, the choice is simply exceptional. With bespoke functionality on their truly respon- sive site, fast delivery (UK next day delivery until 9pm, even on weekends!) and flash sales for those who keep an eye on the site, Master of Malt do everything right. What really lifts this dynamic team to the best of the best is what they offer on top of this. The opportunity to blend your own whisky, build your own drinks – thanks to the dram tasting sets and spirit filled Advent Calendars – and innovatively gift those you love a voucher that accrues interest by the year are the sorts of touches that make Master of Malt immensely special. It puts their customers first and foremost, showing how retail should be, when so often it isn’t. Far from just an online shop, Master of Malt acts as your go-to-hub when considering whiskies and gins. With a fantastic amount of extra content on the site to add to the spirit experience, there is a clear desire by the team to share everything they can on a subject they love. Through how-to guides, tasting videos, distillery footage and more, this company intends to immerse its customers, fans and followers in the world of drinks. A creative team of editors and journalists of this award-winning blog ensure that the stories, people and places that make up the spirits industry are shared with the largest audience possible. This is a major draw to the already popular site. A thorough induction program means that everyone in the business is equally passionate about what they’re selling. Two of the staff are Wine & Spirit Education Trust-accredited educators, delivering the WSET Level 2 Award internally, building up a workforce of passion- ate spirits experts within the company. Making sure that everyone is facing the same direc- tion is paramount to keeping all the different aspects of the company directed towards the appreciation of fine spirits. Looking forward, Master of Malt remain determined to keep on top of developments in the spirits market. With customers always on the look out for new flavour experiences, the team at Master of Malt are sure to have the perfect dram in their not-inconsiderable back catalogue, not to mention emerging spirit categories like mezcal and calvados. As more companies start to operate within the market, the importance of an inimitable perspective will become even more impor- tant. Fortunately, the talented team at Master of Malt have a significant head-start. Giving customers an authentic, genuine experience, it’s no wonder that this innovative company has gone from strength to strength. From humble beginnings in a shed, Master of Malt has grown into the premier provider of fine gins and whiskies. It’s not enough to provide excellent customer service, though Master of Malt do so with aplomb, creating a characterful experience is essential too. Taking a joy and delight in spirits that borders on obsession, Master of Malt has more than enough character to make it totally unique. Master of Malt: Best Online Whisky & Gin Merchant 2019 Contact: Mariella Salemo Company: Master of Malt Web Address: Telephone: 01892888376