Sports and Spirits

A weekly podcast that takes you into the biggest sports events of the week and what you should be drinking with them. Product reviews and ratings. Matt East and Hank Allen have a combined 30 years experience in broadcast television. We're using that experience to bring you the latest news and topics in the world of sports and to highlight some of the great spirits in the United States and abroad. It's a little sports, spirits, and travel all in one place! Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to listen.
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Sports and Spirits




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Sep 13, 2018

Big show this week as Matt and Hank are back to break down all the big games in football this weekend. Plus our Vegas Insider Raphael Esparza joins us to talk Canelo/GGG 2, along with all the insights into Vegas you need. Plus what he's watching in the NFL. 

We also break down the big games in college football. 3 top 25 matchups and we will give you our picks. 

And we'll talk with Exotico Tequila's Graciela Gonzalez about the industry and what they have been up too. 

Thanks for listening! 

Sep 6, 2018

Another big show full of content for you this week. Matt and Hank discuss weekend one of college football and where we stand going in to week 2. 

Then our thoughts on the Khalil Mack trade. Is it possible the Raiders got the better part of the deal? Then we talk fantasy football picks and some of the week one games we are interested in. 

After that a visit with Glenfiddich to talk about some of the new expressions they have to offer. Then it's pick time as we lay out our predictions for some of the big games this weekend. 

Segment times:

11:30-Khalil Mack trade
17:30-Fantasy football
23:30-NFL games to watch 
31:00-Glenfiddich brand ambassadors
1:10 -college and NFL predictions 

Aug 31, 2018

College football is back and we have a big show for you this week! Matt and Hank start by breaking down the weekend weather to let you know what games may be impacted. 

Then it's on to some of the big games of the weekend. We'll talk about Ole Miss/Texas Tech, West Virginia/Tennessee, Michigan/Notre Dame, Auburn/Washington, Miami/LSU, and Virginia Tech/Florida State. 

In between the games we have a great interview with Paul Hletko, the founder of FEW Spirits in Evanston, IL. Got to taste some really great whiskey and gin at Tales of the Cocktail with him. Lot of information as well. 

Finally we wrap up the show with our review of Captain Morgan Apple Smash. It's an interesting drink and we give our thoughts. 

Aug 23, 2018

We are inching closer to the start of college football! Matt and Hank are back this week to break down the rest of the power 5 conferences. 

We start with a quick discussion over the NFL helmet rule. How it's going so far in the preseason. Then it's off to our predictions and analysis of the Big 10 this season. How does Urban Meyer's story affect our picks? 

Then we go to part 2 of our interview with David Powell of Flor de Caña Rum. If you missed part one last week go back and listen. Great time talking with him. 

We will wrap up the show with our breakdowns of the Pac 12 and Big 12, and whether we see any playoff contenders from these conferences. 

As always thanks for listening! 

Aug 16, 2018

Huge show this week for Episode 91! Matt and Hank are back to talk about some preseason stories in the NFL. We touch on where we think Dez Bryant may end up, Jalen Ramsey qb comments, and some other news around the league. 

We also give our thoughts on Ronald Acuna Jr with the Braves getting hit to lead off the game this week. 

Then it's back to Tales of the Cocktail. Part one of our interview with Flor de Caña Rum Brand Ambassador David Powell. He has some great stories to tell. 

After that we give you our preview for the SEC and ACC conferences this upcoming college football season. Who do we think ends up the champion, and what teams should you be on the lookout for. 

As always thanks for listening! Subscribe to the show on iTunes or Spotify. 

Aug 9, 2018

All Balvenie all the time! That's what we have for you in episode 90. Hank sits down with two of our favorites at Tales of the Cocktail.

Balvenie Brand Ambassadors Jonathan Wingo and David Laird discuss what's new with the brand, some exciting new products, what they see in their travels as ambassadors, and a little sports as well. 

If you love The Balvenie you will love this! 

As always thanks for listening. 

Aug 2, 2018

Big show this week as we start off the month of August. Matt and Hank discuss the new helmet rule in the NFL and the impact that could have on the season. 

Then the big story this week, Urban Meyer. How do we see this situation playing out at Ohio State going forward. 

After that some MLB talk as we look at some of the close divisions heading into August. 

We wrap it up with a big interview with Dre Masso, co-founder of Altos Tequila. Great to catch up with him in a noisy and fund Altos Bodega at Tales of the Cocktail. 

Thanks for listening! 

Segment times: 

6:00- NFL helmet rule
10:00- Urban Meyer scandal
17:30- Current thoughts on MLB standings
24:00- Dre Masso, Co-Founder Altos Tequila


Jul 27, 2018

Episode 88 is here and we have some great content for you. After the show open Hank sits down with Allison Parc of Brenne Whisky. She is great. One of our favorite interviews. How often do you meet somebody that started their own brand of whisky and then imported and distributed it. Great stuff. Plus the whisky tastes fantastic. 

After that we will take a look at week one of the NFL schedule. What matchups do we want to see and what do we think about some of the early lines. 

As always thanks for watching!

Jul 20, 2018

Matt is back from vacation as he and Hank kick off Tales of the Cocktail. We have a great interview with Danny Ronen at 13:00 about the category of Genever. It's something that most people aren't familiar about. Great history and information here. 

Then we discuss some big trades in baseball and basketball in the last week. 

Thanks for listening! 

Today's Guest: 

Danny Ronen
Founder of DC Spirits; co-owner of the award-winning bar Academia in Austin, Texas; partner at Unlimited Liabilities; and spirits educator and trainer at Liquid Kitchen.




Genever (pronounced juh-NEE-vuhr) is a complex spirit with a rich history. Every genever is unique, with its own recipe and flavor, and created using artisanal processes. However, by law, all genevers must:

  • contain malt spirit (made from wheat, rye, barley, maize, oat, buckwheat, and/or triticale) and juniper berry
  • be a distilled spirit made from natural ingredients (such as grains and botanicals)


  • Amount of malt spirit: min. 1.5% of the alcohol volume
  • Amount of sugar: max. 20 grams per liter
  • Colorings: possible, but only with caramel
  • Flavorings from juniper berries and possibly other botanicals and malt spirit
  • Alcohol percentage: min. 30%



  • A younger/newer style that originated more recently with a lower malt spirit content and usually more botanicals
  • Amount of malt spirit: min. 1.5% up to max. 15%
  • Amount of sugar: max. 10 grams per liter
  • Color: none
  • Alcohol percentage: min. 35%



  • The old or traditional style, with a more pronounced grain flavor due to more malt spirit
  • Amount of malt spirit: min. 15% up to 100%
  • Amount of sugar: max. 20 grams per liter
  • Color: from light yellow through to darker brown (depending on ageing)
  • Alcohol percentage: min. 35%


Since January 15th 2008, genever (also officially known as jenever and genièvre) has had its own Protected Geographical Indication, meaning that it is geographically protected by the European Union, just like Scotch whisky and Cognac. This gave genever its own ‘appellation,’ and product that carries the name genever can now only be made in Belgium; Holland; the Nord and Pas-de-Calais departments of France; and the North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Saxony regions of Germany.

Genever is considered one of the most versatile and interesting spirits, because:


  • It offers a variety of flavor that is rarely found in other distilled spirits. It can be rich in botanicals — predominantly juniper but also, for example, coriander and angelica. At the other end of the spectrum it can be full of malt and the dark aroma of years spent in wooden casks.
  • The variance in the balance of juniper, malt spirit, botanicals, distilling, and blending techniques allow an enormous diversity of flavor: from aromatic, zesty, and fresh like gin, to earthy, malty, and rich lie, whiskey.
  • Genevers have been made for more than 500 years, yet the industry remains a source of constant experimentation, and innovation.


Genever has existed since the middle ages and was initially used in a medicinal capacity. Later, it came into fashion for recreational usage in the Lowlands of the Netherlands, and in the 17th century became the country’s national drink.


In the early 19th century, the Dutch began shipping the spirit to the U.S. as there was a large population of ex-patriates living there. This coincided with the increasing popularity of cocktails, and in 1880, approximately one in four cocktails in America were made with genever. Following two world wars and Prohibition, however, though genever remained the national spirit of the Lowlands, it disappeared from the world stage.


Since the beginning of the 21st century classic cocktails have soared in popularity and the demand for genever has returned. The genever category is now growing once again, particularly driven by cocktail bars around the world.

Jul 12, 2018

Hank, Adam, and Nathan are back this week. We'll start off talking about the potential changes to the one and done rule in college hoops and what it means for both college and the NBA. 

After that we will examine some questions of American sports viewing habits. Is there less interest? More options to watch? More ways to watch? We give you our thoughts. 

Plus some thoughts on the MLB All-Star game. 

Jul 6, 2018

Big show this week after a bit of a summer break. We start off the show talking with Neal Bodenheimer about this year's Tales of the Cocktail. What changes can we expect and what is the new mission for the organization. Plus what it's been like to run two of the best bars in New Orleans.

Then we transition to sports. Hank and Nathan are joined by our new team member Adam Aikens. We'll run down a couple beer picks for you on this 4th of July weekend. After that a discussion on NBA free agency.

We'll wrap it up with our thoughts on the MLB season as we head towards the All-Star break.

As always thanks for listening!  

Jun 14, 2018

Big weekend ahead! Matt and Hank are back to break down a huge weekend of sports just in time for Father's Day. 

We'll start by giving our thoughts on a couple whiskies that we have recently tried. 

Then it's on to the College World Series. It's one of our favorite events. We pick who we think has the best chance to win. 

Then we'll talk about the World Cup, U.S. Open, and some recent controversy over LeBron's hand. 

Thanks for listening! 

May 31, 2018

Matt and Hank are back to discuss a couple recent beers they've tried lately. 

After that get our thoughts on the NHL and NBA playoffs. What we expect for each series going forward. 

We'll talk a little NASCAR and college baseball to wrap it up and tell you why you should be watching the NCAA baseball tournament this weekend. 

As always thanks for listening! 

May 24, 2018

Big show this week as Matt and Hank are back to talk about the latest happenings in the worlds of sports and spirits. 

We'll start the show talking about some breweries we have recently tried followed by our thoughts on the Supreme Court ruling allowing sports gambling on the national level. 

After that it's review time as we talk about Smirnoff Red White and Berry. We'll give you our thoughts and some recipes for the summer. 

We'll wrap it up with our take on the NHL and NBA playoffs and how we see things playing out. 

May 10, 2018

Matt and Hank are back with a sports heavy show this week. We're talking NBA playoffs as we make our picks for the conference finals. 

After that we'll talk baseball and where we stand so far in the MLB season. 

Then it's on to the NFL. Prop bets are out for the top 5 rookie QBs and whether they start the most games for their teams this season. 

We'll wrap it up with our thoughts on the NHL playoffs and the season the Knights have had. 

Thanks for listening! 

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