diffordsguide.com is aimed at discerning drinkers and is one of the world‘s largest and most-visited drinks-related websites.
Our brand was first established in 2001 by Simon Difford, and in addition to the website, we also publish a series of drinks-related guide books under the diffordsguide brand name, with ‘diffordsguide Cocktails’, now in its 11th edition, the best known.
From bar reviews, to product tastings and lifestyle content, diffordsguide is a global authority on cocktail culture. We have been recognised and awarded many time over, not least in 2013 when we won Best Cocktail Writing (publication) at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans.
In addition, we also utilise our in-house writers, editors, photographers and graphic designers to contract-publish bespoke print and digital publications and websites for the world’s largest drinks companies.
This work happens under our parent company’s name, Odd Firm of Sin (an anagram of founder Simon Difford) which publishes and supplies copy and images to the drinks industry and acts as a consultant in brand development, cocktail development and drink serves. The company was founded in 1997 and over the past 16 years has amassed unrivalled databases populated with images and information on all areas of alcoholic beverages including: beers, wines, spirits, cocktails, bars, distilleries, breweries, brand owning companies, distributors and the bartenders, distillers and others who work in the drinks industry. You can see the website here.
All this demands thousands of fabulous images to accompany our award-winning writers’ prolific content – photographs of cocktails (over 3,500 images alone), bartenders, bars, distilleries and distillers. As a result we believe we own the largest drinks-related photographic library in the world. And a significant proportion of the company’s present annual revenue comes from photography commissioned by drinks companies – the two biggest, Diageo and Pernod-Ricard, included. We have our own private bar, the Cabinet Room, which sits directly above our London office, which we use for photography and special events.
Simon lives and breathes the modern drinks industry. His own bar, at his house in South London, is one of the best stocked bars in the world, with practically every example of spirits and liqueurs on the market today. He has become a world authority and expert on distillation and is respected for his encyclopeadic knowledge of spirits production. And when he's not tasting and testing new products, he's out there 'in the field' road-testing bars around the world - instantly recognizable if not by his personal appearance but by his signature bar call - so if you hear someone ask for a 'Classic Daiquiri' in a Cockney accent, better make sure it's a good 'un!
Likes: Blue shirts, gadgets, everything just-so
Dislikes: Religion, tweeting, public transport
Sally is also responsible for keeping us up to date in the ways of the internet. She's a kick-ass digital designer who is extremely patient and known for her ability to speak slowly until the rest of us understand. She works from Bristol and is also a professional trapeze artist, but is currently between circuses - seriously!
Likes: Hanging upside down, pot plants, her many cats
Dislikes: Stopping smoking, our continual spec changes
Jane is our intrepid in-house hack - a journalist who came to us after completing her degree in London and a brief spell in political journalism. As you may imagine she's much happier writing about bars and booze. She's a proper Aussie and swears like a trooper, but is so young she has no memory of early Neighbours plot lines. Armed only with a napkin and a blunt pencil she's always on the look-out for a story.
Likes: Raw green peppers, Henry VIII, swimming in Noosa
Dislikes: Mozzie bites, sand in her cozzie, neck sunburn
Karen is our office mother, wise oracle and keeper of the keys when it comes to Simon's diary. Previously a Penguin books sales rep and the Good Pub Guide Managing Editor for 20 years we trust her knowledge of spelling and grammar implicitly. Her calming nature has helped improve the office and certainly makes life a lot more organised but she constantly wants to re-arrange the office furniture. We only forgive her due to her exceptional tea-making abilities.
Likes: Her journey to work in the Thames Clipper, her allotment, mountains
Dislikes: Going in the loo after others, cakes that haven't risen, people she's fallen out with
Adam was part of our original team and returns to diffordsguide.com after 12 year hiatus, a period spent having children and learning to drink coffee, the two are not unrelated. His constant use of the word 'action' as a verb and his mantras of "how do we add more value to this?" and "does anyone want pizza for lunch?" are fast becoming the most irritating refrains at the company, of which he is not-so-secretly delighted about.
Likes: Great Grappa, cycling, seasonal / regional menus and discounted entry to theme parks
Dislikes: Bad Grappa, punctures and taking awesome food for granted
Dan is our happy-go-lucky Art Director and has worked for Simon for 12 years on all our publications. Happiest when taking photographs, he lives with his little boy Jake in North London. He also looks a bit like Bruce Forsyth.
Likes: Drinking, smoking, stripes, sheds
Dislikes: Colour, pictures of people smiling, pickled onion monster munch
Gavin joined the team in 2010 after taking a prolonged trip round Latin America, which he talks about non-stop, as well as his passion for craft beer and gastro pubs. As a designer for 14 years Gavin has previously worked for London Underground and been a freelancer. His love of lists has helped us a lot but his tendency towards lime green is causing problems with the art director.
Likes: Notebooks, Neil Young, Brussel Sprouts
Dislikes: Queues, cucumbers, bad service
Harry jumped aboard the good ship Difford in July 2010 as our pet geek. He's responsible for taking us into the 21st century and has made our weekly digital magazine possible, which we find all the more impressive as he does it from Matlock, which is somewhere up north. He's conversant in ten different computer languages though still has to talk to us in English.
Likes: Golf, darts, anything IT-releated
Dislikes: Buses, triple-bogeys, Watford Gap Services (M1)
Mike is our website developer: working closely with our Harold on all-things webs-related, and based in the Matlock technology corridor of the north. Our multi-talented Mike has been a skateboarder for almost 23 years (has broken many bones) and also plays bass guitar in a rock band.
Likes: Summer, Tom Waits and red wine
Dislikes: Winter, hospitals and Internet Explorer
Matt Mason is our IT whizz kid from the tech generation: he could code before he could walk, and we suspect he sees the world like it’s The Matrix.
A recent graduate, he abandoned a prospective job in animation (he decided it was a Mickey Mouse career) and ventured into web development instead. He works out of our other office in Milan Matlock, Derbyshire where he regularly entertains the rest of the crew with his rendition of Stairway to Heaven.
Likes: Rum, making music, Italian food
Dislikes: Autotune, balloons, ankle sprains
Allison is out latest recruit, joining the sales team and has become our mini-Adam, albeit with a full head of hair and a strong Glaswegian accent. She came to diffordsguide via a florist and to say we're disappointed in the lack of stunning floral arrangements in the office is putting it mildly. Allison is constantly out and about in the industry shaking hands and downing cocktails, adding to our growing belief that this Glaswegian may have hollow legs.
Likes: Bicycles, coffee, beanie hats
Dislikes: Snoozing, yellow shoes, the Tube