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10th October 2019

The Thinking Drinkers: Heroes of Hooch; National Tour runs to April

“A terrific show. The best value for money in town”

★★★★ Scotsman

The Thinking Drinkers – Guild member Ben McFarland and Tom Sandham –  are embarking on a national tour with their brand-new show, Heroes of Hooch, fresh from another successful run at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

After several years of sell-out Edinburgh shows and national tours, the ‘alco-demic’ adventurers are returning with a hilarious and intoxicating imbibing expedition in search of history’s most extraordinary elbow-benders – and, as ever, they’re giving each and every audience member five free delicious drinks along the way.

That’s right. Five. Free. Drinks. They’re really delicious ones too. You’re welcome.

Let the discerning duo slide you gently onto the bar stool of discovery as, armed with their catchphrase ‘Drink Less, Drink Better’, they raise a glass to the heroic men and women who have cunningly used alcohol to inspire them to achieve some truly great things – artists, adventurers, astronomers, musicians, magicians, conquerors, can-can dancers, pirates, painters, politicians, thinkers, theorists, scientists, sportsmen, visionaries and more…

These include Alexander the Great, Harry Houdini, Louis Pasteur and Albert Einstein, a moose that drinks Danish lager, a fearless chef, Chicago gangsters, an astronomer with a metal nose, a Chinese pirate, Indian warriors, some salty seamen and, last but not least, God – who was always getting on it. Probably.

At a time when alcohol finds itself in the cross-hairs of the do-gooders gun, “Heroes of Hooch” proves that, contrary to common perception, a whole lot of life’s answers can be discovered at the bottom of a glass.

You’ll learn a lot, you’ll laugh a lot – and you get five free drinks….

Audience members can enjoy the following: Four Pillars Bloody Shiraz Gin; an intriguing, innovative ruby-coloured Australian gin created by steeping whole Shiraz grapes from the Yarra Valley; Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva Rum – a luxury Venezuelan sipping rum matured in tropical conditions to deliver a rich, chocolate taste; The Singleton of Dufftown 12 Year-Old – a deliciously smooth award-winning, approachable single malt matured in oak & bourbon casks; Grand Marnier Cordon Rouge; a legendary French liqueur from 1880 that blends fine cognacs with distilled essence of wild tropical oranges; and Tetley’s No.3 Pale Ale, a resuscitation of a classic pale ale recipe dating back to 1868 using Tetley’s famous double-yeast strain.

The Thinking Drinkers are award-winning drinks writers and comedy performers Ben McFarland and Tom Sandham. They’ve regularly written about drink for a host of newspapers and magazines including the Daily Telegraph, Spectator, Esquire, Shortlist, National Geographic, The Guardian, Time Out London, Conde Nast Traveller, Imbibe Magazine, The Independent and Drinks Retailer News.

Authorities on all aspects of alcohol, the Thinking Drinkers regularly appear on radio and television espousing their “Drink Less, Drink Better” message. Having met in their 20s whilst working on a leading pub magazine, Ben and Tom left for America where they co-wrote the award-winning Good Beer Guide West Coast USA. Since then, the dynamic drinking duo have written and performed critically acclaimed sell-out runs at both the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and venues in London’s West End for the last nine years.

In 2018/19, the Thinking Drinkers completed a 40+ date nationwide tour and will be touring the UK again from September to April 2020.

Together they have written seven acclaimed books including the award-winning The Thinking Drinkers: An Enlightened Imbibers Guide to Alcohol – inspired by one of their previous Edinburgh Festival Fringe shows.

Ben McFarland

Ben McFarland is the author of World’s Best Beers: 1000 Unmissable Brews from Portland to Prague and Boutique Beer: 500 of the World’s Finest Craft Brews. He is been crowned the British Beer Writer of the Year by the British Guild of Beer Writers on three separate occasions – the first time as the youngest ever recipient.

Tom Sandham

Tom Sandham is former editor of leading industry spirits and cocktail magazine CLASS and was recently named “Communicator of the Year” by the prestigious the International Wine & Spirits Competition (IWSC). He regularly lectures on spirits, he launched the Top 50 Bars of the World and House Tonic magazine for the Soho House Group, and is also the author of the award-winning World’s Best Cocktails.


Twitter: @thinkingdrinks

Instagram: @thinkingdrinkers

 What the press have said about The Thinking Drinkers:

“This unique Fringe experience is one to be savoured”                                                                       ★★★★ The Upcoming

“The duo may have the motto “drink less but drink better” but with booze, laughs and some really interesting information this is a show that’s well worth binging on”                                                          ★★★★ Broadway Baby

“A show about booze, featuring free booze. What’s not to like?”                                                  ★★★★ ThreeWeeks

“A talented duo who have deservedly sold out year on year at the Fringe”                               ★★★★ Scottish Field

“An erudite, liquor-loving duo”                                                                                                                             Metro

“Pioneers of alcohol based comedy”                                                                                                       Sunday Times

“There’s no more discerning way to fall off the wagon”                                                                             Time Out

“If free premium vodka, gin and bourbon doesn’t convince you, the show is both hugely funny and genuinely fascinating”                                                                                                                Edinburgh Evening News

 Listings Information:

12th October 2019                                                                                      Newcastle, The Stand / 01912620707


8th November 2019                                                                                    Gloucester, Guildhall / 01452503050  


9th November 2019                                                                                   Colchester, Arts Centre / 01206500900


22nd November 2019                                                                                Bristol, Hen and Chicken / 01179663143


23rd November 2019                                                                               Bridport, Arts Centre / 01308424204


30th November 2019                                                                                London, Leicester Square Theatre / 02077342222


6th December 2019                                                                                   Maidenhead, Norden Farm / 01628788997


7th December 2019                                                                                   Folkestone, Quarterhouse / 01303760750


9th December 2019                                                                                    Leicester Square Theatre / 02077342222


10th December 2019                                                                               Leicester Square Theatre / 02077342222


24th January 2020                                                                               Corby, The Core / 01536470470


25th January 2020                                                                                 Birmingham, Old Rep / 01213599444


31st January 2020                                                                                Cheltenham, Town Hall / 08445762210


1st February 2020                                                                                Cheltenham, Town Hall   / 08445762210


7th February 2020                                                                                Bath, Komedia / 01225489070


8th February 2020                                                                                 High Wycombe, Town Hall / 01494512000


14th February 2020                                                                             Epsom, Playhouse / 01372742555


28th February 2020                                                                             Shrewsbury, Theatre Seven / 01743281281


29th February 2020                                                                           Shrewsbury, Theatre Seven / 01743281281


7th March 2020                                                                                    Basingstoke, The Haymarket / 01256844244


13th March 2020                                                                              Reading, The Hexagon / 01189606060


14th March 2020                                                                               Southend, Palace Theatre / 01702351135


20th March 2020                                                                               Hertford, Theatre / 01992531500


21st March 2020                                                                               Hertford, Theatre / 01992531500


27th March 2020                                                                                Cambridge, Junction / 01223511511


28th March 2020                                                                                 Arlington, Arts Centre / 01635244246


3rd April 2020                                                                                     Barnard Castle, The Witham / 01833631107


4th April 2020                                                                                   Hexham, Queens Hall Arts Centre / 01434652477  


17th April 2020                                                                                   Didcot, Cornerstone / 01235515144


18th April 2020                                                                                   Didcot, Cornerstone / 01235515144


24th April 2020                                                                                  Bingley, Little Theatre / / 01274519814


For more information please contact Gaby Jerrard / Claire Hoyda / Siobhan Connor at / / or 020 7690 0006