The sports presenter tells Miranda Thompson about her first teenage tipple and a messy all-nighter with a rock star in the Caribbean.
Chocolate milk has always been my absolute treat. As a child on holiday in Spain, I remember these tiny glass bottles with a metal cap. They were always very cold ‒ my god, I used to love them. My dad [footballer Terry Yorath] was playing for Spurs when McDonald’s opened in London at Marble Arch, and he would take us for a chocolate milkshake. There’s now a similar drink called Chocolush by Shaken Udder, and occasionally I’ll throw one in the supermarket trolley and drink it on the way home.
Never drink Pernod on an empty stomach. I was 14 and about to go to a party when I noticed a bottle of Pernod that hadn’t been opened in my parents’ bar area, so I decided that was the best thing to go for. I probably had a tumbler full on a virgin stomach. My friend’s dad was picking us up and by the time I’d gone 200 yards down the road to meet him, I could barely walk in a straight line. I got to the party, the alcohol kicked in and I danced like a lunatic for the rest of the night. I remember waking up feeling so dehydrated. Obviously, at that age it only takes a bowl of Coco Pops and the hangover is gone.
Sometimes I’ll get in Highland Spring because it reminds my husband of home. Kenny [Logan, former Scotland Rugby Union player; the couple have been married for 21 years] is from the Ochil Hills in Scotland where it comes from. Water is my first drink of the day – we have a filter tap and I put jugs of it in the fridge. After that I’ll either have a coffee or a green juice. I use pre-mixed powders which have spirulina, wheatgrass and various algaes, then I’ll add a banana, some blueberries and a mix of linseed and flaxseed. It’s just for general wellbeing, nothing specific.
I once added a painting to my drinks bill on holiday. It was early on in my relationship with Kenny, and we were in a beautiful little restaurant in Majorca. There was this amazing picture of sunflowers on the wall and we asked how much it was – I think they said €400, so we said add it to the bill! The next morning we woke up with a hangover, thinking, what have we done? Two weeks later a massive crate arrived at our house in Chiswick and it was the painting – we’ve had it ever since, through all our different houses, and it’s always hung in a snug off the kitchen.
We had a night in Barbados with Liam Gallagher once that got messy. Ostensibly it was for a child’s birthday – the mother had invited various people she’d met around the beach to come and have a few drinks. It started in the afternoon and finished about three in the morning – I even had a change of clothes midway through. It’s highly unlikely that Liam would remember but, at one point, Kenny had him in a headlock. Liam picked up the tab, which must have been extortionate because he’d bought about 15 bottles of champagne during the evening. I’m proud to say we hung in until the end. This was all pre-children [the couple have twins Lois and Reuben, 17] and, nowadays, I’d be throwing my drinks over my shoulder whenever he looked the other way.
About eight years ago, I found myself invited to dinner with Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin. A mutual friend knew the American comedian Chelsea Handler, and I was a fan of hers, so I was invited to meet her for drinks in London, which led to dinner at the Peruvian restaurant Coya. I then realised we’d be dining with Chris and Gwyneth. Everyone was drinking pisco sours. They split up not long afterwards. I think it was the night of the pisco sours when things turned sour in their relationship.
I’m less likely to have a glass of wine on its own these days. I prefer it with food, so I’ll have a gin and tonic. I don’t like flavoured gins; I prefer a dry London variety, such as Sipsmith or Slingsby. In the summer I’ll add a slice of cucumber with a Hendrick’s, occasionally a lemon, but I quite like it straight.
There are a few bars that have great views. The Hyatt in Sydney looking over the harbour and Opera House isn’t bad at all. The whisky bar at Scotland’s Loch Torridon has breathtaking beauty, and the Gong bar at The Shard has fabulous panoramas of London.
A Picasso hangs in the most stylish bar in the world – the Fife Arms in Braemar. I sat down before realising the painting was above my husband’s head.
I love an Eastern Standard cocktail (made with gin, lime and sugar syrup). One night, in Miami, Kenny and I had about eight each. They’re not that strong, they’re tiny so they go down in two sips, especially if you’ve been in the sun all day.
I had to drink a kangaroo’s penis blended with yak milk. It was on A League of Their Own [Sky comedy panel show] in 2012 and was hideous ‒ toxic, almost metallic. It had that taste of ‘I shouldn’t be putting this in my body’.
The person I would most like to share a drink with is my brother. He died 30 years ago when he was 15, before he could drink alcohol. [Daniel collapsed while playing football. A postmortem revealed he had a heart condition.] So it would be lovely to have a glass of wine with him.
I’m still a dancer after a few drinks. I threw a surprise 50th for Kenny a month or so ago and I was on the dancefloor for hours. We had live music and a DJ ‒ there was probably only an hour where I wasn’t dancing.
How should people toast me at my funeral? With chocolate milk.
Gabby’s podcast The Mid.Point is available to stream on all major podcast platforms.