Monica Uhm

Monica is an incurable dilettante, who is relentlessly curious about books, brews (the coffee kind) and bourbons.

Review: Starward Octave Barrels Single Malt Australian Whiskey

By Monica Uhm | June 24, 2022 |

Starward is an Australian malt barley whisky that has been inching its way into the U.S. markets over the past several years. (We reviewed a couple of their releases in 2019 and 2020.) Hailing from foodie-centric Melbourne, Starward sources the grains and supplies from local farms and merchants, along with the wine barrels used for…

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Review: Barrell Bourbon New Year 2022

By Monica Uhm | June 18, 2022 |

Barrell’s annual New Year release for 2022 follows on from 2021 with their usual no-holds-barred blending gymnastics, this time composed of straight bourbon whiskeys sourced from a whopping seven states (TN, IN, KY, OH, WY, NY, and TX), variously aged 5, 6, 7, 9, and 14 years. Barrell has proven through the years that blending…

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Review: Old Elk Double Wheat Whiskey and Four Grain Bourbon

By Monica Uhm | June 18, 2022 |

Ever since Greg Metze joined Old Elk as master distiller at their launch, the NDP (non-distiller producer) has steadily released different twists on traditional whiskey formulations through the years, though still with undisclosed sourced distillate. Drinkhacker has stayed close with their latest releases, beginning with their first blended offering 2017 and checking back in with their…

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Review: Lunar Hard Seltzer, Heritage Line Sunset Editions

By Monica Uhm | June 15, 2022 |

Drinkhacker dove into Lunar’s original core line last year with a nod of approval. Recently the brand has partnered with high-profile NYC area Asian-owned restaurants for a limited series “Sunset Edition” of its Heritage Line, this time aiming to bring “the warm, bustling yet relaxing Asian beachside market to New York City with this lineup…

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Review: Thomas Ashbourne Ready To Drink Cocktails

By Monica Uhm | June 12, 2022 |

Thomas Ashbourne is a new brand that partners with celebrities to bottle and can ready-to-drink cocktails. The objective is to offer top-of-the-line variations of favorite cocktails that are as simple to obtain as popping open a bottle or can. There is always plenty of pomp and circumstance surrounding any celeb-related project so best to override…

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Review: Hella Cocktail Co. Bitters & Soda, Complete Lineup

By Monica Uhm | May 18, 2022 |

Hella Cocktail Co. is leaning into the spirits-alternative category with five bitters-centered non-alcoholic sparkling beverages. The Bitters & Soda expressions all feature “gentian tincture,” aka a tincture (medicine) made from the root of flowering plants in the Gentiana genus. Gentian root has been used for medicinal purposes for centuries across the continents. Let’s dig right…

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Review: Gruvi Non-Alcoholic Craft Beers, Red Wine, and Sangria (2022)

By Monica Uhm | May 7, 2022 |

We’ve dived into the non-alcoholic offerings of Gruvi in the past, with mixed and sometimes lackluster reception (see reviews of releases from 2020 and 2021). Today we visit with them once again, with a recent round of mostly limited releases. Let’s see how they’re coming along in this journey. All are 0.05% abv. Gruvi Golden…

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Review: Mocktails Ready-To-Drink Non-Alcoholic Cocktails

By Monica Uhm | April 16, 2022 |

Mocktails (the beverage company) hails from the UK and has recently expanded into the U.S. with its offering of non-alcoholic ready-to-drink, well, mocktails. There are no artificial flavors nor high-fructose corn syrup in the drinks (and, of course, no alcohol), and they are certainly not shy about literally and figuratively going the distance to source…

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Review: Betty Buzz Non-Alcoholic Sparkling Mixers

By Monica Uhm | April 13, 2022 |

The new flavored seltzer, ahem… buzz, about town is Betty Buzz, a new line of sparkling mixers that are also designed to be consumed on their own (and which are brought to you by Blake Lively). These mixers boast “only clean ingredients” as the flavoring agents, are lightly sweetened, and promise nothing artificial. If that’s…

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Review: Hello Gorgeous Rose Vodka Spritzers

By Monica Uhm | April 8, 2022 |

Hello Gorgeous is a new line of ready to drink cocktails that are rather unambiguous about their figuratively effervescent value proposition. “Sourced from the South of France, each sip is intended to bring out your inner Joie de Vivre.” It is also “about unleashing the beauty of your self expression to the world.” The base…

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