Robert Lublin

Robert Lublin teaches whisk(e)y and wine appreciation classes for Arlington Community Education, near Boston, MA. He is also a Professor at the University of Massachusetts Boston and has published books and articles on Shakespeare as well as theatre and film history.

Review: Gracias a Dios Mezcal Espadin

By Robert Lublin | June 2, 2022 |

Over the last few years, a number of new mezcals have come to the USA in response to exploding interest in the smoky agave distillate. Gracias a Dios, Spanish for “Thank God,” is a joven (unaged) mezcal made by Oscar Hernández. It is made with 100% espadín agave grown in Matatlán, Oaxaca. It deserves note…

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Review: Astral Tequila Blanco

By Robert Lublin | May 21, 2022 |

Astral is a new 100% Blue Weber agave tequila from the lowland region of Jalisco, Mexico. Currently, only a blanco, unaged tequila is available. The distillery’s website explains how it is made, all very familiar stuff: Our production process is steeped in tradition and features a unique milling process using a tahona, a stone wheel…

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Review: Basil Hayden Subtle Smoke

By Robert Lublin | May 10, 2022 |

Producer Jim Beam has introduced a range of new Basil Hayden products in recent years, including creative approaches to bourbon and rye, and now it is offering something completely different by creating a bourbon with a distinctly smoky character. Unusually, it isn’t made with peat. They explain the unique process for creating a very subtle…

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Review: 2021 Banfi Rosa Regale Sparkling Red and Sparkling White

By Robert Lublin | May 1, 2022 |

It’s been twelve years since we last reviewed Banfi’s delightful dessert wine Rosa Regali Sparkling Red, and it deserves another visit, particularly since it is joined this year by a new Sparkling White. Both are lightly fizzy, sweet dessert wines and both show particularly low abv: 7%. Let’s see how the Sparkling Red compares to…

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Review: Old Line Spirits Single Malt Bottled-in-Bond

By Robert Lublin | May 1, 2022 |

We’ve reviewed Old Line Spirits American Single Malt Whiskeys before, but their new Bottled-in-Bond represents their first offering that was distilled, aged, and bottled at their Baltimore home. This release is a 5-year-old single malt that was double copper pot still distilled and aged in #4 char virgin American Oak barrels. Let’s give it a…

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Review: Suyo Pisco Single Origin No. 1

By Robert Lublin | April 30, 2022 |

Suyo Pisco No. 1 is a new Peruvian pisco made entirely from Quebranta grapes drawn from the Mala Valley. Its claim of “single origin” isn’t absolutely clear since the grapes are purchased from a variety of vineyards, but they all seem to be drawn from this one district in Lima, Peru. The brand was introduced…

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Review: Takamine Koji Whiskey 8 Years Old

By Robert Lublin | April 21, 2022 |

Japan’s Takamine Koji Whiskey is made using a special mold that helps convert barley into sugars for fermentation. The mold, koji, is Japan’s national mold and is utilized widely in such Japanese staples as soy sauce and miso. Their website explains how it is used to make whiskey: Takamine Koji Whiskey is made with the…

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Review: 4 Josh Cellars Cabernet Sauvignons, 2022 Releases

By Robert Lublin | April 20, 2022 |

  Josh Cellars wines are widely available and consistently provide good quality for their price point. For wine drinkers that typically drink in the $10-$15 range and want to venture a little further without breaking the bank, these unapologetically big California Cabernets may be to your liking. 2019 Josh Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon California – This…

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Tasting Kopke Port with Winemaker Carla Tiago

By Robert Lublin | April 15, 2022 |

I recently had the chance to sample a range of Kopke Ports with winemaker Carla Tiago on her visit to Boston from Portugal. I was excited to see that she brought some well-aged white ports, which are uncommon in the U.S., as well as Colheita Port, which is single vintage Tawny Port that has been…

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Review: Great Jones Bourbon, Four Grain Bourbon, and Rye

By Robert Lublin | April 11, 2022 |

Opened in 2021, Great Jones Distillery is Manhattan’s first and only legal distillery since Prohibition. Being so new, they aren’t yet bottling their own whiskey. Their products are currently distilled, aged, and bottled at Black Dirt distillery in upstate New York. Today we will be trying three of their whiskeys, but only the standard bourbon…

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