Reviews of spirits, wine, and beer (and various errata like mixers and garnishes) comprise more than 80% of the content at Drinkhacker, and here you’ll find the entire Drinkhacker review archive in one place. Products are rated on a letter-grade scale that should be familiar to most, with F as our lowest, “failing” grade and the very rare A+ as our top score.

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Notes on Grading
How to Analyze, Score, and Review Whiskey

“Consistent” Ratings: It’s Hard!

By Christopher Null | March 20, 2009 |

One day it’s a B-, a week later it’s a solid A. Rating wine, spirits, and just about anything else is a dicey affair, and assigning consistent scores day in and day out is nearly impossible. That’s not just anecdotally true, the science backs it up: A four-year study published last week in the Journal…

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Review: Templeton Rye (2009)

By Christopher Null | March 19, 2009 |

If they were drinking whiskey this good back in the Prohibition days, I don’t feel so bad for them after all. Templeton was a purported favorite of Al Capone and “the center of his bootlegging empire,” Templeton Rye is a killer whiskey that — if marketing is to be believed — has been being produced…

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Tasting Report: Today’s Bordeaux, 2009 Releases

By Christopher Null | March 17, 2009 |

Spent some of the afternoon tasting “today’s Bordeaux,” which it turns out is a lot like yesterday’s Bordeaux, only cheaper. Hit hard by the worldwide recession, the days of $1000 bottles of Bordeaux are rapidly coming to an end. And while the first growth chateaux still command hefty prices (just not quite as hefty as…

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Review: 2008 Graffigna Centenario Pinot Grigio

By Christopher Null | March 16, 2009 |

I enjoyed Graffigna’s 2007 Pinot Grigio and, sure enough, its 2008 is nearly as compelling. Grapefruit is the predominant character in this Argentinian Pinot Grigio, with mineral, grass, and herbal notes following close behind. Again, this wine is crisp and easy to drink, and it goes well on its own or with food. And also…

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Review: Red Stag by Jim Beam Black Cherry Bourbon

By Christopher Null | March 15, 2009 |

I don’t know what deer have to do with cherries, but you try coming up with a name for you black cherry-infused whiskey, OK? Red Stag — which is Jim Beam bourbon “infused with natural flavors” (predominantly black cherry, one would assume) — is as good a name as any for what Beam has come…

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Review: Jameson Irish Whiskey

By Christopher Null | March 15, 2009 |

Come Tuesday, many of you will be picking up a bottle of Irish whiskey to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, and for most of you, it’ll be either Bushmills or Jameson. Can’t blame you, both are solid Irish brands and you can often find them for about $16, especially this time of year. Some more detailed…

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Review: Good Earth Coffee

By Christopher Null | March 14, 2009 |

Been checking out the three offerings from new organic coffee outfit Good Earth. Again, this isn’t a coffee-centric blog, but I drink enough of it to know a good cup from a bad one. The Good Earth brand dates back to 1972, dedicated to healthy and delicious food and drink. Now delving into coffee, the…

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Review: Sierra Nevada “ESB” Early Spring Beer

By Christopher Null | March 13, 2009 |

It’ s kinda jokey: Sierra Nevada’s new ESB stands not for Extra Special (or Strong) Bitter, but for Early Spring Beer, released just in time for the Spring Equinox and your thaw-time enjoyment. To be sure, the copper-colored ESB is crafted in a vaguely British, nicely-hopped style, though it’s far less hoppy and bitter than…

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Review: 45th Parallel Vodka

By Christopher Null | March 12, 2009 |

Hailing from New Richmond, Wisconsin, 45th Parallel takes its name from the line that passes through the state, halfway from the Equator to the North Pole. Distilled from locally-grown grains (unspecified varieties), 45th Parallel is distilled three times and then charcoal filtered before being bottled at 80 proof. The company takes great pains to note…

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Review: Kilbeggan Irish Whiskey (2009)

By Christopher Null | March 11, 2009 |

St. Patrick’s Day approaches… here’s more Irish whiskey reviews. Kilbeggan is an awfully simple blended Irish whiskey, its claim to fame being that it comes from the “oldest licensed distillery in the world.” It isn’t hard to drink, offering light sweetness and moderate wood character locked into a pale yellow spirit. There’s a touch of…

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