Rated A+

Reviews of spirits, wine, and beer (and various errata like mixers and garnishes) comprise more than 80% of the content at Drinkhacker, but only a few (less than 1%) merit our top score of an A+ rating. On a five-star scale, these products would score a full 5 stars. On the traditional 100-point scale popular with many wine and spirits graders, these products would merit scores of 98 to 100 points.

Review: Laphroaig 30 Years Old – The Ian Hunter Story, Book Two: Building an Icon (2021)

By Christopher Null | April 1, 2021 |

The second release — or book, I guess — in Laphroaig’s collectable Ian Hunter Story series has arrived. Like the 2019 Book One, it’s a 30 year old whisky, though this one is completely aged in oloroso sherry casks instead of bourbon. Here’s the short of it: In over a decade of tasting at least…

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Review: Cascade Brewing Contemporary Fashion

By Stephen Allison | January 29, 2021 |

Cascade Brewing, located in Portland, Oregon, is not a typical brewery. The first detail to clue you in is a look at their line-up of beers: not one IPA. Heck, not even an amber ale, stout or lager in sight. In fact, I’m hard pressed to find a single beer that neatly falls into one…

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Book Review: The Japanese Sake Bible

By Stephen Allison | November 14, 2020 |

Sake has been on the rise with champagne cellar master collaborations and delivery services. There is also a growing number books to build upon the foundations set by John Gauntner’s The Sake Handbook and Sake Confidential. The latest book is The Japanese Sake Bible by Brian Ashcraft. The title reminds me of Karen MacNeil’s The…

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Review: Avion Tequila Reserva 44 Extra Anejo

By Drew Beard | September 28, 2020 |

The core offerings from Avion Tequila have consistently impressed us over the years, and the brand remains a significant player amid an ever-growing field of ultra-premium tequilas. In 2013, Avion followed the lead of other premium tequila producers and introduced an extra anejo as the Cadillac offering in their portfolio. Extra anejo is a category…

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The Best Sweet Vermouth Roundup – 25 Bottles Tasted, 1 Winner

By Christopher Null | September 5, 2020 |

I swore off doing a monster roundup like this last time I did a big vermouth writeup — with 16 dry vermouths taste-tested and reviewed. Well, here am I again, facing a phalanx of sweet vermouth bottles that is even larger: 25 in total. Like dry vermouth, sweet vermouth was historically defined and categorized by…

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Review: Joseph Magnus Cigar Blend Bourbon (Batch 27)

By Drew Beard | August 29, 2020 |

We first reviewed Joseph Magnus Cigar Blend back in 2017. At that time, our sample was only the second release of what has since become the distillery’s most premium offering and a coveted, cult whiskey amongst bourbon lovers. In June, the distillery released six different batches of Cigar Blend, which was a bit unusual as…

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Review: Camus Cognac VSOP and XO (2019)

By Christopher Null | January 16, 2020 |

We’ve been fans of Camus since our first encounter in 2010, and the company’s continued efforts at innovation with a regular release of new expressions have only further cemented Camus as a top Cognac house. Recently, Camus took an unusual step and relaunched its core lineup of VS/Very Special, VSOP, and XO Cognacs. The brandies…

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Tasting Report: Champagne Billecart-Salmon, 2019 Releases

By Christopher Null | June 27, 2019 |

In the Champagne world, Billecart-Salmon is a comparatively tiny operation, its 2 million bottles produced each year but a pittance in comparison to monsters like Moet and Veuve. But new CEO Mathieu Roland-Billecart seems to care not at all. At a recent lunch at Auberge du Soleil in Napa, California, Roland-Billecart poured several current releases…

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Tasting 100 Years of The Dalmore at ROOH, San Francisco

By Christopher Null | June 20, 2019 |

Over the course of my career I’ve had many opportunities to drink old whiskey, but this experience from The Dalmore has to go down as one of the most opulent, intricate, and interesting. The concept: The Dalmore is partnering with a handful of high-end restaurants and bars to provide a unique whisky experience called 100…

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Tasting the Wines of Jose Maria da Fonseca, 2019 Releases

By Christopher Null | June 11, 2019 |

Jose Maria da Fonseca is one of those rarities we don’t see enough of in the U.S.: A Portuguese wine producer that makes red table wines (in addition to some sweet stuff). Established in 1834, J.M. da Fonseca now has vineyard holdings all across the country, and recently its head winemaker, Domingos Soares Franco, came…

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