Rated B+

Reviews of spirits, wine, and beer (and various errata like mixers and garnishes) comprise more than 80% of the content at Drinkhacker, and the B+ rating is used for solid products that we don’t exactly love, but which we still heartily recommend. On a five-star scale, these products would score 3.5 stars. On the traditional 100-point scale popular with many wine and spirits graders, these products would merit scores of 87 to 89 points.

Review: 2021 Sonoma-Cutrer Rose of Pinot Noir Russian River Valley

By Christopher Null | April 26, 2022 |

Sonoma-Cutrer’s pinot-driven rose offers a classic Provence-style construction, a mere 11.9% abv, driven by white flowers, ripe strawberry, and lingering vanilla notes as the wine develops in glass. Lemon notes emerge late in the game, the lightest layer of florals lifting the otherwise vanilla-laden, nougat-like sweetness, just a touch. This wine never tends toward complexity,…

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Review: Villon Liqueur

By Drew Beard | April 25, 2022 |

This rather ominous looking liqueur launched last year in the United States. In addition to its arresting, black glass bottle, Villon also has quite the backstory. It is distilled, blended, and bottled in southwestern France and is named for the well-known 15th century French poet, Francois Villon, who notoriously vanished after killing a “wicked” priest.…

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Review: Ransom Bourbon

By Drew Beard | April 24, 2022 |

We’ve already covered a handful of products from Oregon-based Ransom Spirits, including their Old Tom Gin, which put them on the craft distilling map over a decade ago. The whimsically named Whippersnapper was the distillery’s first foray into whiskey, but recently they added to the brown spirits portfolio with this bottle, Ransom Bourbon. The mashbill…

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Review: Wines of Esporao, 2022 Releases

By Rob Theakston | April 22, 2022 |

Thanks to shifts in weather patterns and climate change, supply chain complications, rising temperatures, and fluctuating soil quality, winemakers are facing an expansive list of challenges posing a threat to their craft. It’s not exclusive to the wine industry by any means, either. A quick search on Google will provide any number of articles detailing…

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Review: Del Maguey Mezcal – Vida, Las Milpas, Chichicapa, and 100% Tobala

By Christopher Null | April 22, 2022 |

Ron Cooper founded Del Maguey (pro tip: “del ma-gay”) in 1995, created the category of artisanal mezcal in the U.S. singlehandedly. The brand has gone nowhere but up since, thanks certainly due to the way it works. Rather than being a bulk product, Miller works with 12 different families in 10 villages in Oaxaca (and…

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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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Book Review: Batch Cocktails

By Christopher Null | April 19, 2022 |

What’s the difference between a batch cocktail and a punch? Nothing really, except perhaps for scale. In Maggie Hoffman’s slim but well-tuned Batch Cocktails, each recipe will net you about 8 to 12 servings from a 2-quart pitcher. Perfect for a sizable dinner party, but if you want to host a rager, you’ll need to triple…

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Review: Elysian Dank Dust

By Christopher Null | April 18, 2022 |

One of my favorite beers ever is Elysian Brewing’s Space Dust — and I’m clearly not alone on that opinion of the Seattle-based operation’s flagship beer. Well, here comes a Space Dust spinoff: Dank Dust. It uses the same hops — Chinook, Citra, and Amarillo — has the same abv, and the same IBU level.…

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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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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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