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: Wines of St. Francis, 2022 Releases

By Christopher Null | July 15, 2022 |

Two new budget-friendly wines from Sonoma’s St. Francis. Let’s give ’em a try. 2020 St. Francis Chardonnay Sonoma County – Brightly fruity with lots of lemon, edged with tropical notes. The oak and vanilla here aren’t overwhelming, but work well to complement the moderated fruit notes, which tilt at tangerine and, eventually, strawberry. Some floral…

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Review: Zaya Rum – Cocobana and Alta Fuerza

By Christopher Null | July 15, 2022 |

Zaya rum — made in Trinidad and Tobago — recently dropped two new unusual expressions — the first line extension for the brand, ever. Both are blends that include rum up to 16 years old, and one is lightly flavored. We received them both for review. Thoughts follow. Zaya Cocobana Rum – Flavored with banana,…

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Review: White Wines of Portugal’s Alentejo, Summer 2022 Releases

By Rob Theakston | July 11, 2022 |

As I write this review longhand during a summer heatwave-induced power blackout, it is quite uncomfortable outside. The heat index surpassed triple digits before noon, humidity is swamp thick, and there is zero sign of relief until well into the evening hours. I’m sure this is a scene familiar to many, and it is another…

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Review: Bear Fight Single Malt Whiskey

By Monica Uhm | July 10, 2022 |

Next Century Spirits (NCS) is a fairly new producer based in Raleigh, NC, which launched in 2018. The genesis and purpose of NCS has such an interestingly transparent take, it’s worth an introduction in their own words: Established in Raleigh, NC in 2018, Next Century Spirits blends together traditional techniques and unique finishing technologies to…

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Review: Parch Agave Non-Alcoholic Cocktails – Prickly Paloma and Spiced Pinarita

By Monica Uhm | July 9, 2022 |

Parch is a new line of non-alcoholic, agave-based, ready-to-drink canned cocktails with such careful consideration of approach to the ubiquitous NA category that I will let them introduce themselves: In developing Parch, we studied ancient beverages, rituals and botanical infusions across Mexico and the Southwestern US, drawing inspiration from traditional plant-based beverages enjoyed as alternatives…

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Review: Banfi Chianti Classico, Chianti Reserva, and Brunello, 2022 Releases

By Robert Lublin | July 7, 2022 |

Banfi produces a huge range of Italian wines that are widely available. Today we are looking at fresh vintages of three of their more popular red offerings, all built around Sangiovese. Let’s give them a try. 2019 Banfi Chianti Classico – Chianti Classico wines are tannic and tend to be quite dry, and this is…

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Review: On The Rocks Cocktails – Aviation, Cosmopolitan, and Mai Tai

By Monica Uhm | July 6, 2022 |

Launched in 2016, On The Rocks ready-to-drink cocktails seem to have held a solid footing in the RTD space and chances are high that you have already seen bottles of On The Rocks at your neighborhood stores. The beverages aim to stick with traditional recipes and start with premium well-known branded spirits as their base.…

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Review: Alias Straight Rye Whiskey

By Drew Beard | July 4, 2022 |

MGP had a busy 2021. It began the year with the acquisition of Luxco and its impressive family of spirits producers which now manage the George Remus and Rossville Union whiskey brands. Then they finished the year with a wholesale renaming of their campus in Lawrenceburg, Indiana where those brands are produced. While the new…

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Review: Wines of Bellissima Zero, 2022 Releases

By Monica Uhm | July 2, 2022 |

Bellissima Zero is a wine that includes Christie Brinkley as its brand partner, the wine positioning itself in the BFY (aka “better-for-you”) and “better-for-the-planet” categories (apparently these are a thing). The new line of nonvintage still and sparkling wines are vegan and made with organic grapes. The “Zero” in the name is a reference to…

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Review: Filey Bay Yorkshire Single Malt Whisky Flagship, STR, and Fino Single Cask

By Christopher Null | July 2, 2022 |

Made by the Spirit of Yorkshire Distillery, Filey Bay is the first single malt whisky made in, “and of,” Yorkshire, England. The distillery says this because it’s a true “field to bottle” operation, made with local malt, pot distilled, and aged on site. Filey Bay has a rather extreme finishing operation, with over a half…

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