Rated D/F

Reviews of spirits, wine, and beer (and various errata like mixers and garnishes) comprise more than 80% of the content at Drinkhacker. This category is a catch-all for everything rated D+, D, D-, or F, our lowest rating. These products should be categorically avoided by everyone (and preferably discontinued altogether). On a five-star scale, these products would score 1.5 stars (for D+ ratings) or 1 star (for D, D-, and F ratings). On the traditional 100-point scale popular with many wine and spirits graders, these products would merit scores 68 or below.

Review: 2020 The Critic Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon

By Christopher Null | June 11, 2022 |

Opici Wine & Spirits is a New Jersey-based importer that has set its sights on the world of wine. The two new bottles under “The Critic” label — which seem to be daring the likes of us to take a stab at it — are both sourced from Napa Valley fruit but land at $20…

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Review: Wines of CK Mondavi, Summer 2022 Releases

By Robert Lublin | June 7, 2022 |

We recently tried three white wines from CK Mondavi, and today we dive deeper into their current offerings, reviewing two Chardonnays and two Cabernet Sauvignons. CK Mondavi consistently produces very affordable wines, and today we find out whether these four are bargain bottles worth seeking out. 2021 CK Mondavi Chardonnay – Golden straw colored, this…

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Review: DaySmith Coffee+

By Rob Theakston | February 24, 2022 |

Pop into any bodega or convenience store and chances are there will be a cooler filled with ready-to-drink coffee options ready to refresh and energize. You probably won’t find DaySmith in those options, as this plucky little Texas upstart is just getting its feet wet in the market, but we were lucky to sample a…

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Review: Gold Bar Original Whiskey, Black Bourbon, and Rickhouse Cask Strength Bourbon (2022)

By Christopher Null | January 26, 2022 |

We first encountered this odd San Francisco-based operation’s whiskeys in 2018, when Gold Bar Original was the only expression on the market. Now Gold Bar has expanded to three offerings, including two bourbons. Only one is packaged in the “gold bar” decanter — although the “gold bar” bourbon is painted black — all of which…

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Review: Wines of Jules Taylor, 2022 Releases

By Christopher Null | January 20, 2022 |

Jules Taylor is based in New Zealand’s Marlborough region, where the winemaker produces a series of eponymous, affordable bottlings. She was named New Zealand Winemaker of the Year for 2021. Let’s dig in to this trio of bottlings, all newly released. 2021 Jules Taylor Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough – Sauvignon blanc is Taylor’s specialty, and with…

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Review: Viss Vodka – Ballet Blue and Blush Blossom

By Christopher Null | January 11, 2022 |

Remember how we said that fresh, organic infused vodkas were the hottest trend in the category? Well, they say the exception makes the rule, and here it is in the form of Viss, a candy-colored, heavily artificially flavored vodka that’s imbued with a sparkly substance that makes it shimmer in the bottle and in the…

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Review: Wines of Veramonte, Ritual, and Primus, 2021 Releases

By Christopher Null | December 15, 2021 |

Chile’s Veramonte has numerous sub-labels, including Ritual and Primus, all of which we have reviewed extensively in the past. Today we look at a bottling from each of these brands, all of which are made with 100% organic ingredients. Let’s dive in. 2019 Veramonte Cabernet Sauvignon – Organic or not, this is cheap cab, underdeveloped…

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Review: Simi 2019 Pinot Noir and 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon

By Christopher Null | November 30, 2021 |

Sonoma’s Simi bottles a range of whites and reds, sourced from vineyards throughout Sonoma County. Here’s a look at two of the winery’s more widely available bottlings. 2019 Simi Pinot Noir Russian River Valley – Instantly weird — though not corked — and hard to shake. Notes of mint chip ice cream, strawberry soda, and…

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Review: Strainge Beast Hard Kombuchas

By Christopher Null | November 16, 2021 |

Strainge Beast is the hard kombucha spinoff of California’s Sierra Nevada, and the product is available in (at least) 6 flavored versions, at two different abvs. The standard version of the product, available in 16 oz cans, is canned at 7% abv. The newly released “light” version is just 4% abv and comes in 12…

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Review: Rock N Roll Tequila – Complete Lineup (2021)

By Christopher Null | July 31, 2021 |

Back in 2017 we reviewed two bottlings from Rock N Roll Tequila, distinguished by its extremely heavy bottles shaped like electric guitars. Three expressions are offered: a standard blanco, a cristalino, and a mango-flavored liqueur. Since that time, the brand has changed ownership, though the same distillery, operated by Master Distiller Jose Aceves, is still…

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