Services/Retailers

Our services and retailers category covers online and offline shops and other sellers of alcohol products. Primarily it consists of reviews of subscription boxes, including by-mail cocktail kits, “spirit of the month clubs,” and various wine clubs.

Review: Wine Access Connoisseurs Club

By Christopher Null | March 24, 2022 |

Wine clubs are a dime a dozen — or, more to the point, $59.99 per month with a 12 month commitment. All too often these clubs feature tired, bulk wines that have been hastily repackaged and had a new label slapped on them. That’s not to say you can’t find value in some of these…

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Review: Wines of Vicarious, 2022 Releases

By Christopher Null | February 22, 2022 |

Vicarious isn’t just a brand of wines — a sub-brand of Napa’s Modus Operandi — it’s a wine-tasting “experience.” Vicarious comprises four Napa/Sonoma bottlings, each backed up by online video that walks you through the winemaking and tasting process. I’m not sure I buy the economic argument that $65 for four 4-ounce sample bottles and…

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Review: Liquor Lab Whiskey Experience Kit

By Christopher Null | November 13, 2021 |

There’s a million mail-order cocktail kits on the market these days. Liquor Lab is the latest to join the fray, and while it’s a very gimmicky affair, I can see how it might appeal to some drinkers. First: Liquor Lab is a place (there are locations in Nashville and Louisville), and while I’ve never been…

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Tasting with WhiskyEDU’s A-to-Z of Scottish Distilleries Series

By Christopher Null | October 23, 2021 |

WhiskyEDU is a Whiskies of the World spinoff — a nonprofit, actually — that is focused on, you guessed it, whisky education. Its latest trick is an ambitious tasting series whose goal is singular: To sample product from 162 Scottish distilleries — nearly every single distillery in the country in existence after World War II.…

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Review: 2021 Cocktail Courier Gift Sets

By Rob Theakston | October 19, 2021 |

Nine months ago there was a more optimistic tone to reuniting in public spaces. In an article published at the time, I intonated a foolish sense of optimism that folks would be congregating in large spaces safely without having to worry about catching anything that could potentially land them on a ventilator. Thankfully we are…

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Review: Single-Serve Wines of Le Grand Verre, 2021 Releases

By Christopher Null | July 27, 2021 |

Single-serve wines don’t often get a lot of love, but Le Grand Verre, a new brand landing in the U.S. this summer, wants to change that. Le Grand Verre describes itself pretty simply, as a “single serve, ethical, proprietarily designed, and predominantly female produced boutique wine collection of France.” Here’s some backstory: Envisioned by three…

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Pairing Talisker and Oysters at Home with Real Oyster Cult

By Christopher Null | June 14, 2021 |

A common scene at food-centric events (back when we got to go to food events) would frequently be the Talisker booth, where one busy guy would be tasked with shucking oysters and dousing them with a splash of Talisker whisky to be fed to the faithful. It’s a fun combination — moderately peaty Scotch with…

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Tasting Craft Stouts from Half Time Beverage

By Christopher Null | May 17, 2021 |

Half Time Beverage is the self-proclaimed largest online retailer of craft beer. It’s not just the operator of two stores in New York’s Hudson Valley — featuring more than 4000 beer and cider selections — it’s also an online merchant, happily shipping brews directly to the doors of the very thirsty. Sadly, Half Time Beverage…

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Review: In Good Taste’s Wild Child Tasting Kit

By Robert Lublin | May 3, 2021 |

I have to say, it was a lot of fun receiving my Wild Child tasting flight of wines from In Good Taste. Inside a well-crafted box lay 8 different samples of wine, each 187 ml (roughly 1/4 of a standard bottle). All of the grape varietals were less common varieties. No Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay,…

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Patron Smoked Margarita Kit

Review: Patron x JonBoy Margarita Collection Kit

By Mike Gerrard | May 1, 2021 |

For Cinco de Mayo this year, Patron Tequila has partnered with tattoo artist JonBoy and the Cocktail Courier website to produce all the ingredients needed to make a Fresh Ink Smoked Margarita. There’s a choice of JonBoy artwork when you order, and this is included in the package by way of coasters and cocktail stoppers,…

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