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: Blind Barrels Tasting Kit

By Christopher Null | June 16, 2022 |

Blind tasting whiskey is lots of fun… but it’s awfully hard to do alone. I mean, you bought the bottles, so you know what they are. Blind Barrels solves that problem with what it calls the first blind whiskey tasting subscription kit. I’d suggest that Flaviar was there first, but there’s room for both of…

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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: OG de Negoce 12 Days of Christmas Holiday Pack 2021

By Rob Theakston | December 1, 2021 |

We’ve covered de Négoce (“day nuh-go-shay”) in recent installments: a Fall 2021 overview and recently the 2021 Holiday Party Pack Sampler. This time we look at a 12 Days of Christmas sampler pack: a behemoth dozen bottles of various West Coast wines carefully selected by wine negociant Cameron Hughes. Unlike the Holiday Party Pack Sampler,…

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Review: 2021 OG de Negoce Holiday Party Picks

By Rob Theakston | November 17, 2021 |

Last month we took some time to review some of the offerings from Cameron Hughes’ OG de Négoce (pronounced “day nuh-go-shay”) fall portfolio. The framework of this extension of the Hughes brand takes a chance on the wine futures market, curating selections from various vineyards at lower prices than those found on actual vineyard labels.…

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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: Wines of de Negoce, Fall 2021 Releases

By Rob Theakston | October 17, 2021 |

Cameron Hughes is no stranger to this site or to the wine world. His reputation as a negociant is well-earned, consistently delivering quality bottles of wine under his own label at sensible, affordable price points. His latest endeavor, de Négoce (pronounced “day nuh-go-shay”), takes things up a level and makes things a bit more interesting…

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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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