Review: Wines of Domaine Bousquet Gaia, Summer 2023 Releases

Carrying on with the release overview of Domaine Bousquet’s output for this year, this time taking a closer examination of its Gaia portfolio. So, what differentiates the Gaia line from its siblings? First and foremost, they are 100% organic. The grapes are grown at a cooler altitude (1,200 meters) by the foothills of the Andes…

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Review: Jefferson’s Marian McLain Bourbon

Jefferson’s is out with a new super premium bourbon release – its first in quite a while – and it comes with some interesting history and a charitable initiative, to boot. Jefferson’s Marian McLain honors the 8th generation grandmother of Jefferson’s founder, Trey Zoeller, who seems like she was quite the character in her day.…

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Review: NV Laurent-Perrier Blanc de Blancs Brut Nature Champagne

We have enjoyed other offerings from popular Champagne producer Laurent-Perrier in the past, and today we try their Blanc de Blancs Brut Nature, which is 100% Chardonnay, spends six years on the lees, and has no dosage. The Champagne surprised me: trying it blind, I would not have guessed it was zero dosage. The wine…

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Review: Wines of Gil Family Estates, 2023 Releases

Over the course of a century, the family of Juan Gil Giménez has very quietly established themselves as a family dynasty in Spanish wine lore, spanning over four generations and expanding to nearly a dozen brand names and more vineyards than one cares to count. With no signs of slowing down any time soon, it…

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Review: Storywood Tequila Reposado and Anejo Speyside Scotch Barrel Aged

It isn’t always clear what barrels are used to age tequila. Most often it’s ex-bourbon and sometimes new oak. But Storywood is the first brand I know of to age all of its tequila in ex-Scotch casks. Begun in 2018, Storywood was founded by Michael Ballantyne, who was born in Scotland and raised in Houston,…

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Review: Ghia Non-Alcoholic Aperitif (2023 Reformulation)

Ghia has been a leader in the non-alcoholic amari space, in part because it’s not a category that invites a lot of competition. Bitter liqueurs probably aren’t something the zero-abv set tend to demand a lot of. I’ve admired and enjoyed Ghia as an NA alternative since its 2020 launch — though I definitely consider…

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Review: Wicked Weed Appalachia Session IPA and Dr. Dank Daily Haze IPA

We’ve barely scratched the surface on Wicked Weed Brewing, the Asheville-based craft beer Cinderella story founded in 2012 and added to the Anheuser-Busch/InBev stable not long after, in 2017. The brewery specializes in IPAs and sours, of which there are numerous expressions in their portfolio. Today, we’re taking a look at two sessionable IPA offerings,…

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Cognac Misconceptions and the Challenge of Organic: An Interview with Benedicte Hardy

As Benedicte Hardy likes to tell it, when she took the helm of Hardy Cognac nearly 30 years ago, Cognac was in a very different place compared to today. There was little international education around the spirit. A post-millennium cocktail revolution had yet to break the Cognac from its perception as an after-dinner drink for…

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