Review: Caorunn Gin

Scotland, the legendary home of malt whisky, is also becoming a land known for gin. But leave it to the Scots to do something a bit different: Triple distilled from grain and infused with rowan berry, bog myrtle, heather, Coul blush apple, and dandelion leaf (in addition to six traditional botanicals, juniper, coriander, orange and…

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Book Review: Bourbon: The Evolution of Kentucky Whiskey

Those expecting a sun-dappled romp through the state of Kentucky in Sam K. Cecil’s Bourbon: The Evolution of Kentucky Whiskey we be in for a bit of a surprise. Cecil, who got started in the Bourbon industry four years after Prohibition ended in 1933, has written a tome which dutifully outlines how Bourbon is made,…

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Review: Hard Luck Candy Flavored Vodkas

Hard Luck Candy, from Michigan (Temperance, Michigan, actually!), doesn’t mess around with typical lemon, orange, or even coconut vodkas: It goes straight for the jugular, with four candy-inspired concoctions. All are 70 proof, distilled from grain, and, rest assured, give you more than your daily allowance of artificial coloring. Warning: These are all very sweet…

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Review: Just Chill Natural Stress Relief Beverage

Will “one sip” of this “relaxation beverage” give you “instant enlightenment?” Perhaps not, but it certainly won’t hurt. The ingredients of Just Chill should be largely familiar to readers who’ve explored this nascent category: The ubiquitous L-theanine (150mg per 8.4 oz. can), vitamins B and C, magnesium, zinc, Siberian ginseng, ginkgo biloba, and (perhaps the…

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Review: Drambuie 15 Liqueur

The original whiskey liqueur is as unmistakable as it is classic: Drambuie may not be a spirit for all tastes, but, like Galliano or Campari, it’s a staple you can’t help but admire, if for no other reason than sheer longevity. Now Drambuie is launching a line extension — not its first, but the first…

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Book Review: The Punch Bowl: 75 Recipes Spanning Four Centuries of Wanton Revelry

I am a relative recent, but confirmed, convert to the serving of punch in a party setting. It is always a crowd-pleaser, there are plenty of tasty things you can do with it, and it makes bar service infinitely easier. Serving 20 or 30 at a time just can’t be accomplished any other way. The…

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Review: Lark Single Malt Australian Whisky

Folks are making whiskey all over the world, even in far-flung places like Tasmania, Australia, where Lark Whiskey hails from. The company makes a variety of spirits but the highlights are three single cask, single malt whiskeys produced in the Scottish style of Islay, with local barley and, yes, Tasmanian peat over which it is…

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Review: Pisa Nut Liqueur

Kudos to Pisa for the unique — if obvious — bottle design here: The Italian nut-flavored liqueur’s decanter needs absolutely no introduction. A member of the Amaretto/Frangelico family, Pisa is unique in that it’s flavored with three different nuts: hazelnut, almond, and pistachio. And Pisa really does, surprisingly, have elements of all three. I’d say…

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