Pisco 101 with Duggan McDonnell

I can safely say now that I know more about Pisco than I ever thought I would. More than I ever thought there was to know, actually. And yet, I’m still little more than a novice. Pisco is, put simply, unaged, grape-based brandy from Peru (or Chile, which we’ll discuss later). Peru puts strict controls…

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Review: 2009 Imagery Estate Winery White Burgundy North Coast

A rarity for California: A white blend inspired by French wines. Imagery’s “White Burgundy” is a blend of Chardonnay (of course), plus Pinot Blanc and a bit of Pinot Meunier, a typical grape used in the wines of Champagne. The result is, well, mostly Chardonnay-like, buttery and oaky, but not overdone. There is a certain…

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Valentine’s Day Cocktails with Moonshine, 2011

Little did I know that Moonshine is a brand of “clear corn whiskey” — unaged, white dog whiskey for the rest of us. The company is sending a sample for us to review, but in the meantime, I took an interest in the Valentine’s Day cocktail recipes it sent along. You can sub in another…

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Review: Sliz Cups

This is the first and likely the last review of a plastic cup to appear on Drinkhacker, for reasons that should already be obvious. The idea behind the vessel is, in the company’s words: “Sliz cups are a new drinking product designed to eliminate the cringe between taking the shot and reaching for the chaser.”…

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Review: Canadian Club Reserve 10 Years Old

The 10-year-old version of this workhorse Canadian whisky (various expressions of which we’ve reviewed several times, see links below), offers a lot to like in an unassuming, easygoing package. A rush of raw alcohol on the nose (let it breathe for a few minutes before diving in to help matters) portends little good, but once…

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Review: High West Double Rye!

There is indeed an exclamation point in the official name of High West Whiskey’s latest, cryptic release. I’m not sure how Utah-based High West manages to mix cowboy imagery and metaphors with next-gen, experimental spirit-making technology, but somehow it does. The company now has about a dozen liquors, mostly whiskey, and we’ve gotten our hands…

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Review: Averna Amaro

More bitter stuff, this time the classic amaro (the Italian term for bittersweet digestifs) Averna. Like Cynar, Averna has been a mixology staple for a few years now, though it originated in 1868. Hailing from Sicily, Averna is sweeter than most of its compadres, striking a pleasant balance between bitter and sugary. The body is…

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Review: Latvijas Balzams Riga Black Balsam

Bitter spirits week (month? there’s no end in sight, really…) continues here at Drinkhacker with an obscurity: Riga Black Balsam, a Latvian liqueur made by Latvijas Balzams. “Black” is an understatement. Black Balsam pours with the opacity and color of dark coffee, and it isn’t out of line to suggest there are similarities in the…

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