Review: Michael-David’s Incognito Wines, 2010 Releases

Miachel-David is a winery in California’s Lodi region, where it produces wine under a half-dozen or so labels, especially the Zinfandels for which the region is so well-known. Incognito is a label with two wines, both oddball blends. We tried both of the wines from the latest vintage, which have seen new labeling and branding.…

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Review: U’Luvka Vodka

You’ll see U’Luvka from a mile away, its oversized bottle looking a bit like a nearly-frozen water droplet just about to fall from a tree branch. Perhaps that’s romanticizing things. This is, after all, a big bottle of vodka. Hailing from Poland and distilled from rye, wheat, and barley grains, it’s 80 proof and finally…

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Review: 2008 Soave from Rocca Sveva and Cantina di Monteforte

Of all the wine regions due for a comeback, who’d have thought Soave would be next in line? Soave has a bad rap. Hailing from the Veneto region of Italy northwest of Venice, Soave wines are made almost exclusively from the Garganega grape. Young and uncomplicated, Soave was popular in the 1970s Blue Nun/Black Tower/Lancer’s…

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Review: Southern Comfort Lime

It says on the bottle: “The classic reinvented.” I suppose Southern Comfort is a classic. It’s got its own well-established nickname — SoCo — and the peach liqueur is called for in more cocktail recipes than you’d think. What then to make of Southern Comfort Lime? Take some sweetened lime juice (like Rose’s) and add…

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Review: Don Q Cristal and Anejo Rum

Don Q is an unsung hero in the rum world, producing both some extremely inexpensive spirits as well as some highly-regarded, well-aged rums. Based in Puerto Rico, you’ll find these 80 proof rums just about everywhere. Today we took a look at two of the less expensive, more widely-available offerings from the company. Don Q…

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Review: 2006 Ventisquero Vertice Apalta Vineyard

From Chile’s Apalta Valley comes Ventisquero’s Vertice, a very rich and extracted blend of Camenere (51%) and Syrah (49%). Amazing depth of wine here, with smoky notes at play with deep plum fruit, black pepper, and a touch of eastern spices. It’s just too bad the wine lacks structure, its creaminess washing away the acidity…

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Tasting Report: WhiskyFest San Francisco 2010

Whiskyfest has come and gone, and I’d consider it one of the best installments of the celebration of whiskey to date. It was packed, to be sure, but the crowd rolled with the frequent bumped elbows, stepped-on toes, and spilled spirits, and everyone had a good time. Yes, there were some misses — like companies…

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Review: The Glenrothes 1994, 1998, and John Ramsay Legacy Edition

In the Scotch whisky world, The Glenrothes (correct pronunciation: glen-ROTH-ess) is unusual to the point of being unique. It doesn’t offer age statements on its products, but rather vintage dates them from the point of distillation. You can figure out the age by reading the fine print — the typical Glenrothes vintage-dated whisky is 10…

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