Review: The Glenrothes Select Reserve

In its distinctive hand-grenade bottle (with cardboard shell), a bottle of Glenrothes comes across like a liquid hand grenade. The Glenrothes Select Reserve is the entry-level variation on this whisky, an 80-proof concoction from Speyside with no age statement, a single malt vatted from Glenrothes whiskys of a variety of ages. (Since it’s all malted…

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Review: Avitae Caffeinated Water

Take water. Add caffeine. You have just made Avitae, “energy water,” and officially written as “ávitãe” (but with a long dash over the second “a” instead of a tilde, can’t make ’em with HTML). Avitae’s promise is simple: You get purified water with 45mg of natural caffeine added (putting it in the same ballpark as…

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On Decanting Whiskey

Reader Paul Moody writes: Is there any real reason to decant a bourbon? There seems to be a good selection of crystal decanters to be found on the market these days, but are they primarily for style and looks? They are strictly for looks. Decanting wine is done to aerate the wine and minimize the…

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Review: Maria Mezcal Anejo

Mezcalapalooza continues with this mezcal, a 100% agave anejo, aged one year in oak, and bottled at 80 proof, sans worm or other insect. Maria’s “Mezcal de Oaxaca” is quite unique. Though it offers traditional aromas of smoke laced with agave, the body is something else. Tart like a cherry, it is both sweet and…

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Review: Deschutes Brewery Mirror Mirror (2009)

Take Deschutes’ Mirror Pond Pale Ale, double the strength to 11% alcohol and age 35 percent of it in oak barrels, and you get the cleverly named Mirror Mirror. The moniker is a bit misleading. “Mirror” would seem to imply clarity and smoothness, but Mirror Mirror is a deep bronze color with a lot of…

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Review: Tequila Ocho Single Estate Reposado 2009

When last we visited Tequila Ocho we sampled the bottler’s 2008 and 2009 “single estate” tequilas, comparing two silver tequilas side by side. Today we turn to the 2009 reposado expression. Also from the Rancho Las Pomez Estate, this reposado is aged for 8 weeks and 8 days (which, I guess, is the same as…

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Review: “B&B” Brandy & Benedictine

When I was a kid my dad had THE coolest bottle of booze on the planet. Actually it was two bottles, fused into a single decanter: Benedictine on one side, B&B (a blend of brandy and Benedictine) on the other, each with its own spout. Coolest thing on earth to look at, but not once…

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Review: 2006 Hugues Beaulieu Picpoul de Pinet Coteaux du Languedoc

That’s a big mouth of a name for a $10 wine, ain’t it? Hugues Beaulieu brings us this picpoul from the Languedoc region of France, an area best known for its reds but with also, it turns out, the potential to turn out a surprisingly tasty white. I’d never had picpoul de pinet before (seriously,…

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