Review: Crispy Green Crispy Bananas

Freeze-dry anything and you can’t really go wrong. I’ve tried several of Crispy Green’s dried fruit products. Crispy Banana is the company’s sixth fruit to go through the drying chamber and come out in foil-wrapped nuggets. (0.53 oz., the size of one packet, equals the fruit from one full, pre-frozen banana.) Bananas are a tricky…

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Review: Mocambo Single Barrel Art Edition Rum 20 Years Old

“Top shelf rum” and “Mexico” are not terms that often go together, but Mocambo’s 20-year-old effort, straight outta Veracruz, is nearly a masterpiece. This impossibly dark rum, almost the color of maple syrup, offers a nose of smoke and thick molasses. There’s a good bit of fire on first sip, but things mellow out quickly,…

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Review: Ravi Instant Wine Chiller

Let’s say you grab a bottle of wine and it’s too warm. What do you do? If you’re like most people, you probably just open it and drink it anyway. Secondary options typically run to sticking it in the freezer for a few minutes, or using a wine-chilling gadget (like one of these) to bring…

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Review: 2005 Graffigna Malbec Grand Reserve

We’ve expressed our fondness for Graffigna’s pinot grigio previously. Now we turn our attention to one of the company’s reds: An Argentinian classic, malbec. With this 2005 Special Reserve Malbec, Graffigna has created a quite enchanting wine. Intensely floral — Graffigna says it’s “violets” but I can’t place what kind of flower we’re dealing with…

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“Consistent” Ratings: It’s Hard!

One day it’s a B-, a week later it’s a solid A. Rating wine, spirits, and just about anything else is a dicey affair, and assigning consistent scores day in and day out is nearly impossible. That’s not just anecdotally true, the science backs it up: A four-year study published last week in the Journal…

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Review: Templeton Rye (2009)

If they were drinking whiskey this good back in the Prohibition days, I don’t feel so bad for them after all. Templeton was a purported favorite of Al Capone and “the center of his bootlegging empire,” Templeton Rye is a killer whiskey that — if marketing is to be believed — has been being produced…

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Tasting Report: Today’s Bordeaux, 2009 Releases

Spent some of the afternoon tasting “today’s Bordeaux,” which it turns out is a lot like yesterday’s Bordeaux, only cheaper. Hit hard by the worldwide recession, the days of $1000 bottles of Bordeaux are rapidly coming to an end. And while the first growth chateaux still command hefty prices (just not quite as hefty as…

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Review: 2008 Graffigna Centenario Pinot Grigio

I enjoyed Graffigna’s 2007 Pinot Grigio and, sure enough, its 2008 is nearly as compelling. Grapefruit is the predominant character in this Argentinian Pinot Grigio, with mineral, grass, and herbal notes following close behind. Again, this wine is crisp and easy to drink, and it goes well on its own or with food. And also…

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