Review: Kilo Kai Spiced Rum

When it comes to spiced rum, most people (including myself) pretty much know one brand: Good old Captain Morgan. Nothing wrong with that. The Cap’n takes boring old Bacardi and infuses it with a vague taste of the tropics and the nostalgia of, er, spice traders, pirates, and saucy wenches. The problem is that Captain…

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Bar Review: Bourbon & Branch, San Francisco

Last night I finally had the opportunity to visit Bourbon & Branch, courtesy of a party thrown by my friends at tech company Zannel, to see what all the fuss was about. Bourbon & Branch, or B&B, is fashioned after a speakeasy. You have to have a password, which changes daily, and a reservation, in…

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New Recipe: The (Indian) Summer Tonic

A friend was having heartburn so I mixed up this as a curative: Ginger ale, bitters, and aromatics are all good for the stomach. The other stuff just tastes good. The (Indian) Summer Tonic 1 oz. gin 3/4 oz. creme de cassis 1/2 oz. melon liquer (or Midori) 2 dashes orange bitters ginger ale Add…

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Review: Hornitos Plata, Reposado, and Anejo Tequila (2007)

Hornitos is known for its trademark Reposado tequila with the bright green label. But now Hornitos expands in a natural direction: With both a Plata (aka Blanco or silver) tequila and an aged Anejo, to round out the line with one of each of the three traditional tequila varieties. I tried them all side by…

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Review: BridgePort Brewing India Pale Ale

Eh, looked interesting in the cooler, but this otherwise by-the-book, golden brown IPA has a little too much I and not enough P for my tastes. The hoppiness overpowers the brew (the company claims five types of hops are used), and while you can get that taste of lemon peel if you work for it,…

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Review: 2004 Sebastiani Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley

Sebastiani is a big, big winery. I can’t even go to their tasting room any more because of the overpowering antiseptic smell in there the last time I went. You try tasting wine when all you can smell is Clorox and Lysol. Doesn’t work. My dad (a huuuuge Sebastiani fanatic) gave me a bottle of…

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New Recipe: The B.B.C.

As part of my blueberry kick, and largely by happenstance, the good folks at Beefeater sent along some recipes for what they’re trying to kick off as “sharp’ners,” defined as “a London term for a quick, social drink that allows friends to connect without committing an entire evening.” The idea is that “getting a drink”…

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Review: 2004 Robert Rue Vineyard Zinfandel Wood Road Reserve

I have never been a huge fan of the in-yo-face jamminess of Zinfandel, but once in a while, a really lush Zin, one that balances that fruitiness with spice (or something else) really catches me by the palate. Robert Rue is a small producer that won tons of raves for its 2004 Wood Road bottling.…

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