Review: Ranch Rider Canned Cocktails

Newcomer Ranch Rider Spirits Co. seems to be having a decent run in the rising canned cocktail market. Their Texan roots are proudly touted, with a key expression being the “ranch water,” a Texas bar favorite. Ranch Rider seeks to provide simple, classic, and familiar cocktails with real ingredients and no additives; not even added…

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Review: The Dalmore Sherry Cask Select 12 Years Old

There is never a shortage of finished single malts on the market these days, a process that can disguise otherwise underperforming whisky as something serviceable. But there’s also an art to finishing, and when done well, it’s an experience to savor. Matured in ex-bourbon casks for a decade and finished in a combination of Oloroso…

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Review: 2020 Hampton Water Rose (Plus Candy)

Introduced in 2017, Hampton Water Rosé was conceived by rocker Jon Bon Jovi and his son Jesse Bongiovi, who brought the idea to French winemaker Gerard Bertrand. Learning the wine’s origin, I couldn’t help but think of the lyrics to the Bon Jovi hit “Wanted Dead or Alive”: “Sometimes you tell the day by the…

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Review: Sion Kolsch

Cologne, Germany’s Radeberger makes this Kolsch, and it’s a great example of the style. Cracker crisp with a pleasant maltiness, the clean beer evokes gentle notes of sesame oil, fresh-cut grass, and just a hint of orange peel. This is a simple review but it’s a simple beer, and one that goes down with delightful…

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Review: Artisan Craft Cocktails, Complete Lineup

As a company, Artisan Craft Cocktails is perhaps misnamed: All it makes are dessert cocktails, pre-mixed, bottled, and ready-to drink when poured over ice. These are all unabashedly sweet and uniquely designed for sipping after dinner, not at cocktail hour — and their premium price telegraphs premium ingredients in the mix. Let’s give the four products…

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Review: Melvin Brewing Juice Theorem IPA

Melvin‘s latest is a mostly clear IPA that’s supposed to be “just as juicy” as a hazy IPA. On that front, it’s mission sort-of accomplished. This is nowhere near as flavorful as the best hazy IPAs on the market, coming across with a rather heavy muddiness and more of a vegetal note than a fruity,…

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Review: Blood Oath Bourbon Whiskey Pact 7 2021

The always intriguing Blood Oath series continues with this, its seventh annual release: Blood Oath Pact 7 Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. As has been the case in previous years, it’s a blend of Kentucky bourbons, all rye-heavy recipes, including a 14-year old bourbon, an 8-year old bourbon, and (the twist for 2021) an 8-year old…

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Review: 2019 Poggio Anima Belial and Uriel

Poggio Anima is “a collection of various Italian native varietals representing four regions in Italy, typifying the cultural heartbeat of each area. The brand name translates to ‘Hill of Soul’ and personifies the individual vineyards cultivated for each bottle,” each of which are personified as crazy, pagan demons. (The white wines are named after archangels…

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