Review: Amaro Alta Verde

Italian distillery Antica Erboristeria Cappelletti is best known for its eponymous aperitivo — but it makes a variety of bitter liqueurs, including this one. Amaro Alta Verde is a truly unusual amaro, pale green in color and flavored primarily with Assenzio, a variety of wormwood. “A complementary blend of alpine herbs, citrus and spice frame and…

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Review: Pallini Limoncello, Peachcello, and Raspicello (2021)

Exclusive to the Amalfi coast, Sfusato lemons are prized and in high demand for the intensity of their flavor and serves as the main ingredient in Pallini Limoncello, which we last reviewed in 2009. We recently sampled the flagship expression in Pallini’s range along with two additional flavors, right in time for the heatwave of…

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Review: Laphroaig 10 Years Old Sherry Oak Finish

The marriage of sherry and peat can prove to be a challenging equation to balance. Some distilleries manage to figure it out with elegance and style. Others have birthed mutations best forgotten, relegated to the island of misfit bottles. Thankfully this Laphroaig does not fall in the latter category, but sadly neither does it rise…

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Understanding Bordeaux’s Crus Bourgeois – Tasting the 2018 Vintage

In Bordeaux, there are basically two primary worlds of wine: Crus Classes, those “classified wines” that were first established in 1855, and Crus Bourgeois, which reflects wines from across the Medoc region which are one step down. There have always been many highly regarded wines in the Cru Bourgeois classification, and the classification has been…

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Review: Dos Primos Tequila Blanco

Fancy paint-accented bottle with a leather-wrapped neck, fabric label with signatures attached, a promise of “100% slow roasted Weber blue agave grown right in the heart of tequila country” … that, alas, is about all we know about Dos Primos Tequila, a new spirit which is clearly swinging for the fences — but which is…

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Tasting Virginia’s Best Wines, 2021 Releases

We’re back for our third round with the Virginia’s Governor’s Cup Gold Medalists — a selection of the best wines from the state’s annual wine competition. As has been the norm for the past two years, it’s a well-mixed collection of whites, reds, and dessert bottlings. Let’s dig in. 2014 Trump Sparkling Brut Reserve Monticello –…

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Review: Dirty Devil Vodka

Dirty Devil Vodka has a curiously unique selling point: It’s the world’s first hyper-oxygenated spirit, “a patented process that yields water with five times the oxygen of ordinary water.” Wazzat? Here’s what the company says: “We start with a super purification system that produces the highest quality of water,” explained Daniel Sdicu, Biologist/Chemist, Dirty Devil…

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Review: Mossburn Blended Malts – Speyside and Island

Established in 1992, Mossburn is a bottler of a range of whiskies, most of them sourced from other distilleries around Scotland. (It also operates Torabhaig, which is tiptoeing into its own distillates as we speak.) While Mossburn bottles a variety of single vintage whiskies from other distilleries (much like any independent bottler), what you’re more…

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