Tasting Virginia’s Best Wines, 2020 Releases

Our previous coverage of Virginia’s 2019 Governor’s Cup Gold Medalists — the best wines from the state’s annual competition — was so much fun that the state’s wine board offered us the chance to do it again, tasting the 12 winners from 2020’s competition, which was only recently concluded. Let’s dive in and see how…

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Review: Puncher’s Chance Bourbon

Puncher’s Chance is a Kentucky straight bourbon from Eugene, Oregon’s Wolf Spirit Distillery, best known here for its Blood x Sweat x Tears Vodka. It’s obviously a sourced product — from Kentucky, not MGP — and it’s bottled with no age statement, though I’ve read it’s a blend of whiskeys 4 to 6 years old.…

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Review: Gordon & McPhail Glenburgie 21 Years Old

Glenburgie is not a name widely recognized in America. It does not carry a celebrity endorsement or acclaim from the mass market, and it only makes occasional appearances on menus of the most specialized whisky bars. But this Pernod Ricard distillery remains a critical component to the mega-conglomerate Ballantine’s blend and therefore produces a considerable…

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Review: 2015 Frescobaldi Nipozzano Riserva Vecchie Viti Chianti Rufina

The 2015 bottling of this wine is drier than the 2011, its cherry-fueled core tempered by a heavy tea leaf, bay leaf, and gentle oregano notes. Drying and almost astringent on the finish, this well-aged Chianti feels like it still has one foot planted firmly in the earth, dusty and tight with a hint of…

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Review: La Adelita Tequila Black Cristalino

Several tequila distillers are lobbying to have cristaliño added to the four existing official tequila categories. A cristalino is an añejo or extra añejo tequila that after aging has been filtered to have color but not flavor removed, producing a spirit that is clear, but with all the flavor that the tequila has picked up…

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Review: George Howell Guduba Light Roast Coffee

The name George Howell warrants minimal introduction to coffee fanatics. For over four decades, Howell has been a leader in bringing high-quality coffee stateside. It is not unheard of for brand devotees to stay up late into the night, refreshing and clicking furiously when highly limited edition roasts go live online, with good reason: Some…

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Review: Elysian Full Contact and Salt & Seed

Two new releases from Seattle’s Elysian Brewing — one seasonal and one year-round entry. Elysian Full Contact Imperial Hazy IPA – Available year-round. Beautiful high-abv Imperial IPAs are increasingly common, but Elysian’s Full Contact, made with Centennial, Simcoe, and Strata hops, is near the top of the heap. While it’s not really hazy at all…

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Review: Grey Goose Vodka (2021)

Grey Goose is simultaneously one of the most loved and hated spirits brands in the world. Legions of martini drinkers have turned Grey Goose, which is now owned by Bacardi, into a must-call phenomenon on the back bar, and today some 20 million bottles of the stuff are sold every year. (Though this number has…

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