Review: Peloton de la Muerte Mezcal – Criollo and Pechuga

Peloton de la Muerte (literally “death squad”) is a mezcal brand that’s offered a single Espadin-based expression for about three years. We haven’t reviewed it, but we recently received samples of Peloton’s two new line extensions, Criollo and a vegan Pechuga. Both mezcals are produced with wild agave grown in the Mexican state of Guerrero.…

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Recipes for National Bloody Mary Day 2021

It is nearly New Year’s Day, 2021. If you’re reading this, no nuclear bombs went off at the stroke of midnight, and we have survived and thrived in an otherwise horrible year. Time to recover from our sequestered New Year’s Eve festivities through the marketing-sponsored phenomenon known as National Bloody Mary Day.   The Green…

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Review: 2018 Donum Carneros Chardonnay and Pinot Noir

The Donum Estate is a top-tier producer in California’s Carneros region, and two of its signature 2018 bottlings have arrived. The winery has a significant and complex collection of single vineyard and single appellation bottlings — including a vertical collection bottled in homage of Ai Weiwei, who was commissioned to create a number of large-scale…

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Review: George Dickel Tennessee Whiskey Bottled in Bond 11 Years Old (2020)

Can lightning strike twice? 2019’s 13 year old Bottled in Bond Tennessee Whiskey from George Dickel won all kinds of raves, including from yours truly — proving that a $35 bourbon could go toe to toe with some of the best whiskeys in America. This follow-up edition arrived in mid-2020, an 11 year old made…

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Review: Starlino Rose Aperitivo and Rosso Vermouth

Starlino is a new brand of aromatized wines — and cherries, which we previously reviewed — hailing from Turin, Italy. Today we look at two of Starlino’s wine-based offerings, a sweet vermouth and an unusual pink aperitivo wine that’s great for mixing. (An orange-centric aperitivo was not sent for review.) Starlino Rose Aperitivo – “A…

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Review: Desert Door Back Burn Texas Sotol

Sotol is typically thought of as a Mexican spirit, if it’s thought of at all, but Desert Door makes the only U.S. sotol on the market, distilled from Desert Spoon plants that grow in its native Texas. Launching with a straight blanco version, which was followed by an oak-aged expression, the company has now embarked…

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Review: 2019 Chalk Hill Estate Sauvignon Blanc

Ammonia notes are a bit heavy on the attack of this 2019 estate sauvignon blanc from the iconic Chalk Hill, though the wine is tempered in due course by notes of orange flowers, peaches, and lemon oil — all classic elements from the Chalk Hill repertoire. The finish is lightly grassy with more notes of…

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Review: Talisker 18 Years Old

Talisker single malt can be enjoyed in a variety of expressions, from a smattering of no-age-stated offerings, including the annual Distiller’s Edition, to the occasional Diageo, end-of-year limited edition offerings we see from time to time. The core age-stated range is small, but beefy, with the much-loved 10 year, a 25 year, and this bottle…

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