Review: 2018 Alma Rosa Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, El Jabali Vineyard

Alma Rosa can be found on the southern end of the Santa Rita Hills in Santa Barbara County, where it’s producing wines from vines planted by pioneering winemaker Richard Sanford. Today we look at two single estate wines from this operation. 2018 Alma Rosa Chardonnay Santa Rita Hills El Jabali Vineyard – It’s a one-way…

Read More about Review: 2018 Alma Rosa Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, El Jabali Vineyard

How Much Do Bitters Matter in a Cocktail?

A couple of dashes of bitters swimming in a glass full of booze. How much of a difference can it make if you choose aromatic vs. creole, chocolate vs. orange, cucumber vs. rhubarb? Well, to help get to the bottom of the mystery of how much of a role bitters play in a cocktail, The…

Read More about How Much Do Bitters Matter in a Cocktail?

2019 Vinho Verde Review: Bico Amarelo and Quinta do Ameal Loureiro

These two Vinho Verde wines from Portugal’s Quinta do Ameal are newly available in the U.S. Both are built around the Loureiro grape, a grape indigenous to this reason which is said to make wines that have aromas resembling laurel flowers. Traditionally blended, it also appears in this duo as a 100% varietal wine. 2019…

Read More about 2019 Vinho Verde Review: Bico Amarelo and Quinta do Ameal Loureiro

Review: Lagavulin 12 Years Old Limited Edition 2020

Diageo has been dropping 12 year old cask strength versions of Lagavulin for as long as I can remember, and nothing much has changed this year — it’s still aged in refill bourbon barrels — except that 2020’s release is available in the U.S., unlike the 2019 edition. Don’t come looking for a lot of…

Read More about Review: Lagavulin 12 Years Old Limited Edition 2020

Review: Ron Barcelo Imperial Onyx and Gran Anejo Dark Series Rum

We’ve covered the rums of Ron Barcelo in the past, but we’ve missed a couple of its darker-themed expressions, including Barcelo Imperial Onyx and Barcelo Gran Anejo Dark Series. What makes these rums so dark and onyxy? Heavily-charred bourbon casks are used to age both of these rums. Additional details can be found in the…

Read More about Review: Ron Barcelo Imperial Onyx and Gran Anejo Dark Series Rum

Review: Pratt Standard Old Fashioned Syrup

We reviewed the whole lineup of Pratt Standard cocktail syrups earlier this year, and we were suitably impressed. Just in time for the holidays, the Washington, D.C.-based apothecary is out with their newest concoction, Old Fashioned Syrup. While Pratt Standard’s other offerings are exceptional additions to a slew of somewhat complicated cocktails, this newest is…

Read More about Review: Pratt Standard Old Fashioned Syrup

Review: Talisker 8 Years Old Limited Edition 2020

At 8 years old this is the youngest whisky in the 2020 Diageo Special Releases (2019’s was a 15 year old Talisker), though it does offer one unique spin: It’s aged in refill casks then finished in pot-still Caribbean rum casks, a first for this distillery (and, I think, a first in the Special Releases…

Read More about Review: Talisker 8 Years Old Limited Edition 2020

Review: 135 East Hyogo Dry Gin

Kaikyo Distillery has become best known in the U.S. as the producer of the two Hatozaki whiskies which are available on our shores. Now America is being introduced to a white spirit from Kaikyo, which was originally launched in the country in 2017. 135 East Hyogo Dry Gin is named for the longitude line which…

Read More about Review: 135 East Hyogo Dry Gin