Review: Barrell Rye Batch 1 and 3

They may be referred to as Barrell Bourbon, but Joe Beatrice and crew blend more than just America’s native spirit (see here and here, for example). It took a few years, but finally in 2017, Barrell introduced a rye whiskey to their lineup. Unlike the bourbons, which have seen 2 or 3 different batch releases a year…

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Review: Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Cocktail Bitters

Hey, Jack Daniel’s finally has its own line of bitters: Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Cocktail Bitters, designed to “work hand in hand with Old No. 7.” Let’s give them a try. The nose is heavy on cloves and nutmeg, the intensity coming across a little like a funky jerk spice. Some dark cocoa powder notes emerge…

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Review: Jane Walker by Johnnie Walker 10 Years Old

Diageo continues to honor the women in its past and present — or, at least, it’s been trying to. This special edition of Johnnie Walker — dubbed Jane Walker — is probably the most visible of its recent releases. The astute drinker may recall another “Jane Walker” release, which was just Johnnie Walker Black Label…

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Review: Wines of Cameron Hughes, 2020 Releases

Four new offerings from the well-known, recently-revived negociant Cameron Hughes. 2018 Cameron Hughes Lot 718 Chardonnay Russian River Valley – This chardonnay is redolent with notes of melon and guava, an exotic mix of sweet and savory that rolls across the tongue like a conga line, and there’s a seaweed/saline note on the finish that…

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Review: Balcones Texas Bock (2020)

If any beer is synonymous with Texas (outside of Lone Star, maybe), it’s Shiner. I spent nearly a decade in Austin swilling Shiner Bock, which is easily the brand’s most visible bottling. Well, here’s a twist: Balcones Distilling figured they’d take Shiner Bock and distill it into a straight malt whiskey. Now, making whiskey from…

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Review: Signatory Bruichladdich 1992 22 Years Old

Blessed are the independent bottlers, for they provide rich diversity and much needed perspective in the world of single malts. Some folks take the position that any bottle from an IB is suspect and a gamble in terms of quality, and there is some merit to that argument. On the other hand, there’s Signatory, whose…

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Review: Izo Mezcal Joven Cenizo

Izo is a new mezcal brand, and while a collection of spirits is planned for the future, the present of Izo is a single product, a joven style mezcal made from wild Cenizo agave grown in Durango, Mexico. Izo has put a lot of effort into standing out from a packaging standpoint — the bottle…

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Review: Benromach Peat Smoked Sherry Cask Matured 2010

Benromach’s reputation for being a reasonably priced, sturdy single malt is well earned, especially in an age where distilleries are frequently in favor of pushing well-aged stock and ultra premium product affordable only to a select clientele blessed by capitalism’s benevolence. So it came as a bit of surprise to see a Benromach strut itself…

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