Review: Chianti Wines of Selvapiana, 2020 Releases

Fattoria Selvapiana is a storied producer in Chianti Rufina, the smallest subzone in the Chianti region. The winery recently dropped its 2020 releases, four of which we review below. 2018 Selvapiana Chianti Rufina DOCG – Focused cherry notes are tinged with graphite and a touch of saddle leather, with a slight milk chocolate bent emerging…

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The Best Orgeat Roundup – Monin, Liber, Torani, Trader Vic’s, and Liquid Alchemist

Orgeat — aka almond syrup — is one of those cocktail ingredients that you really can’t fake. Substituting regular syrup in a mai tai just doesn’t do the trick, as you really need that nuttiness to complete the drink — or anything else in which orgeat is called for. Yes, you can make your own…

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Review: Firestone Walker Cherry Barrel Blossom

Here’s a new one from the barrel-aging wizards at Firestone Walker. Cherry Barrel Blossom is a new addition to the much-loved Proprietor’s Vintage Series. It’s a barrel-aged smoked porter brewed as a nod to the German Rauchbier style with smoked malts. Apparently, the brewers decided the porter needed some fruit in the mix, so in…

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Review: Daviess County Bourbon, French Oak Finished, and Cabernet Finished

That’s not a typo in the headline. This really is Daviess County, with two Ses. It’s Kentucky, so it’s weird, OK? Daviess County is the latest brand from Lux Row Distillers, which is relaunching a label that dates back to 1874. Says the company, “The brand, bought by the David Sherman Corporation in 1993, honors…

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Review: One Eight Distilling Untitled Whiskey No. 18

Here’s another Untitled release from the folks at One Eight Distilling in our great nation’s capital. Up until now, the Untitled series has consisted exclusively of sourced whiskey stocks, but for No. 18, the crew at One Eight decided to combine their in-house rye whiskey with one of their sourced bourbons. As a reminder, District…

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Review: Ardbeg Wee Beastie 5 Years Old

For a distillery that releases premium whiskies at 24 and even 26 years old, and for which a 10 year old is comparatively young, releasing a 5 year old spirit is a bold move. But Islay’s Ardbeg is so confident of its success, though, that they are adding it to their core range, so I…

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Review: Torani Amer

Amer Picon (aka Picon Amer) is one of those old-school classic spirits that you read about in dusty old cocktail books and which doesn’t seem to exist anywhere — at least in the U.S. Amer Picon is readily available in Europe but it can’t be sold here because of a botanical ingredient called calamus that’s…

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Review: The Whistler Double Oaked, Honey Whiskey, and Irish Cream

The new Whistler Irish Whiskey brand comes to us from family-owned Boann Distillery, which can be found in the Ireland’s Boyne Valley. “At Boann, we pride ourselves in being one of the most innovative whiskey distilleries in Ireland, and in late 2019 our new state-of-the-art facilities and custom copper pot stills produced the first spirit…

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