Review: Old Carter Single Barrel Kentucky Bourbon 12 Years Old

After Kentucky Owl was sold to Stoli Group in 2017, Mark and Sherri Carter, one half of the team behind the cult brand, decided they wanted to stay in the whiskey business. Enter, Old Carter Whiskey Company: The Carters were hooked on the process of making and blending whiskies, as well as the state of…

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Review: NV Scharffenberger Brut Rose Excellence

Scharffenberger is known for its high-end chocolate, but this Anderson Valley winery actually came first. Today it is primarily known for sparkling wines, a blanc and a rose. This nonvintage sparkler is a blend of 55% chardonnay and 45% pinot noir, all sourced from Mendocino. In 2020, the wine is drinking with a thick, biscuity…

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Tasting Report: Wines of Temecula Valley, 2020 Releases

While you rarely see Temecula Valley-grown wines in stores, the region is hopping with tons of wineries, all hot destinations for southern California tasters, thanks to its convenient location about an hour northeast of San Diego. With travel shut down, visiting Temecula isn’t an option right now, so in lieu of bringing media to the…

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Review: Elijah Craig Barrel Proof Batch A120 (January 2020)

By now you know the drill: This is Elijah Craig’s latest release in the erratically-scheduled Barrel Proof bourbon series. The A120 batch number means it’s the first release of the year (A), and it came out in January (1) of 2020 (20). Contrast with A119. As always, it’s a 12 year old expression bottled at…

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Review: East Brother Gold IPA

One of the few beers in Richmond, California-based East Brother‘s stable that we haven’t reviewed, this Gold IPA is an American style IPA with an undisclosed hop bill. The quite dark gold-colored brew kicks off with an attack of nutty malt, slightly sweet with almond paste and honey notes rather than aggressively bitter as you…

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Review: 4 Wines from the Loire Valley, 2020 Releases

France’s Loire Valley, just 100 miles or so southwest of Paris, has long been a kind of working man’s alternative to the fancier wines of Bordeaux and Burgundy. But here in the third largest winegrowing region in the country, you’ll find some of France’s most approachable wines, including the universally loved Sancerre (made from sauvignon…

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Review: Grand Brulot Liqueur

Grand Brulot is not your everyday coffee liqueur — far from it. In fact, it’s only 49% coffee liqueur. Crafted from 51% VSOP Cognac and 49% liqueur de cafe, this blend from the Tardy Cognac house is really a coffee-flavored brandy, not the other way around. The spirit, as the name suggests, is a tribute…

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Recipe: Aviation Cocktail

You’ve loaded up on violet liqueur, now what do you do with it? The #1 (and for many drinkers, the only) use for creme yvette or creme de violette is in the Aviation, a delightful little drink and not just because of its color. The key is to keep the violet liqueur dialed back —…

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