Review: Wines of Marques de Caceres, 2019 Releases

Marques de Caceres is a large, value-oriented wine brand in Spain’s Rioja region. Today we take a spin through Caceres’ 2019 releases, including its sparkling wine. Thoughts follow. NV Marques de Caceres Cava Brut – Instantly big with apple juice notes and a touch of lemon peel; this sparkler immediately reminds me of holiday parties.…

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Review: Shinobu Blended Whisky Mizunara Oak

Hey Japanese whisky fans, if you’re frustrated by your inability to find Suntory and Nikka products, there’s a new option on the market to consider, called Shinobu. Formally billed as The Shinobu Blended Whisky Mizunara Oak, Shinobu is made by the eponymous distillery in Niigata Prefecture, about 200 miles north of Tokyo. Shinobu isn’t distilled…

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Review: Cocktail Squad Canned Cocktails – Complete Lineup

Cocktail Squad is a series of ready-to-drink canned cocktails created by a Boulder, Colorado-based couple, Lauren and John Maggio. Now numbering six different products, these are all made with real spirits — no malt liquor here. Cans are 355ml and designed for single-serving use. Thoughts on the full lineup follow. Each product is canned at…

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Review: Rebel Yell 100 Proof Bourbon

Earlier this year, Lux Row’s Rebel Yell — a brand on the upswing — rebranded itself with new labels and an overall more upscale look, in line with its higher-end aspirations. Alongside that, the whiskey company launched a new offering, a 100 proof version of its standard, wheated bourbon. Formally it’s known as Rebel Yell…

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Review: Heavensake Junmai Ginjo and Junmai Daiginjo

Champagne and Sake are two beverages that you’d think wouldn’t have much in common, but Heavensake proves otherwise. Founded by Piper-Heidsieck cellar master, Regis Camus, Heavensake fuses Champagne’s art of blending, and penchant for marketing flair, with the Japanese craft of sake brewing. The result aims to solve one of sake’s biggest hurdles in the…

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Review: Michter’s Single Barrel Straight Rye 10 Years Old 2019

Michter’s 2019 edition of its 10 year old single barrel rye is here, and the company says this is going to be it for the year, due to shortages. For those that tasted the 2018 and 2017 bottlings, note that this release is going to be a bit different, at least in theory: This is…

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Review: Cocalero Clasico Liqueur

Cocaleros are South American coca leaf farmers, and it may surprise you to know that Cocalero Clasico is not the first liqueur to be bottled in their honor. That distinction falls to Agwa de Bolivia, which appears to still be on the market. Cocalero is every bit as green and scary looking as Agwa, but…

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Review: Charbay R5 Hop-Flavored Whiskey Lot 5 (2019)

Ukiah, California-based Charbay has long produced (since 2013) a unique whiskey made from Bear Republic’s Racer 5 IPA. The beer is distilled, aged (for how long isn’t specified), and bottled. For this release, 10 barrels were produced. Lot 5 of R5 has also been released to raise money for Stand for Kindness and survivors of…

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