Review: Single Malt Whiskies of France’s Maison Benjamin Kuentz

Maison Benjamin Kuentz is a brand of single malt whiskies — four, at present — produced at G. Rozelieures Distillery in Lorraine, France. They’re all young whiskies — but quite fresh and light on their feet. I haven’t been able to track down a ton of production information about the products — but I did…

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Review: Mighty Swell Spiked Spritzers (2019 Flavors)

Based in Austin, Texas, Mighty Swell is part of the burgeoning spiked spritzer market. At present the company offers four varieties, with its most recent flavor added earlier this year. Per the company: “Mighty Swell Spiked Spritzers were born of a desire to create a premium tasting, ready-to-drink alcoholic beverage that fits consumers active lifestyles…

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Review: Sagamore Spirit Rye Port Finish

Baltimore-based Sagamore Spirit continues to innovate by taking MGP-distilled rye and applying unique finishes to it, taking an otherwise familiar product into a new direction and dimension. The latest of these is Sagamore’s Port Finish, a blend of straight ryes (with varying mashbills and ages) that is finished for six months in two different types…

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Review: E&J XO Extra Smooth Brandy

Any product that includes “extra smooth” in its name is never a promising introduction, but in picking up a mini of Ernest & Julio Gallo’s highest-end brandy — designated an XO release — for all of 99 cents, I figured the overall level of risk was very low. There’s no formal age information here —…

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Review: Madam Pattirini Gin

Who, you may rightly ask, is Madam Pattirini? Well, how about a story to start things off? Madam Pattirini, aka Brigham Morris Young, (January 18, 1854–February 20, 1931) was the son of Brigham Young and one of his wives, Margaret Pierce. In 1875,  B. Morris Young served a mission for the LDS Church in the…

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Review: Virtue Cider Rose and Mezzo Spritz

Today it’s time for cider, with a visit to Michigan’s Virtue Cider. Specifically, we’re looking at one of the company’s oldest offerings (the Rose) — and its newest (Mezzo Spritz). Thoughts follow. Virtue Cider Rose – “A blend of hand-pressed heirloom Michigan apples aged in French oak barrels,” with added botanicals to give it color…

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Review: Metaxa Greek Spirit 12 Stars

Founded in 1888, Metaxa has endured as one of the most unique spirits of Greece, a blend of brandy made from dried grapes that is infused with sweet Muscat wine plus rose petals and other botanicals, then aged in Limousin oak barrels. Metaxa is available in a wide range of quality levels — we reviewed…

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Review: Wines of Butternut, 2019 Releases

Butternut is a brand from Napa- and Nashville-based BNA Wine Group, which — and I’m sure they would admit this — focuses on low-cost bulk wines packaged under a cute name. Butternut is also one of the pioneers in the burgeoning canned wine space, with four varieties available in familiar 12 oz. cans. The company…

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