Tasting the Wines of Argentina’s Salentein, 2018 Releases

Salentein is a strange name for a winery in Latin America, right? Turns out the Salentein family is Dutch, relocating to Argentina in 1996 after falling in love with the land here in the country’s Uco Valley. Salentein’s estates are located at the highest elevations in Mendoza, where it operates four fincas, or estates: El Oasis,…

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Review: Bruichladdich Bere Barley 2008, The Organic 2009, and Octomore 8.4

These three releases from Bruichladdich arrived earlier in the year, but our tasters got shuffled behind some larger bottles. With deep regrets, here’s a belated look at some of Bruichladdich’s most notable 2018 releases. Bruichladdich Bere Barley 2008 Islay Grown Dunlossit Estate 9 Years Old – Bruichladdich has lately been focusing hard on its home…

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Review: 2016 Cantina Tramin Nussbaumer Gewurztraminer

Our final venture into Alto Adige for the moment, this is an aromatic gewurztraminer from this mountainous region. Even more heavily perfumed than the typical gewurz, this 15% alcohol wine is a monster, layering camphor and mothballs atop notes of quince and orange peel. Doughy, almost yeasty at times, there’s a mushroom element that plays…

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Review: Buchanan’s Select Blended Malt Whiskey 15 Years Old

  Buchanan’s latest release fills a mid-level spot in the whisky producer’s lineup, this one unique in that it’s a blended malt, with no grain whiskey in the blend. There’s no information on the distilleries used to produce the blend, but since Buchanan’s is a Diageo brand, pretty much the entirety of Scotland is a…

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Review: 2016 Exitus Red Wine Aged in Bourbon Barrels

“Complex. Toasty.” Exitus tells us what to expect right on the label of this bourbon barrel-aged monster, which spends 3 months in bourbon barrels. It’s a California-sourced mix of Zinfandel, Petit Verdot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petite Sirah, and Merlot, which makes for a true mutt of a blend. But… can it stand up to a bourbon cask?…

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Review: Mount Gay XO Rum – The Peat Smoke Expression

Rum and peat? Has this been done before? If not (and I think not), then why not? Barbados-based Mount Gay’s experiment is one of the most unusual I’ve seen from the rum world in years. It’s a blend of column and pot still rum, ranging in age from 8 to 15 years old. It is…

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Review: Lagunitas Fall 2018 Releases

Hey, it’s a quintet of new releases from our friends up the road in Petaluma, Lagunitas Brewing. Lagunitas Born Yesterday Pale Ale 2018 – (2017 bottle pictured.) Born Yesterday is a highly limited, fresh-hopped, unfiltered pale ale that Lagunitas has put out a few times before. For 2018, this one is “a newborn version of…

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Tasting with Winemaker Arnaud Hereu of Odfjell Vineyards, Chile, 2018

Recently we were invited to sit down with Arnaud Hereu, winemaker for the Chilean label Odfjell Vineyards, and taste some of their new releases over dinner. What a delight it was! Arnaud is as vivacious as his winemaking style. He’s traveled the wine world to get a hands-on oenology education, starting with his home turf…

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