Review: Little Book Blended Whiskey Chapter 7: “In Retrospect” (2023)

Every release of Beam’s Little Book feels like it’s going to be the last one. Chapter 6 of the book was “To The Finish,” but now we have “In Retrospect.” What, one may ask, have we learned in the last 7 years? Never a whiskey that has shied away from complexity, this release is a blend…

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Review: King Robert II Blended Scotch – Treble Cask and 12 Years Old

King Robert II is a budget Scotch brand that got a relaunch last year from its owners at Ian Macleod. Now available throughout the U.S., three expressions are on tap — a non-age-statement “treble cask” edition, a 12 year old, and a 15 year old. (We’re reviewing the first two today.) Some details: The brand…

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Review: Doc Swinson’s Whiskeys, 2023 Releases

Doc Swinson’s came out of nowhere a few years ago, and since then the brand (using all sourced stock) has absolutely exploded. What began as a handful of sourced whiskeys is now a bazillion different bottlings, filed into various series. We recently received a care package of five of these expressions, so let’s get right…

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Review: Bertha’s Revenge Small Batch Irish Milk Gin

Bertha, Big Bertha to her friends, was an exquisite, whiskey-drinking, grand dame of a cow. She was a Droimeann, a now endangered Irish breed that whether black, white, or red, are typically defined by a long, pale brushstroke of a stripe that extends from neck to tail. Bertha was beautiful then, but she was also…

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Review: Highline Bourbon and Triple Rye

Despite the American whiskey scene in 2023 being more equitable than ever, there’s still a great deal of gender imbalance. This isn’t necessarily an indictment, but rather the reality of an only recently popular category that was largely built in the American South by predominantly white males. While women seem to be increasingly visible in…

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Review: Convite Mezcal Una’

Convite makes a range of high-grade mezcals, but with Una’ — yes, with an apostrophe at the end; the term means “woman” in Zapotec — it’s on to something with a twist. It’s produced with espadin agave but colored a light shade of pink (with cochineal tint) in order to give it a thematic alignment…

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Review: La Maison & Velier Rums, Early 2023 Releases

The other day a mysterious little box landed on my doorstep, filled with small samples of spirits bearing strange names with all-caps labels attached to them. ISAUTIER CANE. FLAG SERIES TRINI. RIVERS. What I soon realized I had in hand was seven samples of fine rums from La Maison & Velier, which distributes some of…

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Review: ImpEx Core Expressions 2023: Ardnamurchan, Filey Bay, Lochlea, and Wolfburn

ImpEx continues to rise in prominence as an importer and indie bottler of rare, obscure, unusual, and important whiskeys — not to mention rum and (soon) mezcal. (Stay tuned for details.) We’ll get to more independent bottlings from ImpEx soon, but today we’re looking at four distillery releases which ImpEx considers its “core expressions” for…

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