Review: Isle of Raasay Na Sia Single Casks 2023

Earlier this year, we took our first taste of the much-anticipated Isle of Raasay Single Malt. I first tried it in Scotland last summer and then again when our review sample arrived care of U.S. importer ImpEx, and on both occasions I was impressed by the unique complexity this upstart distillery had achieved in a…

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Review: Tempus Fugit Cherries

As discussed in our in-depth roundup of cocktail cherries, “brandied cherries” are often a misnomer. Almost all cocktail cherries, even the high-end ones, are stored in syrup or juice (or some combination thereof), with no booze at all in the jar. Tempus Fugit, best known for its intense liqueurs, is one of the exceptions. This…

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Review: Barrell Foundation Bourbon and Rye Batch 004

What would bourbon season be without a few new releases from the prolific blenders at Barrell Bourbon? While Jonathan is hard at work tasting the new Cask Finish Series duo (more amburana!), today I’m checking out two somewhat a-typical offerings: Foundation, Barrell’s very first non-cask strength whiskey, and a new cask strength rye. Thoughts follow.…

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Review: Santa Teresa 1796 Speyside Whisky Cask Finish

The quality of Santa Teresa 1796 Solera Rum has remained impressively consistent, at least across our two tastings in 2013 and 2020. Presumably, it’s been that way since Hacienda Santa Teresa, Venezuela’s oldest rum producer, first launched the brand back in 1992. And during all that time, the 1796 Solera expression has stood alone. Until…

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Review: Bhakta 1928

Best known for their highly-aged brandy, Raj Bhakta’s eponymous spirits brand is making moves into other categories, including whiskey. They released an Armagnac-cask finished bourbon earlier in 2023, and they’ve also dabbled in rum. Now, they’re mixing up something different altogether: a blended spirits that’s 60 percent rye whiskey, 30 percent Calvados, and 10 percent…

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Review: 2020 Beaulieu Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

We often cover the higher-end wines of Beaulieu Vineyard — aka BV — but the more affordable bottlings are far more common in the market — not to mention accessible. This Napa Valley expression is a decidedly soft and juicy incarnation of cabernet sauvignon, so bursting with plums and cherries that it doesn’t immediately evoke…

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Review: Redbreast Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey Cask Strength 12 Years Old (2023)

The Irish still seem to be warming up to the idea of cask strength whiskey. While the numbers are certainly growing, the pickings are comparatively slim when you look to the east where the Scots have embraced high octane expressions for decades. Of course, not nearly with the same enthusiasm and zeal as we rocket…

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Review: 2018 Quinta de Fonte Souto Alicante Bouschet DOC

We’ve covered Symington’s Quinta da Fonte Souto white blend on several occasions, but never its red: this alicante bouschet is a signature variety of southern Portugal’s Alentejo region. These grapes are grown at Symington’s 511-acre Quinta da Fonte Souto estate in Portalegre. The resulting wine is dark purple, completely opaque — perhaps best thought of…

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