Book Review: Drink Like a Bartender

Ever been concerned that a bartender would “judge you… hard” for what you’re drinking? (If so, leave the bar.) Good news: Here’s a book to help you with your barstool etiquette. Boston-based writers Thea Engst and Lauren Vigdor fill this trifle of a book with bon mots from the drinking world. The book doesn’t really…

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Review: Old Pulteney 25 Years Old

Old Pulteney, one of the most northerly distilleries on the Scottish mainland, is keeping true to its name with the recent release of a 25 year expression; yet another extra-aged release that follows on the heels of last year’s outstanding 35 year old. The whisky spent 22 years in ex-bourbon casks and the final three…

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Review: 2017 FEL Pinot Gris and 2016 Pinot Noir

The winery formerly known as Breggo continues its releases of Anderson Valley-focused bottlings, with these two offerings the latest in the lineup. 2017 FEL Pinot Gris Anderson Valley – This wine is slightly tropical in aromatic approach, but it’s weighted down by heavy greenery notes, which give the palate a muddy body and a tight,…

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Review: Compass Box Phenomenology

Phenomenology, one of the latest limited releases from merchant whisky bottler Compass Box, is a celebration of the idea that taste is subjective. Compass Box is well-known for sharing the details of their sourced whiskies in minute (and sometimes legally risky) detail, but for this special blend the goal was to keep things confidential in…

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Review: Avery Brewing Tequilacerbus

The craft brewing movement emerged, in part, out of a desire for more creativity, but the recent trend in barrel aging has sometimes been anything but. Don’t get me wrong. I love a good bourbon barrel-aged dark beer, but the category is getting more saturated by the day. Thankfully, breweries like Colorado’s Avery Brewing are…

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Review: Knob Creek Cask Strength Rye 9 Years Old

Jim Beam’s latest superpremium offering should come as no surprise. The original Knob Creek Rye was a hit back in 2012, so it’s natural that the company would release a cask strength offering, as it’s often done with its other whiskey releases. Says Beam, “Aged for 9 years and stored in Warehouse A, the oldest standing rackhouse…

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Book Review: High-Proof PDX

Karen Locke’s High-Proof PDX is perhaps the most niche-oriented book about the drinking world that I’ve ever encountered, and I’ve read books on absinthe and amari. High-Proof PDX is billed as “a spirited guide to Portland’s craft distilling scene,” and that’s just what it is. This slim tome is a guidebook of sorts, describing in detail…

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Review: Damrak Gin

Damrak is an old brand that tends to fly under the radar. I see it all the time, yet I’ve never really experienced it. Part of the Lucas Bols stable, Damrak bills itself as an “authentic” Amsterdam-based gin brand. With 17 (largely unlisted) botanicals and a juniper-restrained profile, it’s hardly a recreation of Tanqueray. But…

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