Review: Booker’s Bourbon “Apprentice Batch” 2023-02

The second Booker’s Bourbon release of 2023 is upon us, and this one dives deep into the Noe family archives for its naming inspiration. According to the official release notes for Booker’s “Apprentice Batch”: This batch pays homage to the beginning of Booker Noe’s distilling career when he first learned the art of making bourbon…

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Review: 2016 Renieri Brunello di Montalcino Riserva DOCG

Renieri is a member of the Bacci family of wines, which produces a wide range of wines on five different estates around the main DOCG region in Tuscany. Situated in the southern part of Montalcino, Renieri primarily focuses on the Sangiovese varietal, and today we’re uncorking a 2016 Brunello Riserva centered mainly around that grape.…

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Review: Garrison Brothers Small Batch and Balmorhea Bourbons (2023)

We’ve visited the well at Texas bourbon pioneers Garrison Brothers quite a few times, and today we’re taking a fresh look at a couple of expressions we’ve experienced in the past. The distillery should need no introduction, so let’s dive into the two whiskeys. Garrison Brothers Small Batch Bourbon (2023) – A bit of a…

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Review: 2021 Booker Wines Vertigo

A glance at the website of Paso Robles-based Booker Wines immediately reveals a commitment to minimalism. Like their bottle labels, the company’s story is conveyed using only the most essential of elements, aligning with the practice and philosophies of legendary Japanese designer Kenya Hara. This attention to detail and austere simplicity is what aesthetically sets…

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Review: The Irishman Single Malt Irish Whiskey 12 Years Old and 17 Years Old

The Irishman brand underwent some tweaking in 2022 with sexy new packaging and a few edits to the core lineup. What once was the entry-level Founder’s Reserve Blend is now dubbed The Harvest and a new rum-finished expression has joined Single Malt and Vintage Cask in the non-age stated portion of the portfolio. All that…

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Review: Hardin’s Creek The Kentucky Series: Frankfort

As promised, Round 2 of the new Hardin’s Creek line from Jim Beam is here. As a reminder, the trilogy of whiskeys are all identical 17 year old bourbons save for one detail: They were aged in different rickhouses in Kentucky, exposing the impact of Kentucky’s various microclimates. The first release, Clermont, showcased the impact…

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Book Review: How to Make Better Cocktails

A telltale sign of a solid cocktail recipe book for beginners is the percentage of effort and page count dedicated to discussing techniques, barware, garnishes, styling and other elements necessary to building a decent knowledge base, bar supply, and skill set. And to its credit, How to Make Better Cocktails spends nearly a quarter of…

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Review: Virginia Distillery Co. Scholar’s Craft American Single Malt

Touting “Coffee Cask” aging on its label, Virginia Distillery Co.’s Scholar’s Craft American Single Malt Whisky immediately caught my attention. As lover of all things coffee, I was intrigued by the proposition of a 100% barley single malt aged in former bourbon casks and finished in coffee barrels. Virginia Distillery Co. is well known for…

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