Review: Villon Liqueur

This rather ominous looking liqueur launched last year in the United States. In addition to its arresting, black glass bottle, Villon also has quite the backstory. It is distilled, blended, and bottled in southwestern France and is named for the well-known 15th century French poet, Francois Villon, who notoriously vanished after killing a “wicked” priest.…

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Review: 2020 Loveblock Pinot Noir Central Otago

We’ve seen Loveblock‘s New Zealand-born pinot noir in the past — like, seven years ago — so it’s time for a refresh. Things, it seems, haven’t changed all that much (though the price has come down quite a bit). Straightforward and mild, this wine has an initial edge of cherry and rhubarb, but things fade…

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Review: Ransom Bourbon

We’ve already covered a handful of products from Oregon-based Ransom Spirits, including their Old Tom Gin, which put them on the craft distilling map over a decade ago. The whimsically named Whippersnapper was the distillery’s first foray into whiskey, but recently they added to the brown spirits portfolio with this bottle, Ransom Bourbon. The mashbill…

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Review: Garrison Brothers Guadalupe Bourbon

“Perfectly suited for the bourbon connoisseur with a sophisticated palate,” this latest Garrison Bros. release comes finished in (Portuguese) Port wine casks. Per the distillery: Bottled at 107 proof, Guadalupe is a port cask-finished bourbon named for one of Texas’ most beautiful rivers. Master Distiller Donnis Todd connected and worked directly with winemakers in Portugal to secure…

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Review: Wines of Esporao, 2022 Releases

Thanks to shifts in weather patterns and climate change, supply chain complications, rising temperatures, and fluctuating soil quality, winemakers are facing an expansive list of challenges posing a threat to their craft. It’s not exclusive to the wine industry by any means, either. A quick search on Google will provide any number of articles detailing…

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Review: Del Maguey Mezcal – Vida, Las Milpas, Chichicapa, and 100% Tobala

Ron Cooper founded Del Maguey (pro tip: “del ma-gay”) in 1995, created the category of artisanal mezcal in the U.S. singlehandedly. The brand has gone nowhere but up since, thanks certainly due to the way it works. Rather than being a bulk product, Miller works with 12 different families in 10 villages in Oaxaca (and…

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Recipe: Alaska

Just like the origins of the word cocktail, the exact stories behind the names of some of the oldest libations are lost to time. Take this variation on the Martini, for example. You’d think this one would be an easy tale to remember. When it first emerged in cocktail books right before World War I,…

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Review: Wines of the Far Niente Family, 2022 Releases

The three wines below all have different names, but they’re all sister brands of Far Niente — whose fonts and design choices are consistent with the parent brand. At these prices, I certainly would call any of them “second labels.” Let’s see how they pan out in the luxe California wine space. 2019 EnRoute Pinot…

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