Review: Wines of Argentina’s Alamos, 2015 Releases

An affordable Argentinian icon, Catena’s Alamos brand is out with three new releases. Let’s try ’em all! 2014 Alamos Torrontes Origin Salta – Extremely aromatic and perfumed, a field of white flowers in a summer rainstorm. Big apple and white peach notes and honeysuckle dominate the palate, with a very fragrant finish quickly following (and…

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Review: Wines of CrossBarn by Paul Hobbs, 2015 Releases

We’ve covered the wines of Paul Hobbs in the past, but this year we look at a larger collection of five offerings. Thoughts? Here they come! 2014 CrossBarn by Paul Hobbs Chardonnay Sonoma Coast – Fresh and easygoing, blending tropical notes with gingerbread cookies up front. The finish is creamy and caramel-focused, but it’s not…

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Review: Mezcal Alipus, 4 Expressions

Del Maguey isn’t the only game in town if you want to explore single-village mezcals. Craft Distillers has put together a line of six different mezcals (including one special bottling of only 600 bottles) showcasing different terroirs in the pueblos of Oaxaca — all of which are a bit south of the capital. Each of…

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Maraschino Head to Head: Bols vs. Luxardo vs. Maraska

Maraschino is an essential liqueur in many a classic cocktail — especially the Casino and the Hemingway Daiquiri — but it’s one of the few categories where only a small number of producers, typically wicker-clad European brands, hold sway. The biggest of these is Italy’s Luxardo. Croatia’s Maraska is another commonly-seen version of the liqueur.…

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Book Review: The Craft Cocktail Party

Cocktail party? OK. Craft cocktail party? Even better! Julie Reiner’s big, hardbound book takes the now-popular seasonal approach to organization, dropping a couple dozen recipes into each of the four seasons. Reiner, owner of the Clover Club in Brooklyn and the Flatiron Lounge in Manhattan, keeps things fairly simple — most of the cocktails only…

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Tasting Report: West of West Wine Festival 2015

The West of West Wine Festival is all about wine at its westernmost terminus in the United States: The Sonoma Coast, where dense fog and craggy conditions make growing conditions ripe only for a few prized varietals — chardonnay, pinot noir, and syrah. Recently I spent an afternoon at the WoW grand tasting, working through dozens…

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Buffalo Trace Single Oak Project: Every Barrel Reviewed on One Page

Looks like there’s still plenty of interest in the recently-completed Buffalo Trace Single Oak Project. Want to look up a barrel but can’t stand dealing with the search system (I don’t blame you) — then here ya go, every single barrel reviewed on one page, in numerical order. As a reminder, barrel #80 was named…

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Review: Braulio Amaro Alpino

Braulio’s an Italian amaro… alpino. Alpino? From the alpine mountains, which gives it a bit of a different spin than what you might be used to. Braulio originated in 1875, and it’s created with a blend of 13 herbs. Only four are known to the public: gentian, juniper, wormwood, and yarrow. The rest of the ingredients remain…

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