Review: Tap Rye Sherry Finished Canadian Rye Whisky 8 Years Old

The Canadian Tap brand is back with a third expression of its finished rye whiskies: Tap Rye Sherry Finished. As with the maple and port versions of Tap, “finishing” here means the addition of actual amontillado sherry to the blend of rye whiskies, not aging in ex-sherry barrels, the traditional definition of “finishing.” (That said,…

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Drinkhacker Reads – 02.03.2015 – Buffalo Trace’s Single Oak Project Reaches A Finale, Finally

The experiment known as the Single Oak Project will at last be reaching its conclusion after sixteen rounds and 192 barrels of bourbon. This final round will focus on number four char level barrels and stave seasoning of six months. The rest of the variables (recipes, entry proof, and grain size) will change. As of…

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Review: Banfi 2011 Belnero and 2013 San Angelo Pinot Grigio

Two new bottlings from Banfi recently arrived, including an older vintage of the blended Belnero, the 2012 vintage of which we reviewed a few months back. 2010 vintage notes can be found here. 2011 Banfi Belnero IGT – A sangiovese-heavy blend, this wine is immediately overpowered by chocolate notes, making for a stark contrast to…

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Review: Lockhouse Vodka

Buffalo, New York’s first distillery since Prohibition is Lockhouse, and its eponymous Lockhouse Vodka is its first product. (A gin is now also available.) Column-distilled from local grapes, it’s an unusual spirit in the increasingly familiar vodka space. A pungent nose offers the immediate connotation of a white whiskey, with hospital notes mingled with toasted grains.…

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Book Review: The Spirit of Gin

Jesus, Matt Teacher really likes gin. His new hardcover, The Spirit of Gin: A Stirring Miscellany of of the New Gin Revival, crams nothing but juniper-scented spirits into its 350-plus pages. Rest assured, there’s not really 350 pages of material to be revealed in the giniverse. The Spirit of Gin is breezy and light, with lots of white…

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Review: Spirit Works Gin, Barrel Gin, and Sloe Gin

Sebastapol, California is in the heart of Northern California’s winemaking operations, and it’s here where Spirit Works can be found, cranking out a variety of gin, vodka, and white whiskey products. They even make an authentic sloe gin here — and we were lucky enough to try it, along with the company’s standard gin and…

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Review: Starr Hill Shakedown Imperial Chocolate Cherry Stout

Starr Hill flies a bit too close to cute with this Imperial Stout that has cherries and dark chocolate mixed in during the fermentation. The chocolate is far more noteworthy — there’s just a hint of sourness driven by the cherry component, and mostly that comes through on the finish. In the meantime, it’s a…

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Review: 2012 Markham Cellar 1879 Blend Napa Valley

God bless the lunatic who dreamed up this insane blend of six grapes that shouldn’t go together. Markham’s Cellar 1879 blend is composed of Napa grapes in this proportion: 36% Merlot, 21% Petite Sirah, 14% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Syrah, 9% Zinfandel, and 8% Petit Verdot. Named in honor of Markham’s founding, it’s an insanely drinkable bottling that won’t break the bank. There’s…

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