Review: Claiborne & Churchill Dry Riesling and Gewurztraminer

Two aromatic whites from this San Luis Obispo-based operation. Thoughts follow. 2013 Claiborne & Churchill Dry Riesling Central Coast – A humble riesling, studded with notes of honey, Meyer lemon, and some green herb garden notes on the nose. The body moves into slightly sweet territory, with chewy nougat dominating, leading to a somewhat woody,…

Read More about Review: Claiborne & Churchill Dry Riesling and Gewurztraminer

Review: Wines of Rodney Strong, 2015 Releases

Rodney Strong’s mainstream releases for 2015 are hitting right about now.  We tasted a trio of its entry-level Sonoma County wines. Thoughts follow. 2013 Rodney Strong Chardonnay Sonoma County – Buttery, but not overdone, this rich-and-creamy Chardonnay offers marshmallows atop notes of tropical fruit — pineapples, plus peaches. Some meaty character gives this some oomph,…

Read More about Review: Wines of Rodney Strong, 2015 Releases

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,…

Read More about Review: Tap Rye Sherry Finished Canadian Rye Whisky 8 Years Old

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…

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

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…

Read More about Review: Banfi 2011 Belnero and 2013 San Angelo Pinot Grigio

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.…

Read More about Review: Lockhouse Vodka

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…

Read More about Book Review: The Spirit of Gin

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…

Read More about Review: Spirit Works Gin, Barrel Gin, and Sloe Gin