Review: 2014 Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau

Another year, another Bojo-Nouveau, the “first wine of the harvest,” as Georges Duboeuf’s less-garish-than-usual label reminds us. This year’s Beaujolais Nouveau is the usual shade of grape juice-purple, with a jammy nose redolent of grape jelly, strawberry, some violet notes, and mud. The body runs through all of the above paces, introducing some shades of tea…

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Review: Maker’s Mark Cask Strength Bourbon

Hey, remember when Maker’s Mark said it was going to lower its proof from 90 to 84? That didn’t work out, so the company figured why not go the other way, with a limited-availability cask strength expression of the classic Maker’s Mark. Cask strength bourbon is a bit at odds with the company’s avowed mission to…

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Drinkhacker Reads – 11.19.2014 – Wednesday Quick Links

Another round of quick links. Lots to cover today! • Vinuous acquires International Wine Cellar for an undisclosed sum. Pretty ambitious for a company which started up less than 18 months ago. [Forbes] • Bud Light is planning on launching a flavored beer line. [St. Louis Business Journal] • William Grant wastes no time relaunching Drambuie…

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Review: Jim Beam Kentucky Fire

Jim Beam’s spin on the cinnamon-flavored whiskey fad — the Fireball phenomenon — crept up so quietly earlier this August that no one seems to have taken much notice. I guess being, like, eighth to market doesn’t get you much press. No matter, though. Let’s have a look at Beam’s Kentucky Fire — cinnamon whiskey’s…

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Review: Austerity 2013 Pinot Noir and Chardonnay

Two new bottlings from Austerity, a Monterey County-based operation. Thoughts follow. 2013 Austerity Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands – Classic SoCal Point structure, rich with cherry jam and strawberry preserves. But the flabby body and overly sweetened finish mar an initially appealing character. Notes of tea leaf and coffee bean add a touch of mystery,…

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Review: Bee d’Vine Honey Wine

You can make wine from just about anything, but honey wine has a long and rich history, dating back some 2000 years to Africa, where the honey seems to flow freely. If you’ve ever had mead at a Renaissance festival (or your crazy uncle’s house), you basically know what you’re in for. Honey wine is essentially…

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Review: XXIV Karat Grand Cuvee and Rose — Sparkling Wine with Gold Flake

What, sipping Cristal ain’t baller enough for you? Kick back some XXIV Karat (that’s 24 Karat if you ain’t down with Roman numerals), a sparkling wine that is infused with “indugent 24-karat gold leaf.” Yeah, Goldschlager wrote this playbook, and El Cartel Tequila tore it up. Gold flake in spirits is becoming common these days. Gold…

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Rioja Review: 2008 Rioja Bordon and 1998 Vina Albina

When it comes to upscale wines, Rioja is a category that is often overlooked. But these Spanish wines, primarily Tempranillo with a smattering of other Spanish regional grapes, like Mazuelo and Graciano, thrown in, can often be aged for a decade or more, particularly at the Reserva level or higher. Today we look at a…

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