Review: Bluewater Distilling Organic Vodka and Halcyon Gin

Bluewater Distilling in Everett, Washington makes a variety of spirits (including an aquavit!), but it’s best known for two major staples, a gin and a vodka, both organically produced and crafted in a classic copper pot still — not a column still, which is by far the norm for most vodkas and gins. Thoughts on both…

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Recipe: National Rum Day Recipes, 2014

This Saturday (August 16th) marks yet another turn in the calendar for National Rum Day. We’ve had several emails from distilleries come through our inbox over the past week, and here’s a sampling of some of the best of the bunch: Guayaba Arabica 1 ½ parts Bacardi rum 1 part Goya guava nectar ¾ part fresh…

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Review: 2012 Starmont Pinot Noir and Chardonnay

Two new high-end wines from this adjunct of the Merryvale Winery, located in Napa Valley. Both are exquisite offerings. Thoughts follow. 2012 Starmont Pinot Noir Stanly Ranch Estate Carneros – Gorgeous Carneros Pinot, light as a feather with silky notes of tea leaf, cherry, cola, and a little strawberry. Seductive on the nose, it’s got…

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Review: 2 Wines from the SommSelect Website, 2014

If you’ve ever seen the documentary Somm, you will remember Ian Cauble, the bright-eyed sommelier who seems like a shoo-in to pass the Master Sommelier test administered at the end of the film. I won’t spoil what happens in the movie, but fast forward to today, and Cauble has his own internet wine website, SommSelect. Essentially…

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The A-List – July 2014

Welcome to this month’s edition of the A-List, where we look back at the best of last month’s reviews and ratings and compile them into a really useful, printer-friendly graphic you may take along during your next trip to the store. (Rob’s note: This month we had some insanely pricey scotch head our way, but…

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Three Days on the Juice with Urban Remedy

So my wife got us doing a juice cleanse. It’s all the rage, ain’t it? So why not? We can all use a little detox once in awhile. It’s not a trend I’m smitten with, but I’ll try just about anything once. Urban Remedy, like many juice providers, offers a three-day cleanse kit that includes…

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Tasting the Wines of Washington’s Columbia Winery with Winemaker Sean Hails, 2014 Releases

Though we’re only a few hundred miles away, here in California we honestly don’t see many wines from Washington state. And yet, after California, Washington has the 2nd largest number of wineries in the country. Columbia is one of them. Not to be confused with Columbia Crest, Columbia recently became part of the Gallo empire,…

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Review: 3 Wines from Four Vines, 2014 Releases

Three new releases from our friends at Four Vines. Thoughts follow. 2012 Four Vines Naked Unoaked Chardonnay Santa Barbara – Unoaked as promised, which leaves this SoCal Chard buttery without being stuffed full of wood and sawdust notes. The body’s bigger than most unoaked Chardonnays I’ve experienced of late, which is a nice balance to the…

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