If you walk into any bar, anywhere in the world, odds are high that you'll be able to count on one thing—a bottle of Angostura Aromatic Bitters ready to season your cocktail. I went to Trinidad and Tobago to see how these bitters (and the House of Angostura's rums) are made.
Bourbon has long been our go-to for reasonably priced whiskey, but as demand continues to grow, more and more producers are jacking up prices to cash in on the trend. That's part of what makes Tincup American whiskey such a refreshing change of pace: it's a delicious whiskey at a reasonable price.
Some seriously good Irish whiskey is now available in the U.S.
If you haven't tried high-proof tequilas yet, seek these out.
Situated in the small hill country town of Hye, Garrison Brothers Distillery is leading the craft whiskey charge in Texas.
Suntory and Nikka remain the sole Japanese distillers exporting their whisky for American consumption, but there are a number of new bottlings on the market in the US.
This vodka from Suntory is made from 100% Japanese rice and water sourced from the island of Kyushu. The rice mash is distilled in small pot stills and clarified through a bamboo filtration process.
Produced by Cooper Spirits (of St Germain and Lock, Stock, and Barrel Rye), this new cocktail-in-a-bottle is a revival of one of the first American cocktails touted for its medicinal properties. It makes for a darn-easy cocktail party: the only other thing you need is ice.
This new whisky from Cutty Sark ups the ante on proof and flavor without breaking the bank.
Wading through saccharine, artificial-tasting bottles in search of that unicorn—a truly delicious liqueur—is most often unrewarding and gag-inducing. But today, I'm here to tell you that magical creatures do exist, if you only look hard enough. Two of the most exceptional examples I've found are the new honey liqueurs from Bärenjäger.
It's been a banner year in the spirits industry, with incredible new releases flowing fast and furious. After reviewing dozens for this site (and drinking even more beyond that), it's always difficult for me to choose favorites. Still, you're wondering what to seek out to tuck under the Christmas tree or order online as a gift to yourself, so I might as well try. Here are my top spirits of the year.
If you've been watching top shelf Scotch pricing lately, you would be forgiven for thinking they were selling bottles of actual liquid gold. Enter the Balvenie Tun 1401. Offered at $250, it's a mind-blowing Scotch that can compete with whiskys at twice or even four times the price.
Now, I realize a single malt bourbon is a contradiction in terms, but hear me out. Glenfiddich's latest release in their limited edition line is very special Speyside Scotch. Unlike the vast majority of its compatriots, this whisky is aged entirely in former bourbon barrels.
These two limited releases from Woodford start with the exact same malted barley distillate. However, the Classic Malt spends its time in used bourbon barrels (like Scotch), while the Straight Malt matures in new charred oak barrels (like Bourbon). They offer an intriguing opportunity to taste the effect that the barrel truly has on the spirit.
This new limited release from Martini & Rossi is more fruit-forward than Carpano and more full-bodied than Dolin. Subtly sweet, bitter, rich, dark, complex, and spicy, it's everything a sweet vermouth should be.
The latest release from the small whiskey blending company (Jefferson's exclusively buys and blends whiskeys from other distillers) began as a conversation over food between friends Trey Zoeller of Jefferson's and Chef Edward Lee of 610 Magnolia and Milkwood restaurants in Louisville, KY.
Join us for a virtual tour of Herradura's operation in action—from the agave nursery to the harvest, the giant clay ovens to the fermentation tanks, the stills to the barrels, and everything in between.
Releasing whiskies without age statements is a growing yet controversial trend among distilleries, a move away from 10 year, 12 year, 18 year, etc., offerings. The movement has been met with mixed feelings from connoisseurs and critics, skeptical of the trend as a way to cash in on the current boom in demand for whisky despite the limited stocks of older aged malts at most distilleries. While that is certainly a very real concern, we tend to feel that the proof is in the pudding.
Compass Box has many lovely bottlings in their lineup, but arguably their breakthrough whisky was the Peat Monster—an unapologetically peaty blend of single malts that has a balanced sweetness to it that makes it an entirely distinct style of whiskey. This year Compass Box celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Peat Monster with a limited edition anniversary release, bottled at 97.8 proof. We gave this special whisky a try.
Jägermeister Spice was inspired by the original recipe (flavored with some 56 secret herbs, fruits, flowers, and roots) but highlights cinnamon and vanilla, and is bottled at a lower 50 proof. And here's the shocker: it's meant to be drunk neat at room temperature.
The new Tuthilltown Spirits Hudson Maple Cask Rye Whiskey is not a whiskey with flavoring added, but instead a uniquely finished whiskey. And it's an absolute knockout.
Now owned by Kirin Brewery Company of Japan, Four Roses has been making quite a comeback in the US market, winning critical acclaim and popular appeal with benchmark bourbon and transparency in its production methods. They're celebrating a 125th anniversary this year with the release of a pair of exceptional bourbons.
The unusual approach of blending different styles of whiskey together into a single spirit has provided a welcome new frontier. And like with any successful emerging trend, it was only a matter of time until the big boys jumped on the bandwagon. Enter the latest offering from Wild Turkey, called Forgiven.
This is the most successful flavored bourbon we've tried to date.
While mezcal's outsider status is attractive to those who seek out and consume hard-to-find booze, limited distribution and publicity also makes it difficult to penetrate the mass market. Mezcal from Oaxaca, a partnership between 11 independent mezcal brands and the Oaxacan government, seeks to change all that.
Relatively unknown in North America until about five years ago, elderflower liqueur has come a long way from its humble origins as a medicinal cordial. Today we're comparing the popular brand St-Germain to another version from Pür Spirits.
Novo Fogo is located on the edge of Brazil's coastal rainforest and produces two styles of seriously delicious organic cachaça. Their Silver is dangerously balanced and crisp and unlike any other cachaça I've ever tried.
Distilled from Eastern Washington-grown winter wheat and flavored with dried Washington apples, mint, juniper, and hops, this spirit is almost more of a genever than an American gin. It's very aromatic, with a nose perfumed with green apple, grapefruit, and malt and only a hint of the telltale juniper and botanicals.