Staff Favorites - David Othenin-Girard

David Othenin-Girard
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Reviews

  
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Four Roses "K&L Exclusive" Single Barrel OBSV (Aged 10 Years) Cask Strength Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 04-19-2017
The OBSV is bold and spicy with some subtle fruit and lots toasty oak. It has some feeling of really old-timey bourbon, notes of fresh licorice sticks, dark cherries, Sweet Tarts, roasted coffee and sweet oak. The entry is rich and powerful with some fruit at the front before moving drier and spicier than expected. Big bold and not as easy as the OESV, this definitely dominated by the rye grain. The finish moves toward a drying woodsy note that's long and lingers on the dark earthy tones for ages. This is slightly edgier than the OESV, but packs a punch for those that really like a spicy style.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

Four Roses "K&L Exclusive" Single Barrel OESV (Aged 10 Years 2 Months) Cask Strength Kentucky Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 04-19-2017
This wonderful OESV has so much going on. We've got a nose of pure apricot, fresh bananas, slight cacao and wonderful woodsy exotic wood. On the palate its soft and clean style and totally doesn't show the proof at all. Delicate caramel, toffee, candied citrus and a handful of walnuts. The tannin on the end is smooth and quite long. An absolute dream for people that like them easy going, but don't mess around.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

Domaine Baud "Cuvée Sauvage" Brut Cremant du Jura
Review Date: 04-18-2017
This is soooooo good. Super clean. Excellent balance. Magic Price.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2013 Keenan Napa Valley Merlot
Review Date: 04-18-2017
This is just PERFECT Napa Merlot. Classic, solid, elegant, pleasurable drinkable delicious Merlot. Everything is there nothing more nothing less. In such a stupendous vintage like 2013 it's important to identify the great sleeper wines. This is without a doubt one of them.
Price: $36.99 Add To Cart

2016 Amplify Wines "Camp 4 Vineyard" Santa Ynez Valley Carignane
Review Date: 04-18-2017
Here we go with some good old fashioned Geek wine. This hands off Santa Ynez Carignan really took me where I wanted to go without any of that wet dog stuff some might be expecting. A beautiful translucent ruby in the glass. The nose is brambly red fruit and hints of earth. Tons of acidity and mineral on the palate with that earthy red fruit taking over. There's this wonderful elegant subtle tannin, but the most striking thing is how clean and precise it is as a whole. An exciting wine to free you from the over-ripe doldrums that have become the norm in SoCal Mediterranean varietals.
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart

2015 Matthiasson "Linda Vista Vineyard" Napa Valley Chardonnay
Review Date: 04-18-2017
Matthiasson is really pushing the envelope for what's possible under $30 in Napa Chardonnay. They've taken a queue from our friends Europe and decided to let the vineyards and the fruit do the talking. Balanced and nuance is paramount here, but not at the expensive of expressiveness. A beautiful golden color. Extremely balanced nose of juicy citrus and ripe apple fruit. Medium bodied with some creaminess. Mature but not oaky, with plenty of texture for those who like to feel what they drink. The finish is complete and satisfying with zesty side that's rare in Napa Chard. Obviously, Steve has got great taste and so do his wines.
Price: $25.99 Add To Cart

2014 Tatomer "Vandenberg" Santa Barbara County Riesling
Review Date: 04-18-2017
The gorgeous Tatomer Vandenberg Riesling is in danger of redefining how we look at Santa Barbara County. It's incredible that they've achieved such depth and a complexity despite the drought. The color is a lovely light yellow. This has a beautiful nose of wet stones, lemony citrus peel and flinty petrol. The palate is just bursting with lemony acid, tons of texture and a graceful persistence. Somehow it's both perfectly SoCal and wonderfully Riesling! A great bottle and more proof that Tatomer is up to something special.
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart
VN 92

2016 Inizi "Saini Vineyard" Dry Creek Valley Tocai Friulano
Review Date: 04-18-2017
I was NOT expecting to love this! I'm not used to enjoying domestically produced Italian varietals because to put it bluntly, they don't often work. But, this works very very well. The nose is pithy citrus, soft floral notes, but not perfumed or artificial in anyway. Great texture and that tropical citrus note running through which drops away for a lovely mineral finish. One of the best domestically produced Italian whites I've ever had.
Price: $23.99 Add To Cart

Alberta Dark Batch Rye Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
This is some wonky old school stuff. I imagine this is what whisky USED to be like back in the day. Distillers in Canada (and the states for that matter) are well within their rights to use flavor additives to enhance their Rye Whiskies before bottling without listing the ingredients on the label. Purist are convulsing around the country, but if it makes it taste better and it's not poisonous than why the hell not. I used to harp on Cognac for using additives, but then I found out that great cognac uses additives (particularly old under-proof brandy called petites eaux or faibles) because it's freaking delicious. Nobody wants to talk about it because they're worried that their image will be tarnished. Alberta Dark doesn't beat around the bush. This is awesome rye whisky with a splash of sherry and it's delicious! Dark rye spice and nutty sherry notes work together to build a unique and inviting profile that will peak even the most grizzled whiskey drinkers interest.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart

Hochstadter's Vatted Straight Rye Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
The wonderful Hochstadter Vatted Rye was once an endangered species, but it looks like they've renewed their commitment to this product! This is absolutely fabulous little rye blends exceptional of whiskies sourced from distilleries in Pennsylvania, Indiana, Kentucky and Alberta. They include whiskies from 4 to 15 years old and are bottled at 100 proof without any chill filtration. The result is a unique and delicious confluence of flavors. A big nose of dark cherries, baking spice, old wood and sweet caramel. The palate shows less of the age, instead a bit more baking spice (cinnamon and nutmeg) with the sweetness taking a back seat. This is easily one of the most mixable ryes on the market and priced appropriately. It's recently replaced Rittenhouse as my go to in the house for mixing despite being $10+ more, it's totally worth it!
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Lot 40 Single Copper Pot Still Canadian Rye Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
Lot 40 Rye has gone from being impossible to get and expensive to be our go to affordable sipping rye! The spectacular quality you get on this one for the price is UNMATCHED elsewhere in the rye world. That said it's nothing like the grainy rye coming out of all the craft distilleries in the states or the punchy cocktail friendly bravado of a Rittenhouse. This is zippy herbaceous 100% pot still 100% Canadian is well matured rye unlike any other. Delicious nose of caraway, licorice, candied cherries, citrus peel and baking spices. The palate is cinnamon and spice and everything nice! It's almost Christmas-y! Sweet Muscovado finish to balance all the spice. The whole thing builds to a nice long satisfying finish. This isn't a powerhouse that's going to knock you out, but instead there's something more intricate and oblique about it. Perhaps it's the pot stills or something else going on, but this is one serious little drink for $30.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart
WE 97

Russell's Reserve "Small Batch" 10 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
What can I say about Wild Turkey except that Jimmy and Eddie Russell are two of the industry's finest stewards. On their watch, across multiple owners, they've worked to been able to keep quality levels at Wild Turkey extremely high. They've never compromised what they've knew to be important for quality production in the name of making an extra buck and the result speaks for itself. Their namesake product, the Russell's Reserve 10 Year is probably older than Jimmy likes his bourbon, but for me it's perfect. Only bested by the Single Barrels in their portfolio, the 10 year is just a silly price for great aged bourbon of the highest quality. Tons of complexity on the nose, with that high rye component coming through. The big bold herbal spices is tempered with a sweet nougat and toffee. Big and rich on the palate with subtle licorice, old bourbon spice, sweet vanilla and dark fruit to finish. Very few things get this good under $30.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart
WE 92

Old Forester Signature 100 Proof Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
This is probably the best regularly release whiskey produced by Brown Forman USA. The OF 100 proof has so much going on, yet it remains totally under the radar. For as good as Brown Forman are at making whisky (they skip the e on OF for some historical bizarre reason), they've yet to create serious cache around this brand. New releases like the OF Prohibition are changing that trend, but we sell 10 times as much Buffalo Trace as we do Old Forester. I think that a huge part of that has to do with their ground game in Kentucky. People go to BT (partly because of VW) and see the beautiful old brick warehouses and fall in love. Equally so at Woodford, but OF doesn't have a place to call its own. The distillery experience on Whiskey Row in Downtown Louisville was severly damage in a 2015 fire. Hopefully that will open soon and give Old Forester a place to showcase their exceptional wares. Maybe they'll finally do some cask strength single barrels? In the mean time, I'll keep reminding my customers that this is one of the best bourbons they're not drinking.
Price: $22.99 Add To Cart
WE 94

Willett Pot Still Reserve Bourbon (750ml) (ships as 3L)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
Willett's flagship product is their Pot Still Reserve in the wonderfully weird pot still bottle. This super easy going small batch blend represents 30 years of grit and determination in one little bottle. Now that the Willett's have finally got their still up and running, this will likely become a showcase of their older own distilled bourbons in the future. For now it's still a blend of some wonderful sourced whiskies of excellent quality. Easy drinking, but not simple by any means, expect a strong bouquet of candied citrus and sweet dark caramel. The sweet nose and front palate belies a building peppery note and a drier finish driven by oaky spice. Production remains very limited on these, so don't expect it to always be around. The awesome bottle makes for a great gift all year round.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

Four Roses "Single Barrel" 100 Proof Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
This whiskey sets Four Roses apart from its competitors in nearly every category. It checks ALL the boxes. A 10 year old high rye recipe bourbon bottled as a single barrel at 100 proof and sold for only $40! What the hell is everyone else doing? Four Roses makes your whiskey look stupid! You go to Four Roses, see what they're doing. Takes some notes. No one sells better whiskey for less. This is always the special OBSV recipe. Since these are single barrels, every bottle you open is a new and wonderful experience. If you don't have a bottle in your bar already, you're making a terrible mistake.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
WE 94 WA 92

Medley Bros. Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
A splendid entry level offering from the Medley/Wathens Family bottlers. This little high proofer is nipping at the heels of greats like BT, Four Roses, Wild Turkey 101 for best bang for your buck bourbon in the store. The Medley's have the incredible advantage of actually controlling the distillation of the products, which most bottlers aren't able to claim (despite their best efforts). The result is one of the most affordable and delicious whiskies in the store. Easy and corn driven with sweet butterscotch and subtle barrel spice. Beautiful texture and a fine easy finish for something that's totally balanced and put together at 102 proof. Great for cocktails as well.
Price: $23.99 Add To Cart

Noah's Mill Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
Noah's Mill is a legend. It's been one of Willett's flag ship brands for decades. This whiskey includes some of their oldest stocks, which means some of the barrels in the blend are 20+ years old. Expect an average age around 15 years. This elegant whiskey is complex and heady, but not overpowering. Its soft yet distinctive aromatics range from candied citrus, floral honey and stone fruit to forest, leather and smokey oak. A sweet front palate of caramel and toffee is followed by a pepper and spice finish owing to a significant amount of rye in the mashbill. For an over-proof (114.3-degree) bourbon, it is not at all hot. It's absolutely incredible that we're able to sell this whiskey for $55 when every distillery out their is trying to get you to pay $100 for some 6 year old. Thank you to the good people at Willett for having the gumption to keep it real after all these years.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart

Jefferson's Reserve Very Old Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
The excellent Jefferson's Reserve Bourbons have long been a darling of knowledgeable drinkers around the country. Some purists harp on the fact that we don't actually know who distilled it and likely the bottler is prohibited by contractual law from divulging their sources, but that doesn't actually preclude the whiskey from being exceptional. These guys are making whiskey on a tiny scale (batches are less than 20 barrels) and include whiskies up to 15 years old. In fact, Jefferson says that 50% of this bottle at least 15 years old! That whiskey is then blended with up to 3 other bourbons for one of the best values in the store. Old whiskey flavor at totally reasonable prices.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

Maker's Mark Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
Maker's Mark is easily the most consistent bourbon on the market today. Not many people realize that it's a wheater (i.e. same recipe as Weller) the coveted base for the Van Winkle bourbons. There's not a whole lot that separates what Maker's does from what happens at Buffalo Trace. The yeast strains are different. The Maker's stills are tall and skinny which makes a difference, but for what it's worth Maker's have become masters at replicating that special recipe, which Julian Van Winkle helped develop all those decades ago. He was making the best whiskey at the time in an "old fashioned" way (i.e. No chemists allowed! was the distillery motto) so why wouldn't you seek his advice when starting a distillery? Indeed, it was in Stitzle-Weller's image that Bill Samuels molded what would become one of the Country's most popular whiskey brands. After around six years, with a unique system of barrel management to encourage consistent aging, we get this ubiquitous and delicious whiskey marked with that special red top.
Price: $22.99 Add To Cart
WE 90 - 95

Four Roses Yellow Label Kentucky Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 04-18-2017
I can't tell you the number of times we've had some older timer walk in off the street and beckon me over to point out the Four Roses Yellow Label, "now why does a nice store like yours carry this CRAP!" Wait a second there Sir. You may remember the old Yellow Label blend that Four Roses used to sell back in the bad old Seagram days and indeed that was a dog, but this is by no means that! The labels are nearly identical, but this one is filled only with Straight Bourbons from one of Kentucky's best. The blend of their ten recipes is one of the easiest Bourbons to get behind in the store and represents a stupendous value. Four Roses is high rye Bourbon, even their low rye recipe is high rye compared to some of their competitors. That wonderful grainy spice is tempered by the various yeast strains and the ultimate result is a wonderful easy drinking bourbon for a VERY reasonable price. Expect a nose of sweet barrel spice, caramelized sugars, and delicate floral notes. The palate has a bit more savory spice, but is still dominated by the sweet flavors of honey, ripe apples and more vanilla. Easy drinking and easy on the pocket book.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart
WE 93

2015 Elephant Hill Chardonnay Hawke's Bay
Review Date: 04-18-2017
It's not often that we find cross over wines in New Zealand for California Chard drinkers. That said this is not Rombauer of the Southern Hemisphere, but it is very much in an internationally appealing style. Deep notes of creamy butter, subtle nuttiness, stone fruit and baked Golden Delicious. The nose is so heady and rich that you expect to be inundated with ripeness and oak on the palate, but instead you get a wonderful zesty lemon paired with a great texture and some tropical fruit notes. Wonderful balance, for this textured expressive style.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart
SK 93 BC 90

2015 Elephant Hill "Le Phant Rouge" Red Blend Hawke's Bay
Review Date: 04-18-2017
This lovely little quaffer is one of the best cross overs in NZ right now. It has lots of life and some good structure, but isn't ultra minty or eucalyptus. Great ripeness paired with elegant structure. Dark current, some plummy notes, and an easy earthy spice on the finish. This is one that almost any red wine lover can easily get behind. Love Bordeaux, you'll probably like this. Cali Cab? No doubt this is in your range. A very easy wine to love.

2015 Elephant Hill Sauvignon Blanc Hawke's Bay
Review Date: 04-18-2017
The gorgeous Elephant Hill Sauv Blanc is a benchmark for Hawke's Bay. It's certainly not what you'd expect from most $15 NW SB! The nose is powerfully rich and complex, but without the typically grassy notes, instead lovely herbaceous mineral quality and deep ripe lemon fruit. It's somewhere between a great Graves White and a top notch Sancerre. The palate is textural and equally complex with a subtle building acidity and a lovely touch of brine on the finish. A stupendous example of the potential here and a stellar price.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart
SK 90

Barbancourt Estate Reserve 15 Year Old Haitian Rum (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Barbancourt Estate is Haiti's top rum producer and makes a very unique style that blends technique from both the Cognac and Armagnac. Like most French protectorates, Barbancourt uses only fresh cane juice for fermentation rather than a mix of molasses and water. This is then distilled to 70% on a column still before being rectified on an alembic pot still to 90%. This high proof spirit is then cut to 100 proof and aged in large vats and small barrels. The result is some where in between a Spanish and a French style rhum. It's ultra clean and fruity, but without the sweet syrupy notes of aged Spanish rums. By 15 years, there's plenty of concentration and density of wood, heavy on the butterscotch, toffee and baking spices. It retains some of the fruitiness of the younger expressions on the palate, but the bold spice and sweet caramelized sugar aromas are definitely in charge here. It's really unlike any other agricole on the market, as it's made quite differently, but nonetheless offer a lot deliciousness for the price.
Price: $42.99 Add To Cart

English Harbour 5 Year Old Rum (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
English Harbour is a stupendous offering that represents some of the old school style rum, without the over the top esters of a Jamaican. Fermented with a mixture of baking yeast and wild yeast, the distillery uses open top fermentation to encourage some of the funky wild yeast to interact with the wash. This is then distilled on an old copper column still for a light bodied rum that's full of character. It's kind of an in between style, not quite light and sweet like the Spanish, not quite heavy and funky like the English. Altogether a wonderful expressive and delicious Caribbean rum.
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart
WE 98

Kirk & Sweeney 12 Year Old Dominican Rum (750ml) (ships as 3L)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Sweet rich and easy drinking, Kirk & Sweeney is designed to give rum producers like Zaya and Zacapa a run for their money. Ultra dense and sweet style, if you love a good cigar with your rum, this one is always a good choice.
Price: $33.99 Add To Cart
WE 95

Pusser's 15 year old British Navy Rum (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Pusser is named for the ships "Purser" or Supply Officer, in charge of doling out the daily rum ration to thirsty seaman. The blending and technical information were acquired by Charles Tobias who championed the brands public debut over the last 30 years. In 2012, Tobias sold his shares in the rum company, but his vision lives. A true English Style rum made from a blend of Heavy rums, there is tons of complexity here, very much focused on the Demerara style. If you really want to catch the old school style, toss in a quarter once of some funky Jamaican rum. Blending rum at home is FUN and totally safe as long as you don't operate heavy machinery.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

Johnny Drum "Private Stock" 101 Proof Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Johnny Drum has long been a go to for our staff and customers are starting to catch on. For years this special Bourbon held the 15 year designation right on the neck and while they're not able to use it any longer, there remains incredible old bourbon in the blend. While we don't have precise information about the contents here, there's no doubt that Willett is including some nicely aged bourbon in the blend. It remains a go to Bourbon that nearly anyone can appreciate. Dense nose of deep maple, oak spice, and sweet candied fruit. The palate is structured and not overtly sweet thanks to the higher proof. This one is really fun to mix with and stands up to anything in the price range without even flinching. Plus the old school wax top looks so COOL!!!!
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2006 Worthy Park 10 Year Old "Golden Devil" Single Barrel Jamaican Rum (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Worthy Park is one of the Jamaica's crown jewels, on the famous estate established in 1670. On the fertile central plains at nearly 1200 feet above sea level, thousands of acres of sugar cane grow as they have for centuries. Located in the central St Catherine's parish, the estate has cultivated cane commercially since 1720 and along side that operation a great history of rum production arose. But in the years after WW II, an over production of Jamaican Rum convinced Worthy Park to cease large scale distilling operation. It wasn't until 2004 that the Clark Family decided to give rum distillation another go. The distillery was completely rebuilt in 2005. This is some of the first distillate from the new distillery and it's as wonderful as expected. The yeast used in this high ester production is cultivated directly from the local cane leaves and only traditional pot stills are used. After 10 years in barrel, the esters have softened and developed into and incredible array of tropical fruit aromas. Lively and medium bodied, this rum is just more proof that Jamaica is producing the most complex and out standing rums on the market. The future is Jamaican rum and the future is now.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

Bruichladdich "Botanist" Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Jim McEwan's ginny babe is a baby no more. Remy has taken the Botanist out of it's crib and it's quickly becoming one of the hottest gins in the world. That hasn't changed anything about how delicious it is. Still using those same 22 Islay botanicals, the key to the Botanist's complexity is actually the ultra slow distillation at Bruichladdich on the banks of Loch Indaal. 17 long hours to produce one batch on the odd Lomond Still nicked named "Ugle Betty". The resulting spirit is one of the most unctuous and deeply complex gins on the market. Each distinct local botanical infused with the breath of the Queen of the Hebrides.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Cadenhead's Old Raj Gin 110 Proof (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Cadenhead's Old Raj is a true Classic. That light yellow hue, imparted from the rare and expensive saffron flower, hints at the exceptional quality and complexity. The stiff 110 proof reminds us that this is Campbeltown's own Gin - the pride of Kintyre. It's racy, it's powerful, it makes no excuses, but it will hold you tight and kiss you goodnight.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

Gin Mare Mediterranean Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Oh Gin Mare, you've always been here for me. When I'm bored of the same old gin, there you are waiting for me, all savory and oily. It's that Olive thing that gets you first, but then you notice the other unusual flavors. And you fall in love. Don't mess this up by trying to mix it too heavily. This stuff begs for good tonic and some anchovies. Nothing more needed.
Price: $33.99 Add To Cart

Ventura Spirits "Wilder" Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Ventura Spirits is one of SoCal's most exciting new distilleries. These guys are really in it for the right reasons. They do crazy shit like try to distill seaweed and make wild weird brandies from local strawberry, quince and other wonderful treats. Their Wilder Gin exemplifies everything that their all about. They're pulling these botanicals from the hills around the distillery and fruit from local farms, the result is something utterly unique and truly Californian. This is a beautiful base to build complex cocktails around or use it to give a fresh twist on an old classic. No doubt this should be considered one of SoCal's premier micro gins.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

The 86 Co. Ford's Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
The wonderful Ford's Gin has become a go to for many bartenders and no surprise thanks to it's loveable creator Simon Ford. It's pretty simple really. First, get one of London's great old gin houses to produce an ultra high quality gin for you. Make sure it's distinctive, but versatile. Maybe add a hint of Grapefruit - nobody is doing that. Next, ship the ultra high-proof bulk spirit to the states for proofing and bottling at Charbay in Ukiah. Kick it with Marko, drink a lot. Finally, sell it for an incredibly fair price. It's that easy. Now you know how to start your own Spirits Company. Or just buy 86 Co.'s Ford's Gin and relax.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

Four Pillars Rare Dry Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
My things have really come full circle when the Australians are surpassing the British in the Gin game. No doubt there are some cranky brits over this one, but the quality of the Four Pillars gins cannot be denied or ignored. This is a citrus driven style, but with plenty of botanical oomph to keep it serious. I love to use this in citrus based cocktails. In Rickeys, Corpse Revivers, Last Words it just sings, but has enough to standard up to a really nice tonic syrup and some descent soda.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Caledonia Spirits Barr Hill "Tom Cat" Barrel Aged Gin (375ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Caledonia Spirits had me hooked the moment I opened a sample of the outrageous honey they use to make their gin. This veritable nectar of the gods could literally make anything delicious. Now take an ultra high quality gin, age it in good quality oak, and add just enough honey to feel it, but not enough make it particularly sweet and you've got one of the most dangerous concoctions on the market. Aromatically unique, encompassing a huge variety of complex flavors, Barr Hill has created one of the most successful barrel aged gin I've yet come across. Sip it straight or in the place of whiskey in certain spirit driven cocktails.
Price: $30.99 Add To Cart

Jensen's London Dry Bermondsey Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Jensen's is one of these new craft gins coming out of London that's taken the time to do the research and get it right. They've achieved incredible balance and complexity without simply overpowering their gin with new or odd botanicals. The spirit is supple and ultra fresh feeling and seemingly without one tiny edge sticking out anywhere but remains a truly traditional London Dry style. One of my favorite new gins and without question on of London's finest.
Price: $33.99 Add To Cart

Bowman Bros Small Batch Virginia Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
The wonderful Bowmna Bros Bourbons are an odd thing. This is one of the only triple distilled bourbons out there and it starts with distillate from Buffalo Trace (mashbill #1 & #2) being trucked out to the Bowman facility in Virginia. It's distilled a third time (the continuous still and again on the doubler at BT should count as two) on the Bowman's pot still, which looks as though it might be a component on a space rocket built in the 1800s. The resulting distillate is rich and supple, unique, but familiar. The small batch is a great balance between the sweet Bowman's style and some nice rye spice. An easy going whiskey at a great price that hints at the potential of some of Bowman's higher-end offerings.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart
WE 90

1986 Domaine Boingnères Folle Blanche Bas-Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
There is no doubt that Madame Lafitte's Domain Boingneres is the finest Bas-Armagnac has to offer. In the Grand Cru village of La Freche in a prime outcropping of the Armagnac's most ferrous sandy soils the beautiful and meticulously tended estate stands a head above the rest. Madame Lafitte took over from her father in 94 after his multi-decade career of building up Boingneres to being one of the top producers renowned across all of France. In 1975, Monsieur Lafitte removed all of the Domaine's Bacco and replaced them with the Cepage Noble (namely Ugni Blance, Folle Blanche, and Colombard). Each are distilled separately and aged in their dry chais in 100% new Gascogne wood. The high quality distillation is able to stand up to all that oak without any trouble and the resulting aged products are truly transcendent. This Domaine truly one of the benchmark by which all other Armagnac's should be judged. The 86 Folle Blanche is absolutely unparalleled in it's pinpoint structure and intense aromatics. There's a great deal of spice and a beautiful richness that keep it from seeming at all austere. Expense, but for great lovers of this region it is something to aspire to.
Price: $249.99 Add To Cart

Darroze Les Grand Assemblages "20 Year Old" Bas-Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
The exceptional Darroze 20 year is a tribute not only to the incredibly high quality stocks that Marc Darroze has in the chais, but also to his exceptional skill as a blender. The resulting Armagnac is one of the most elegant and well put together products of any kind. Expect bold notes of dense tropical fruit (mango and guava), soft supple tannins and rich, but not syrupy mouth feel. This is a great age for Armagnac as you have the freshness and intensity on display, but all the edges are starting to round out. This is something that should always be open in the back of the bar, just to keep you steady.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

1976 Darroze Domaine de Jaulin Bas-Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Darroze is an expert at selecting the best armagnacs. But that's not all he does. Darroze is also one of the most meticulous about elevage and management in the chais and the result are some of the finest brandies being sold anywhere in the world. This single vintage Domaine de Jaulin is no exception. The domain is in Bretagne d'Armagnac on the boarder of Bas & Tenareze. The soils are sand and clay mix which makes for a hearty deep spirit when Baco is planted. The vines average 40 years old and cover about 3 hectors. The property is owned by the Castay family. The resulting brandy after 40 years in oak is a wild fix of deep figgy fruit and earth incense. A gem by any standard.
Price: $199.99 Add To Cart

Baron de Lustrac 25 Year Old Brut de Fut Bas Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Baron de Lustrac is a well respected small producer that has estates both in the Tenereze as well as Bas-Armagnac. They're generally focused on single varietal offerings, but it was the 25 year old XO that struck me as their most exceptional brandy for the price. These are old Armagnacs of at least 25 years old without the addition of water or coloring whatsoever and bottled right out of the cask. The result is of a purity and intensity not scene in the rest of the line up and at this price it could easily be a contender for best value in the whole region. The style is not ultra estery with tons of floral, fruit and spice aromas. Very balanced and very well put together.
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

Marie Duffau Napoleon Bas Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
The easy drinking Marie Duffau Armagnacs have brought more people into this category than almost any other product. This is the country's best selling Armagnac and with good reason. If you're looking for round soft and supple this is about as good at anything at this price.
Price: $36.99 Add To Cart
WE 90 - 95

1987 Domaine de Jean-Bon 28 Year Old "K&L Exclusive" Bas Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
The exceptional Jean Bon estate is not exactly a picture of perfection on arrival. Farming equipment, debris, animals seem to be wandering aimlessly. It took a solid 15 minutes for the proprietor to realize there was anyone there, but when they did we found and absolute gem. It's perhaps the an assuming nature of the property that like Baraillon has kept the national importers away, or maybe the miniscule production. We knew, however, the moment Madame Lacourt step out of her quant farmhouse that we'd met someone special. The little farm in La Depeche is doing it old school. Modern Armagnac producers might call their stuff old fashioned, but we call it absolutely delicious. Big bold and estery, the Lacourts have a relatively hands off approach to the elevage of there Armagnacs. That means, not a ton of oxygenation, very little ouillage, and some investment in high quality Gascony oak. The result is bold, blustery Armagnac Sourdois (Madame's nom de famille) as they call it. Dense chewy, dried fruit and big spices, the Jean Bon Armagnacs are in the top tier for this old school style.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

Chateau de Pellehaut "K&L Exclusive - L'Age de Glace" Ténarèze Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
The absolutely stupendous young "ICE AGE" Armagnac remains a go to for mixing in any number of cocktails. Two reasons for that - the incredible price and the total lack of additives (sugar or boise) to get in the way of those fresh young brandy flavors. You can always add sugar to your drink, but if they add it first you can't take it out. No other Armagnac provides this kind of quality for the price. Use it in Sidecars, Crustas, Punches or just drink it long.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart

Clos Martin XO 15 Year Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 04-11-2017
A splendid little value from this medium sized estate producer that's doing almost everything right. The well respected producer puts a significant amount of information on the back of the bottle about what you're drinking and bottles without the use of excessive additives. The 15 Year Old XO is one of the best values in this special region and it consists entirely of estate grown Ugni Blanc and Baco. This spicy floral style is what Bas-Armagnac is all about, contrasting the intense aromatics with elegant fruit and texture. Only complaint is that they've bottle it at 80 proof, but it's still a wonderful brandy.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart

2005 Caol Ila Cask Strength Gordon & MacPhail Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 04-04-2017
The fabulous Gordon & Macphail Caol Ila Cask Strength is always one of their best offerings. Contract purchased and filled into their own barrels (in this case 1st fill bourbon), the Caol Ila doesn't lose any of its character being aged in the G&M Warehouses in Elgin. Not far from the ocean by any means, but not quite as rugged as the coast of Islay, this fabulous little whisky only needs about a decade to reach a stupendous level of depth and complexity. This is briny oysters, intense lemon, iodine, salted nuts and old leather. I enjoy this one straight out of the bottle, but its intensity does lend itself to a hefty dollop of water. An absolute gem as always.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

Glenlivet 12 Year Old Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 03-29-2017
Glenlivet 12 is the ubiquitous favorite of so many, there's just nothing wrong with it. It's a benchmark whisky and responsible for defining an entire style and introducing an entire generation of drinkers to single malt. It remains a wonderful value and one of best-selling whiskies in the store.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart
WE 90

Aberlour 12 Year Old Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 03-29-2017
Aberlour 12 year is a fine little whisky from the tiny distillery in the town of the same name. At this price it's hard to argue with their Double Cask Matured entry level. It's a great alternative to Balvenie Doublewood or even the 'Farclas 12 year each at $10 more than the Aberlour. Expect a good malty base note, subtle fruit framed around easy sherry influences, dried fruit, dark chocolate, and baking spice spice. Solid stuff.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
WE 97

Balvenie 17 Year Old Doublewood Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 03-29-2017
Balvenie released the 17 year follow-up to the ultra-popular 12 year Doublewood to attack a price and age range that they'd historically been avoiding. We used to get the oddball cask finishes in the 17 year range (peated, Madeira, Islay, etc), but for standard offerings Balvenie went straight from 12 to 21. Assuming the 12 year Doublewood spends 10 years in ex-bourbon/hogshead and 2 years in ex-sherry, we can assume this simply spends another 5 years or so in sherry before bottling. Deep and darker than the 12 year, there's still tons of fresh vanilla and oak poking through the rich toffee and nutty sherry. A wonderful balance between the fragrant freshness of the Aberlour spirit, the rich oak flavors, and the dense sherry influence.
Price: $125.99 Add To Cart

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