Reviewers


K&L Email Alerts

Sign up to receive custom alerts, new arrivals and the latest happenings from K&L Wines


Staff Favorites - Andrew Whiteley

Andrew Whiteley
Andrew Whiteley  | Send Email  |   Subscribe to My Sommelier Service


Reviews

Page: 1 2 3 next
1974 Invergordon 45 Year Old "Old Particular" Single Refill Barrel Cask Strength Single Grain Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 12-04-2019
It's hard to put this whisky into its proper context. We've tried to explain grain whisky in so many ways over the years, but nothing ever quite does it justice. It's simply not malt and it's certainly not bourbon. While it may share some characteristics with these, the single grain we bottle deserves its own focus. I believe part of the unique character of these whiskies comes from the fact that they were never meant to be bottled on their own. They were supposed to go into blends long ago. Unlike the forgotten malts that reach this type of age - grain is often filled into quite neutral barrels - perfect for decades long aging without becoming overly woody or tannic. If you've ever had 40+ year old malt, while it's undeniably special, it can often be a little extreme and massively tannic. At 45 years of age, this grain in refill bourbon wears just enough wood to highlight the natural form in all its beauty. It's like lingerie for whisky at this point. You know it's there, but all you can see is underneath. In this case insane richness, melted caramel, fruit in fresh cream, butter pudding, orange zest and vanilla candy. It stands alone as an experience in the whisky world unlike anything else. Complex, smooth, friendly, sweet, and luxurious. All for a modest price tag considering this was distilled the same year Nixon was impeached. Any malt or bourbon that old would not only cost many thousands of dollars, it might just be undrinkable. This is why single grain truly stands apart.
Price: $349.99 Add To Cart

1997 Benriach 21 Year Old "Chieftain's" K&L Exclusive Single Rum Barrel Finish Cask Strength Unchill-filtered Speyside Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 12-04-2019
Most of my notes for the last of the Chieftain's barrels include the word 'holy' followed by words unfit for print. The Benriach 21 year beast is no different. It's insane. There is nothing like it available anywhere - certainly not at this price point. 3 years in rum cask has done something profound to an already exceptional whisky. The richness and intensity here is unmatched. There is a bit of good funk - in the way the finest pot stilled rums bring the funk, and it balances the fruity and oily malt nature. There are bunches of vanilla bean and a creamy full fat milk of the highest quality - lush, textural, and coating. Fruit runs amuck. The finish is big, but restrained. It's a travesty to think Chieftain's won't be around any longer bringing us bottles like this one.
Price: $169.99 Add To Cart

New Riff "K&L Exclusive Single Barrel #15-4911" Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 12-04-2019
Denser than 4917 - barrel 4911 is deep from the first nosing. Caramel, cocoa, and vanilla are the first to greet your senses. Lots of fragrant all spice and woody complexity carry through from start to finish. The middle is chockablock full of Luxardo cherries, cola, cinnamon. The finish shows off the sexy tannins of quality American oak - pepper spice and vanilla intertwined in glorious ways. For those in the know, New Riff offers some of the most compelling drinking in the country and there is a quickly growing cult following for their single barrels.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

New Riff "K&L Exclusive Single Barrel #15-4917" Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 12-04-2019
'Succulent' comes to mind when tasting this barrel. It's incredibly rich, soft, and creamy, but it has verve and freshness. It makes your mouth water and your brain want more. The finish is long and savory, just perfect for inviting the next sip of sweetness to wash over our tongue. That sweetness is caramel, clove, cinnamon, allspice, molasses, cherry cola, and all the nice things. The savor comes from a bit of sweet mint and herbal eucalyptus. The high rye in the mashbill adds tremendous spice and complexity as well as a cool grassy note that again provides lift and freshness. The level of mastery shown by New Riff in 4 short years is incredible.
Top Value!
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

Jos. A. Magnus & Co. (13 years old) "Joseph Magnus" Barrel #1384 K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Indiana Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 12-04-2019
The minuscule yield of 109 bottles from this ultra dense 13 year old MGP is insane. Cotton candy and maple syrup flourish on the nose. Sweet molasses and cola takes over on the palate. Salt water taffy adds a zip and freshness that feels like you're walking down the boardwalk and a hint at the fruit component underneath it all. Lifted on the finish this barrel feels cool and inviting. A peak at the alcohol indicates 51% ABV - quite satisfactory for a bit of punch, but supremely soft and easy to drink neat. Another special barrel from Magnus' selection of fine MGP distillate.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

Jos. A. Magnus & Co. (13 years old) "Joseph Magnus" Barrel #1360 K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Indiana Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 12-04-2019
Booming vanilla and wood spice leap from the glass as you pour a dram. It smells like a barrel dumping station on the day the distillery is putting together their oldest blends. Rich and impactful. The wood is sweet yet also leathery and herbal. There is abundant vanilla, cinnamon, cigar box, toffee and a touch of fresh saw dust. Molasses and caramel drip. There is a light fruitiness in the background that brightens the whole experience. A clear but far away note of apple. At 53% ABV and yielding just 164 bottles this is a concentrated example of Indiana's finest.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

2007 Fine Pot Distilled Jamaican (Monymusk) 11 Year Old "Thompson Bros." K&L Exclusive Single Refill Hogshead Cask Strength Jamaican Rum (750ml)
Review Date: 12-04-2019
The perfect introduction to Jamaican pot distillate. This rum is intense yet approachable. You'd never guess it's bottled at 56% ABV even when sipping it neat. The nose is complex, yet wholly enjoyable, even for a novice rum drinker. No robust fusel notes here, just a gentle umami underpinning insane fruit and spice. Mix it with just a bit of simple syrup and a healthy dose of fresh lime juice and crushed ice and you have yourself the simplest and most refreshing of daiquiris. A dash of bitters and a sugar cube? A Rum Old Fashioned you and your guests won't forget. The complexity of the spirit does all of the hard work for you. It's a well balanced and rich tapestry of flavor, all you have to do is highlight it.
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

1997 Blair Athol 21 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Refill Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 12-04-2019
The sherry casks we've sought out from this great Pitlochry distillery have been some of the most well received age malt stocks we've ever brought in (last years divisive cask aside). This year we've broadened the Blair Athol horizon by getting a clear look at the malt itself after 21 longs years in a more subtle wood. The glory of the distillery is on full display. There is a waxy texture that glues together a wide array of fruit and cereal ranging from crisp apples and ripe pear to steamed barley and fields of wheat. A floral honey note interweaves sweetness from the nose down to finish. The slight prickle and mild sweetness of cinnamon dusts your senses on the finish. With a bit of springwater the dram opens into a more robust combination of chocolate and creamy oatmeal. It's simply everything there is to love about Blair Athol in its purest form.
Price: $109.99 Add To Cart

2001 Ben Nevis 18 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Refill Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-29-2019
Mid palate galore. This is all about the nougaty center. It's sweet barley, soft Christmas spices, and vanilla laden, but with a stiff upper lip. While many whiskies finish in the back of your mouth, this one sticks right in the middle of the tongue, slowly oozing its fudge and caramel goodness everywhere. There is a bit of a dark chocolate and flamed orange peel note, but it's hard to place distinctly in the nose, body, or finish. It sort of informs all three phases of enjoyment. 18 years old and at that sweet $100 mark, this is classic old school luxury from Ben Nevis.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

2003 Benrinnes 15 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Refill Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-29-2019
Light and chewy are hard to do at the same time, but the old distillations of Benrinnes seem to achieve it every time. There is so much complexity to the malt itself, it's mesmerizing. Tons of fruit ranging from pear and apple to loads of stone fruit crossed with a touch of fresh cut hay and the texture of fine crumb, hot out of the oven pound cake. A bit of zesty lemon peel and Pilsner bright barley offer a fresh but flavorful palate. A fine toasty oak on the finish rounds everything out and provides a bit of sweet spice and chocolate. Just a perfect whisky and maybe the best intro to Benrinnes we've ever bottled.
Top Value!
Price: $74.99 Add To Cart

Còdigo 1530 K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Añejo Tequila (750ml)
Review Date: 11-29-2019
Calling all Don Julio 1942 fans! If you love agave spirits with weight, texture, sweet fruit, and exotic spice, look no further. While 1942 set the standard for luxury Tequila when it was released nearly 2 decades ago, today it comes across a touch sweet for the modern palate. Codigo on the other hand presents a very similar luxury feel and luscious texture without any of the cloying agave syrup finish. Made from ultra ripe agaves and aged in the finest Napa Cabernet French oak barrels this single cask of anejo offers a heady blend of tropical fruits and exotic spices unlike anything else on our shelf. The pineapple and banana upfront fruit are robust yet perfectly balanced by cinnamon, pepper, allspice, and a hint of tannin and cassis from the red wine component. I believe this is our 3rd or 4th barrel of Anejo we've brought in from Codigo, and it's by far the best we've ever seen.
Price: $109.99 Add To Cart

Four Roses Small Batch Select Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 11-27-2019
We've been quietly cranking through this incredible Four Roses offering since it launched earlier this year. It's become a staple on the bar of nearly ever staff member in our Redwood City store, and with good reason. Now with the major accolades bestowed upon it by Whisky Advocate, I'm guessing it will be on nearly every whiskey lover's bar by the end of the year. It is perfect holiday drinking. Loaded with insane amounts of cinnamon, it would sit next to any dessert splendidly at Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. Cigar box and cherry fruit notes blend together in a hedonistic concoction worthy of any bourbon lover's adoration. The oak vanillins carry sweetness to every corner of your mouth. The finish hints at the fresh mint and other herbal notes found in Four Roses F yeast strain. It goes on and on and then keep on going thanks to the 104 proof which is absolutely the best decision Four Roses could have made for a blend of this caliber. Huzzah to Brent Elliot — Master Distiller since 2015 and the "Master Mind" behind this great new offering.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart

2007 Glenlivet 12 Year Old "Signatory Unchillfiltered Collection" 1st Fill Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-23-2019
Sister cask to the 2006 Glenlivet that we sold out of almost instantly just a few weeks ago. I'd have to say this is the big sister despite being just a touch younger. Not big and brash like it's sibling, but much more mature and refined (I'm basing this assumption on my relationship with my older sister). Intensely sherried, but just another example of how varied sherry casks can truly be. This is more butter cream and candy corn than chocolate and toffee. Fresh orange peel rather than burnt, zippy even. Rich malt forms the core of the whisky, but is wrapped in layer after layer of creamy nut butter, figs, and desert fruits. It's basically a scent journey to the market in Marrakesh where baskets upon baskets of dried figs, dates, and oranges mingle with saffron, turmeric, teas and other exotic spices. If you liked the first barrel you owe it to yourself to get a bottle of this one, it's the perfect foil. Same same, but different. And different in all the right ways.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

Tamdhu 19 Year Old "Old Malt Cask" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-23-2019
Simple pleasures here. Tamdhu has recently revamped their entire lineup of distillery offerings and it's vastly improved, but nothing touches the best single casks. This 19-year-old in refilled hogshead yielded just 187 bottles. It's just a damn tasty whisky. If you've got a gift to give to a whisky lover and you're not sure on what style they like, this is the bottle to give. You can't like whisky of any type and not love this bottle. It's pure orange, honey, vanilla, and a little bit of spice mixed with sweet caramel and cream. Perfectly rich without being over the top, the impressive 19-year age statement is only overshadowed by the very low cost. But low cost has never been a problem in my book.
Top Value!
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

2007 Dailuaine 12 Year Old "Old Particular" Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-23-2019
If oily doesn't mean anything to you yet when it comes to Scotch, it will after you taste this. The malt itself is slick and supple with a slightly funky meaty quality alla Mortlach. Baked apples and red berry and quince compote represent the fruity side of the whisky which bounces off of the savory complexity from the sherry wonderfully. It's as if you've stored loose leaf black tea in a Cuban cigar box. A slight hint at the umami of strong type baijiu comes up on the finish -insanely complex for the modest 12 year old/$65 combo. Not as dark as previous Dailuaine casks we've had, but frankly a better whisky that previous casks if you prefer nuance, balance, and complexity. While I haven't decided yet on what I think the very best value is in our current single cask selection, this is certainly in the top 3.
Top Value!
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

1998 Orkney (Highland Park) 20 Year Old "Thompson Bros." K&L Exclusive Single Refill Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-23-2019
HP20 is going to be delicious no matter what. At 150 bucks, it's all the sweeter. This number is particularly interesting as it is a hogshead filled from same day vattings before it was sold off onto the independent market - a number of these casks have come up as Edrington has divested stocks, rumor has it, to pay for the budget sucking massive new Macallan distillery. It's classically salty and has that beautiful medium intensity heather driven peat that the distillery is known for, although it shows most on the finish and not up front. Apricots and other stone fruits in varying levels of dehydration play across the entire experience from nose to palate and intermix beautifully with the floral smoke on the finish. Coming in at an even 50% ABV at cask strength, it's a very sippable whisky neat. With a touch of water the oils come crashing out of solution as do the grain notes. The aromas suddenly explode with honeyed barley and a whole new drinking experience begins. An extremely good first showing from our new partners in Sutherland, the Thompson Brothers.
Price: $149.99 Add To Cart

2005 Laphroaig 13 Year Old "Chieftain's" K&L Exclusive Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Unchillfiltered Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-23-2019
Every so often time stops, a dizzying array of pieces fall into place, and you're left with one special moment. Such is drinking this masterpiece. Tragically, Chieftain's is going away. One of the most storied and high quality bottlers in Scotland has pulled out all of the stops for it's swan song. Aged to perfection this cask toes the line perfectly between every facet of Laphroaig. It's equally salty, malty, fruity, floral, and smoky in that amazing way that only Laphroaig can be. In addition there is a splendid cigar box spice provided by an amazing barrel of the highest quality and perfectly matched to the whisky. Not overpowering, it is just robust enough to blend seamlessly with everything on offer from the spirit. My best Laphroaig drinking experience was having John Campbell, Distillery Manager, walk me through the classic 10 year, a single cask bourbon barrel roughly 14 years old, and the legendary 30 year. The insights those 3 carefully chosen whiskies provided into the soul of Laphroaig is something I will never forget. It set off a personal and more indepth study of the whisky behind the smoke and iodine that the distillery is so famous for. This one cask highlights the traits that makes the the malt from this special place so complete and such a rarity in the flavor spectrum without giving up that core profile. Tasting this malt and then going back to Laphraoig 10 will forever unlock for the drinker the often overlooked and underappreciated glory of the classic expression.
Top Value!
Price: $159.99 Add To Cart

1979 North British 40 Year Old "Old Particular" Single Refill Barrel Cask Strength Single Grain Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-23-2019
Gummy peach rings, creamy custard, strawberries, sticky syrup, caramels, brown sugar topped creme brulee, sweet afternoon biscuits, the list goes on and on. We were extremely picky when it comes to grain whisky this year. Rather than build a selection with a broad spectrum of what grain has to offer, we selected only the most opulent, over the top casks that still met our strict value proposition requirements. At 300 bucks, this 40 year old is bluntly put, a slam dunk. If you need a perfect gift for a whisky lover (even if that is just a gift to yourself) you cannot mess this up. Succulent, sweet, candied notes, gobs of fruit and cream, and a lively Christmas spice finish, this cask is everything you can ask for in a 40 year old whisky and then some. "Glorious" comes to mind.
Top Value!
Price: $299.99 Add To Cart

Maker's Mark 46 K&L Exclusive "Barrel #6" Private Select Kentucky Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 11-23-2019
Neal and I have a friendly rivalry going since we blended these casks side by side. While I may swear in good fun that "my" cask is better, the truth is they're both excellent, but very, very different. Slightly darker in color and tone than cask #5, Neal's cask #6 is more the bass, while #5 occupies an alto range of flavors. Much weightier on the palate, the heavier use of French oak creates a deep and varied array of chocolates, coffee, toffee, and hints of herbs that lay down the funky bass line for a Maker's walk on the wild side. A perfect cigar bourbon if you will, or just a lovely sweet treat to cap off a glorious night.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

1995 Clynelish 23 Year Old "Signatory Vintage Black Label" K&L Exclusive Single 2nd Fill Sherry Butt #11239 Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-21-2019
This is the one people will ask about for years to come. It's bound to enter the rarefied air of "legendary cask." Frankly, it's one of the greatest whiskies we've ever had the pleasure of tasting, let alone choosing to buy. 23 long years in a sherry butt of superlative quality has proved to be exactly the thing Clynelish needs to draw every facet out into the open. The nose is balanced between orange zest, roasted and candied nuts, succulent orchard fruit, a bit of pipe tobacco, a dusting of crushed stone, spice, and everything nice. The palate is dark and chewy, brooding almost. It matches the maple syrup color and sweet profile. There is a savory thread from the tip of the tongue all the way to the back of your throat that adds complexity and counterpoint to all of the sweet cask and malt notes. The finish is expansive. Every nerve on your palate is alive and buzzing after you finish a sip. It's simply a perfect whisky. Fortunately, sherry butts are huge and this one provided 516 bottles of liquid gold. Sadly, it won't be nearly enough. Once you've tasted this number and looked at its sexy vintage black label, you will simply need to fill the safe with as many bottles as you can stuff in there, because this is a once in a lifetime dram.
Price: $249.99 Add To Cart

1988 Bunnahabhain 30 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Refill Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-21-2019
This whisky is stunningly complex. While we had a 30 year old Bunna last year that was dark with sherry, this impressive cask is all about the character of the malt itself. It is a perfect example of why Bunnahabhain is such a well regarded distillery. The malt itself feels drizzled in honey. A slight cream provides richness. There is a dizzying array of fruit that ranges from tropical pineapple to honeycrisp apples. It's basically a breakfast bowl of yogurt, granola, and fresh fruits, but with an enormous wallop of power. Under the obvious notes on the nose is a gentle sea brine and herbal quality both of which provide lift and freshness. The body is full, but not heavy. An the finish lights up your tastebuds with the priqlyness of high proof and the sweetness of creme brulee. A masterpiece malt not to be missed by any serious whisky drinker or collector.
Price: $349.99 Add To Cart

1991 Cameronbridge 27 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Refill Sherry Butt Cask Strength Single Grain Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-19-2019
Single grain whisky occupies a fascinating spot in the drinking world. Rarely though about, often entirely unknown, yet utterly delicious and extremely appreciated by those in the know. Typically grain whisky is just regarded as the bulking agent in blended Scotch to stretch the flavorful malt farther. The grain for this purpose rarely reaches age statements that excite anyone. Young grain, while indeed quite tasty (think Nikka Coffey Grain), isn't typically super compelling. When a cask reaches a ripe old age that could be talked about in decades, something magical happens. The soft grain starts to show cream and fruit notes. It develops tons of complexity in its own right. Add to that a well matched cask and you've got a cheap but wonderful whisky. This sherry butt - a rarity in the grain world - is the perfect partner for this 27 year old Cameronbridge. A first or second fill cask would frankly be too overpowering for the more subtle grain, this refill barrel complements the whisky perfectly. It adds just enough spicy kick and dried fruits to take this grain from merely tasty to exquisite. Pepper hits upfront, cinnamon mingles in the finish. Cream envelopes singed orange peel and sultanas. Caramel and vanilla abound. Similar casks hover around $200 bucks per bottle. Once again, there is simply no contest when compared with K&L's ability to offer whisky direct from Scotland.
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

5 Sentidos Espadin "Batch ESALB01-19" K&L Exclusive (Alberto Martinez) Santa Catarina Albarradas Uncertified Oaxacan Mezcal (750ml)
Review Date: 11-14-2019
When you taste a spirit that challenges everything you thought you knew, you're onto something special. Espadin, the most plentiful agave for Mezcal production, also tends to be the least expensive. While it's easy to think, "oh, Espadin, why would I pay more than 30 or 40 dollars for a bottle?" it's hard to dismiss this piece of magic from Alberto Martinez bottled by 5 Sentidos. This is the pinnacle of Espadin agave spirit. Wonderfully complex it's a fascinating combination of fruit, savory herbs, sweet flower blossoms, and just the tiniest hint of smoke. It's one of the most broadly appealing agave spirits I've tasted all year. If you've got an agave lover, Tequila, Mezcal, Sotol or otherwise, they'll find this to be an exceptionally enjoyable spirit. If you're buying it for yourself, one sip and you'll think you got the steal of a lifetime.
Price: $109.99 Add To Cart

1997 Ledaig 21 Year Old "Chieftain's" K&L Exclusive Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Unchill-filtered Island Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-08-2019
One of the great peated whiskies of Scotland, but sadly often overlooked. This particular cask smells of apple crisp and quality tobacco burning hot. Cooked fruits mingle with caramel, burnt orange peel, nutmeg, a sprinkling of seasalt and a faint background of iodine and herbs. A bit of water and it opens into more of a saddle shop complexity of leather and oil. The savory components make this a perfect whiskey for deep contemplation. It's more subtle than many an Islay dram. A dream for any lover of island malts.
Price: $149.99 Add To Cart

1995 Caperdonich 24 Year Old "Chieftain's" K&L Exclusive Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Unchill-filtered Speyside Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-08-2019
Welcome to the club. One of the greatest secrets of Scotland is briefly available here at K&L. The refill hoggie yielded just 155 bottles and this rarity is worth every penny. It's intensely sherried, laden with dried figs, candied orange peels, sultanas, and the complex aromas of an unlit Cuban cigar. This is a malt you can pick apart all night long. At 55% ABV if needs no water, although it doesn't harm anything to add a small drop. While long lost distilleries often pique my curiosity and are always fun to taste and talk about, they rarely deliver on this level. Active sherry and unctuous oily malt - a stunning combo to be sure - have never been quite this good.
Price: $399.99 Add To Cart

Jack Daniel's Single Barrel "K&L Exclusive" Cask Strength Tennessee Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 11-08-2019
I must admit, we had sort of written Jack Daniel's off here at K&L. No. 7 Black Label is about 99% of what they produce in Lynchburg. It's delicious, sure, but it's also commoditized. We just are never going to be the place that buys 10 pallets of Jack to compete on price. When they first released their Single Barrel Select a number of years ago I was blown away by the intensity of the full proof version. When we had a chance this summer to visit the distillery, all my preconceptions about this massive brand were challenged. What I forgot was that you just don't become the world's largest American whiskey brand by accident or by cutting corners. You do it by consistently making the best damn whiskey you can make. Every day. Every decision undertaken by the team at JD is to improve quality and production, together, not independently. While nearly every single barrel goes into the No. 7, there are a few that make it to an older age and are destined for the single barrel program. This one is a gem. One sniff and you know it's Jack. A sip and you feel like Jasper himself jumped up to smack you in the face. It's a no holds barred version of the famous tipple. The sweet mellow nature of Tennessee whiskey is still there, loads of vanilla, sweet grain, some gentle stone fruit, but everything is turned up to a full blown 11. A slight licorice snap note provides freshness along with a spicy cinnamon line. A little bit of water to tame the beast and the body just explodes. It becomes super full and rich and washes over your pallet, a warm blanket of goodness. While this is excellent neat or with a little water or ice, I'm not gonna lie - it make's the best damn Jack 'n Coke you'll ever have.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart

Maker's Mark 46 K&L Exclusive "Barrel #5" Private Select Kentucky Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 10-12-2019
My first inclination for this barrel was to pick nine of the Baked American Pure 2 staves to really double down on the natural character of Maker's Mark. I figured that was the closest thing I could get to an actual single cask. I was sorely mistaken. The added depth and complexity achievable through this unique cask program is astonishing. While maintaining a Maker's Mark backbone of sweet vanilla and mellow wheat, with five Pure 2 staves the increased length and breadth of the mixture of seared and toasted French staves, with a single Maker's 46 stave, improves the whiskey. Instead of the just the sharper peaked aromatics of American oak, the base tones of spice fill out the feel of the nose. Heady cooking spices abound, but still with a focus on the sweet spices and ever present sweet vanillins. It fills the glass, your nose, and the room. On the palate the intense tip-of-the-tongue sweetness of Maker's is carried all the way to the far corners of your mouth. It's a full-palate whiskey in a way that the classic just isn't. The finish lingers with hints of cocoa nibs and cinnamon. This is simply a perfect high-proof wheater, and just in time for the holidays.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

2003 Glen Scotia "Malts Festival 2019 Limited Edition" Rum Cask Finish Peated Campbeltown Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 10-11-2019
I fell in love with this whiskey months ago when I tasted a preview sample. Now that's it's here I simply cannot get enough of it. It's the perfect sweet peater, in fact it should be the definition of "easy peat." There is just enough smoke to frame the presentation of the other aromatics and to bolster the intensity of the wonderful citrus and tropical fruit that takes over the nose. Sweet baking spices and molasses coat your palate. There is a bit of salinity, particularly on the finish, that leaves you satisfied and yet going back for sip after sip. While most other places are selling this at $110 bucks, we backed up the truck and are able to offer it at just $69.99! I suggest you do the same since this limited Malts Festival release won't be around for long.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

Privateer Rum "The Queen's Share - Smuggler's Cove Cask #P393" American Rum (7 50ml)
Review Date: 10-10-2019
Made from a combination of evaporated cane juice crystals, boiled brown sugar, molasses, and a careful distillation, the Queen's Share is an opulent drinking experience. The texture of this rum is remarkable. While the aromatics are robust, brimming with dry oak spice and supple vanillians, it's really the body that will catch your attention. It is luscious. Graceful, yet commanding. The palate is a combination of candied nuts, toasted coconut, caramel, and an underpinning herbal quality that keeps things from feeling too sweet. The finish lasts for minutes. This is wonderful on its own, but also perfect to add body and length to any cocktail.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

Privateer Rum "Distiller's Drawer - K&L Exclusive" Bottled-In-Bond American Rum (750ml)
Review Date: 10-10-2019
Typically when someone talks about bottled in bond spirits, they're referring to bourbon or rye. In the case of Maggie Campbell, founder of Privateer Rum - it's all about rum. This "Distiller's Drawer" cask, a special distillery designation for their choicest barrels, has it all. Sweet vanilla, cola, cinnamon and nutmeg abound on the nose. The palate is superbly rich and round but dry as a bone. For those who like the feel of a sweeter style rum, but not the added sugar, this barrel is perfect. At 4 years old it's a great balance between wood and spirit character equally suitable for cocktailing or simply enjoying neat after dinner.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

Michel Couvreur "Peaty Overaged" K&L Exclusive Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 10-10-2019
This has been a favorite bottling of mine every year since it first landed in 2014. This marks our fifth iteration and I believe may be the finest. The soft sherry is of the highest quality. The malt is all 12 years and up, the smoke profile is perfect. Pure sexy peat, intense yet welcoming. A slight salinity brings freshness to the palate and highlights the brimming sweet fruit. It's rare to see anything of this quality come together, let alone for 80 bucks.
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

Michel Couvreur "Cap a Pie" Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 10-10-2019
For a mere 70 bucks, this falls into the category of 'life's simple pleasures.' From head to toe, a perfect blend. Set aside how wonderful, cool, and unusual Couvreur is as a producer and just taste the whisky. It's flawless and offers a bit of everything in the whisky-verse. If you've ever enjoyed a bottle of Johnnie Walker Blue, be prepared to be blown out of the water by this number.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

2014 Bunnahabhain Staoisha Heavily Peated 4 Year Old "Signatory Unchillfiltered Collection" Dechar/Rechar Cask Strength Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 09-24-2019
Oops. I made the mistake of popping this bottle in a communal staff space and it took over the room much to the chagrin of the few peat haters. It's robustly peaty, loaded with wet earth, cold smoke, iodine, salted caramel, candied cereal, and green apples. It's a titanic whisky. This will challenge all of your perceptions regarding the importance of age and is not for the faint of heart.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

New Riff Bourbon Barreled Kentucky Wild Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 08-21-2019
A decent barrel-aged gin is a rare thing. An excellent one is like a unicorn - you're pretty sure it exists, but you've never seen one. I was flabbergasted by New Riff's barrel-aged gin. I've gone back to that bottle over and over again this year, nursing it down to the end until I could replenish my stocks once our for-sale product actually arrived. The color is extremely light, but the gin has spent a shocking 5-7 months in as-fresh-as-they-get bourbon barrels. Aside from the mellowing and melding of flavors achieved by the time barrel, there is a haunting, subtle sweetness and complex vanilla oak profile imparted to the gin. It's like a very dry version of Old Tom Gin. While it's great on its own, it's the perfect ingredient for a modern version of the Martinez cocktail.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

New Riff Kentucky Wild Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 08-20-2019
I'm a gin guy. My wife and I probably consume more G&Ts and Martinis than any other cocktail at home. Of course when my box of New Riff samples I requested at the start of this year arrived I dug into the whiskies first, cause that's really what was going to make or break this Kentucky distillery for me, but I was thrilled to get to the gins, if not a little skeptical going in. Knowing nothing about the gin, I evaluated it first just on taste and was giddy. After diving in and learning a thing of two about the production, I was ecstatic. Built on classic gin botanicals the Kentucky Wild Gin at first blush is something of a London dry style, but harbors a few major twists. The most noticeable is the texture - there is a bit of new make rye spirit added to the neutral grain. Not only does this enhance the flavors as the herbal nature of the rye plays extremely well with the botanicals, but it adds an enormous amount of rich texture to the base. The 2nd major twist comes from the American Spice Bush. Endemic to the Ohio River Valley, the fruit of this bush has a distinct flavor that falls somewhere between all spice and mace with a hint of pepper and tea notes. It's really a perfect gin botanical. Add to that some wild local juniper to enhance the backbone and a touch of Golden Rod - Kentucky's state flower - and you've got yourself a true Kentucky Gin that drinks like a dream and makes a killer dry Martini.
Price: $32.99 Add To Cart

New Riff "Single Barrel" Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 08-20-2019
Distilled in the fall of 2015 and bottled in the fall of 2019, barrel #15-4076 clocks in at 112.4 proof. More than one of our staff members muttered impressed profanities under their breath upon tasting this barrel. It's jammed with expanding flavors ranging from caramel, chocolate, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg, to sandalwood, mint, tangy apples, cracked pepper and varnish. The proof is high, but the heat is remarkably restrained. It's an easy sipper even at cask strength. Of course like all of their whisky - it's bottled without chill filtration. Just raw, unadulterated whiskey goodness. Selected for exceptional quality and bottled one barrel at a time, the single barrel SKU never gets old. Each one is a unique, but complete expression of the quality New Riff produces every day.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

New Riff Bottled-In-Bond Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 08-20-2019
When you start a new distillery, it's not uncommon (for the savvy operators) to hire a longtime industry pro to make sure the setup of the facility is up to snuff. If you're really dedicated to making great whiskey, you hire the best. If you're dedicated to making great rye, that means you find the man who has a reasonable claim to having distilled more rye whiskey than anyone on earth. Larry Ebersold spent 40+ years making whiskey at what is today known as MGP - one time the largest whiskey distillery on the planet and he is responsible for making an enormous portion of the bourbon and rye available on the market today. The investment in great people has paid off in a big way for New Riff. They let Larry order up the "small" distillery of his dreams and implemented a few new ideas he had that were not in the cards at a massive facility like MGP. A bit unusual in that it is 100% rye (95% rye and 5% malted rye) this is a dissertation on why rye is such a compelling distillation grain. It's both spicy in flavor and plush on the palate. There is a small floral and grassy component that is intense but not perfumy or overly sweet. The cinnamon and pepper that is so clear in the high-rye bourbon, counterintuitively melts into the core of this 100% rye. Bottled-In-Bond, this Fall 2019 bottling is a masterpiece and rightly deserves to be where New Riff hangs their hat.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart

New Riff Bottled-In-Bond Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 08-20-2019
The importance of what New Riff has done can't be stated in a single review. The true magnitude their accomplishments can only be understood when looking at the larger picture of the American whiskey industry and where they fit into it. As with any whiskey though - the story isn't fully told until you get it in your glass and judge for yourself. I love the combination of richness and spice in the bourbon. In particular, the high (30%) rye content really amps up the experience. While the sweet vanillans and caramels of the barrel create a base for the whiskey, it's the high toned peaks of rye aromatics that make the pour sing. Pepper and cinnamon abound, but the touch of dried alfalfa adds the savor needed to make it a complete drinking experience, not just a sweet and spice bomb. The finish lingers, both long and well rounded. Perfect at 100 proof, as required by the Bottled-In-Bond Act of 1897, you have many options for enjoying this one. Neat is never a bad idea, but the savory notes play extremely well with vermouth if you want to mix up some cocktails. There is enough punch that a little water or ice isn't going to dilute you past the point of intense aromatics and flavor either.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart

Animas Joven Mezcal (750ml)
Review Date: 07-27-2019
While there are less expensive mezcals available, very few in the sub $50 category deliver this much flavor and intensity. With the sky rocketing price of agave, it's getting harder and harder to find quality at a reasonable price point. This espadin mezcal is stuffed with intense fruit components and balanced by a perfect slightly saline minerality and gentle smoke. And that's just the nose. The palate reiterates all of those notes but adds a crystal clear black pepper spice to the mix. The finish is medium length and very clean. The perfect place to start a mezcal journey, or to keep your hands off the super high end wild agave while you play around with cocktails.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart

Fukano 10 Year Old K&L Exclusive Single Cask Japanese Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 07-26-2019
Stunning aromatics. Sweet, floral, fruity, spicy, a splash of umami. You'd never expect rice whiskey to gain so much complexity, but here it is. The real advantage the rice seems to enjoy is a silky texture after just 10 years - certainly ancient by the standards of what we've seen so far in the category. I feel we've just begun to plumb the depths of what rice distillate has to offer and with each incredible bottling I get more excited to explore further.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

The 86 Co. Ford's Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 07-26-2019
The only 86 Co product that isn't going away - and thank the cocktail gods. This is the answer to all of your gin mixing needs. Intentionally built to highlight every key flavor profile in all of the gin classics this works in everything from a G&T to a Ramos Fizz to a Bee's Knees, Martini, Negroni, Aviation, Last Word or anything inbetween and beyond. It's a true work of art and a no brainer as to why Brown Forman wanted to add this London Dry classic to their portfolio. A big pop of juniper keeps the ship steering straight as you cruise through coriander, angelica, citrus peels, orris, cassia, and a touch of jasmine to name just a few. It's also one of the most affordable gins on the shelf and should be a staple in every bar you know, home or otherwise.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

The 86 Co. Cabeza Tequila (750ml)
Review Date: 07-26-2019
When opportunity knocks, open the door! Typically 30 bucks (and a screaming deal at that) The Cabeza Tequila from the 86 Co will be going out of business, but will always be in style. A true classic - no sugar, no additives, just pure agave flavor made by a master. Bright agave fruit combines with an expressive cracked pepper bite to stand out just right in any tequila cocktail. While you don't have the glycerol texture you find in many tequilas today, it does have a very smooth mouthfeel, but without any of the added sweetness. Just squeeze a lime, drop in some Cointreau, and stir up your best house margaritas until you run out of this incredible tequila. Then wish you bought more, cause you won't see Cabeza again and you'll never find a tequila of this quality for $20 anywhere else.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

Douglas Laing's "The Gauldrons" Batch #1 Limited Edition Campbeltown Blended Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 07-25-2019
Douglas Laing is killing it with their regional malt blends. The Campbeltown is the newest in the lineup and instantly became my favorite. While only 3 distilleries are in operation in Cambeltown today, you can bet that the majority of this blend comes from Springbank, Glengyle (Kilkerran) or Glen Scotia - there may be some of Cambeltown's long lost distilleries kicking in it too. The end result, regardless of who makes up the blend is an incredible array of sea salt, sweet malt, light peat, and a pinch of grass all in a supple and medium rich texture. It's pretty much the perfect essence of what was once the whisky capital of Scotland and at an extremely affordable price. This is a great dram to make a staple in your home bar.
Price: $59.99 Add To Cart

Bardstown Bourbon Company "Discovery Series #1" Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 07-24-2019
While we visited Bardstown Bourbon Company on our annual KY trip this past April, we didn't have the chance to taste this particular product since the blend wasn't done yet. After receiving an explanation of what they were expecting the final blend to be made up of, we couldn't wait! It was still on our receiving dock when I pulled a bottle and cracked it open. The nose is insane. It's full of mint and a little bit of chocolate. In fact, I don't think I've ever had such a strong mint nose in a bourbon before. Some of the Four Roses yeast strains give a strong mint fragrance, but this is next level. Caramel and wood spice back up the sweet herbal aroma and the high proof cuts off any sweetness from getting to cloying. The palate is equally entrancing. It attacks from all angles. You get zip and cut and weight and silky texture. The flavors are complex and layered, like a Cafe Diablo, but brighter. The finish is long and bright with a reiteration and reinterpretation of the mint note that started it all. A truly exceptional blend from the hedonistic team at one of the most exciting distilleries in Kentucky.
Price: $129.99 Add To Cart

Rezpiral Tepeztate "Series 4 - K&L Exclusive" (Berta Vasquez) San Baltazar Chichicapam Uncertified Oaxacan Mezcal (750ml)
Review Date: 07-19-2019
Rezpiral is one of the most ambitious mezcal projects to come to the United States. Seeking out mezcaleros with multi-generational knowledge and respecting each of their unique processes, Rezpiral works with choice producers across Mexico to select the finest small batch agave spirits possible and bottle them without intervention or manipulation. Berta Vazquez's extensive experience allows her to produce spirits of unrivaled intensity and flavor. This K&L exclusive batch of Tepeztate yielded only 144 bottles and is exceedingly complex. At first blush it is robustly smoky. After nosing the glass a journey unfolds. It moves from smoky to herbal - seamlessly passing from savory oregano and marjoram to sweeter dill and mint. It folds into a spicy combination of black pepper and mild pepperoncinis. On the palate the saga continues. A diverse forest of fruit trees envelops you, leaf, blossom, and fruit all compete for your attention. It doubles back on itself and the finish rehashes the symphony of sweet herbs and spice before fading into a clean and persistent smoke. In terms of diverse flavor and complexity, no spirit on the shelf rivals Berta Vazquez and her distillates.
Price: $129.99 Add To Cart

Suntory "Hibiki Japanese Harmony" Japanese Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 07-10-2019
If you haven't had Hibiki Harmony recently, you must retry it. In all honesty, it's not something we've opened for the staff here in a long time since it is so tightly allocated and sells out so quickly. It just wasn't necessary. With our most recent drop of one of the most asked for Japanese whiskies on the market, I decided it was time to make sure the staff all knew what exactly we had. I must say, I was blown away by the richness in particular. The flavors are a delight, crisp apple, fresh stone fruits, a touch of piquant pepper and a surprising amounts of vanilla and caramel. The palate has much more weight, presumably from a higher malt content, than I recall. It coats the tongue, but is never heavy. The finish is clean and bright and decidedly entices you to have another sip. We spend most of the year out of stock on this whisky just sadly telling customers, "no, it's not available." Today, we are sitting flush and want to let everyone know it's here. The trick is, with the insane popularity of all true Japanese whisky, it won't be here for long.
Price: $74.99 Add To Cart

2018 Astrolabe Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough
Review Date: 06-27-2019
A beautiful NZ savvy! Right out of the gate it has a surprise on the nose - it smells richer than most NZ sauv blanc, there is a vibrant grapefruit component to go with the classic lemon/lime and touch of grassiness. The palate has great acid cut to go with a little bit broader profile than many. It tastes like perhaps it has seen a little extended time on the lees with a hint of biscuit and fresh baked bread. While delightful on its own, the wine really should shine with food. Any fish dish or chicken would do nicely.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

Suntory Hakushu 12 Year Old Japanese Peated Single Malt Whisky (limit 12) (750ml)
Review Date: 06-27-2019
Hakushu has always been my favorite of the Suntory malts. The sweet and elegant malt profile is rounded out beautifully by the gentle peat smoke giving the whisky more body and texture than its brothers. The "forest distillery" also produces a verdant whisky - it feels green and fresh, cool and earthy. Moist peat and cool mint gently hold up the bouquet of flowers and cereal notes. The palate is extremely balanced with pepper and cinnamon playing off of the sweeter grain notes. The smoke is more rich body than intense fire. A long and earthy finish is sweetened by a maple syrup and caramel note that leaves a very pleasant aftertaste. With Japanese whisky being so hard to get these days, you have to get while the gettin' is good.
Price: $109.99 Add To Waiting List
Limit of 1 per customer

Legent Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 06-27-2019
Generally "innovative" in the bourbon industry is a shield word for an experiment gone wrong. Not so in this case! Beam Suntory - one of the world's most important drinks companies is in a unique position through ownership of two of the most important brands in two of the hottest categories in the spirits world - bourbon and Japanese whisky. A quick coating of your glass with Legent and you'll fill the room (or cubicle in my case) with robust cinnamon, sweet dried fruits, caramel, candied popcorn, vanilla, and a smooth sense of calm. The 47% ABV is just perfection for sipping neat. The judicious use of sherry and red wine casks on only a fraction of the whisky adds complexity without overpowering the inherent bourboness of the spirit. Just as you'd expect from Beam and Suntory bringing their great whisky heads together - Incredible Kentucky bourbon in the elegant and sophisticated Japanese profile. A home-run hit with a cool concept and perfect execution.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart

Braes of Glenlivet (Braeval) 29 Year Old "Sovereign Wax Top" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 06-13-2019
Crazy spices dominate the palate. All spice, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg just to name a few. It's intense and pretty all at the same time. It's not often the first thing that comes to mind on a nearly 30 year old whisky is zip, but this has a piquant zest and tingle to it that makes it feel alive. The Braes of Glenlivet, as it was known (today, simply Braeval), sits very near its more famous brother, The Glenlivet. While the two facilities share a style, the Braes seem to sport more of a rich mid palate, although to be fair, it's not exactly an apples to apples comparison as a comparatively old Glenlivet will cost you a small fortune.
Price: $249.99 Add To Cart

Page: 1 2 3 next