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Review: Dulce Vida Organic Tequila Lone Star III (Anejo)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 19, 2016

Dulce Vida Lone Star IIIDulce Vida Tequila is produced from 100% organic agave grown in the Los Altos highlands which are situated in the Tequila Region of Mexico. The company produces the only 100° proof, 100% organic tequila (also free from additives of any kind) in the world. As well as being 100% organic, their tequila is also produced in a manner which embraces the concept of sustainability. During production of the spirit a complete waste recapture program is set in place which results in the production of a nutrient-rich soil supplement which is supplied to the local farming community. The methane gas which is produced as a by-product of the waste collection & processing is captured and utilized to help power Dulce Vida’s production facilities in the village of San Ignacio Cerro Gordo at Campanario.

Dulce Vida Organic Tequila Lone Star III (Anejo) has been aged in Garrison Brother’s Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey barrels. The Garrison barrels are a special cooperage, 10-gallon barrels which were used to age the first Texas Bourbon produced.

Here is a link to my review of this wonderful añejo spirit:

Review: Dulce Vida Organic Tequila Lone Star III (Anejo)

“… The breezes above the glass carry indications of a lightly sweet honey and fruit scent which seemed to reflect impressions of vanilla, canned pears and sweet apricots the combination of which seems to me to be quite unusual for a tequila spirit. I also sense light indications of fine oak and sandalwood spices combined with mild indication of white pepper. The typical earthy/fruity aroma (reminiscent of garden squash or pumpkin) of the agave is buried deep within the spirit as is the typical peppery squeal of highland spice …”

Please enjoy my review.

 

Posted in Anejo Tequila, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Cocktail Hour: Tequila Añejo Old Fashioned

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 18, 2016

The Old Fashioned Cocktail is usually associated with whisky, perhaps rum and even brandy; but only recently has it become fashionable as a cocktail suitable for the agave spirit, Tequila. This is perhaps because the spicy flavour characteristic of tequila (añejo or otherwise) does not lend itself easily to this simple cocktail. The peppery spice and the earthy fruity agave flavours are aggressive, and in an Old Fashioned, these aggressive flavours are given free rein. Many persons find the result just a little too demanding and intimidating for a drink we aspire to enjoy in our easy chair after a long day at work.

What I have found is that rather than adding simple syrup as the sweetener, a better course of action is to add a mixture of agave syrup and orange Curacao. In particular, the orange Curacao plays wonderfully with aged tequila tempering its wild side, without diminishing its rich depth and character.

Anejo Old FashionedWith a wonderful tequila like the Dulce Vida Organic Tequila Lone Star (Anejo), the results of this simple tweak can be quite stunning.

Tequila Añejo Old Fashioned

2 oz Dulce Vida Organic Tequila Lone Star III (Anejo)
1/4 oz Orange Curacao
1/8 oz Agave Syrup
ice
Orange Peel

Add a thin coil of Orange Peel to the bottom of a rocks glass
Add a few cubes of ice
Pour 2 oz Añejo Tequila over the ice
Stir Gently
Enjoy Responsibly

Note: If  you are interested in more of my original cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more of my mixed drink recipes!

Note: My posting for Dulce Vida Organic Tequila Lone Star III (Anejo) will publish tomorrow.

Posted in Cocktails & Recipes | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Top 25 Canadian Whiskies of 2015

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 17, 2016

Canada's Best of 2015

Canada’s Best of 2015

Canadian Whisky continues to go through a resurgence as whisky aficionados all over the world are becoming re-acquainted with the great Canadian Spirit. We saw the beginnings about 10 years ago when the two largest Canadian Distillers, Wiser’s and Crown Royal released new Ultra Premium Whiskies (Wiser’s Red Letter & Crown Royal XR Waterloo). These new whiskies which were each priced above $125.00 and established a new high water mark for Canadian Whisky at least as far as price was concerned. Admittedly, the market was rather tepid towards these new offerings as the local Canadian consumer was much more comfortable with their Canadian whisky priced in the low twenties, and even the flag bearer of premium whisky at the time (Wiser’s 18 Year Old) was still to be found in the mid forties and low fifties.

As time went one other super premium Canadian whiskies began to appear. Alberta Premium’s ridiculously low-priced 25 Year Old Whisky was introduced in 2007 (only $30 a bottle) followed by a more moderately priced 30-year-old offering five years later ($60.00 per bottle). Canadian Club joined the parade bringing forward their own Ultra Premium 30 Year Old offering and then making their 20-year-old whisky a permanent part of their whisky family. During all of this Highwood Distillers was quietly producing a premium 21-year-old 100 % corn whisky as well as their LOT 1525 which was a blending of premium whiskies aged 15 to 25 years.

As well as beginning to produce premium aged whiskies, Canadian distillers also started to innovate. Forty Creek was leading this innovation as John Hall began distilling and aging whisky from three separate grains blending them and then using unique casks to finish the job. In the US, more experimentation with our national spirit was underway as companies like 35 Maple Street in Sonoma California began to play with our straight Canadian Rye. Not to be outdone, Wiser’s and Crown Royal joined in each experimenting with new styles of oak barrels and new rye forward whiskies bringing more diversity to the spirit we call Canadian. In the midst of all of this, a distilling revolution began as micro distillers began popping up across the country each of them bringing a new twist to Canadian Whisky.

This all brings us to the present, 2015. Canadian Whisky is in demand in Canada (and all over the world) like never before. The spirit is now a more varied and diverse than it ever was. Speaking in ‘whisky terms’, it is a great time to be a Canadian!

Just follow this link to see the full list:

The Rum Howler – Top 25 Canadian Whiskies of 2015

Posted in Canadian Whisky, Whisk(e)y, Whisk(e)y Review | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Review: Ron Abuelo Anejo 7 Anos

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 16, 2016

Abuelo Anos 7Ron Abuelo Rum is produced by Varela Hermanos SA in Panama, Central America. This company has a history which dates back to 1908 when Don José Varela Blanco launched the first sugar mill in the then recently formed Republic of Panama. In 1935, the site began to distill sugar cane juice for the production of various kinds of spirits. Now today, the company produces an impressive array of products which includes over one million boxes of spirits and of course a strong variety of rums. The Ron Abuelo brand is just one brand from this wide assortment.

According to the website, the Ron Abuelo Anejo 7 Anos is produced from molasses and aged for 7 years in white oak bourbon casks.

Here is a link to my latest rum review:

Review: Ron Abuelo Anejo 7 Anos

“… Dark brown sugary baking spices have evolved with vanilla, nutmeg, cinnamon and hints of clove. There is also an impression of pecans. The menagerie reminds me of the smells of cinnamon buns baking in the oven. Hints of orange marmalade rise up as well …”

Please enjoy may review of this Panamanian Rum!

Posted in Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Cocktail Hour: My Rum Club Cocktail

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 15, 2016

My Rum Club Cocktail has its roots in the Brandy Crusta which is a classic cocktail traced back to Joseph Santini (circa 1840). Santini was a celebrated bartender and caterer in New Orleans at that time. Almost forty years later, Leo Engels used Santini’s 1840 Brandy Crusta as the basis for his Rum Crusta recipe in his Bartender’s Guide, American and other Drinks, 1878). The recipes in Leo Engels guide give us an important glimpse at the bar drinks of his time and how they had already began to evolve into more complex forms.

My Rum Club Cocktail has its roots firmly in Santini’s and Engels’ early Crusta recipe; however I have tweaked the proportions and added a small splash of ginger-ale to lengthen it slightly. My bar drink is perhaps a little harder to construct than a typical rum and soda; but the effort is well worth the prize.

Abuelo rum club cocktailThe Rum Club Cocktail

2 oz Ron Abuelo Anejo 7 Anos
1/4 oz Orange Curacao
1/4 oz tsp Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice
1 tsp Sugar Syrup
1 dash Fees Bitters
1 dash Maraschino Liqueur
Ice
Sugar
Lemon Peel
Splash Ginger-ale

Add the first six ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice
Shake until the sides frost
Rim the edge of a chilled cocktail glass with a lemon slice and dip it in sugar
Strain the contents of the shaker into the chilled, sugar rimmed, cocktail glass
Garnish with lemon peel and a lump of ice
Complete with Ginger-ale

Please Enjoy Responsibly!

Note: If  you are interested in more cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more of my mixed drink recipes!

Note: My review for Ron Abuelo Anejo 7 Anos will publish tomorrow.

Posted in Cocktails & Recipes | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Review: Havana Club Añejo 7 Años

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 14, 2016

Havana thumbSometimes when I take the first sip of new rum, I close my eyes; and I let the rum show me where it belongs. This rum brought me to an old tavern, close to the docks.  The kind of place you see in old movies where the rum flows and stories get taller in the telling.  The place has an oily, tobacco stained floor. Cigarette smoke drifts up to the ceiling mingling here and there with the occasional smell of a Cuban cigar.

A girl sits on a boardwalk stage, singing slightly out of key, as the patrons in the tavern pay more attention to their stories than to her. A burly bartender, who looks like he can handle whatever trouble comes his way, wipes the sweat from his brow, and then with the same towel wipes the bar-top. He glances at me playing solitaire in the corner of the room and sipping the rum he served me. I had told him I would stay and pay him well if the rum was good.

He served me a soft oily, smoky rum called Havana Club.  I smile… the tip will be generous tonight.

Review: Havana Club 7 Year Old Cuban Rum

“… The nose displays a moderate amount of smoke which seems to subdue the aroma from the glass to a certain extent. Over time, molasses, dark brown sugary baking spices, dried fruit (raisins and prunes) and a lurking tobacco all find their way out of the glass and into my nostrils. I would have scored this a little higher had the nose been more assertive …

Posted in Dark Rums, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Review: Forty Creek Spike Honey Spiced Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 13, 2016

FC SpikeForty Creek Spike Honey Spiced Whisky is produced by the Forty Creek Distillery (now owned by Campari). Former owner of the distillery and brand, John Hall is the Whisky Maker (as he likes to refer to himself) at Forty Creek, and this spirit was produced under his direction.

According to the label on the bottle the ingredients are, Canadian Whisky (presumable John Hall’s flagship whisky Forty Creek Barrel Select), sugar, and natural flavors (presumable honey and spices). It is bottled at 40 % alcohol by volume.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Forty Creek Spike Honey Spiced Whisky

“… The spirit caries a deep golden colour with reddish hues visible in the glass. The breezes are mild, and along with the notes of honey are additional notes of butterscotch, vanilla, banana, ginger and cinnamon …”

Please enjoy my review which concludes with a nice tall back deck drink, the Spiced Mammy.

Chimo!

Posted in Canadian Whisky, Flavoured Whisky, Whisk(e)y, Whisk(e)y Review | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Cocktail Hour: The Honey Spiked Mammy

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 12, 2016

When I recently received a bottle of John Hall’s Forty Creek Spike (Honey Spiced) Whisky, I wanted to showcase the ‘honey spiced’ flavour in a nice cocktail which could be embraced by a wide range of persons. For that purpose, I decided that a tall refreshing bar drink was the proper course of action. It turned out that I had already created such a bar drink about two years ago, the Spiced Mammy. A few tweaks to that recipe to adapt it for the honey flavour in this spiced whisky was all that was required.

My Spiced Mammy is very loosely based upon the well-known Mamie Taylor Cocktail which is a bar drink designed for blended scotch whisky. Tthe ginger-ale in the recipe certainly finds a good home next to our national whisky as well. Rather than using lime juice as we would in a Mamie Taylor, I am using lemon juice which pairs naturally with honey. The sharp lemon flavours are just the right foil for the heightened sweetness of the ‘honey spiced’ whisky created by John Hall. I also added touch of lime zest for colour (and as a compliment to the lemon flavour).

Please enjoy.

Spiced MammyThe Honey Spiked Mammy

2 oz  Forty Creek Spike
1 oz Fresh Lemon Juice
dash or two of Sugar Syrup
1/2 cup cracked ice
Ginger Ale
Thin Strips of Lime

Remove thin strips of lime peel from a fresh lime
Fill a tall highball glass half full of chipped ice
Add the lemon juice and the Forty Creek Spike Whisky
Top with ginger ale
Add a few threads of lime peel and stir gently.

Remember, my aim is not to help you drink more…it is to help you drink better!

If  you are interested in more of my original cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more of my mixed drink recipes!

 

Posted in Cocktails & Recipes | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Review: Dulce Vida Organic (Reposado Tequila)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 10, 2016

Dulce Vida ReposadoDulce Vida Tequila is produced from 100% organic agave grown in the Los Altos highlands which are situated in the Tequila Region of Mexico. The company produces the only 100° proof, 100% organic tequila (also free from additives of any kind) in the world. As well as being 100% organic, their tequila is also produced in a manner which embraces the concept of sustainability. During production of the spirit a complete waste recapture program is set in place which results in the production of a nutrient-rich soil supplement which is supplied to the local farming community. As well, the methane gas which is produced as a by-product of the waste collection & processing is captured and utilized to help power Dulce Vida’s production facilities in the village of San Ignacio Cerro Gordo at Campanario (in Mexico of course).

Dulce Vida Organic Añejo Tequila has been aged for 11 months in American Bourbon Whiskey barrels, and my review shall begin as it always does with a look at the bottle.

Here is a link to my review of the 2015 Rum Howler Reposado Tequila of The Year:

Review: Dulce Vida Organic (Reposado Tequila)

“… The initial breezes above the glass carry a nice updraft of fine oak spice and sandalwood interspersed with wisps of butterscotch and honey. It takes only a little while for a nice peppery agave scent to come forward. The spicy agave slowly reveals its signature ‘punky’ fruity aroma; however the oak and sandal wood in the air never lose their way. They remain as lovely accents upon the spicy punky highland agave fruit …”

Please enjoy the review!

Chimo!

Posted in Reposado Tequila, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Cocktail Hour: The Ruffled Pelican

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 9, 2016

This cocktail was inspired by one of my favourite gin drinks, the Darby. The Darby is a wonderful cocktail which mixes grapefruit and lime with dry gin. It is easy to mix, and it is sure to please even the most discriminating of palates.

Grapefruit and lime mix as easily with agave as they do with juniper, and so for this variation of the Darby I simply replaced the gin with a very nice Reposado Tequila from Dulce Vida. The result is very similar to the well-known Paloma albeit with much less soda.

Ruffled PelicanI call this cocktail, the Ruffled Pelican.

Ruffled Pelican

1 1/2 oz Dulce Vida Reposado Tequila
1/2 oz Fresh Squeezed Grapefruit Juice
1/2 oz Fresh Squeezed Lime Juice
1/2 oz Sugar Syrup
Splash Soda

Pour the first three ingredients into a metal shaker with ice
Shake until the sides of the shaker are frosted
Strain into a suitable glass
Add a small splash of soda
Garnish with a slice of lime
Enjoy!

Remember to enjoy my cocktail suggestions responsibly!

If  you are interested in more of my original cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more mixed drink recipes!

Note: My posting for the Dulce Vida Reposado Tequila review will publish tomorrow!

Posted in Cocktails & Recipes | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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