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Review: George Dickel Rye Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 8, 2016

George Dickel Rye

George Dickel Rye (introduced in 2012) is a straight rye whisky produced from a 95 % rye mashbill. It is the only whisky produced by the company (George A Dickel & Co.) not distilled and aged at their Cascade Distillery in Cascade Hollow, Tennessee.Instead the rye whisky is mashed using a 95% rye and 5% malted barley mashbill, then distilled and aged by Midwest Grain Products (MGP) in Lawrenceburg, Indiana.

The whisky is then sent to Diageo’s Plainfield, Illinois facility where it is first chilled to a specific specifications before being charcoal mellowed, and then bottled at 45 % alcohol by volume. (The brand is currently owned by Diageo).

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: George Dickel Rye Whisky

“… The breezes above the glass carry strong rye note coupled with woody spice, maple and caramel. The aromas have merged together well and the combination is very enticing. As I allowed the glass to breathe I noticed a nice mixture of vanilla and baking spice  cinnamon and hints of nutmeg and allspice) which gave the air a bit of a rum-like aroma …”

Please enjoy  my review of this pleasing rye whisky.

Chimo!

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

Cocktail Hour: The 1794 Cocktail

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 7, 2016

The 1794 Cocktail (created by Dominic Venegas at “Range” in San Francisco) celebrates the US Whiskey Rebellion which occurred in 1794. The libation is an offshoot of the classic Negroni cocktail (which uses equal parts of Gin, Sweet Vermouth, and Campari), and a variation of the lesser known Boulvedier (which replaces the Gin in the Negroni with Bourbon).

1794 SAM_2544The recipe calls for three strong flavours to coexist: spicy Rye Whisky, Sweet Vermouth, and the somewhat unique herbal bitterness of Campari. Balancing these strong flavours takes a bit of practice as not all rye whiskies have the same spicy kick, and not every Vermouth has the same sweetness (or the same herbal flavour profile). But when you get it right, the bar drink is a wonderful melding of flavours which makes the libation an ideal aperitif to enjoy before your evening meal.

My chosen whisky for this offering was George Dickel Rye which has a firm but not over-the-top rye flavour. I found that when I mixed with a touch less (1/4 oz less) Campari and Sweet Vermouth (Cinzano Brand) than the original recipe called for, the George Dickel Rye was able to shine just a bit brighter in the cocktail, and balance (at least for my palate) was achieved.

Here is the recipe:

1794 Cocktail

2 oz George Dickel Rye Whisky
3/4 oz Sweet Vermouth (Cinzano)
3/4 oz Campari
Ice
Strip of Orange Peel

Add the ingredients into a metal shaker with plenty of ice
Shake until the outside of the shaker begins to frost
Strain into a cocktail glass
Garnish with a twist of orange peel

Please Enjoy Responsibly!

And if  you are interested in more Cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for some of my original mixed drink recipes!

Note: My review for George Dickel Rye will publish tomorrow.

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

Review: Gibson’s Finest Bold Canadian Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 6, 2016

Finest Buckeroo SAM_2611Gibson’s Finest recently released a brand new 8-year-old expression in Alberta, Gibson’s Finest Bold Canadian Whisky. What makes it ‘Bold’ is the bottling proof which is a full 46 % alcohol by volume which is a full 6 % more than the 40 % alcohol by volume bottlings which are standard for the Canadian Whisky category. The whisky also features what the media notes call a ‘bold deep colour’. The dark colour or the whisky combined with the higher bottling proof apparently are part of the reason why the producer claims the whisky is ‘specially crafted to deliver Canada’s Finest Rye and Cola’.

Here is a link to my latest Canadian Whisky review:

Review: Gibson’s Finest Bold Canadian Whisky

“… When I bring my nose to the glass, a caramel note is quite obvious and sits out in front of the oak spice and whisky grain. I allowed the glass to breathe and soon noticed a building fruitiness of canned pears and baked apples. As time passes vanilla with a touch of cinnamon emerges and melds into the caramel note which now resembles the smell of baking cinnamon buns …”

Please enjoy my review of this brand new Canadian Whisky!

Chimo!

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

Review: Brugal Anejo Superior Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 5, 2016

Brugal Anejo SAM_2347The Brugal Distillery was founded in 1888, by Andrés Brugal Montaner. Over the next one hundred and twenty years the company grew steadily, and it is now one of three large rum distillers in the Dominican Republic. Although the Edrington Group now controls the company, George Arzeno Brugal, is the current chairman, and most of the current board members are direct descendants of the original company founder.

I reviewed Brugal Anejo about six years ago when it was called, Ron Brugal Anejo – Desde  1888. My understanding from talking to the local Brugal Brand Ambassador about two years ago at the Rocky Mountain Food and Wine Show is that the spirit has undergone a few changes since my original review. In particular, since the Edrington Group gained control of the company, they have instituted a new wood policy which governs how all of the Brugal spirits are aged. This practice brings the cask selection process into line with the wood policy the company uses for its Scotch whiskies.

According to the Brugal USA Website, Brugal continues makes their rum in the traditional manner (from molasses) and ages the spirit on site in Puerto Plata. The Brugal Anejo is aged for two to five years in medium toasted ex-Bourbon American white oak casks.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Brugal Anejo Superior Rum

“… the fine oak spices have gained a little momentum. There are light impressions of raisins and chocolate, making me check my notes to make sure that no sherry barrels have been used to age the rum (they have not). A few baking spices are beginning to peek into the breezes with little hits of cinnamon and even lighter cloves. Wisps of orange peel (as well as orange Curacao) seem to meander into the aroma …”

Please enjoy my review!

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

Cocktail Hour: The Spanish Mule

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 4, 2016

The Spanish Mule is variant of the more familiar Moscow Mule which mixes spicy ginger beer with Vodka and uses a lime garnish. The Spanish Mule simply replaces the Vodka with Dark Rum. Now if this sounds to you suspiciously like a Dark ‘N Stormy, you would be almost right. Almost, because the aforementioned Dark ‘N Stormy is one of the few rum cocktails in existence which has been granted a Trademark license (the other that I know of is the Pain Killer Cocktail).

Creating a trademark around a cocktail is a tricky business, and in the case of the Dark ‘N Stormy, the trademark granted apparently provides Gosling’s Rum Company, and only Gosling’s Rum Company the right to set the ingredients for this particular Cocktail. Without getting into things too deeply, what this basically means is that if a this bar drink is made with Gosling’s Rum, then and only then is it properly called a Dark ‘N Stormy. If any other rum is used, the cocktail should be given a different name, especially if the bar drink is used for a commercial purpose.

Spanish Mule SAM_2349For that reason, I choose to call my version of the serving a Spanish Mule as this tends to eliminate any confusion as to what the libation is, and this stops any potential lawsuit from coming my way. (And to be fair, I expect people to respect my rights under copyright so it is only fair that I respect the trademark rights of others as well.)

This is the simplest of Spanish Mule recipes. I am mixing a very nice Anejo Rum, Brugal Superior, with a new non-alcoholic Ginger Beer that I have recently become acquainted with, The Great Jamaican Old Tyme Ginger Beer. Old Tyme is not as spicy as many other ginger beers which makes it a perfect accompaniment for this young (but tasty) Anejo Rum.

Please enjoy the Serve!

Spanish Mule

2 oz Brugal Anejo Superior Rum
3 oz Old Tyme Ginger Beer
ice
Slice of Lime

Add Ice to a Rocks Glass
Add the Rum over ice
Top with Ginger Beer
Stir
Garnish with a lime slice
Enjoy Responsibly!

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

_______________________________________________________________________________________

Note my new review for Brugal Anejo Superior Rum will publish tomorrow!

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

2016 Spiced Rum Taste-off: Voodoo Spiced Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 3, 2016

Voodoo Spiced RumI continue my spiced rum taste-off with the 19th best spiced rum on my rum shelf. Voodoo Spiced Rum is produced by Three-D Spirits, Inc. ( www.redrum.com). The company was founded in 1996 with the stated goal to create exceptional  handmade rums. Their spiced rum is apparently (according to the website) produced from a blend of aged Virgin Islands Rum. The blended rum is infused with cloves and cinnamon as well as Madagascar vanilla, and bottled at 35 % alcohol by volume.

No information is given regarding the age of the rums in the blend; however, based upon my tasting notes, I would suggest that the spirit was aged for only a limited time period as there is very little evidence of oak or wood spice in the taste profile. This is typical of the spiced rum category.

Here is my review:

#19   Voodoo Spiced Rum

“… When I nose the glass vanilla wafts upward, and it is obviously the dominant spice. I also sense a mild but firm butterscotch sweetness and a light peppery spiciness in the breezes above the glass. Taking a little time and listening to what the merry little breezes above the glass tell me, impressions of cloves become more obvious along with hints of cinnamon …”

_________________________________________

I hope you all find this countdown enjoyable and you can follow the rankings here:

The Rum Howler 2016 Spiced Rum Countdown

Posted in Awards, Extras, Rum, Rum Reviews, Spiced Rum | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »

Review: 1800 Reserva Reposado Tequila

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 2, 2016

1800 ReposadoThe 1800 Tequila brand is owned by the Beckmann Family, who also own the Jose Cuervo brand. And indeed, according to the nom identifier upon the bottle (Nom 1122 CRT) the brand is produced at the same facility, the Casa Cuervo, S.A. de C.V. which is located in the central lowland tequila region of Jalisco Mexico. The 1800 Reserva Reposado is produced using piñas from 100 % Weber Blue Agave (8-12 year old) and is aged in a combination of  American and French Oak barrels at least six months. 

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: 1800 Reserva Reposado Tequila

“… When I nose the glass it yields mild butterscotch aromas, and behind them are soft punky vegetal smells of lowland agave. The earthy aroma is reminiscent of baked squash and grilled pineapple. There are also unusual hints of cooked celery within the vegetal nature of the agave aroma (maybe a bit of water cress too). As I gave the glass time to breathe some peppery notes began to break free from the fruity agave as well as hints of vanilla and cinnamon, and perhaps a dusting of milk chocolate …”

Please enjoy my review as my descent into Tequila Madness continues

Chimo!

 

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

Cocktail Hour: The Scarlet Ruse

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 1, 2016

Scarlet Ruse SAM_2561This cocktail, The Scarlet Ruse, is part of my ongoing series of Tequila cocktails named after the Travis McGee novels of American author John D. MacDonald. This is the fourteenth novel in the series and like most of the Travis McGee stories its title is well suited to be also the name of great cocktail. In keeping with the theme of a ruse or trick, this cocktail is actually an altered version of the classic bar drink, the Tequila Sunrise. However the ruse or twist is that the mixed drink is made not with orange juice but with the juice of both the navel orange and the blood orange.

For those unfamiliar with the Tequila Sunrise, it is a simple bar drink made in an ice filled glass with just Orange Juice, Silver Tequila and Grenadine. I experimented with the juice from blood oranges in the recipe, and then I went a step further and used lightly aged Reposado Tequila instead of Silver Tequila. My new recipe, the Scarlet Ruse, tastes a little different from a typical Tequila Sunrise; it is not quite so sweet and carries that lightly earthy flavour which is typical of blood oranges.

However, it is delicious in its own right.

The Scarlet Ruse

1 3/4 oz 1800 Reserva Reposado Tequila
1 oz Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice
3/4 oz Fresh Squeezed Juice of Blood Orange
3/4 oz Grenadine
Ice

Build over ice in an Old-Fashioned Glass
Enjoy Responsibly!

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 review of 1800 Reserva Reposado Tequila will publish tomorrow.

Chimo!

 

 

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

2016 Rum Howler Spiced Rum Taste-off

Posted by Arctic Wolf on May 31, 2016

Several weeks ago I found myself staring at all the spiced rums on my rumshelf in my tasting room. I had a little over 20, and most of them were barely touched. I had done my review for each, made a cocktail or two, and then sealed the bottles and moved on. I even had several full bottles that had were still sealed as often when samples are sent to me, the producer sends two bottles rather than one. While staring at the spirits the thought occurred to me that perhaps I ought to do something constructive with my spiced rum selection. So, I decided that I should re-taste all of these rums, create new tasting notes, and update my reviews especially as I was curious how the older reviews would stand up.

krakenThose who are regular readers know that I like to present the results from these types of exercises in a ‘Countdown’ format, and so during the next two months I shall be present the results, one spiced rum at a time, beginning with the rum which ranked 20th on my newly created list, then work my way down to the spiced rum which I feel is the best in my tasting room. As I publish the new reviews, I will be replacing my older review with the newer ones such that by the time I am done, all of the reviews will be updated with the new tasting notes and scores. (In a few cases when the older review stands up well with my current thoughts (especially of the published review is current) I have left the older review as it is.)

Today I shall begin with the Rum which ranked Number 20, on my Rum Howler 2016 Spiced Rum Countdown, the Kraken Black Spiced Rum, here is the new review:

#20   The Kraken Black Spiced Rum

“… The merry little breezes above the glass tell me a story of peppery spice and licorice. Cinnamon is revealed along with wiffs of cloves, plum preserves, and black cherries. The black spiced rum has an almost medicinal quality as there is also more than a hint of menthol in those breezes which as it combines with the fruity smells of black cherries and plums makes me think of cough medicine and Jagermeister …”

I hope you all find this countdown enjoyable and you can follow the rankings here:

The Rum Howler 2016 Spiced Rum Countdown

Posted in Awards, Extras | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Review: Cabresto Reposado Tequila

Posted by Arctic Wolf on May 30, 2016

Cabresto repo SAM_2550Tequila Cabresto, imported by Cabresto Imports Corporation, is a brand rooted as solidly in Detroit as they are in Arandas, Mexico. Tequila Cabresto is a family owned brand with duties spread across two generations of the Lopez family. Founder Silverio Lopez runs the family ranch in Arandas and cares for the agave until its reached peak yield. His son Antonio is learning the craft of growing the best agave in the world and currently handles the branding and exportation of Cabresto to the US. Daughter Sonia is the first Lopez to graduate college and is spearheading the US operations of Cabresto Imports Corporation. They do all this while maintaining the family tire shop in Southwest Detroit.

Cabresto Reposado Tequila is a pure 100% Agave tequila. The agave fields, and the distillery which produces the tequila are located in Atotonilco in the highlands of Los Altos de Jalisco, Mexico. The harvested agave is cooked in an adobe furnace that softens the plant’s fibers and transforms its starches into sugars. Once cooked and rested the agave is passed through a shredder to separate the coarse fibers, then through rollers to squeeze out its sweet juice. Once distilled, the reposado tequila is aged in charred white oak barrels for a period of over six months, and then bottled at 40 % alcohol by volume.

Here is a link to my review of the Cabresto Reposado Tequila:

Review: Cabresto Reposado Tequila

“… When I bring the spirit to my nose I notice the breezes carry a very light honeyed caramel scent into the air beside a warm punky agave fruit. There is some spicy white pepper and some mild indications of sandal wood and oak spice. The notes are not aggressive but they are firm. As the glass breathes I notice impressions of scattered tea leaves, a light herbal quality reminiscent of fall grass which has just turned dry enough to cut for hay, and bits of menthol. These impressions are slippery and vague yet they serve to give the Reposado Tequila a bit of added character …”

Please enjoy the review, Chimo!

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

 
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