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Posts Tagged ‘Review’

Review: Gautier VSOP Fine Cognac

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 20, 2017

In 1755 the Gautier family obtained a Royal Warrant and a founding charter from the King Louis XV for the purpose of making Cognac. It is probable that the family was active making brandy and cognac prior to 1755; however, the Royal Warrant and founding charter mark the official launch of the Maison Gautier.

The Maison Gautier VSOP blend is produced from eaux de vie derived from grapes grown in the Petite Champagne, Fins Bois and Bons Bois “crus”.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Gautier VSOP Fine Cognac

“… The breezes above the glass carried a nice aroma which represents a melding of oak spice, raisin and caramel toffee. The spiciness of the oak is firm but not assertive which appeals to me as sometimes oak can dominate a spirit to the detriment of the other aromas and flavours …”

Please enjoy my review which includes two luscious cocktail suggestions, Champs Élysées, and the Sidecar, two classic Cognac/Brandy Cocktails.

Chimo!

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Posted in Brandy and Cognac Reviews, Cognac Review | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

#Top100Rums – #95 Harbour Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 18, 2017

The Yongehurst Distillery is a brand new Micro-Distillery located at 346 Westmoreland Ave near Dupont and Dovercourt in Toronto, Ontario. The facility is owned by long-time friends, Rocco Panacci and John-Paul Sacco who are making what just might be Toronto’s first micro-distilled rum upon their brand new small pot/column combination still.

The rum that Yongehurst is producing is unique (one of the first micro distilled rum produced in Canada) and perhaps the first rum produced in Canada which is completely unaged (in Canada, by law, all rum sold must be aged for a minimum of one year).

Here is a link to the review of the #95 Cane Spirit on my Rum Howler – Top 100 Rums of 2017 countdown:

Review: Harbour Rum (Yongehurst Distillery)

“… A light sweetness which reminds me of cotton candy drifts upwards into the breezes with feathery indications of mint and menthol alongside …”

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To follow the countdown list on a daily basis, you should follow me on twitter (Rum Howler on Twitter) using the hashtag #Top100Rums.

Alternatively you can view the  list as it grows by viewing my Reveal Page:

The Rum Howler – Top 100 Rums of 2017

The Reveal Page will be updated at least weekly through September, October and November and then daily in December.

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

#100: Kicking Things off with Stalk and Barrel Blue Blend

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 16, 2017

The Rum Howler Top 100 Canadian Whisky Countdown kicks off with a brand new whisky from Barry Bernstein and Barry Stein own and run the Still Water Distillery.

#100 Stalk and Barrel Blue Blend

“… The nose is rye and corn forward with hints of anise and a few touches of sour fruit. Dusty sandalwood spices follow with clear impressions of vanilla and almond. I noticed some hints of canned fruit (peaches and apricots) and a building sweetness …”

Of course you can follow the countdown on Twitter  (#Top100CanadianWhisky) or check in on my Reveal Page which will be updated about once per week.

The Rum Howler – Top 100 Canadian Whiskies of 2017

Enjoy the Countdown: Chimo!

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Note: As indicated yesterday, I will not be posting every whisky in my countdown here on the website, but I am going to try to highlight every Canadian spirit that I have not reviewed previously. (Rum Howler on Twitter)

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

Review: St-Remy XO Authentic French Brandy

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 13, 2017

St-Remy Heretic No. 2

In 1886 Paul-Emile Rémy Martin II established the original St-Rémy Distillery in the tiny village of Machecoul. After 30 years of experimentation (in 1917), St. Remy launched Fine St-Rémy, the French Brandy which came to define the St-Rémy style and character for decades to come. The distillery began to exported their French Brandy to the rest of Europe in the 1920s and then jumped the Atlantic to Canada in 1967. Within another decade, the St-Remy spirit was sold on all five major continents, and today St-Rémy proudly proclaims itself the World’s No. 1 French Brandy.

The production of St-Remy XO Authentic French Brandy begins with the selection of grapes, harvested in France’s most prestigious wine-growing regions, such as Burgundy, Champagne, Rhône Valley, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire Valley, Bordeaux and Beaujolais. Distillation takes place in both column and pot stills where the fermented wine is heated until the contained alcohol evaporates and becomes eaux-de-vie. The heart of the second distillation is carefully selected by the distiller to have the proper characteristics such that the eaux-de-vie will develop into brandy as they are matured in small French oak barrels.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: St-Remy XO Authentic French Brandy

“… When I bring my nose to the glass the breezes bring me aromas rich with oak and caramel toffee. There are firm oaky vanillans imprinted into the oak and toffee as well as hints of maple. The spirit is fruity with scents of orange marmalade, plump raisins, and impressions of Turkish Delight (red licorice) dancing in the background …”

Please enjoy my review which includes my cocktail recommendation, Heretic No. 2.

Chimo!

 

Posted in Brandy and Cognac Reviews, Brandy Review | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Review: Pure Scot Blended Scotch Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 8, 2017

The Bladnoch Distillery was founded in 1817 which means that this year Bladnoch is celebrating its 200th year. The Distillery was built in the lowlands on the River Bladnoch by two brothers, John and Thomas McClelland. It is in fact, the southernmost whisky distillery in Scotland, and at 200 years of age, one of the oldest Lowland Scotch Whisky producers.

After a recent retrofit, the Distillery has began to resume production and Bladnoch has released two new Blended Scotch Whiskies (Pure Scot and Pure Scot Virgin Oak 43) and three new Single Malt Whiskies (Bladnoch Samsara, Bladnoch Adela, and Bladnoch Talia). These expressions are just beginning to arrive in the Canada.

The subject of this review, Pure Scot Blended Scotch Whisky, is a blending of Bladnoch Single Malt Whisky with aged Speyside, Highland and Islay Malts. The whisky has no age statement, however it is known that the Bladnoch Single Malt Whiskies used in its construction are at least nine years old. The final whisky is chill filtered and bottled at 40 % alcohol by volume.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Pure Scot Blended Scotch Whisky

“… The breezes above the glass reveal a lightly sweet whisky in which butterscotch is playing nicely with wisps of oak and grain spice and malt barley. As I let the glass breathe I noticed some vanilla melding with nutty almond and hazelnuts which reminded me somewhat of marzipan, and some indications of canned fruit (peaches and apricots) …”

Please enjoy the review which includes a new cocktail, Cerise Old Fashioned.

Chimo!

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

Review: Pemberton Valley Organic Single Malt Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on August 29, 2017

The Pemberton Distillery is located in the heart of the Coast Mountains, an area known for its massive ice caps and pure glacial streams. The Master Distiller, Tyler Schramm, studied a Masters of Science in Brewing & Distilling at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland. The distillery first broke onto the scene in August of 2009 with their Schramm Organic Vodka (reviewed here), an authentic sipping vodka produced  from whole organic potatoes (grown just 15 km from the distillery in the Pemberton Valley). This special Vodka is produced using an all natural fermentation process that does not use of chemicals, synthetic anti-foaming agents, or additives. In fact, the distillery boasts that they follow the same traditional methods used by single malt scotch distilleries. They distill in small batches using a hand-operated copper pot still, and the entire distillation is performed by Tyler Schramm, who is continuously testing and sampling the distillate for quality.

All that care and attention which the distillery displayed in producing their organic vodka has also been turned towards their production of Single Malt Whisky. According to the Pemberton Distillery website the spirit is:

” A true West Coast style single malt Whisky. Pot distilled in small batches from organic BC malted barley …”

I was sent a bottle from Cask No. 4 which was distilled in September of 2012, and bottled in April of 2017. The Whisky was matured in an ex bourbon cask and bottled at 44 % alcohol by volume.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Pemberton Valley Organic Single Malt Whisky

“… My first impression was of warm buttermilk porridge with firm nutty smells of barley wafting upwards. There is a leather-like impression which reminds me of burlap, and hints of sweetness which seem like graham wafers dipped in cane syrup …”

Please enjoy my review of this outstanding Single Malt Whisky which includes a my recipe recommendation, Provenance.

Chimo!

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

Review: Roca Patrón Reposado Tequila

Posted by Arctic Wolf on August 25, 2017

Roca Patrón Tequila is a pure 100% Agave Tequila made from agave grown in the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico. The agave is 6 to 7 years old when harvested, and the heart of the plant or the piña is all that is used. After harvest the piñas are chopped in half by hand and slowly steamed in masonry brick ovens for about 79 hours to soften them. The softened piñas are then shredded and placed into a traditional stone pit, where they are crushed by a large 2 ton stone milling wheel called a Tahona.

According to many Tequila producers, the manner in which juice is extracted from the piñas has a noticeable impact upon the flavour of the final distilled tequila. This was very evident when I tasted the Roca Patrón Tequila which has a noticeably softer earthy flavour than the regular Patrón Tequila distilled mainly from juice extracted by a roller mill.

Roca Patrón Reposado Tequila is distilled twice in copper pot stills , and then aged for 5 months in used American oak bourbon barrels. It is also one the best tasting Reposado tequila spirits I have encountered.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Roca Patrón Reposado Tequila

“… I discovered a lightly sweet, mildly punky agave aroma lifting from the glass. It has a fruity smell; but it did not carry the typical sharpness of citrus and white pepper which I usually find in highland tequila. Rather the citrus and pepper are blunted as the air above the glass also carried a subtle earthy quality which resembled aromas of baked zucchini and squash …”

Please enjoy my review which includes my recipe recommendation, Arctic Wolf’s Tequila Old Fashioned.

Chimo!

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

Review: Mount Gay Eclipse Silver Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on August 21, 2017

It was in 1910 that the appearance of Haley’s Comet coincided with a total solar eclipse, and this event is said to have inspired Mount Gay to create their Eclipse branded rums. Mount Gay 1703 Eclipse Silver Rum is composed of rum distillate produced from both pot and column still distillation. Although this rum is clear, it has nevertheless been matured in charred white oak barrels, barrels which previously held American whiskey. The lightly aged rum is filtered clear and bottled at 40 % alcohol by volume.

Today (across ten US states and through parts of the Caribbean) another total eclipse of the sun may be witnessed by those lucky enough to be in its path. It seems an ideal day to revisit and update my previous review for the Mount Gay Eclipse Silver Rum.

Review: Mount Gay Eclipse Silver Rum

“… I found that the white rum displayed an inviting aroma to my nostrils above the glass. The scents and smells of light butterscotch were evident as was a firm presence of banana, a mild citrus zest, and a light minty aroma. As the glass decanted a vague grassy vegetal scent began to waft upwards as well. Allowing the glass to breathe resulted in a strengthening of this ‘grassiness’ which seemed to imply a more complex character than I may have originally anticipated …”

Please enjoy the Eclipse today whether it be the astronomical phenomena or the great rum from Mount Gay!

Chimo!

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

Review: Rig Hand White Dog Corn Distillate (An Aging Simulation)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on August 19, 2017

Rig Hand White Dog Corn Distillate aged for 14 weeks in a small 1 liter cask.

The Rig Hand Craft Distillery (formerly Big Rig Distillery) opened their doors on October 17, 2015 and they already have an impressive line-up of spirits for sale at their boutique store within the facility. These spirits include their Premium Vodka and their selections of White Dog Distillate (not whisky for three years yet); and as well as their intriguing Sugar Beet Brum.

The distillery’s White Dog Malted Corn Distillate is produced from 100 % Alberta grown corn distilled upon the company’s main still (Mighty Morley). This is a versatile still consisting of a large wash still, two columns, and a condenser. The columns are different sizes, a short 4-plate column is used for stripping the spirit (reducing the water content), and a tall 16-plate column is used for Vodka production. The Corn Distillate is distilled twice through the through short 4-plate column to produce a more flavourful spirit than if the 16 plate column had been used. After distillation the spirit is either filtered and reduced to bottling proof (53.4 % alcohol by volume for my sample) to be sold as White Dog Corn Distillate, or it is placed in re-used oak casks to become whisky in three years.

For this review, I decided to aged the distillate for 14 weeks in a small 1 litre oak barrel in an attempt to simulate the maturation of a premium well-aged whisky. As you can see from the picture I snapped of the final product (placed in a new decanter), the hue of the whisky had reached deep copper .

I thought it would be interesting to share my simulation results as a ‘Whisky in Progress Review’.

You can read the results here:

Review: Rig Hand White Dog Corn Distillate (An Aging Simulation)

” … The harsh astringency of the new make distillate and its firm vegetal notes had been soothed by the time in the barrel, and firm woody notes, hints of chocolate and pungent baking spice were now the dominating aspects of the whisky …”

Please enjoy my review, Chimo!

Please bear in mind that this was only a simulation and all conclusions reached should be interpreted with caution.

Posted in Moonshine and New-make | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Review: Aviation Gin

Posted by Arctic Wolf on August 14, 2017

Aviation North

Aviation Gin is produced by House Spirits in the Pacific Northwest (Oregon). According to the company website, Aviation was the result of a collaboration between House Spirits and American Bartender, Ryan Magarian, and many consider this spirit to be the gin which launched the American Gin style.

For those unfamiliar with what is termed American Gin, it is a style which tempers the flavour of the juniper berry (and citrus to some extent) in favour of bringing forward a more floral style of gin. That is not to say that juniper is absent among the botanicals which help to infuse their flavour into the spirit, it is just that the juniper is held in check to allow the other botanicals, (in this case: cardamom, lavender, sarsaparilla, coriander, anise and orange peel) more expression.

Here is a link to my latest Gin Review:

Review: Aviation Gin

“… The piny aroma is not as forceful as a typical London Dry Gin, as juniper lies beside rather than ahead of the coriander and cardamom with lavender pushing through quite clearly as well. There are hints of lemon, licorice (anise) and mint and if you wait for it, orange peel climbs out of the glass to join in the menagerie of scents and smells …”

Please enjoy the review which includes my cocktail suggestion, Aviation North.

Chimo!

Posted in Gin, Gin Review | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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