Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Eleven Wells Spirits

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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Butcher’s Bourbon - Prime Cut Tennessee Straight Bourbon

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Monday, June 29, 2015

Glenkinchie Single Malt

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Sunday, June 28, 2015

Zane Lamprey’s New Monkey Rum - A First Sampling

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I can’t tell you how excited I was when I opened the care package sent from Monkey Rum today.  First off I was greeted by our pal Pleepleus sitting on top of each cap, and even better yet, the box included two different Rum varieties for us to sample.

For those unfamiliar, Monkey Rum was created by National Geographic TV host of “CHUG” and former host of Drinking Made Easy and Three Sheets; Zane Lamprey.  After sampling spirits in over 60 different countries, Zane has a pretty amazing palate for spirits, and especially for one of his favorites, Rum.

According to Zane, “I set out to create a Rum that captured the spirit of my adventures--a more evolved Rum compared to what was available on the market.”  Zane worked with co-founder Ian Crystal and the team at Monkey Rum to not only create some unique varieties of Rum, but also some unique packaging.  The labels are loaded with Zane Lamprey show references, with the train representing “CHUG” (with a train number representing the number of Kickstarter backers that supported Zane), the sailboat representing Three Sheets, loads of Pleepleus and monkey references and even the “evolution spirits” seal representing the evolution of man and the progress made in developing this Rum.

As if that’s not enough fun, the barrel-shaped bottle not only highlights the fact that these Rums are barrel-aged, but it is designed to be recycled or more accurately Up-cycled.  The base of the bottle forms the perfect rocks glass or pint glass, and the neck can be up-cycled to form a Daiquiri goblet.  Monkey Rum will also be running a promotion where consumers can mail the empty bottle back in the gift box and Monkey Rum will return the repurposed glassware.
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So enough of that fun, lets get down to tasting.  We always like to sample spirits straight up as well as in a mixed drink so of course that’s what we did.  Monkey Rum with Toasted Coconut was up first.  The aromas of this Rum are distinctly roasty with softer notes of coconut.  There's a subtle banana-like fruity aroma with a little caramel at the end.  The flavors follow the aromas pretty accurately, however this Rum leads with a really delicate roasted coconut followed by a chewy caramel up front and it finishes with a boozy yet almost buttery finish.  Overall it

‘s really clean and pleasant and the toasted coconut flavors really makes it unique.

Up next we tasted Monkey Rum Spiced Rum.  While I initially found some pineapple in the nose, it was followed immediately with lots of herbal and spicy aromas.  On the palate I thought I tasted allspice, cinnamon and some other really well balanced herbals.  In the middle there’s lots of sweet molasses as well as some slightly fruity and nutty flavors.  As with Monkey Rum Toasted Coconut, both Rums finished cleanly with no aftertaste.

As far as the Rum cocktails are concerned, we decided of course to make a Pina Colada with the Toasted Coconut and a classic Mai Tai with the Spiced Rum.  We wanted to keep it fairly simple and choose a cocktail that we thought would play into the strengths of each Rum.   Both cocktails were of course delicious and I think both drinks benefitted from this level of premium barrel-aged Rum.  In the end I think we really appreciated the flavors of these Rums straight up much more than mixed into a cocktail, but whatever you choose, you’ll really enjoy Monkey Rum.

A big thank you to everyone at Monkey Rum for sending these samples.  Monkey Rum clocks in at 35%-ABV and it is available in 750ml bottles in CA, NY, FL and NJ so be sure to try it for yourself and be sure to let me know what you think.

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Friday, June 26, 2015

Wild Reeds Blue

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Thursday, June 25, 2015

Chancellor’s Clear Mountain Rye Whiskey

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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Georgia Mountain Moonshine Corn Whiskey

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Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Wood Hat - Double Wood Pecan & Oak Bourbon Whiskey

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Jameson Irish Whiskey Announces Drinking Buddies Collaborations With Five Craft Breweries

imageFrom Jameson:

NEW YORK, NY – (June 23, 2015) Jameson® Irish whiskey announces today the next phase of the Jameson Drinking Buddies program, highlighting distinct craft beer collaborations with American breweries. Continuing on last year’s successful collaboration with KelSo Beer Company of Brooklyn, Jameson is partnering with five local breweries from across the US who exemplify devotion to the spirit of their neighborhoods and share Jameson’s passion for craft & quality in the beer they produce.

The five breweries from across the US include – Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles, Captain Lawrence Brewing Company in New York, Deep Ellum Brewing Company in Dallas, Great Divide Brewing Company in Denver, and Hilliard's Beer in Seattle. Jameson invited each brewery to the distillery in Ireland, and then sent them home with Jameson Whiskey barrels to create a limited edition beer inspired by both their experience in Ireland, and their own unique neighborhood.

Showcased in a video series, being released over the coming weeks on JamesonNeighborhood.com, is the story of each partner brewery in the Drinking Buddies program. From visiting the Jameson distillery in Ireland, to becoming buddies with the whiskey distillers, the series sheds light on each brewer’s Drinking Buddies experience. Following the distillery visit, the brewers returned home to their neighborhood breweries with Jameson barrels, where the episodes chronicle the beers they ultimately brewed.

“The breweries involved share Jameson’s passion for craftsmanship, quality, and creativity,” said Sona Bajaria, Director, Jameson Irish Whiskey, Pernod Ricard USA. “With the creation of these locally brewed Jameson-inspired beers, our goal is to pay homage to the spirit of each brewery’s neighborhood.”

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For more information on these unique collaborations, videos detailing the partnerships and tasting notes on the five specialty beers, please visit https://www.jamesonneighborhood.com.

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Monday, June 22, 2015

Jack Daniel Distillery Announces Launch of "Jack Daniel's Tennessee Fire" in Canada

imageCALGARY, ALBERTA--June 22, 2015 - The Jack Daniel Distillery announced today it has launched a new red hot cinnamon liqueur called "Jack Daniel's Tennessee Fire," in Canada. Crafted with Jack Daniel's Old No. 7 whiskey and naturally infused with a proprietary red hot cinnamon liqueur for a smooth and delicious taste, Jack Daniel's Tennessee Fire will be available across Canada this summer.

Based upon the tremendous success of Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey and the explosive popularity of the liqueurs and flavoured whiskeys, distillery officials said they wanted to offer existing and new friends another Jack Daniel's flavor option.

"We were extremely pleased with the launch of our first liqueur, Tennessee Honey, in 2011," said Jack Daniel's Master Distiller, Jeff Arnett. "The success of Tennessee Fire in the U.S. again proved our friends have a thirst for flavored offerings, and we're very excited to see how this product is received in Canada this summer. Folks know that any time they see Jack Daniel's name on a new product, they can trust its quality. I'm interested to hear what our Canadian friends think about it."

Jack Daniel's Tennessee Fire will be available at 35% alc/vol. and priced in line with Jack Daniel's Old no.7 and Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey.

Follow @JackFire and facebook.com/JackTNFire for more information.

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Palmetto Moonshine Blackberry

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Hindus Upset at Whisky Named After Sacred Nectar: Amrut

imageFrom Rajan Zed:

Hindus are upset at a single malt whisky named as Amrut (which they regard as sacred nectar of immortality), calling it highly inappropriate.

Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that amrut (amrta) emerged from Churning of the Ocean (samudra-manthana), which was highly important part of Hindu faith; and linking whisky to it was trivialization of the oldest and third largest religion of the world with a rich philosophical thought.

Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, pointed out that amrut, which also found mention in oldest existing scripture of the mankindRig-Veda, was the name given  to the nectar of immortality, which bestowed deathlessness. Selling whisky named as Amrut was highly misleading and it hurt the feelings of the devotees. Moreover, amrut (amrit) is also blessed water in Sikhism and some denominations of Buddhism.

Symbols and concepts of any faith, larger or smaller, should not be mishandled, Rajan Zed noted.

Meanwhile, the website of Amrut Distilleries Limited which produces Amrut Single Malt Whisky sold worldwide in various flavors, also mentions: …when Gods and Rakshasas - the demons - churned the oceans using the mountain Meru as churner, a golden pot sprang out containing the Elixir of Life. That was called the "Amrut"…

Amrut Distilleries Limited run by N.R. Jagdale Group, founded by the late Radhakrishna Jagdale in 1948 and currently headed by Neelakanta Rao Jagdale, is headquartered in Bangalore (India) with its European distributor based in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne (United Kingdom). It has bottling units in Karnataka and Kerala states of India and claims to have grown into a trans-national player. “Amrut presents this product as a humble tribute to the Indian farmer”, company website says talking about Amrut Whisky, which is available at Duty Free shop also.

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