Willett Bourbon Review
Willett Bourbon Review
October 12th, 2010
With winter well on it's way (yup, I said it... SNOW) one of the larger shifts in the beverage industry has to do with Whiskey becoming the main focus and interest in bars, restaurants, and private purchases. Out with cosmos and in with manhattan's, mint juleps, highballs, and even neat: as cold weather hits, Whiskey is at the top of the list. Amongst the vast sea of these wondrous spirits (Scotch, Irish, Canadian, American, Rye, Bourbon...etc) there seems to be a growing market for "unique" or "limited" Whiskeys, Bourbon in particular. Whether it's production levels, specific barrels, or constant supervision by a famous celebrity, whatever fits the Distiller's ideal for such small releases seems to be working. With Distillers constantly improving recipes and pushing the envelope of traditional Whiskey production, there is one Whiskey as of late, that is worth recognizing.
At your first glance of Willett Bourbon, the tall, well-crafted bottle shaped as a traditional "Pot Still" from which the Whiskey is made from, you may think the Bourbon is all cosmetics. Once you open and pour the spirit you quickly realize that this is not true, the nose is bold with oak spice and vanilla with underlying coconut tones. The drink is exceptionally smooth for how big the nose is, the massive mouth feel is accompanied by brilliant notes of cinnamon, butterscotch, and nutmeg to round out the drink.
With a superior product encased in a unique and well represented package, Willett Bourbon is a standout in the crowd of fine Bourbons and Limited Releases.
Posted by Mark Fetter on October 25th, 2010 | Permalink
Bogle Old Vine Zinfandel Review
Bogle Old Vine Zinfandel
Zinfandel Tasting, Park Hill Golf Course
September 28th, 2010
Off the bat I must confess that going into the Zinfandel Tasting, domestic Zins and I were on a "so-so" basis. I was used to the high alcohol, almost abrasive fruit structured that ultimatley finished with more alcohol on the back, massive Californian monster wines. So going into a tasting of over 170 Zins, I was sceptic. Starting off I met up with my good friend and fellow co-worker Mats who if you know Mats, you know how much he loves wine, especially Zins. I figured if I could tag along with him throughout the tasting that I would tackle the best wines of the night and I was correct. Mats guided me to many different styles of Zins from the old world style Primitivo's from Italy to the bold, earthy, lush-fruited Zins of Dry Creek. I had many favorites throughout the tasting but one in particular I thought was drinking exceptionall well, the Bogle "Old Vine" Zin from California.
Even after tasting a variety of Zins (which is about as straining on your palate as it gets) the nose on the Bogle still showed through: bright raspberry fruit and oak with underlying vanilla spice without the expected heat from the almost 15% ALC. The drink was long, starting with an intense mouthfeel rich with ripe cherries and black raspberry fruits that lead into silky tanins and a delightful, lingering chocolate covered raspberry finish. For a wine to stand out amoungst 170 of it's cousins is impressive alone, but then seeing the $10.99 price tag set me over the edge. The other charateristic about this wine that stuck with me was it's ability to pair with food but also make an amazing wine to drink on it's own. Some of the Zins during the tasting were so alcoholic and "hot" that I swore I was handed a Zin-flavored vodka martini, to have a balance between structure and acidity while the alcohol still wasn't overwhelming the delicate fruit profile is to me what makes a good Zin, and the Bogle Old Vine Zin is one, good, ZIN.
Posted by Mark Fetter on October 4th, 2010 | Permalink