Saintseester’s enthusiasm for the espresso martini has inspired me to write about my own affections in that vein.
When it comes to the hard stuff, I’m a bourbon or Tennessee whiskey sort of fellow, with a non-small amount of affection for Canadian as well. I can drink Scotch in polite company, but it’s never my first choice.
I mix whiskey occasionally, but I usually have it either on the rocks in a highball glass (in the summer), or neat in a snifter (in the winter).
I keep several in stock, and have been exploring premium offerings from some of the folks whose “regular” spirits I generally keep on hand. Here are reviews of three I’ve tried lately (well, the last one is actually a years-old standby, but the first two are relatively recent):
Wild Turkey Rare Breed. Fire, fire, fire, and nothing but fire. I’m wholly underwhelmed with what is supposedly a premium bourbon from Wild Turkey. This starts off like downing a slug of acetylene, and finishes with all the subtlety of chewing up and swallowing a Bic lighter. It’s extremely disappointing, particularly given that run-of-the-mill Wild Turkey 101 is plenty hot itself, but with enough woody and spicy personality to make it all worth it. No character in this Rare Breed bottle; only heat. Hey, guys? I can get just as much heat for a hell of a lot less money than this. WmWms grade: F
Crown Royal Special Reserve. Much better. This is smooth, appealingly but not obscenely sweet, with a clean finish. Its main problem is that I find it absolutely indistinguishable from regular Crown Royal–itself no pedestrian spirit at $56 for the big bottle. I like Crown Royal a lot, but what am I paying for when I buy Special Reserve? Just a fancier bottle cap, it seems. WmWms grade: C
Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel. Oh, my. Oh, my my. One swallow is a bit smoky; the next, fruity, with a little maple note; the next, you just can’t tell, but it’s always a delight. Better keep drinking it to find out. I also quite enjoy the subtle variation from bottle to bottle. This is my drink. This is what I would be buried with, if I believed in taking earthly stuff with you (or being buried at all, for that matter). This taste is far beyond the relatively modest premium thay charged for it. I remember always looking forward to a sniffter of this to accompany Curb Your Enthusiasm, back when we had HBO a few uyears previosu. It’s just, um, really good, you know what I mean? I mean, like REALLY YUMMY. I realllly, really, REALLY like this….and stuff. I mean, I can’t hardlay talk and stuff tqylking about quite ahoauws much apoietuapiej i hoalkeja; eliea ahdgay.a dgancan AUI have ahgaontoher hone>? ahasdhawlheha, haskdlhreally agoahsahergabwsgal;ksdmf. ,dfmaiopjaom r’eikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikikik
Thanks to winehardware.com for the snifter image. Thanks to jackdaniels.com for the Single Barrel image.