Drinks on a Plane

AirbagI’m not a frequent traveler.  I seem to have found my location in the universe and seldom wander far from home.  On the rare occasion that I do travel, flight is not my preferred method.  I have nothing against it, it simply has gotten too hairy since the TSA started their security theater project.

In particular I dislike not having access to my own beverages.  Having to toss a perfectly good bottle of water and purchase another at the exorbitant airport prices is galling.  Even worse if you want to drink on the plane or in the airport you can have the added experience of highway robbery without ever leaving the plane.

In flight beverages can be even worse.  A single airplane bottle of crown royal that goes for $1.50 on the ground can run $7-$10 in the air.  Admittedly you can get a free coke and ice to go with it but that’s still a pretty hefty markup.

With a little careful planning you can drink on the plane and avoid paying out the nose for it.

It turns out that there is a little loophole in the TSA regulations.  You can bring any liquid through the security check so long as it is A) Less than 3.4 oz and B) fits into a quart size zip-top bag.  This means if you are willing to make due to hotel shampoo you can use that quart size bag to bring almost a dozen 50ml bottles of various alcohols onto the plane with you.

I have confirmed all of this through personal experience.

Even a couple of bottles of personal stash can make the difference between a good flight and a poor one.

Some things to keep in mind:
Don’t let the attendants see you open them, it’s just easier to avoid the hassle of having them tell you to put it away.
Plan your cocktails.  Getting free mixers from the drink cart is great.  Having a handful of single malts and a bottle of jagermeister to help them along is not.
Don’t overdo it.  Being drunk and disorderly on a plane is a great way to end up in federal prison.

Lastly, I came across this after my trip but I fully plan to snag a couple for road trips and future flights.

Jack Rudy Carry-on Cocktail Kit

Glaser Distilling

glaserLogoI was very pleased to run across a new addition to the Portland distillery scene.  While they don’t operate their actual stills in Portland it is the place to be for tasting rooms as many others have already proven.  Based out of a celebrated winery located near Roseburg they produce a number of very keen products that I was able to taste on my visit.

Glaser in the Pearl can be found at 1230 NW Hoyt A, Portland, OR 97209
a few scant blocks from I-405.  Parking is a challenge unless you’re there during the day.  They are open 2pm to 8 pm Tuesday through Sunday.

Among their offerings were both Vodka and White rum as well as a spiced rum and a few other items that I can’t seem to find on their website.  This may mean they were seasonal or could just indicate that they don’t update their site often.

Their more interesting items were a Limoncello, coffee, and Butterscotch liqueur.   I would have loved to have bought a bottle of each but funds limited me to a single bottle of the butterscotch.  I was assured by the very lovely Sandy Glaser herself that they produce all of the butterscotch used in the liqueur themselves which makes it doubly wonderful.

It has been a while since I visited but their selection does not appear to change often.  Prices were reasonable for the region and the liqueurs were excellent.  Personally I didn’t find anything in their regular spirits to write home about but your mileage may vary.

Make Your Own: Coconut Sugar Simple Syrup

wpid-wp-1426623842805.jpegThere are as many kinds of sugar out there as there are fruits and vegetables.  Most sugar we consume is made from either sugar cane or from sugar beets.  While there are numerous sugar substitutes the number of all natural sweeteners is also constantly expanding.  Case in point, Coconut sugar.  I had not seen this product before but there it was on an endcap at the grocery store.

Ever the experimental dabbler I picked up the only size bag they offered and endeavored to see what you could do with it.  This is the Madhava 1lb bag and it runs about $6.50.  For starters it is brown.  Not brown like brown sugar is brown, but a kind of rough woody brown with oddly uneven grains.  It is also unlike most other sugar cane based sweeteners in scent.  It lacks the bitter molasses notes that are so common to sugars and caramels.

I started with a test base of about 30g of sugar to 30g of water.  I elected to do this as a quick and dirty microwave batch rather than my normal stovetop method.  After about 10 seconds the grains had begun to dissolve and it took a full 20 more seconds to get the entire mixture combined.  It took some additional stirring to dissolve the grains and I think without that action they might not have dissolved at all.

The resulting syrup is dark, almost black opaque liquid.  The scents present before of woody, palm like aroma have increased dramatically.

On the tongue this is a very rich product.  The flavor is closer in content to an unsulphurated or blackstrap molasses than anything else I can compare it to.  There is very little in the way of a coconut flavor, this may stem from the source of the sugar.  Coconut sugar is dried palm tree sap, perhaps closer akin to maple syrup than granulated sugar.

While not sweeter than sugar the extra flavors present are not always complimentary and do make this a much harder sweetener to use in context.  I attempted a basic old fashioned and found that the woodiness of the sugar clashed horribly with the lemon in my cocktail.  Given the quantity of citrus drinks in the general catalog this could be a major hindrance.  Additionally the darker color makes anything you put this into a much darker drink that it would be otherwise.  In a bourbon or whiskey cocktail that might not be an issue but again the flavor is not fantastic with oak either.

I did use some of this syrup when making Irish Cream and the difficulty with getting the grains to dissolve again caused for problems in the finished product.  I have yet to find a cocktail that works well with this but I think more experimenting with rum and possibly an orgeat or falernum addition might turn this around.

In all, I cannot recommend this product.  The price per pound, general inflexibility in use, lack of availability and oddness of flavor make it so much less desirable than agave, honey or cane sugar.

Bourbon Heritage: The Whiskey Rebellion

rebellionIt may seem a little unusual now but until the passage of the federal income tax via the 16th amendment in 1913 the federal government received almost three quarters of their revenue from alcohol taxes.

After the end of the revolutionary war the federal government had racked up something in the order of $54 million in war debt.  By 1789 the debt had become a problem and by 1791 the government had found a solution in the form of excise taxes on distilled spirits.

This was the first time the government had imposed a tax on domestically produced goods.  This was especially hard on farming communities in the “western” part of the country.  Whiskey was used to convert excess grain into a cash crop which given the lack of a national currency was a common medium of exchange.

The rebellion started in 1791 with the tarring and feathering of a tax collector.  Followed by the murder of a process server, delivering papers to the tax collector’s murderers.  Tax offices were burned and the federal response was the brutal suppression of the dissenters.

The entire affair can and does occupy several books of history but the end result is that the rebellion failed and many of the people involved left Pennsylvania moving westward and south into what would eventually become Kentucky, Tennessee and the rest of the bourbon belt.

All your favorite brands in one way or another owe their existence to those Pennsylvania Rye makers who fought hard to keep their moonshine.

Casker

I was searching for a place online that I could buy some rarer bottles when I stumbled upon a fantastic site.  Caskers.com is a plethora of bottles both mundane and unique.  The only drawback to the site I’ve found so far is that it requires you to create a login or use facebook to access the site at all.  Once you’re beyond that hurdle the site is very responsive on both desktop and mobile.

Breaking it down the site has 5 sections.  Firstly is the spirits themselves, a massive list that can be filtered by your location, the spirit type, point of origin and more importantly by in or out of stock.  The least expensive item in their catalog appears to be a $28 bottle of honey flavored vodka and the most expensive a $1000 bottle of 30 year old Balvenie.  I could swear that I’ve seen more expensive and unique bottles that have likely sold out and been removed.

Next up is the clubs.  Much like the current fashion for mail order boxes of unique stuff from places like lootcrate, glambag or Citrus Lane these clubs offer a curated selection of spirits.  Choosing from whiskey, vodka, or spirits you can have up to 4 shipments a quarter sent to your home for about $100-160 per package.  There is also an office option where starting at $250 you can have as many spirits as you want delivered as often as you need.

There is also a line of accessories with everything from drinking horn novelty cups to engraved glassware.

Something I have only seen offered by Jack Daniels is the private cask.  Starting at $1500 you can choose an entire cask of a spirit of your choice and have it custom bottled with your own label, be it for a wedding, graduation, retirement, hunting cabin or private club.  The Jack Daniels option was close to $1000 and generally required a licensed agent to facilitate the transaction, I can only assume caskers is taking on the more boring portions of this in exchange for a higher price tag.

Lastly is their concierge service.  If you’ve ever had a white whale that you couldn’t locate on your own and despaired of having the time and funds to travel to the places that might have what you need then this is the site for you.  Caskers offers a service to track down rare, ultra-premium and small batch products.  There’s no listed prices as this is the kind of service where if you have to ask you probably can’t afford it but I’d be tempted to see if they could find something limited but mundane like the Mt. Vernon rye or Anchor Christmas Spirit.

This site has shown me some very interesting stuff, from a vodka made entirely out of of honey to an absinthe named for Emperor Norton.  I haven’t had the chance to place an order but I’ve played around with their shopping cart and with a shipping cost of only $9.99 for a single bottle and $24.99 for a six bottle case they are more reasonable than several other sites I’ve visited.

Pricing is obviously going to be tricky but on a few items I could compare online they were the same as other web vendors.  For the items that appeared locally on oregonliquorsearch.com the pricing was pretty close with a difference of a few dollars here or there but neither caskers nor the local shops appeared to have the advantage.

The real benefit here is selection.  The internet has not been the boon to liquor sales that you might expect due to the problems of distribution and the costs involved in shipping.  If caskers can offer Lost Spirits, Balcones, or even just a wider selection of small batch major label products then they’re already ahead of anything else I’ve run across.

Tilt in the Pearl District

A recent addition to the Portland landscape Tilt currently operates two locations.  One on Swan Island in north Portland and another in the Pearl district.  A third location on east Burnside will be opening soon.

I’ve been to the pearl location several times now and I can say that the experience loses nothing by repetition.  Squarely on the corner of 13th and Everett, Tilt is among good company with restaurants such as Hamlet, Oven and shaker and Vault Martini.

Inside the decor is spartan with chrome and black in abundance and the odd piece of industrial equipment squarely situated for flavor.   There is a seating area and a long bar with numerous stools, booths and a ping pong table.

The menu is heavy on the american standards of hamburger, fried chicken, biscuits and gravy, and pie.  Despite the greasy spoon similarities the menu is exquisitely prepare and each portion is of a quality that knocks you off your stool.  The burgers are huge, juicy and filling.  The sides and appetizers are equally robust.  I personally recommend the bacon tots.  The tots are made fresh and each is a tiny wad of deep fried potato that delights and stuffs you like a thanksgiving turkey.  They come in 6, 12 and 18 pieces but beware as they are each huge and stick to your ribs.

Pie is the other serious offering here.  Everything sweet from cinnamon rolls to tarts is on offer but Pie is king and like any good late night diner you can get a slice of just about anything hot, a la mode, or even done up as a milkshake.

Now, you might ask why I would bring all this to my blog.  The answer is simple, they have possibly the second deepest bar I have seen in Portland.  Many places can get by with a smaller selection of more complex items but sitting in Tilt you can start picking out great bottles for ten feet in either direction and still not see everything they’ve got.

The cocktail menu appears to be seasonal, with about 10 unique options every season.  Their winter menu was still on board when I first went and I had the opportunity to drink something made with rum, nocino and lime that gave me new ideas.   In the spring I had a little coupe called a night swim that involved a basic martini splashed with vanilla syrup and creme de violet.  Everything I have had there is complex.  Flavors from bitter to sweet play in a wonderland of presentation and selection.

More tellingly the bartenders are never coy about what they are using and when asked to make a bourbon milk punch for the Hopboxer they gamely took down the recipe and presented an excellent cocktail in reply.

I look forward to their east Burnside location finally opening as I want something closer to my work and home where I can take friends and family.  My downtown options were previously locked in but I think that given the quality of the food and the much better selection I’m moving Tilt to the top of my list when it comes time to pick a restaurant.

Why can’t I take Everclear on the plane?

IMG_20131206_092742One of the more unusual restrictions I found when researching what alcohol you can take on a plane is the limit on proof.  For airlines the limit is 140 proof or about 70% ABV.  This limit applies to checked luggage only from what I can tell.  Bottles in your carry-on don’t seem to get the same treatment.  This led to two possible answers.  First is the fact that high-proof spirits are actually illegal to sell in at least 15 States and transporting them could lead to significant liability.

Second is the possibility for damage to the aircraft and cargo.

For legality purposes it is illegal to sell alcohol at 190 proof in California, Florida, Hawaii, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, New York, Virginia, and Pennsylvania.  It’s totally legal to own so far as I’ve been able to tell but as with many other things the devil is in the details.

My college chemistry courses taught us about a concept called vapor pressure.  Essentially the boiling point of a liquid is decreased depending on the amount of atmospheric pressure applied to it.  This is the reason that people who live at high altitude or who go hiking in the mountains have to take care when cooking.  Water will boil at a much lower temperature leading to inaccurate cooking times.  As you can see below the boiling point drops significantly as the pressure decreases.   Standard cruising altitude for most aircraft is 30,000 feet at which point the pressure would be around 226 torr outside.  Given the chart below that puts the boiling point somewhere between 40 and 65 C.  The closer to 200 proof you get the lower the boiling point.

When alcohol boils it turns into a gas which rapidly increases the pressure inside the bottle and causes either the cap to fail or the bottle itself to shatter, at which point you have a quantity of highly flammable gas loose inside the hold of an aircraft.

Not to mention that the exploding liquor bottle and flying glass could do a bit of damage on their own.

Depending on the aircraft most cargo holds are generally pressurized and heated.  Some aren’t heated but regardless the changes in pressure and temperature shouldn’t impact a bottle while in flight.

So in the end this amounts to an overabundance of caution from the airlines.  I’ve reached out to some airlines in an effort to better understand this restriction but have not yet heard back from any.

Whiskey Tees

Update: Upon reviewing the picture for this story I found that the site appears to no longer be active.

 

Item of the month clubs that send boxes of fancy stuff seem to be a dime a dozen these days.  From Lootcrate to Glambag the bag of random stuff to your door has returned.  One that caught my eye recently was Whiskey Tees.  A company that for $20 a month will send you a different whiskey distiller’s shirt each month.  Discounts for yearly subscriptions are offered which can bring the total down to $16 per shirt.

They say that each of the shirts uses unique artwork from the various distillers but from the example shirts on their site it looks mostly like the company logo plastered on a random color t-shirt.  The ones I recognize from Corsair, Koval and Few aren’t really that different than what you see on their bottles.

Additionally while it may seem like the hipster thing to do by wearing a shirt from a liquor you probably can’t even buy in your state the shirts are likely not much better than what you could purchase from the various company websites.  Unlike liquor there aren’t any restrictions on what T-shirts you can ship interstate.

Great idea for the whiskey drinking friend who likes to advertise their hobby.

What is the difference between Whiskey, Rye, Scotch and Bourbon?

6156035_origI had an opportunity to work in a distillery retail store, which is much like a standard liquor store only with a limited selection.  People of all types came along with questions like “do you sell scotch?”  At first I was befuddled, that people could be so ignorant of what they were drinking.  After a couple of weeks I stopped wondering and started pulling out the details so I could really answer people’s questions.  One of the most prominent was “What is Bourbon?”

This is actually a much deeper question than it first appears because it comes right on the heels of the more important question, “What is whisk(e)y?”

The term whiskey simply means any grain spirit distilled to less than 160 proof, barreled at no more than 125 proof and aged in an oak barrel.

Bourbon, Rye and Single Malt whiskeys are all sub-types of whiskey that specify a specific grain type that predominates.  So you could make whiskey with 20% each of corn, rye, barley, quinoa and wheat but you could never call the resulting franken-whiskey anything other than just whiskey.  If you have at least 51% of rye you can call it a rye whiskey but anything less and you’re stuck with the general label.  Please keep in mind that much of what I’m going to discuss here is based on American regulations or American trade deals with other countries.  Some things could be different outside the US and I’m also not a lawyer or an expert on TTB regulations.

Aging and the White Dog

The aging stipulation is actually a funny bit.  The rules say you have to age it, but not how long.  Another loophole is that predominantly corn whiskey can be sold unaged.  This is where moonshine comes from.  Moonshine or White Dog is a kind of unaged whiskey where the product spends as little time as possible in a barrel.  In some cases this is simply the time it takes to pump the liquor into and out of the barrel.  Some distilleries like House Spirits let their White Dog rest for as long as 3 days.  Because there is no regulation on the term white dog anyone can use it to mean any number of things.  So if a label says white dog but not whiskey then chances are it doesn’t contain the right amount of corn or that they age it in something other than oak, if at all.  Moonshine is also an unregulated term so it could just as easily refer to a sugar based spirit as shown in Pink Panty Dropper Watermelon Moonshine.

If the whiskey has been aged for at least 2 years and contains no other flavoring or coloring additives it may also be labeled as Straight Whiskey.  This can be applied to any type from Straight Rye to Straight Bourbon.  If a whiskey is over two years it gets the option to be called straight, it’s not a requirement but if you see straight on the label you can infer something about the age.

Beyond that the rules regarding age are rather complicated.  That is a link to the TTB regulations on Age, whiskey occupies a full 6 pages of this 16 page document.  The big take away is that if the spirit is less than 4 years old then an age statement is required.

Bourbon

Bourbon is actually a sub-type of corn whiskey, where corn whiskey requires at least 80% corn in the initial mash bourbon is less stringent and requires only 51% or greater.

All bourbons are aged in new charred american oak barrels, this statement requires some parsing.  New means unused previously, only fresh barrels are used for each batch.  This means that some of the flavors and mellowing involved in the contact between alcohol and wood never gets to carry over from batch to batch.  Additionally it means that there are quite a few used bourbon barrels on the market as the distillery can’t reuse old barrels for bourbon.  These get snapped up by beer brewers, rum makers and scotch distillers for use in their own less stringent aging processes.

The next part of the statement is charred, this means that the barrel will be imparting both color and flavor to the spirit as the charcoal filters the spirit over time.  Uncharred barrels will generally do this to some degree but never to the same extent that even a lightly charred barrel will.  Charring is not an on or off process.  Barrels can be charred or toasted to any number of degrees which allows the distiller to control how quickly and to what extent flavors will be imparted over the aging process.

Lastly we come to American Oak, this is important because there are actually many species of white oak from American to French and even an Oregon specific variety.  Each has a slightly different character due to climate, soil and species that can impart drastically different flavors to the finished product.  For a prime example I suggest tasting the Burnside Oregon Oaked Bourbon alongside its 4 year counterpart and compare the differences.  Requiring a specific species limits the range of flavors that the wood can vary from and also gives a healthy kick to the American Cooperage industry.

Bourbon has some other finicky bits about barrel strength, bottle strength and such but most of these don’t impact the differences between other whiskey.

Tennessee Whiskey

As bourbon is a sub-type of corn whiskey, so too is Tennessee Whiskey a sub-type of bourbon.  Only recently defined by Tennessee state law they have defined Tennessee Whiskey as a bourbon that undergoes the Lincoln County Process.

This means that first off the producers in Tennessee have to adhere to all of the normal restrictions for bourbon with regard to content, age, and process.  The Lincoln County Process refers to a process where the raw unaged bourbon is filtered through sugar maple charcoal prior to being cut and barreled.  This is not an exact process as different distilleries will either soak or trickle the whiskey through the charcoal and will do so at differing proofs and temperatures.

Funny Story, none of the distilleries that use the Lincoln county process are actually IN Lincoln county.  Jack Daniels, George Dickel and several others are located in next door Moore County and have been for most of their existence.  A little digging shows that Moore county was created out of parts of Lincoln county sometime in the 1850’s which means it’s not a new change.

Additionally, the only distillery actually in Lincoln county is Prichard’s.  Through an amazing example of targeted lobbying Prichard’s managed to get an exception to the Tennessee law added which exempts them from the requirement to use charcoal filtering on the basis that they have never used it before.  The law was originally sponsored by Jack Daniels and so I don’t really see much wrong with other distillers getting their digs in against a law which promotes exactly the process JD has been using for over a hundred years.  What makes it funny is that Prichard’s has only been around since 1997 and was able to have enough sway to get something like this done.

Rye Whiskey

Legally a Rye Whiskey is one in which the grain content has at least 51% rye.  As explained above bourbon is primarily corn with the remainder being composed of things like rye and wheat.  It is therefore possible to have a rye and a bourbon in which the difference in the content is a 2% change from rye to corn.

I can’t actually name any whiskey that meets this definition as most companies do not publish their grain bill but under the rules it is possible.

Rye tends to have a spicier flavor as compared to the mellow notes of wheat.  Rye also has a fairly distinctive aroma.  Rye is aged in oak like most other whiskey but unlike bourbon does not have the same level of restrictions on how it is produced and under what circumstances.

This leads to a lot more variance in how rye is composed and a lot less consistency across various brands.  Many major brands offer a Rye from Bulleit‘s rather traditional offering to the Ri-One craziness from beam-suntory.

Scotchy Scotch Scotch

First off all scotch is made in Scotland.  If it’s made outside of Scotland the definition gets a bit more murky but some alternative names include American Single Malt, Single Malt, Malt Whisky, and of course he catch all Whisky (no e).  The second big requirement for all of the types in this category is that they use predominantly barley or malted barley in their grain bill.  Third Scotch is aged for three years in oak casks.

When they say made in Scotland they get really picky, it must be processed, converted, fermented, distilled, aged, bottled and labeled IN Scotland.

Their naming guidelines are equally odd.  You cannot use the name of a distillery on the bottle unless the product actually came from there.  This is in contrast to the US where we are presently having our own growing pains with non-distilling producers.

Single Malt Whisky is actually three terms and not one.  The Single portion means how many distilleries were involved in the process.  Single means it all happens in one shop, Blended means more than one distillery’s product was combined into the results.  Malt means that the contents are 100% malted barley, if instead it said grain it would mean that other cereal grains were used in the grain bill.

More interesting still is that the laws in Scotland actually prohibit the production of non-scotch whisky.  So you will likely never see a Scottish bourbon, or a good Scottish rye.  It would take forever to list out the more salient details of the various kinds of scotch and I’m nothing like an expert on any of them but suffice to say they are many, manifold and delicious.

As to American Single Malts there have been a number of them arising over the years and several of them have outperformed ancient named Scottish brands in tasting competitions.

Irish Whiskey

Previously one of the most popular types of whiskey, Irish Whiskey has taken a pretty hard fall over the years.  Generally similar to scotch, there are considerably fewer restrictions on how it is produced.  For one thing most Irish whiskey is distilled three times compared to two for scotch.  It is also aged for three years.  Beyond that, it simply has to have the character of the component grains to qualify.

For such a famous spirit it is very strange that there are only a bare dozen distilling operations in the entire country.  The most famous of which are the distilleries producing Jameson and Bushmills.

What is Malting?

You might only hear the term Malt when talking about scotch but the process itself is used in a number of areas.  Essentially what happens is that grains are exposed to water and then allowed to sprout, this begins the process of converting the stored starch in the grain into sugar.  The grains are then very rapidly dried and the process stopped creating a product with a lot of accessible sugar and a high content of the enzyme which breaks down starches already active and ready to go.  Any grain can be malted but it is not necessary to put this fact on the label, so if you see malted *grain* on your whiskey it was the distiller’s choice to put that there.

In general this provides for a more rapid fermentation than using unmalted product.  Additionally, barley contains a much higher concentration of the enzyme than other grains which makes malted barley an excellent product for kickstarting the fermentation process in other grains which might take much longer to begin fermenting on their own.

It is also how you begin the process of fermenting things like potatoes which do not normally contain enzymes of their own and would otherwise not ferment.

More recently synthetic enzymes have come on the market allowing distillers to produce similar results without the addition of barley to their products.

What is Sour Mash?

Sour Mash is another optional label component.  The process is a bit like keeping a bit of sourdough starter to begin your next batch.  Some of the fermented mash from a previous batch is added to new washes to allow some of the original yeast strains to carry over.  This has a big impact on flavor and most of the best whiskey is sour mashed whether they say so on the label or not.

A list of terms that don’t actually mean anything

Handcrafted
Small Batch
Barrel Aged
Cask Strength
Moonshine
Single Barrel

Aval Pota

aval pota 2Mcmenamin’s operates two distilleries in the Portland area, one at Edgefield and another at Imbrie Hall.  Their products aren’t generally sold outside of their own operations but with dozens of small strip mall bars all over town it isn’t exactly hard to find their stuff if you want it.

Recently I went shopping for presents and found a number of new products on their shelf.  Among them was this tasty little number.  Aval is middle welsh for apple, Pota is old Irish for a pot still.  From the name you would expect an apple brandy but Aval Pota is basically apple pie.  Unlike a number of the other ones on the market this one isn’t a moonshine base it uses a single malt whiskey.

Blended with apple juice and spices down to a reasonable proof this is a pretty sweet liqueur.  It runs well hot or cold, the apple flavor in most things is normally too mild to notice but this holds up well.  Apple smell on top is a nice aroma followed by the cinnamon.  The flavors carry over into the first and second notes where you get the sweet and crisp kind of apple flavor you might get from a dried apple ring.  The whiskey has a nice bite on the end, being from single malt it doesn’t have the more spicy or rounded notes of a bourbon or rye.

A little spendy for something this low a proof, most flavored whiskey products aim a little lower since they know the whiskey flavor will be covered over and thus any imperfections will be less noticeable. Pick up a bottle when things get colder and drop a little into your tea or cider.  This doesn’t disappoint.

33% ABV and $29.95 for a 750ml bottle.