New Release Spirits of Note

December 16, 2015 § Leave a comment

There are lots of new spirits that have made their way onto the shelves of your local bottle shop in recent weeks. I was chatting with Stacey Brennan of the Hillside Liquor Store (North Dairy and Shelbourne in Victoria) about which items really tickled her fancy and this what she said.

Legend Distilling Blasted Brew Coffee Liqueur ~ $26 + Tax

Legend Distilling Blasted BrewLegend Handmade Vodka and locally roasted organic coffee from Backyard Beans in Summerland come together to create a spiked coffee exploding with flavour. Hints of dark chocolate and vanilla mingle with the smooth flavour of cold brewed coffee to create this unique craft liqueur. Perfect sipped on it’s own or in your favourite coffee cocktail.

Legend has it, blasting through rock to build the Kettle Valley Railway was dangerous work, especially during winter, when the explosives would get a little frosty. When workers slept in late, they’d have to make up for lost time by defrosting the dynamite in a roasting pan over an open campfire. You can probably guess how the story ends… let’s just say their railroad careers were a ‘flash in the pan’. Don’t fall asleep on the job, keep your eyes wide open with a sip or two of our spiked cold coffee brew.

Ingredients: Legend Handmade Vodka, Organic Coffee, Demerara Sugar, Raw Cocoa Nibs, Pure Vanilla Extract.

375ml – 24% ALC

as you no doubt surmised, Legend Distilling is a craft distiller based on the Naramata Bench just outside of Penticton. Link to Website

Sheringham Distilleries Seaside Gin ~ $25 + tax 375ml, $42 + tax 750ml

Sheringham Seaside GinCitrus, floral and notes of the sea make our Gin as refreshing as a seaside stroll.

Elegant for sipping and noble in your favourite cocktail…clean as the South Island surf.

Made from B.C. organic white wheat, B.C. malted barley, natural botanicals and sustainable hand-harvested local winged kelp (Alaria marginata).

ALC./VOL.  43%

VOLUME  750mL + 375mL

Sheringham Distillery is located in the metropolis of Shirley on Vancouver Island (about 1 hour up the coast from Victoria). Link to Website

Merridale Cowichan Vodka ~ $46.99 + tax 750ml

Merridale VodkaMade entirely from B.C. fruit and distilled in our hand-crafted copper still to create a silky, soft finish. To further enhace the smoothness, our true craft vodka is mellowed for over three years in stainless steel and then cold-filtered through charcoal. The result is a round, full-bodied spirits that pours cool and clean across your tongue. Enjoy it neat, over ice, or in your favourite cocktail.

Merridale Cidery and Distillery is an apples throw away from Mill Bay on Vancouver Island. Link to Website

Stacey Brennan is the GM of the Hillside Liquor Store and knows her stuff. You can contact her or any of the staff at the store click the link to their website for contact info and hours.

 

Cheers

 

The Dork UnCorked

Cafe Victoria Dec. 15: Show Notes & Gift Ideas

December 15, 2015 § Leave a comment

Dropped by to see Bruce Williams on Cafe Victoria today and we talked about gift ideas and some wine recommendations for Christmas Dinner. I have also thrown in a few bonuses that I should have mentioned on the show.

Wine Gifts By Personality

You know the feeling. Your standing in front of the wine shelf in your local liquor store, and there is too much choice. How do you decide which wine is right. Well it may sound cheesy but the label often gives you an insight as to the personality of the wine. Here are some wines that work capture certain personalities.

Lake Breeze Ehrenfelser – $18-$20 Private Stores only.

Ideal for the whimsical, optimistic ray of sunshine on the list.

Honourable Mentions: Cedar Creek Ehrenfelser – $16.99, Gehringer Brothers Ehrenfelser – $12

Wolf Blass Grey Label McLaren Vale Shiraz – $30

Ideal for tall dark and somewhat pensive and thoughtful.

Borsao Garnacha – $11.99

You the outgoing always engaging person, this is their wine.

Catena Malbec – $22

Perfect for the pensive yet authoritative person on your list.

Mission Hill Reserve Chardonnay – $18-$20

This is for the classic beauty with gentle side.

I will be doing a complete post on this in the coming days.

 

Gift Giving

Spirits

If you are looking for a huge bang for the buck then look to single batch rum or brandy. Both are often overlooked but deliver huge value.

Flor de Cana 18 Year Old – $60

Comparably aged Whisky runs about $120. Obviously Rum and Whisky don’t share the same flavours, but the reason aged spirits are more valuable is that more of the spirit is given to the Angel Share the older it is. The Angel Share is the amount of the spirit that is evaporated each year. The evaporation leads to a slow maturing of the spirit, meaning and intensification of the flavour as well as the subtleties. In Scotland the Angel Share is 2-3%/year where as in rum producing nations the Angels Share is 6-8%. Imagine the refinement of an 18 year old rum.

Torres Reserva Familia Jaime – $120

Torres brandies are aged using a Solera system. A solera aging system is an ancient aging system used primarily in Spain and Portugal for Port & Sherry. Typically 5 rows of barrels are used to aged the brandy with oldest being on the bottom. When this year’s batch is to be bottled, the barrels from the bottom row are emptied and put into bottles. Then the brandies in row two barrels are used to refill row one barrels and so on until the row 5 barrels are filled with this year’s product. As you can well imagine this system of ageing produces remarkable brandies.

The Jaime is named after the founder of the Torres winery and is composed of the oldest Soleras meaning the brandy is at least 30 years old. A similarly aged Cognac, although uniquely flavoured, runs about $180/bottle.

Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye – $30

Should be hitting the shelves of your local liquor store this week. But get it quickly as there is only 1500 cases for BC and demand for 5000.

The Dork UnCorked airs each Saturday between 2 and 3pm.

 

 

 

 

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