Winchester "Extra Smooth" Rye Whiskey
Rye — USATastedAt least 6 months in new oak. Vanilla and light cereal and odd jelly bean sweetness in finish. Thin body and no real rye spice.
Dry Fly Washington Dry Gin
Modern Gin — Washington, USATastedFloral and citrus flavors give way to mint, eucalyptus, and juniper. Thick mouth feel and a creamy malty sweetness. Very pleasant to drink and mixes well in cocktails. Very much a flavor product of the Inland Empire, Pacific Northwest, and Spokane, WA. Dry Fly is making some outstanding wheat distillates, all worth trying.
Cimarrón Blanco Tequila
Tequila Blanco — Los Altos, Jalisco, MexicoTastedGrassy, lightly vegetal, and sweet. Front of mouth flavor and then clean and gone quickly with no ethanol burn. Thin body, light flavor overall. I'm not sure I see the cult following except for price/quality and romance. A good mixer.
High West A Midwinter Nights Dram. Act 7
Rye — USATastedAct 7 Scene 1. High West sourced (MGPI) Rendezvous Rye whiskey blend, finished in French oak port barrels. 49.3 ABV. Beautiful deep auburn color. Vanilla and stone fruit on the nose. Warm cereal grain, plum, brown sugar and spices, fading into the grassy spiciness of rye, with a long lingering sweetness. Round and oily. Oak and vanilla and rye are all there, but wrapped in this fruit essence that smooths and gives it tremendous depth. A wonderful winter dram, a 5 star, but... High West takes a premium markup on rye it sources, blends, (in this case) rebarrels, and bottles. Marketing. I live in UT and love the product, except for the pricing. Their own whiskey... not so great. As more distilleries start making their own superior whiskeys, HW is going to be pulled down by their pricing and lack of distilling innovation and excellence. Take note.
Jack Daniel's Old No. 7
Tennessee — Tennessee, USATastedVanilla, corn, and a little charred oak. Sweet, light/thin, easy. It's the whiskey of my college days, easy to drink and find in any bar (or airplane) --Jack and Ginger is the fallback when you know they can't make anything more complicated. Drinkable, iconic, safe.
1792 Full Proof Straight Bourbon
Bourbon — Kentucky, USATastedCaramel and vanilla and sweet grain on the nose. Thick viscous mouthfeel, rich, with sweet grain and fruit (maybe banana bread, but emphasis on the bread/grain part), and a little oak in the mouth. Sweet turns to spicy grassy rye finish, dry and warm, but not too hot. Will open up with a little ice or cold water. Not overly complex, oaky or smoky, but that's not a bad thing. I like barrel proof whiskeys, and this is a good one. Jim Murray's Whisky Bible named this the 2020 World Whisky (meaning all categories) of the Year. An over-shoot? Maybe, but worth arguing. Distiller's lead taster probably underscored this, yet D readers seem to agree. As I've sipped this over several days it's grown on me and I'd put it in the top tier of full proof bourbons I've had in the last year. This is an elegant drink.
Sipsmith VJOP London Dry Gin
Navy-Strength Gin — EnglandTastedStrong juniper and some citrus on the nose. Juniper all over the mouth, with some spice and light orange floral. Creamy thick mouthfeel. Long spice and juniper finish. Not hot for a navy strength gin. Made a great Martini and G&T the first night. Sipsmith makes a range of great gins, and this is the top of the heap. Not everyone will agree--it is a juniper bomb--but this has grown on me to the point I'd rank it one of my 3 favorite gins. Worth a serious try.
Copper & Kings the moons of juniper gin
Distilled Gin — Kentucky, USATastedNose is juniper and sage, sweet honey floral. Dry cardamom and spice explodes on the tongue, with some honey sweetness. Juniper and wood and allspice follows, then spicy nettles and juniper and wood on the finish. Thick viscous mouthfeel. Not what I was expecting at first taste, but it has grown on me. Most unusual flavor profile, more akin to St George Terroir than others (I say that as a GOOD thing). You'll either love or hate it, but let it grow on you for a few drinks before deciding. Used it first in a Negroni, but it really shines in a DeVoto Martini.
Ezra Brooks "Old Ezra" Barrel Strength Bourbon 7 Year
Bourbon — Kentucky, USATastedLight fruit nose; then fruit, spicy rye, tannic oak (I'm missing the vanilla everyone mentions), burned cereal, anise; followed by a long and not pleasant astringent finish. Not much corn sweetness here. Disappointing, even with some water/ice.
Dry Fly Straight Washington Bourbon 101 4 Year
Bourbon — Washington, USATastedCookie sweetness, light vanilla floral on the nose. Oak and tannin spice then corn sweetness and vanilla. Medium light body. Long spicy finish which is odd for a mashbill without rye. High proof is a little hot, but... an interesting wheated bourbon.