The Cheat Sheet: The Professor’s Guide to the Best Cocktail and Spirits Links

 The Professor is ill this week, so I'll be dismissing class a little early today.

  • News from the San Francisco World Spirits Competition is starting to trickle out, and one of the big winners was Knob Creek. The brand, owned by Jim Beam, was the category winner for Best Rye Whiskey (with Knob Creek Rye, hitting the market soon), and also took home Double Gold medals for Knob Creek Bourbon and Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve. [Edit: Looks like the full results are now online.]
  • Serious Eats presents an excellent guide to bourbon. (Previously they covered Irish whiskeyblended Scotch whisky and single malt Scotches.)
  • Food Republic spills the details on the birth of Beefeater 24 gin. (It took Master Distiller Desmond Payne a year and a half to come up with the formula.)
  • At CLASS Magazine, Ian Cameron rounds up 7 coffee liqueurs. He gives the highest marks to Lua Licor de CafĂ©, a liqueur made in Spain that I'm not familiar with.
  • Also in CLASS, Simon Difford discusses the history of Bacardi, the famed rum producer, and includes reviews of several of their spirits.
  • At Liquor.com, David Wondrich takes us behind the scenes of the Blood Caesar, a variation on the Bloody Mary that is Canada's national drink.
  • The Contra Costa Times discusses Concannon Irish Whiskey — whiskey made by Cooley Distillery in Ireland and then aged in used Concannon Vineyard barrels.
  • Saveur Magazine investigates the Las Vegas cocktail scene and finds it fine. I haven't been to Vegas in so long, I doubt I'd recognize the place.
  • Tullamore Dew Irish Whiskey is returning home, breaking ground on a distillery in the town of Tullamore, a small village in Central Ireland. (It's been produced elsewhere for the past 60 years.)
  • In other distillery news, the old Willett Distillery, one of Kentuck's most famous producers of bourbon, has resumed operation.
  • In GQ UK Magazine, Ian Cameron discusses the new trend of bottle aging cocktails. (I suppose the oxidation from the air in the bottle would change the flavors — but I think it might just make it taste bad.)
  • The Epicurious blog has some nice things to say about Rhuby, the rhubarb-flavored spirits from Art in the Age.
  • A company called Cedar Ridge is making bourbon in Iowa now — the state's first — and the Beverage Tasting Institute has pronounced it "exceptional."
  • Rum season is fast approaching, and Hamptons Online recommends Brugal rums, and shares some recipes.
  • George Washington's whiskey distillery, located at his Mount Vernon estate, has resumed production for the season. Visitors can stop by and see how the U.S.'s first president made rye whiskey — although, sadly, there are no samples to be had.
  • Speaking of Washington's distillery…Some of Scotland's best master distillers came over to make the first single malt whiskey at Mount Vernon.
  • John Mitchell, Scotland's cocktail king, reveals the secrets of life behind Scotland's busiest bars.
  • Eight great cocktails mixed up by the fine folks at Philadelphia's The Franklin Mortgage & Investment Co. These all sound good.
  • Bartender Simon Ford visits the best bars in Amsterdam.

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