Spirits

Those who favor ice in their Scotch will no doubt find a kinship with this replicated bottle of Mackinlay’s Rare Old Highland Malt Whisky, the spirit Irish explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton selected to...
When the famous Highland distillery of Glen Garioch (pronounced “Glen Geery”) was mothballed in 1995 after 198 years of operation, it ended a legacy of producing lightly peated, honeyed single-malt...
Of the six elements, or "pillars," that define the character of the Macallan’s single-malt whisky, the unusually small stills used in the distillation process are perhaps the most noteworthy...
As the bucolic Charente River flows silently past the majestic Château Courvoisier, one would hardly guess that the musty Paradis cellars of this historic Cognac house sequester some of the oldest...
Actor-comedian-musician Dan Aykroyd, a student of the paranormal, created Crystal Head vodka ($50), which is a glacier-clear spirit that provides enlightenment of its own.
With Johnnie Walker’s first release since launching its top-of-the-line Blue Label King George V edition in 2007, the blended-Scotch-whisky maker is taking new strides. The Johnnie Walker Double...
If the taste of a whisky literally reflected the topography of the place where it was made, then one would expect a dram of Laphroaig to be lean, even austere. The south coast of Islay, after all, is...
Highland Park , the northernmost distillery in Scotland, recently unveiled its oldest and most expensive whisky to date, the unparalleled Highland Park 50 Year Old ($17,500), a vatting (combining) of...
One has to admire the “out-of-the-snifter” approach of Courvoisier , founded in 1834 and one of the four leading Cognac houses, which has now taken this classic digestif from an after-dinner setting...
Louis XIII was originally registered by Paul-Emilee Rémy Martin on June 13, 1874, as Louis XIII, Âge Inconnu (Age Unknown). Since then, its age has become not only known, but legendary as a blend of...
Not since 1977, when Grand Marnier introduced the extraordinary Cent Cinquantenaire to commemorate its 150th anniversary, has the brand produced a liqueur as in-depth and haunting as Grand Marnier...
The familiar black-and-yellow label of the world’s number-one selling Cognac is getting a face-lift this month when Hennessy offers its long-beloved V.S. blend in a special bottle designed by...
One of the greatest and richest single-malt whiskies in existence was created against one of the world’s starkest landscapes—a remote, windswept island in the Orkney archipelago. High­land Park,...
Holland’s oldest distillers, the Nolet family, who established their business in 1691, have set a new benchmark for the primary component of the martini. Even so, 10th-generation family patriarch...
Founded in 1698, Berry Bros. & Rudd is not only Britain’s oldest wine and spirit merchant and the creator of the Cutty Sark brand of Scotch whisky, but also a purveyor of fine rum, which it sells...
Connoisseurs have long been familiar with Louis XIII, the Grande Champagne Cognac composed of 1,200 eaux-de-vie ranging in age from 40 to 100 years. However, even these cognoscenti will be pleasantly...
Its luxuriously thick bottle from Saverglass in Feuquières, France, and massive, Mayan-inspired gilded cap by jewelry designer Bill Wall both suggest to the uninitiated, even before their first sip,...
By law, cognac must be made in the Cognac region of France, but brandy can be produced anywhere—even in Ukiah, Calif., where 12th-generation distiller Miles Kara­kasevic makes an unusually complex...
Turning 40 can be a momentous occasion, especially at Glenfiddich, one of the few remaining family-owned distilleries in Scotland. This Speyside institution, founded by Wil­liam Grant in 1887, has...
Generally, we are averse to selecting the same distillery for inclusion in our Best of the Best issue two years in a row, even when the whiskeys in question are dramatically different. Yet we cannot...
The single malts from Talisker has been nicknamed “the lava of the Cuillins” for the spirits’ trademark peppery character, as well as the 181-year-old distillery’s solitary location in the jagged...
As soon as the federal government began enforcing the Volstead Act, clandestine stills cropped up across the land to supply a crude, corn-based whiskey that—because it was delivered nocturnally by...
Combining spirits of various ages requires as much care and dexterity of the blender as, say, weaving together disparate melodies does of the master musician. It is with such adroitness that Juan...
John MacDonald, distillery manager for Balblair Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky, releases whisky from casks for bottling only when the spirit reaches its optimal maturation. For this reason,...
The object in making fine vodka, until recently, has been largely to eliminate rather than to exaggerate flavors. Popular taste, however, has gone in the opposite direction. Today’s flavored and...
Since its founding in 1863, this Cognac house—the fifth-largest producer in the world—has remained family owned, with Cyril Camus, the fifth generation, now bringing it to America. The flagship...
For years, this small, family-owned Cognac house has sold its prized eaux-de-vie to many of the larger companies for their most prestigious blends. But now certain "lots," as founder Abel Tesseron...
In 1263 the chief of the Clan Mackenzie saved King Alexander’s life; in gratitude, the king granted the clan permission to portray the royal stag’s head, which appears on every bottle of The Dalmore...
Of all the single malts created by The Dalmore master distiller Richard Paterson, this is the most complex. It is a compilation of whiskies aged for 20 to 40 years in a variety of woods, including...

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