February 18, 2014

Flaviar Liquor Tasting Packs - Sample, Sip, and Save

2013111415 13844444573894 original

Flaviar has something unique to offer liquor lovers everywhere - samples of high end liquor that are sure to impress your friends and even yourself. Flaviar is a Community of Spirits Lovers who want to discover new & exciting drinks in the company of their friends, and their members receive 5 Premium Spirits in 1 tasting pack every month.

We were sent the “Spanish Brandy Inquisition”, and a really nice tasting guide with the 5 tasting bottles. The presentation is exceptional, and all of your Liquor Snob friends will surely be impressed with the details of each of the liquors along with the guide on how to taste and test them.

Flaviar photo homeOur home tasting kit from Flaviar. Get yours monthly or just buy the ones you want.

Here’s why Flaviar is a great way to discover new liquor:

  • Discover New & Exciting Flavours Every Month  
  • Tasting for a Fraction of the Bottle Price  
  • Socialize with Friends (Designed for a Party of 3)  
  • Gift-Ready (for a Flavourtastic Surprise)”

Thanks again to Flaviar for sending. Our tasting went really well over the past weekend on Sunday night, with our favorite Brandy being the Osborne Carlos 1 Imperial. There was much discussion and much liquor knowledge gained reading about all the different brandies.

Jay Brewer at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

December 15, 2013

PAMA Bar Stars Series and Holiday Punch!

Welcome to our series of Liquor Snob posts in partnership with PAMA pomegranate liqueur. If you like this one, check out all of our PAMA-related stories.

Take a guess about what our favorite holiday-related thing is. Here's a hint: we love the excuse to see our families, get together with friends, and go to holiday parties. Give up? Our favorite thing about the holidays is that we are often in the presence of many other people, giving us an excuse to whip up large amounts of boozy concoctions in the form of delicious punch. Oh, and the hanging out with all those people is a nice side effect too.

If your only experience with punch is hawaiian punch and ginger ale with a hunk of sherbet floating in the middle, it's time to expand your horizons. Punch can be tart or sweet, still or effervescent, highly-boozy or more session-oriented, all depending on the recipe. The one common denominator with all well-made punches is that they're always delicious and always a crowd pleaser.


The folks at PAMA know this, and they know their product makes a great addition to just about any punch - it's tart, zingy and with a beautiful crimson color. That's why they kicked off the holidays with a Bar Stars Event with holiday entertaining in mind:

On October 30th, PAMA brought together the famed DeGroff family for an evening of Stress-Free Holiday Entertaining with Punches. There's nothing that symbolizes the holidays more than family, which is why it made perfect sense to have the whole DeGroff family here, renowned bartender Dale, "King Cocktail" himself, his wife Jill, a famed saloon artist, and rising bartending star, son Leo. The father and son duo teamed up behind the bar to celebrate PAMA, family, holiday traditions, and the bartending profession.
The event was a smashing success and the first in a series of Bar Stars events held by PAMA as a way to give back to the bartending community. Check out Dale & Leo's holiday punch recipes below.

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Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

December 8, 2013

WhistlePig Straight Rye Whiskey - Damn Good

WhistlePig 10yr frame

We recently got our dirty little hooves on some WhistlePig Straight Rye Whiskey courtesy of the WhistlePig themselves and we have to say WOW. This is not your friendly pig's rye this is the really good stuff any pig should hide. 

WhistlePig produces a 100-proof, straight rye whiskey, aged for at least ten years through a unique double-barrel process. We got samples of the 100/100 and the Boss Hog - both are amazing. There's something really special to this rye giving it a smooth yet polished upper set of rich notes and it's just yummy.

And we're not the only ones that think this is an amazing rye whiskey. WhistlePig Straight Rye Whisky has earned 96 points from Wine Enthusiast, their highest rating ever for a rye whiskey, a 'highest recommendation' from Spirits Journal, as well as accolades from The Wall Street Journal, GQ, Forbes, Maxim, Imbibe Magazine, and many others.

And we're just going to have to give it some major props at Liquor Snob. We love it because we've never had a rye that goes head to head with the best bourbons out there and with none of the lower end hangover. Great stuff and get it while you can before everyone is into WhistlePig and all you can do is wish you had drank more.

Jay Brewer at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

November 17, 2013

PAMA: From Grenadine to Persephone's Elixir

Welcome to our series of Liquor Snob posts in partnership with PAMA pomegranate liqueur. If you like this one, check out all of our PAMA-related stories.
In our opinion, there are two big tragedies related to the pomegranate. The first is what happened to Persephone - if you know your mythology, you know she got trapped in Hades for eating a few measly seeds. The second tragedy is what people usually do with them when they're turning them into grenadine syrup - and by that we mean the sickly sweet sugar syrup you see sitting on many a bar or liquor store shelf. As you can see in the tart-to-sweet scale below - this corn syrup concoction is the standard of sweetness at 100%.

We've found a couple of interesting homemade grenadine recipes, if you're interested:

  • Jeffrey Morgenthaler offers a simple recipe that calls for pomegranate molasses and very little effort

  • The Kitchn proposes another recipe that calls for lemon juice to tarten things up a bit

  • Serious Eats takes out the lemon, keeps in the pomegranate molasses, and adds a dollop of rosewater just for fun

These recipes all sound pretty great (and pretty simple) but what if you didn't have to do anything but uncap a bottle to add pomegranate zazz to your cocktails? We've been working with PAMA for over a year now, and we can tell you its combination of pomegranate, vodka and a touch of tequila is more than enough to add tartness and color to your cocktail without you having to slave away in the kitchen, even for a minute.

The cocktail world is moving away from food coloring and corn syrup, and we're huge proponents of making our own cocktail ingredients. We know, however, that if you're a home bartender it can be a pain to make a full bottle of something like grenadine only to use a few ounces, then throw the rest away once it expires. That's why we like the fact you can still get natural flavors without going through that kind of Hades (see what we did there?) by using PAMA in your cocktails.

We included a one of our favorite recipes PAMA recipes, Persephone's Elixir, below. This drink is perfect for PAMA and really showcases how the spirit can be a great all-natural addition to your liquor cabinet.

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Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

November 7, 2013

Ole Smoky Moonshine Arrives for Review

old-smoky-moonshine.jpgImagine our excitement when we came home from the bar today to find a box on our front stoop, because usually such cardboard receptacles only mean we've gotten in another shipment of unexpected booze. It was a little soggy from the rain, and when we got it inside we realized two things - it had been shipped from Tennessee and it hadn't been taped shut. Once we opened the box we understood maybe that wasn't an oversight, because how bootlegger is it to thumb your nose at shipping regulations? Very goddamn bootlegger, if you ask us.

Inside the box were three jars of Ole Smoky flavored Moonshine - Lemon Drop, Strawberry, and Apple Pie. If you're not familiar, Ole Smoky bottle their product - corn liquor - in Mason Jars for that down home feel.

We've watched Justified Season 2 so we're a little skeptical about the Apple Pie, but we'll make sure to be careful - it was in the glass, not the jar. We'll put together a full review of all the flavors, but you can find out more at the Ole Smoky website. All kidding aside, we're especially interested in Lemon Drop and Strawberry because they're currently only available at the distillery, but we'll keep you posted with a full review.

Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 15, 2013

PAMA Asks: Are You Indispensable?

Welcome to our series of Liquor Snob posts in partnership with PAMA pomegranate liqueur. If you like this one, check out all of our PAMA-related stories.
There's not much time left to enter the PAMA "Are You Indispensable?" contest - a "cocktail competition for professional bartenders and mixologists, age 21+." The competition has been running since August, and you only have until October 31 to get your entry on the books.

The competition is meant to highlight PAMA's positioning as an "indispensable modifier" for cocktails of all kinds, no matter the base spirit, the occasion or the season. In PAMA's own words:

Bartenders and mixologists are invited to create a cocktail recipe using PAMA. Six finalists will be chosen to compete in New York City for a chance to win the $5,000 grand prize, second place prize of $2,000, or third place prize of $1,000. To enter your cocktail creation, visit

Five thousand dollars is a lot of scratch to a lot of bartenders, so what would we be thinking about as we developed a new PAMA cocktail (if we were eligible)? We'll tell you below!

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Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 15, 2013

PAMA's Versatility: Any Booze, Anywhere, Anytime

Welcome to our series of Liquor Snob posts in partnership with PAMA pomegranate liqueur. If you like this one, check out all of our PAMA-related stories.

One of our favorite things in the world is the look on someone's face when they try a cocktail they've never had before, and they love it. A great aspect of this is when you tell them it's a drink they've heard of before - a margarita, say, or a daiquiri - but this drink looks and tastes nothing like they're used to while still being delicious.

The ability to develop these slightly off-kilter, yet still delicious drinks, without the need for a fully-stocked bar containing hundreds of bottles, can be a challenge however. That's why it pays to have a few bottles in your hip pocket that are versatile enough to play multiple roles in multiple cocktails.

One of PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur's claims to fame is its versatility - the ability to work with any spirit, make cocktails that work in any season and any time of day. So how can we use PAMA to its full potential? Let's explore below.

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Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

August 28, 2013

Vodka Zinger Review

vodkazing-thumb.pngWe've spent the last few weeks playing around with our Vodka Zinger liquor infusion system for the last few weeks off and on, and we've put together some thoughts on the system and how well it works. Liquor infusions are a quick and easy way to impart some new flavors into your booze, and it's a fun hobby for a lot of people who are looking into dipping a toe into the mixology pool. So - does the Vodka Zinger simplify the infusion of your booze enough to justify the price tag, or are you better off sticking to your mason jars and strainers?

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Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

February 14, 2013

Does Silicone Make Booze Taste Better?

gspirits.jpgGerman brand G Spirits certainly seems to hope silicone makes their liquor delicious. These folks aren't adding silicone to their liquors - they're pouring the booze they make over the (we can only assume) enhanced mammaries of an "international Playboy model." No, we are not making this up.

According to The Daily Caller:

German liquor company G-Spirits has created limited-edition bottles of whiskey, vodka and rum that all go through one very special step before bottling: Each drop of liquor is poured down the bare breasts of a naked model before it's packaged for your imbibing pleasure.

Does it actually change anything about the character or taste? Depends what the model was up to before she came to the distillery we suppose, but if you're interested you can try it out for $150 to $180 per bottle. Is it weird that the only reason we want to get a bottle of this stuff is to put it in a room with a bottle of Ron de Jeremy and film some footage?

More info at G Spirits (Most Definitely NSFW)

Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

December 5, 2012

PAMA Poinsettias and Preparing for the Holidays

Welcome to the fourth entry in a series of Liquor Snob posts in partnership with PAMA pomegranate liqueur. If you like this one, check out our first, second and third posts.

The holidays are approaching fast, and if you plan to entertain or attend some parties, it's crucial to have a few tricks up your sleeve for food and cocktails. PAMA, with its ruby red color and cocktail-modifying versatility, is a good tool to have in your kit for making holiday-themed drinks. One quick, easy and delicious option is the PAMA Poinsettia, pictured above:

PAMA Pomegranate Poinsettia (Recipe and Image via BarNoneDrinks)

1 oz. Pama Pomegranate Liqueur
1 oz. Cointreau
1 oz. Orange Juice
3 oz. Champagne

Mix first three liquids in a tumbler with ice. Slowly add champagne stirring gently. Rim a flute glass with orange zest. Strain into the champagne flute.

To make your life even easier if you're planning to make more than a few, you can pre-mix the first three ingredients and store the mixture in the fridge or display it on ice for your party. Then it's just a quick three ounce pour topped with champagne when your guests start to clamor for more. The PAMA Poinsettia is a holiday classic with a new twist - so what other tricks does this versatile liqueur have up its sleeve for the holidays?

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Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

December 3, 2012

Vermont Ice Apple Creme Liqueur

applecremebottle.jpgWe were shopping for a party this weekend when we stumbled across some information for a new product that tickled our fancy for the holidays - Vermont Ice Apple Creme Liqueur from Boyden Valley Winery. We've enjoyed this Vermont-based winery's other products (big fan of their Glogg when we're too lazy to make our own), so we're excited to try out this new offering.

Until recently the Vermont Ice line was mostly ice wines and ciders, but it's being expanded with this new apple liqueur, and you can expect to see a maple liqueur coming out soon as well. The award-winning Vermont Ice Apple liqueur is a combination of ice cider, apple brandy and cream, which has potential to be out of this world on a cold winter night. It weighs in at 30 proof (15% ABV), and retails for about $30 for a 750ML bottle.

Learn more about Vermont Ice Apple Creme and pick up a bottle from the Boyden Valley website, and we hope to review it soon.

Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

November 13, 2012

PAMA, Texture and Thanksgiving, Oh My!

Welcome to the third in a series of Liquor Snob posts in partnership with PAMA pomegranate liqueur. If you like this one, check out our first and second posts.

It's one thing to be able to make a delicious cocktail - say achieving the perfect balance of sweet, sour and strong and creating flavors that dance on the tongue - but believe it or not flavor isn't the only thing that can make a good cocktail great. Texture is an unsung hero of for many home bar tenders, and playing with texture can be a fun way to achieve the next level for your drinks. What do we mean by texture? It can be anything from the "mouth feel" to other tactile experiences associated with a drink - learn more below.

pama_pairings.jpgWhat do we mean by "texture"? Basically it's anything that affects the physical feel of your interaction with the drink. Camper at Alcademics put together a nice list of textural descriptors to help you wrap your head around it, and also included some excellent tips for manipulating texture in your drinks:

Some Texture Descriptors for Cocktails and Spirits
Thick, syrupy, not dilute enough
Thin, weak, non-integrated, over-shaken
Bubbly, fizzy
Tannic, astringent
Soft, pillowy, foamy, frothy
Slushy, viscous, chewy
Gloppy, chunky

As pointed out in the above post there are all kinds of ways to fiddle with the texture of a cocktail, including:

  • Modifying Sweeteners & Other Ingredients: Adding or removing sugar, or changing what you use to sweeten a cocktail (e.g., honey, agave nectar, etc.) can also change the mouth feel.

  • Modifying Ice & Temperature: Shaking a drink will break up the ice and cause it to form a layer on top of the finished cocktail; stirring does not do this. Chilling a drink more will change the liquid's viscosity - be careful because too cold or too warm can both negatively change the experience of a drink.

  • Adding Specific Texture Modifiers: An old trick for foaming up a cocktail is to add egg whites before you shake. You can also play with thickeners, pectins and other specific modifiers to change the feel of a drink, or substitute sparkling wine or seltzer for a still ingredient.

  • Modifying Glassware: Rimming a glass with salt or sugar is a sure fire way to change the drinking experience.

PAMA's position is that their product is excellent for toying with certain aspects of texture for multiple reasons, one big one being the tannins from the pomegranate, which "have a drying effect on the tongue and cause the mouth to water in response creating the illusion of texture on the palate." Learn other ways PAMA can change a drink's texture at Pama Pros.

An excellent time to be thinking about texture is when you're pairing your cocktails with food. If you're about to tear into a 2,000 calorie meal of turkey, stuffing, gravy, and pie, are you going to want a thick, heavy, syrupy cocktail, or do you want something frothy and light? We know how we'd answer - and we've put together a list of Thanksgiving-friendly cocktails using PAMA that will pair well with your turkey day and give you a few chances to play with texture.

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Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 10, 2012

PAMA and the Bartender's Tool Kit

Welcome to the second in a series of Liquor Snob posts in partnership with PAMA pomegranate liqueur. Read our first post.

Ever since we did our Pama review a few weeks ago, we've been thinking about this pomegranate liqueur and how it fits into our cocktail-mixing toolkit, both at home and behind the bar. The first thing that struck us about PAMA was that it was much more versatile than we originally gave it credit - we were able to use it tasty cocktails from a modified Kir Royale to a tasty Manhattan (pictured above) and we wanted to spend some more time investigating just how versatile it can be.

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Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 12, 2012

PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur Review

Welcome to the first in a series of Liquor Snob posts in partnership with PAMA pomegranate liqueur.

What is PAMA?
PAMA is a liqueur made with pomegranate juice, vodka, and a bit of tequila. It weighs in at 34 proof (17% ABV) and while you might expect it to be on the sweet side, it is actually quite tart, and adds a striking ruby red color to cocktails. It stays far away from the syrupy sweetness we've seen in other fruit liqueurs, and can actually be used in cocktails to reduce the overall sweetness of the drink.

The Look: As mentioned, PAMA is ruby red and really makes its presence known when added to a cocktail.

The Nose: Dark berry fruits are the first thing you'll smell, tart and fruity without being syrupy. There is an assertive (but not overwhelming) whiff of the vodka and tequila that form its base.

The Taste: More berries, with a surprising tartness that lingers on the tongue. It has a mouth feel similar to wine, and while it has a thickness to it, it's not syrupy. If you know what pomegranates taste like, you know pretty well what PAMA tastes like, and we mean that in a good way.

The Verdict: PAMA is available at our local liquor store for $19.99, and we feel this is a very fair price for a good product. In comparison to some of the other "pomegranate" liqueurs we've tried, PAMA is the clear winner, and we enjoyed playing with using it to modify our cocktails.

Our fellow bartenders started off a bit skeptical at first, but once they tasted it every single one of them had an idea for a cocktail, from just mixing it with soda for a good low-alcohol "session cocktail" to mixing it with beer (see our recipe ideas below, as well as some notes on using PAMA as a cocktail modifier).

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Jake Jamieson at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

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