Sunday, July 24, 2016

Ron Cartavio

I've struggled with this review for no good reason for so long it is driving me mad.
The rum is fantastic, I enjoy every expression. My problem is that every-time I start to write something, I cruise around the web a bit and see that my friends have already written something similar, they have been to the distillery, have a million cooler photos and all I can really do is pile up another mountain of verbiage.
So here is an idea, I am going to tell you I think this rum is very tasty, an absolute pleasure for me to share and I am going to introduce you to some of my web friends so you can see how eloquently they have written about it!
Cool Ad I found!

Head to Rob's Rum and put Cartavio in the search window.  Rob's Rum
My very good friend Nicholas Feris had something to say! The Rum Collective
Check out what Chris has to say and his extensive photos from Peru. Spirits Reveiw
My pal Dave covers 3 expressions, links below . The Rum Gallery
Matt gets detailed! Cocktail Wonk
Paul Senf and Margerat Ayala also gave a lovely write up the XO. GOT RUM?
Josh does a great job here! Inuakena

Here is the Ekeko > web page.

Also, check out Tastings, don't know these guys, but they do a really good job. Plus, they have links to reviews of each rum if you scroll down the page. ****Side note, my 2 favorite to 'regularly' enjoy are the 2 lowest rated.
Distiller has a review for the XO here,  and the 12 Solera here.

I don't think I know the Lone Caner, but I like his style. Lone Caner

Sorry if I forgot to include anyone. Email me, PM me or text me and I'll add you to the list!

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Barrell Bourbon Batch 007

Back to the Bourbon! I told you I was paying attention to Batch #'s and since I've already confessed how much I love this company, let's move on! It is definitely getting to be deliciously predictable that the bottle will show up and be a winner, but I will do my due diligence! This will make 7 different offerings from the team at BARRELL and each one has been great whiskey.

As usual, I stole this picture from their site, behold Batch 007: 

Basics on this bourbon:
~ Straight Bourbon
~ Distilled and aged in Tennessee
~ 122.4 proof {uncut, un-colored, non-chill-filtered}
~ 5 years {new, charred, #4 white oak}
~ 70% corn, 25% rye & 5% malted barley

The biggest difference between Batch 005 / 007 and the 007 is the age. 007 is a few years younger but a very similar mash bill; the same distillery; the same people; the same barrel treatment. I said before, I'll say it again, these kinds of offerings are so informative, especially if you keep the open bottles to try next to each other. I don't (usually), but I do keep decent notes and I do have a good sense memory. So, next best thing.

The corn character is opulent in this, the 5 years in wood have given this Bourbon a gorgeous balance. 007 shows more of the lighter, brighter fruit (like 006) with a definite shine of citrus against the darker notes you find in #4 char barrels- maple, caramel, cinnamon, cocoa, with some hints of the char coming through the structure is checked with tart fruit in a spiced lassi dusted with baking spice.

Nose: Aromas of light juicy summer fruits, with some softer citrus and Peruvian popcorn, playfully bounce from scents of darker oak with creamy notes of caramel woven in,

Taste: The flavors focus on pocket pastries with over-ripe stone fruit and buttery crust, without sacrificing the aromas. The flavors build to unified statements of rich. spiced, fruit and balance.

Finish: It goes on and on, re-stating the aromas and flavors, but also revealing some fleshier aspects to be sought out in subsequent tastings alongside a darker showing of the fruits.

This is beguiling whiskey, it is youthful but only if you think about it. It has an "old-soul" if that makes any sense. Definitely, a whiskey to seek out and savor.

*Founded by Joe Beatrice, Barrell Bourbon is committed to unique offerings with exceptional quality as the consistent bridge that connects each Batch. They tell their story on the website, check it out.

By the way, the website is fantastic. You can check out reviews (or post your own) and there some details on every offering that they have released and how / where to find them: Check it out here:

And definitely, check out the Tasting Notes by Warren Bobrow, they'll make you hungry and thirsty at the same time!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Senda Real Tequila

This is a fantastic tequila that is kind of difficult to find if you are not in Southern California. This tequila is from NOM 1482, the name means 'Royal Path',  they own all their own agave, horno roasted--you know old school. That's what I think when I taste this tequila, blanco and reposado both, it reminds me of when I was younger and I would go to Mexico and score this style of tequila. I call it traditional, maybe even royalty, tequila for Mexico =honest tequila. Oh, and another thing to mention is, this tequila is a fantastic steal!

My pal Lou lays it down right here . . .
On Sipping off the Cuff, my buddy Mike goes crazy for it!
Or check out the US distributors site. . .  

But briefly, the Send Real Blanco is bold, pungent citrus, elegant spices, persistent minerality with great structure. Perfect for shots, cocktails parties and a good time!
The Senda Real Reposado is the blanco, but much richer with more baking / barrel spices thrown in. It is delicious, layered and balanced.

I'm in the mood for a beverage and these 2 cocktails are perfect to stand up to the rich bold agave of Sena Real, and either one (Blanco or Reposado) would be fantastic for either drink. These recipes are from Cafe Royal, by W.J. Tarling and these are my adjusted ratios, but please feel free to adjust to your preference.


1 1/2 Oz Senda Real
1 Oz Orange Curacao (Clement Creole Shrub)
1 Oz French Vermouth (Dolin Dry / Noilly Pratt may be preferred for the Blanco)

I say stir with ice till very cold, strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Tia Juano 

2 Oz Senda Real
1 1/2 Oz French Vermouth (Dolin or Noilly Prat--Lillet even works here).
1/2 Oz Campari. (I love it with 3/4 Oz--but I am bitter)

Stir with ice till very cold, strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Barrell Whiskey Batch 002

I know what you're thinking dear reader, "Why is Forrest posting these out of order?". But I am not, see this is Batch 002 of the Barrell Whiskey, which is not Barrell Bourbon.
To see my review of Batch #1 with so explanations and an original photograph by me, click on this sentence!

I love this company! It is amazing to me that American Whiskey has all but disappeared in our marketplace, with the only readily available brands falling on the lower price point. It is wonderful that BARRELL is releasing these limited editions to show how great American Whiskey can be. This will make 6 different offerings from the team at BARRELL, it is beginning to be difficult to keep track, but they all have been fantastic.

I stole this picture from their site,
  ~~~BARRELL Whiskey Batch 002: 

Basics on this American Whiskey:
~ Straight American Whiskey
~ Distilled in Indiana
~ Aged in Kentucky
~ First in previously used Bourbon Barrels
~ Then Sherry Cask Finished
~ Total aging: 9.5 years
~ 123.8 proof {uncut, un-colored, non-chill-filtered}
~ Mash bill is corn, rye & malted barley

Opulently rich, the sherry pulls you in every direction without burying the grains, stone fruit and spice. There is wave after wave of amazing flavors and aromas but this Whiskey is easy to drink and easy to enjoy.

Nose: Aromas of peaches and apricots  stewed in sherry smeared on toasted brown bread served with strong fresh tea. There are supple and intricate stone fruits balanced perfectly along side clean grains.

Taste: Honey sweetness and grain lead the flavors with the sherry never overpowering the taste, but continuosly reminding you it's there and not to be ignored. The mouth-feel is so creamy you can almost taste butter.

Finish: Layers and layers of flavor linger on in an unbelievabley beautiful deliberation. Also revealing more savory notes.

This whiskey is a gem. It shows you how amazing this style of whiskey can be. The cask strength is absolutely necessary to keep the flavors moving and vibrant. This whiskey is a revelation.

*Barrell Bourbon was founded by Joe Beatrice, and they are committed to unique offerings with exceptional quality as the consistent bridge that connects each Batch. They tell their story on the website, check it out.

The website is fantastic. You can check out reviews (or post your own) and there some details on every offering that they have released and how / where to find them: Check it out here: