I'm not ready to bury my head in my hands like the guy in the photo, but I have been piling on the pressure lately and it's mostly all my own doing. Nobody sat me down when I got this job and said, "David, you need to do as many extra-curricular events as possible!" (that was actually what my high school guidance counselor told me so that I would get into a good college). However, simply doing the minimum is so boring and I'm usually someone who can't sit still as it is. In any case, all these events I've been donating my services to as of late have left me little time to do much with the blog here, so forgive my absence. I will make it up by inviting you now to join us at one of the many upcoming tastings or dinners we are promoting. Plus, there have been some more whisky deals to broker, so look at some of these new arrivals, as well.
Tastings & Events
September 22nd - Wednesday - Farmer's Market Cocktails @ Ferry Building in SF -$40 - 6 PM
September 23rd - Thursday - Cocktail Class @ Heaven's Dog in SF - $25 - 3 to 5 PM
September 25th - Saturday - Field Trip to St. George Distillery (Whiskey Club Members Only)
September 30th - Thursday - Four Roses Tasting @ Martin's West in Redwood City - 7 PM - FREE
October 5th - Tuesday - Ardbeg Tasting w/ the Chopper @ Martin's West - 7 PM - FREE
October 6th - Wednesday - 5 to 6 PM - Special Ardbeg Tasting w/ Master Distiller Rachel Barrie and the Choppers! @ Heaven's Dog in SF (needs RSVP via email w/me)
October 7th - Thursday - Amrut Indian Single Malt Tasting @ Elixer in SF - 7 PM - FREE (needs RSVP via email w/me)
October 8th - Friday - WhiskyFest SF @ Marriott in SF - 6 PM - $100 (tickets available @ www.maltadvocate.com)
1996 Caol Ila, Murray McDavid, 13 Year Old Chateau d' Yquem Sauternes Cask Whisky $65.99 - Just when you thought the cask enhancement revolution was over, Bruichladdich's Jim McEwan is still ready to say otherwise. While the combination of peat and sweet is nothing new to the single malt world, the latter has almost always come from sherry wood influence, adding a toffee and caramel balance to the smoky and spicy flavors. This very limited Caol Ila bottling uses the same formula, but in a whole new way. This is bourbon cask-aged Islay, further enhanced by the lush dessert wine of the world's most famous Sauternes: Yquem. The result is a flavor profile that currently has no comparison - rather than simply balancing the peaty campfire smoke, the wine cask seems to restrain it, transforming power into elegance. Stonefruits swim through the palate, bringing Highland flavors to an Islay malt, but the salty edge of the island style is never dilluted. This is beautiful peated whisky in the vain of Port Ellen rather than Ardbeg.
Slieve Foy 8 Year Old Irish Single Malt Whiskey $41.99 - Yet another fantastic whiskey from Cooley distillery, who is looking to retain its newly awarded title of "best distillery in the world," as recently deemed from Malt Advocate. The Slieve Foy is alive in a way that most other whiskies are not - zesty fruit, sweet spices, and soft vanilla are all singing upon the entry. The vibrant character fades towards the back as the softness of the barrel aging slows things down, but the memory of it stays with you on the finish. The Slieve Foy is an Irish whiskey that screams to be heard above the more mild Redbreast and Paddy-filled crowd, but without losing its traditional Irish character. A solid, solid whiskey. -David Driscoll, K&L Wine Merchants "Pretty pale yellow/lemon juice/sauvignon blanc/oyster color; superb clarity. Reminds me of white pepper, butcher's wax paper, and beeswax in the first pungent sniffs after the pour; six minutes of additional air contact bring out tropical fruit scents, most notably papaya, as well as cereal grains. Entry flavors caress the taste buds in silky smooth sheets of flavor, especially palm oil, unsalted butter, and sweetened breakfast cereal; midpalate is a study in whiskey elegance and power co-existing in harmony as the taste profile exhibits controlled grainy sweetness, light, fresh honey, baking spices (cinnamon, nutmeg), and light wood tones. Concludes with style and grace. Delicious and serious." Spirit Journal September 2010: 4 stars/Highly Recommended
Four Roses K&L Single Barrel Cask Strength Kentucky Bourbon $54.99 (special order for now - due in before Oct 1st) - Once again, we're teaming up with Kentucky legend Jim Rutledge to bring our customers a single barrel of his beautiful Four Roses whiskey. This time around we opted for yeast strain OBSO, which brings a different mash bill of 60% Corn, 35% Rye, 5% Barley. This bourbon is a liquid manifestation of the phrase "an iron hand in a velvet glove." The palate opens up to some big time flavor, rich sweetness, and fruity spice, enveloping the senses with sheer power and force. The finish is all nuance however as the whiskey dies down to a meer whisper and gently glides away, softly hinting at the beautiful barrage of flavors it battered you with only moments before. Another legendary whiskey for our K&L customers to enjoy!