Part of the mixology adventure is tasting and reviewing different spirits by themselves before deciding if and how to incorporate them into new cocktail recipes! In deciding which products to review, I tend to look for spirits that are craft-distilled, small batch, or in other ways distinctive from the typical popular mass produced or status brands.
It’s also important to note that taste is a subjective thing and that what pleases my palate may not totally suit yours, but at least you’ll have a guide to consider before making a purchase.
Finally, I purchase these spirits myself to preserve the integrity of the reviews and accept no compensation from any of the distillers or distributors. Now, let’s get on with the reviews.
Whiskey Diva Review:
Rowan’s Creek Bourbon … Smooth, But Dangerous
Now, while the headline might seem a bit cryptic, it’s actually quite appropriate. I discovered this new addition to the Whiskey Diva LaBARatory quite by accident, when I stumbled on a list recommending some bourbons to try this year that are worth the money. As a bourbon girl (and gin girl, and rye girl, and mezcal girl … okay so I like a lot of different spirits), it piqued my interest.
I picked this 750ml bottle up at Total Wine & More in Manchester, CT for $39.99 + tax. Distilled by Willet Distillery in Kentucky, Rowan’s Creek is apparently one of their best brands, from what I’ve read. And, while there’s no aging statement and no information on the specific mash bill, the smoothness would suggest that’s it’s been aged around 8 years maybe [that’s strictly a guess on my part]. At the same time, there’s a familiar and quite welcome spiciness in the tase which indicates a decent rye content.
As I mentioned, it’s incredibly smooth from start to finish for very enjoyable sipping in my fave style (2 fingers on the rocks with a splash of H2O or as we used to say down South, branch). Along with the nice rye spice, there are sweet flavor notes of caramel, vanilla, honey fruit and, of course, oak. Probably the only downside is that it’s so smooth and tasty, one tends not to realize that it’s 100.1 proof, so you could start feeling it sooner than you expect. And that’s why I (and others) say it’s dangerous — so be warned!
In terms of ratings, I recommend it highly with a 5 Thumbs Up 👍🏼 review. Cheers!
Mezcal Diva Review:
Casamigos Mezcal Joven … Decent, But Overpriced
Having really developed a love for mezcal in the past year, I’m always excited to try a new one. This week, I opted to try a 375ml bottle of Casamigos Mezcal Joven from Total Wine & More at a fairly hefty price of $28.99 + tax ($60.99 + tax for 750ml), and that’s the issue.
However, let’s start with good stuff. It’s actually very smooth for the most part with a mix of herbal, smoky and pepper flavors that makes mezcal an enjoyable straight sip. (I typically like mine in a shot glass or snifter straight up with no ice.) Unfortunately, there was little else to distinguish it for the price. (Though I am puzzled as to the exceptionally negative reviews I came across while researching it. I don’t think it’s bad, just not extraordinary.)
Considering Scorpion Mezcal Reposado is even smoother with more flavor at $49.99 + tax for 750ml and there are several other Joven mezcals just as smooth as Casamigos for a lot less, I cannot find a good reason to recommend it.
More To Come
Life has been busy lately, but I’m trying to work out a more frequent schedule for my blog posts. I’ve also had my first new drink commission since launching my updated website, so that’s also been keeping me busy.
Disagree with a review? Want me to review something you’ve been thinking about trying? Looking for recommendations? Let me know. As always, I welcome your (constructive) comments and questions.
And be sure to add my blog to your favorites and keep checking back for new posts!
Remember, life is good … drink it up!
The Dark Diva