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  1. In my experience having mixed a good chunk of the Dead Rabbit Drinks Manual, the Dead Rabbit m.o. is to make things complicated, but not fussy. The Dead Rabbit's rum blend is equal parts Smith & Cross, Cruzan Blackstrap, and Banks 7. I have to think that equal parts would be a safe starting point for Blacktail's blend.
  2. I had to sub Ransom for the imperfect combo of Hayman's and Botanist but this is some nice work, Chris.
  3. In general I would advocate for a 100-proof or higher bourbon for juleps--it's a pretty naked drink with a ton of melty crushed ice so you want a spirit that's going to hang around for a while. OGD 100 is a great choice that balances proof, quality, and price point.
  4. From the article: This is certainly a semantic argument, but the point to me is that we have more accurate language for most of these things (including the thing above, where "accurate language" would most certainly not employ the word "martini"), so why not use it? Seems like when people used to do things like substitute one base spirit for another, such as with the negroni and the boulevardier, they would give their creation a new name. Now we get things like "bourbon negroni" or "kentucky margarita" because people need comfort zones and hand-holding which I guess is another topic entirely.
  5. Kentucky Margarita Jim Beam Black Cherry Bourbon, Triple Sec, Lime, Brandy Cherry They aren't listing their "bourbon martini" but there's this beast: Dirty Southern Martini Crop Organic Tomato Vodka Pickle Juice, Pickled Green Tomato Tabasco Oh, they're also charging 14 bucks for the likes of Baker's and Knob Creek. I don't care if it's Manhattan, that is completely insane.
  6. Thanks guys, you all have me feeling a bit better about this. Dry vermouth is definitely the worst and seems to go off instantly. Sweet vermouth less so, and I've found Punt e Mes to be remarkably sturdy. Maybe my next trip to the store will result in me bringing a bottle of this home.
  7. Now that this has been available for a while, does anyone have experiences they could share on preservation and shelf-life? Is it like a vermouth where it degrades after a couple weeks? Are people refrigerating it, using a vacu-vin, etc. etc.? I'd love to mess with this product but am always hesitant to keep large bottles of perishable, wine-based things around because it's really hard to go through them fast enough.
  8. Like Dan said, it's hard to offer any definitive advice without knowing what else is available to you. Maybe I don't fall in the category of people who really love rum but I paid somewhere between $40-$50 for Zacapa and got a rum that I think is nice but not particularly unique and not (for me) worth paying a premium for. That being said, if this is your chance to grab it and you're not overextending yourself, just satisfy your curiosity. You will eventually anyway.
  9. Following this thread with amusement, but the bourbon person in me is obligated to point out that Wild Turkey 80 is NOT watered down Wild Turkey 101. It's ~5 year old whiskey while the 101 is more like 7 or 8. The new Wild Turkey 81 that started to hit stores this year is a lot closer to 101 plus water.
  10. Well the difference with Aperol is that it's not wine-based. I've stored my Aperol at room temp and the current bottle is old at this point (like a year plus) and I don't think it tastes any different than when it was new. If it were to develop an off flavor, it wouldn't be like when wine starts turning; it would probably be a lot more obvious/nasty. For wine-based stuff, I think Punt e Mes holds up quite well (think several months), regular dry and sweet vermouth less so. Lillet and Cocchi seem to turn very slightly after a couple weeks. Carpano Antica has never lasted more than that in my house. Cardamaro is one where uncertainty about the shelf like is actually preventing me from buying it. I'd like to have it around but there's no way in hell I could get through a bottle quickly enough if it's something that actually turns.
  11. Trust your senses, IMO. The one issue I find with your approach (which is also mine) is that it's harder to twist peel cut from fruit that's been living in the fridge for an extended period. But you can still usually get enough citrus oil pretty easily, and I have never noticed a difference in aroma between new/old lemons and oranges.
  12. I like the Espolon reposado quite a bit, especially at its current price point. The blanco I'm less crazy about. It's just a little too soft and muted for my taste, and I prefer a rougher, more agave-forward blanco to give margaritas some punch. But again, for the price, there's nothing really "wrong" with it.
  13. Totally agree with this--that extra surface area for your Herbsaint (or equivalent) is important to the drink. I stopped making sazeracs in s.o.f. glasses because the aromatics just weren't there. That said, I do have a couple of these Heavy Sham Rocks Glass, 5 3/4 oz. around and use them often for sipping spirits, rock-less old fashioneds (something I make quite a bit) and certain cocktails that just seem to work better as a down drink.
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