05.24.2018 | The Block Distilling Co

Distilleries

Spring Gin

If you’ve ever been to the RiNo Art District of Denver then what you probably saw are the bones and structures of Denver past, but within those bones you will find the passion and visions of Denver future. Restaurants, art galleries, stores, bars, breweries, cideries, wineries, and most importantly…. a distillery. The RiNo Art District is art itself with passionate individuals showcasing their trades in all mediums. What was it always missing though? A distillery, of course!

The void was filled over two years ago when Michelle Flake, Kraig Weaver, and Kameron Weaver took over the old Block building to chase their dream of distilling. The Weaver brothers are both graduates from the Colorado School of Mines where they both received engineering degrees. During my visit to the Block, Kraig explained how home brewing was a popular past-time among their peers during their college years, but their vision was always in the cocktail and distilling scene. After graduating they both went off into their respective careers until the distiller’s life came hollering at the two of them and they decided to take the plunge. The Block Distilling Co released their first distillates for sale, vodka and gin, this past November of 2017 and opened their tasting room to the public in December of 2017 and they show no sign of slowing down!

Recently Kraig invited me to come check out the distillery and talk distillate to learn more about how the Block is combining science and creativity to produce some seriously incredible products.

Being in downtown Denver space is of course limited, so when you first enter the tasting room you will witness their first feat of engineering aptitude and ask yourself, “how the hell is there a distillery in this building?” The tasting room is a high ceiling large industrial room with a black accented bar in the corner against the white walls of the building. The room is filled with communal bars and beautiful furniture. Fun fact, the furniture is all made by Kraig who is an extremely talented fabricator. With outdoor seating and an inside-outside open concept this is a bar that I highly recommend hitting up for some gin and tonics this summer, a place I could easily kill an entire afternoon hanging out at.

“Eleanor”

Behind a large glass wall the entire distillery is in plane sight for all to see, we wasted no time and went straight into the action. Once in the distillery portion of the Block Kraig introduced us to their gleaming copper hybrid still, “Eleanor.” Kraig explained to us the different processes used to make their different distillates from vodka, to gin, to good ol american whiskey! One interesting note from his rundown was how they make their vodka so damn tasty. The traditional process of making vodka is that once the neutral grain spirit is made it is then filtered through charcoal, which is going to strain out all the goods that provide flavor and leave you with the creamy flavorless distillate we all associate vodka with. However, at the Block they are doing no such filtration, because they want you to taste the high-quality grains they are putting into every vodka they make, so what you’re left with is a full-bodied grain forward vodka that is damn good, and that is coming from me, who does not really like vodka. Kraig then took us through their fermentation process showing us both the open and closed fermentation tanks that each serve different purposes for different distillates. The quick and dirty, is that your open fermentation tanks are going to be used for your whiskies, because you want all the stuff floating around in the air to interact with your yeast and impart various flavors into your whiskey! One thing you wont notice is a grain mill inside the distillery, but its there, the Block just craft-fully and thoughtfully hid the beast from view, at the Block all their grain is milled in house and comes from small local farms and malters. The use of space really is incredible and clearly thought up by two engineers.

As is the best part of any tour we then checked out the barrel room. It may be a small room for now (they have plans for expansion), but what is inside is what matters! The Block team isn’t following the status quo with their barrel program either. Rather than using the standard new american oak casks that the majority of the industry is using they instead are barreling with American white oak casks from Canton Cooperage from Kentucky. There are two primary differences in the barrels being used. Firstly, the barrels have been air seasoned for 36 months rather than the typical 12 months, which imparts a higher amount of complexity due to the increase of natural tannins in the wood. Secondly, the heads on the casks are toasted rather than charred, which allows for much more of the natural wood flavors to come through in the whiskey.

I’m sure y’all are wondering what all they have aging in the small back room of the distillery, so here we go:

  • 4-grain whiskey made using wheat, oat, rye, and barley that will be aged a minimum of two years
  • Bourbon whiskey made using yellow corn, blue corn, red corn, millet, and barley that will be aged a minimum of two years
  • Winter gin which is their barrel aged Autumn gin that will have been in barrel for about a year

You’re going to have to wait some time for the whiskies and Winter gin to be ready, but what I can tell you is that the wait is absolutely going to be worth it. During a subsequent visit with Jabin, founder of Licensed to Distill, Kraig uncorked a cask of the 4-grain whiskey and Winter gin for us to sample. The 4-grain has only been on wood for a handful of months, but already the flavor development and complexity of the whiskey is astounding. I would gladly take a bottle of how it is now, but I know its going to be something truly special after the full maturation period. You’ll read about my love of the Autumn gin shortly, but just know that the barrel effect it takes on to make the Winter gin takes it to an entirely new realm. You’ll have to battle me to be first in line for all these eventual releases!

Keeper of the Barrels

Beyond all the aforementioned spirits that the Block is distilling up they also are making brandy from pears, peaches, and grapes from Palisade, Colorado. For those of you not from Colorado, Palisade produces some of the highest quality and succulent fruits that you will ever try! Again, no quality is being left out of their distillates.

After our tour was done Kraig took us to the bar to sample the vodka and their Autumn gin. A brief rundown on the gin is that they produce four varietals of gins: Summer, Spring, Autumn, and Winter. The Summer, Spring, and Autumn gins are all made with different botanic mixtures that use various varietals that impart flavors of their namesake season, while the Winter gin is their Autumn gin that is barrel-aged. The Autumn gin may just be the best gin I’ve ever had… with over a dozen different botanic components it has warm spices of cinnamon, cardamom, and anise. The gin was a full body and smooth expression that changes flavor profiles the entire time from the first nosing to the finish. It was simply incredible. And as mentioned earlier the vodka is a grain forward profile with lots of freshly cut greens and dried grains. No mixing required for this vodka to be enjoyed!

If you know me, you know we had to crush some cocktails… pictured are the “G&T” made with Autumn Gin, tonic syrup, and soda water and the “Tea Time” made with Autumn Gin, black walnut bitters, chamomile tea, maple syrup, and lemon juice. Both filed under things I love. The Block team are no one-trick ponies that just know how to distill, they also have one of the better distillery bar programs that I have been to. Just keeps getting better, right?

“Tea Time”

“G&T”

Gin and Gin

At the Block no shortcuts are being taken, no quality is being given up for the sake of product, no distillate is being shipped in as a “stop-gap” as all product is produced in house for your enjoyment (patience is a virtue when it comes to whiskey), from the grain they begin with all they way down to their super slick bottles the Block is doing it the right way. How do I know? Taste any of their product and you’ll find out these facts for yourself.

If you ever find yourself in RiNo be sure to pay a visit to the Block Distilling Co and see for yourself how this amazing group of people are combining a love of science with the art of distilling to create truly exceptional spirits!

Cheers

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A recipe for you to try at home using their Autumn Gin:

“Autumn in Portugal”

  • 2 ounces Autumn Gin
  • 1 ounce East India Solera Sherry
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon simple syrup
  • 3 dashes Bittermens Xocolatl Mole bitters
  • 1 egg white

Wet shake all ingredients over ice for 30 seconds. Strain out ice and dry shake vigorously for 60 seconds. Double strain into a coupe glass and garnish with whole start anise. Enjoy!

“Autumn in Portugal”

Autumn Gin

02.16.18 | Citrus Clarity in the Smoke | Lagavulin 8 Year Limited Edition

Scotch Whisky

If you look at the current landscape of Single Malt Whisky you will see that distilleries are in a nuclear arms race to release older and older whiskies as limited releases to one-up one another. Recently I was informed of a very notable distillery aiming to release a 50-year scotch in the near future. Five. Zero. Its often times a hard thing for myself to conceptualize a whisky that is double my age, but do not for one moment get me wrong. These whiskies are exquisite, amazing, masterful, ancient, etc., etc., etc. I am not complaining one bit. However, what would you say to one of the most famous Islay distilleries deciding that for a limited edition release they would release an… 8 year? *Alongside an absolute epic bottle costing over $1,000 of course*

The Lagavulin 8 Year was released to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the distillery. Now, this seems like a milestone worthy of an old ancient cask from deep within the rick house, right? The reason for the 8 year age statement goes back to whisky writer and historian, Alfred Barnard, sampling an 8 year Lagavulin and proclaiming it to be, “…Exceptionally Fine,” so Lagavulin set out to recreate the old 8-year style and release it as a Limited Release.

The Lagavulin 8 year comes in with an abv of 48%, which I found to be a terrific direction to turn up the abv a bit for this youngin from the 43% abv of the 16-year. The whisky was aged in primarily American Oak casks. Clarity. In the glass, the Lagavulin is a lovely crystal clear chardonnay white color. The palate blossoms immediately. A fresh harvest of bright citrus – orange and tangerine zest –  fades to a swelling wave of saline ocean water misting the nose. A clean smoke of barley and fresh hay finish the scent as you go to taste the whiskey – such a lovely clean and citrus smoke on the nose. On the palate, it begins with the iodine of crisp ocean water that marries with a perfumey smoke of spices burnt over oak. The palate turns sweet as a flavor of clove and honey and sweet grains usher in the finish. The Lagavulin shows its face on the finish. The finish begins with black pepper and seasoned salt that gets the taste buds salivating. Smoldering peat is present, strong and proud. The finish is long and incredible. A layer of smoke remains with cinnamon and sweet honey coating the inside of the mouth.

Holy s***! The Lagavulin 8 year is simply incredible. Crisp, refreshing, clear Islay amazingness. The flavors with the 8 year are pronounced and work in harmony with the fresh ocean peat that is present. I love what Lagavulin did here, they said eff you to all those that just throw out NAS young whiskies and said let us show you how it’s done by rolling out an absolutely exquisite 8 year scotch.

The Lagavulin 8 year is a refreshing medley of fresh citrus that awakens the senses to brisk mists of fresh salty ocean water as mulling spices steep over a smoldering pit of peat. So much clarity and sharpness in the various flavor profiles present. It goes without saying that I love this whisky and at around $50 this is one single malt that should not be missed out on!

Sláinte

02.07.18 | To Mix or Not To Mix… That is the question | Laphroaig 10 year Cask Strength Batch 009

Scotch Whisky

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The Laphroaig 10 Cask Strength, a beautiful Islay that is unapologetic in its presentation of itself. Assertive spiced smoke meats intertwine with a musty green earth to present a true representation of Islay whisky. At 58.1% abv this is the scotch that “puts hair on your chest,” the pungent campfire that you either love or you hate. For myself, it’s a love that burns as passionately as the peat itself.

The Laphroaig 10 year Cask Strength is the peated whisky for peat lovers. Non chill filtered and sporting an impressive abv this whisky is for the Islay purist. As mentioned before the palate brings with it an impressive amount of spiced smoke and subtle citrus, while meshing with the brine of musty greens. For me this is about damn near perfection given its wide availability and stomachable price point for a 10 year cask strength.

I set out this year to teach myself to be a better home cocktail maker, because lets be honest, bars are f****** expensive. When you think of whiskey cocktails most people immediately associate them with the american bourbons and ryes, which completely makes sense. They have approachable and almost universally loved flavor profiles of baking spices and honey, and they mix well with literally almost anything. However, I am slowly finding that scotch makes the cocktail that we all deserve, but as Benjamin Parker said, “with great power come great responsibility.” The reason I say that is scotch is going to range from your soft citrus floral Speysides that could easily disappear in a cocktail to your smoke bombs from Islay that can just swallow up your cocktail. I will address your soft and florals another day, as today we are talking mixology with the Laphroaig 10 year Cask Strength.

From Death & Co: Modern Classic Cocktails is “Pete’s Word” (pictured above)

.75 ounce Laphroaig 10 year

.75 ounce Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur

.75 ounce Green Chartreuse

.75 ounce Lime Juice

Shaken with ice and strained into a coupe.

Why it works:

The Chartreuse and Laphroaig are both assertive palates in their own right, so at first you may see this cocktail as being a power struggle of flavors, but the lime works magic in taming the peat and the sweetness of the Luxardo smooths the bitter herbals of the Chartreuse. Through this the cocktail finds an equilibrium of complexity in the glass. What I really love about this cocktail is it awakens the Laphroaig and brightens it into a really refreshing cocktail!

The following recipe is a homemade one entitled “Pipe Tobacco”

.75 ounce Laphroaig 10 year Cask Strength

.75 ounce East India Solera Sherry

.75 ounce Creme de Cocoa

1 Egg White

Mix all ingredients in a shaker with ice and give it a good hard shake for 30 seconds, strain out the ice using a fine mesh strainer back into the shaker, dry shake vigorously for about a minute, and then fine mesh strain it into a coupe to get the thick 1/2 inch head on it.

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Why it works:

Firstly the creaminess of the egg tones down the sharp oak and spice you get from the cask strength. Chocolate and peated scotch is just an amazing and natural pairing that adds a bitter quality that battles to tame the peat on the palate. The East India Solera Sherry is a sweet Oloroso, so it layers on flavors of nuts and red fruits that provides a sweetness to smooth out the bitterness and smoke of the drink. The “Pipe Tobacco” is a decadent drink that changes the profile of the peat that allows it to shine, but introduces a variant profile that may be more approachable for someone that isn’t crazy about straight peated whiskies.

I am a fervent believer and preacher that peated scotches can and should be used in cocktails. Firstly, using them means you don’t have to buy some expensive smoke gun to make “smoked” cocktails and, *hint hint* that is all smoke and mirrors because that smoke gun doesn’t do anything really for the flavor and most likely there is a peated scotch or mezcal in the cocktail anyways. Lastly, behind the peat of Islay scotches there are a world of intricate and nuanced flavors that when combined with the right accompaniments will create a complexity in the glass that will blow you away. Just know that these cocktails are certainly not for the faint of heart and if that’s not your jam then may I suggest a Moscow Mule…

As always though, keep true to your scotch roots, pay homage to the Usice na Beatha, and pour yourself a glencairn neat of the Laphroaig 10 year Cask Strength, because this scotch is that good.

What are your thoughts on scotch in cocktails? Do you have a favorite scotch for mixing, and a favorite recipe? Be sure to comment below!


					

02.06.18 | Chocolate Cereal and Pipe Tobacco | Wood’s Distillery Tenderfoot American Malt Whiskey

American Whiskey

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Admittedly I am not a huge fan of Whisky Festivals – you really have to take the good with the bad, but don’t worry I’m not going to get on my soapbox and rant about why I don’t like them. I want to talk about the good!

What I love most about them is being able to try tons of new whiskies, all that I want, and often times ones that I hadn’t known about. In Colorado there are new distilleries opening up left and right and it is quite crazy how quickly it’s happening, so these festivals are a great opportunity for myself to get out there and see what is happening across the state.

When you’re trying so many different whiskies in a tight window it’s easy for many to fall through the cracks and get forgotten amongst the many drams that are had. That brings me to Wood’s Distillery out of Salida, Colorado, a mountain town a few hours west outside of Denver. I recently tried their Tenderfoot American Malt Whiskey at a festival, and here I am a few weeks later still thinking about it.

The Tenderfoot Malt Whiskey is a blend of malted grains including 2-row barley, cherrywood smoked barley malt, dark chocolate barley malt, malted rye, malted wheat, and then aged in good ok new American White Oak barrels. Now reading what goes into making the whiskey you might say, “damn, there is a whole lot going on and that could quickly become a weird unbalanced mish-mash of flavors,” and I would then tell you, “hell no, this shit is good”.

A decadent balanced palate of dark flavors, chocolate cereal (think Cocoa Krispies), sugar and spice roasted nuts, pipe tobacco and leather brings a smokey perfume to the nose and floral palate.

The Wood’s Distillery Tenderfoot Malt Whiskey reminds a Coloradan that there be good things going on up in dem der hills!

Side note, but their Gin was also really stupid good!

01.15.18 | Orange Blossoms in Seville | The Macallan Amber

Scotch Whisky

Let’s just get it out of the way, this scotch is non age stated… phew, alright, did we all get our unnecessary anger out of the way??

Well now we can continue with the review of The Macallan Amber. The Amber is from a four bottle line of NAS scotches that The Macallan picked solely on their color to show the change overtime in Sherry Casks. The Amber is the second iteration of the four, the other three being the Gold, the Sienna, and the Ruby. I for one think it’s an interesting exercise of Sherry Casks that takes away any preconceived opinions on the age of the whisky. Simply, here are the various stages a single malt goes through during a lifetime in a sherry cask. Save your anger over NAS scotches for someone else tonight, because I found this one to be simply lovely.

In the glass it is a crystal clear and watery orange hued Amber, which the body is completely what I would expect at 40% abv. On the nose was bright citrus tangerines and floral honey amongst young grains. The palate is very sweet where I found honey suckle apples and cinnamon streusel. A light breakfast in spring accompanied by a warm lemon and honey tea. The finish was a soft oak and bright colored stone fruits that left the palate feeling refreshed, a short finish, but a pleasant one. Overall, a scotch that put up no fight and was the easy on the mouth pour that I enjoy sometimes between the peat and cask strength beasts.

The Macallan Amber was a refreshing spring time single malt that had me dreaming of orange blossoms on a bright Seville day, I was ready to book a ticket to Spain now with the bottle in tow!

The Amber is one that anyone could approach and find pleasurable, while showcasing a young Sherry barrel before the bold deep red fruits develop. A wonderful scotch for those new to it and a great change of pace scotch with no fight for those of us that know!

Sláinte

01.12.18 | The Light Side | High West 14 Year Light Whiskey

American Whiskey

The yang to the yin of whiskey, light vs dark, Luke vs Vader, what am I talking about?? The High West 14 Year Light Whiskey, that’s what!

Now I am not well-versed on what the hell light whiskey is, so I’m going to let the label fill you in on it, per High West, “…light denotes a grain spirit distilled between 80-95% alcohol by volume – it’s “lighter” than a straight whiskey (which is distilled to <80% ABV) but “heavier” than neutral grain spirits (what is called NGS and makes vodka) which must be distilled >95%.” Basically with this you are distilling out the congeners and science things that make your prototypical whiskey flavors, so what are you left with? You’re about to find out!

The nose gave me a total feel of nostalgia back to my childhood when visiting my grandparents house where they always had those huge tubs of ice cream with the red handle, y’all know what I’m talking about! Well on the nose there was vanilla ice cream with a melted caramel topping, sweet, creamy, and very soft. Once on the palate there was an initial rush of ethanol that quickly dissipated into a decadent buttery pound cake and creamh white chocolate. The 14 years of oak shows its face briefly on the finish before ushering in a lot of butterscotch.

It’s unlike any other whiskey on the market in all the right ways. It’s such a soft whiskey that you could hold in your mouth for hours without discomfort, so decadent and buttery with just the right astringency and no burn. A light spring time whiskey that should be drank with pastries on a Sunday morning, cause that’s how I roll on Sundays. Unfortunately only available at the distillery and the park city lounge, don’t pass it up if you ever find yourself at the mothership!

Cheers

01.11.18 | An Islay Campbeltown? | Longrow Red 13 Year Malbec

Scotch Whisky

I can’t help myself, but all that has been on my mind lately are Campbeltown whiskies. I just cant… they’re SO GOOD, so what could be better than a traditional Campbeltown? A freaking peated Campbeltown, and what could better than a peated Campbeltown? A freaking peated Campbeltown finished in FREAKING MALBEC BARRELS. Holy s***. Also, huge shoutout to Josh with @mondovinodenver for always carrying terrific single malts, in particular, this one 👍🏻

The Longrow is a peated release that our favorite Springbank puts out to bless us with a “mainland Islay”. The bottle I was lucky enough to find is their 13 year cask strength that spent the last 15 months of its life in Malbec barrels from good ol’ South Africa. Have I mentioned that I LOVE Malbecs and that they’re basically the only wine I drink due to their big full bodied fruit flavor and little tannins? This particular bottles comes in at a beautiful cask strength of 51.3% abv. Now how did basically my three favorite things taste when brought together??

The whisky is a red hued brewed tea that just coexists perfectly with the bottle label, very appealing to the eye.

The first impression on the nose was an orange creamsicle in a candy shop, lots of sweet red candies in this one. The sweetness fades away to a slowly smoldering camp fire on the beach at sundown – a beautiful saline smoke, earthy and relaxing.

The palate is a symphony. All flavors playing a part and evident, but none overpowering the other, balance. The smoke of seasoned meat cooking over an open fire shows its face alongside a simmering pot of cranberries and cherries with mulling spices. A dry saline breeze blows through the scene bringing with it dry notes of oak.

The finish is once again balanced and reserved. Tart cherry tannins dry the mouth, a nod to the Malbec, a charred oak spice takes you away…

I can’t put this scotch down. There are a lot of big bold profiles that could have easily ran away from one another, but what Springbank has created is a masterful harmony of balanced flavors that makes for an incredible dram. Peat with red wines are a movement I’m very behind.

Sláinte 🥃

01.10.18 | From Taiwan with Love | Kavalan Solist Sherry Cask

World of Whiskies

I am part of a terrific Asian Whisky group that is full of some incredibly knowledgeable people. The same group that really got me up to speed and interested in Amrut, this group also are Kavalan fanatics. Not having it really available in Colorado I just couldn’t understand the excitement. Kavalan is amongst the relatively young distilleries that are making big noise in the whisky world by snatching up renowned awards consistently for their single cask line. Starting in 2006 out of Taiwan, the Solist group consists of bourbon, wine, and sherry cask expressions that are becoming increasingly difficult to find due to their popularity! Kavalan had me at Sherry and Cask Strength, so here are my thoughts.

The color of the Kavalan is insane – an incredibly deep amber, but on the surface a beautiful halo of light forms contrasting against the deep Sherry red. If the sight of the whisky doesn’t convince you of the sherry bomb sitting in your hand then the scent certainly should. On first nose I found a decadent dessert wine full of rich spices of clove and cinnamon, the scent of a cigar being hand rolled rises with shavings of dark chocolate, and taking over on the end is sweet cherries, tons of cherry. On the taste is a slight spice that is going to carry you through the entire taste, the spice is of cinnamon sugar. The sherry bomb is in full effect here. An explosion of chocolate covered cherries, cranberry sauce topped with mascarpone, the spice of Mexican hot chocolate awakens the taste buds, a syrup of sugar cane coats the inners of the mouth and allows the flavors to spread over the entire surface. One the finish is a burst of minty oak that shocks the mouth and then smoothens out into a sweet cherry cola that fizzles away.

I get it now, I want to be a freaking Kavalan fanatic too! The Solist Sherry Cask was without a doubt one of the best whiskies I’ve ever had. For my personal profile it has everything I want, cask strength, sherry, and a complex layering of spices and flavors. A masterfully crafted whisky by a top notch distillery – now to hunt down the other Solist expressions!

Prost! 🥃

01.10.18 | The King of Peat | Bruichladdich Octomore Edition 7.3

Scotch Whisky

First review of 2018 and it is a serious banger that I spent most of my time off exploring… the OCTOMORE (duh duh duh duhhhhh).

I often times feel that I am on a greater divine journey to seek out the outer limits of peaty scotch to taste them all. For me peat is such a fascinating resource due to its significance in the making of scotch!

For today’s tasting we have everyone’s favorite peat nuclear bomb series… the Bruichladdich Octomore, specifically the 7.3 release. For a wee bit of reference your typical Islays have a PPM (parts per million) phenol of 30-50, with some reaching up to 100. This particular Octomore sports a PPM of 169, so yeah this thing is peaty AF, it’s beautiful! The last technical points are that it is a beast at 63% abv, aged 5 years in American Bourbon Barrels and Spanish Wine Casks of Ribera Del Duero, and the barley is all from the coast of Islay itself. I’ve spent the last several days tasting it each day as this has been one of the most interesting scotches I’ve ever had, and has been a dandy to think about and reflect on!

In the glass the Octomore is a charred gold, reminiscent of what is to come. The nose was very similar to a different favorite spirit of mine, Mezcal! A meaty smoldering brick combines with the saline spray of the ocean, while a sweet lemon poppy seed cake provides a muted sweetness to the nose. As you can see this one is already a journey for the senses!

The palate began with an ancient smoke from deep within a smoldering fire. A red piece of seasoned meat cooks on a salt block that awakens the taste buds. A floral spice of oak accompany a fruit laden Bienenstich cake – this association must just be due to the holiday season – of almond, honey, and baked grains.

The finish is heavy of sea salt, that leaves a salivating mouth wanting more of the scotch! Smoldering peat along the coast side slowly dwindles away leaving a deep smoke flavor in the mouth.

The brute of heavy flavors with a delicate undertone of nuanced flavors there for you to find. It’s a beautiful thing.

Sláinte

01.10.18 | New Kids on Tennyson | The Tatarian

Bars

A very exciting day indeed for the Whisky Accountant with the opening of The Tatarian on Tennyson street in the Berkeley neighborhood. Tatarian is the newest addition to Mike Huggins and Lenka Juchelkova’s bar portfolio of the Arvada Tavern and Union Lodge 1. The common theme amongst the three is constant, damn freaking good cocktails. The volume 1 cocktails at The Tatarian all pay homage to the trees you find in nature, so the cocktails incorporate aromatic spices, herbs, and roots from all walks of nature.

Now if you open up within walking distance of the Whisky Accountant you better believe you are going to get some serious love!

For scientific purposes, Mrs. Whisky Accountant and I sampled a few of their libations.

“Black Jack” | Knob Creek Rye, Laphroig 10 year cask strength, chocolate bitters, smoked honey syrup, benedictine, and a flamed orange | as you can imagine this was AMAZING and was the Whisky Accountants first cocktail choice. I mean come on, Scotch + Rye = all that I love in this world!

“Bodhi” | A chai tea infused pisco cocktail that was rich, velvety, and creamy in a glass topped off with a smoldering cinnamon stick. This drink was a full sensory experience of taste, sight, and smell intertwined.

Last but not least, “Árbol Del Tule” | a deliciously smoked Mezcal cocktail with a slight bite at the end of every sip.

However, this isn’t just your typical cocktail bar, because the Berkeley neighborhood isn’t just your well, typical neighborhood. Tatarian is your gathering place for not only AMAZING cocktails, but also good beer, affordable shots, and good times. That is a place that we can get behind!

Cheers and welcome to the neighborhood!