We’ve got some exciting things to talk about today, including our first co-sponsored event with the Alamo Drafthouse on Mission St. in San Francisco where we’ll be bringing you…
A K&L “Drink & Watch” Movie Special Featuring Director Steven Soderbergh Live in Person!
On Monday night, January 23rd, starting at 7 PM, we’ll be teaming up with the gang at the Alamo Drafthouse to bring you a screening of Steven Soderbergh’s Academy Award-winning film Erin Brockovich, featuring a live Q&A session with the director himself (hosted by yours truly) and a meet-and-greet cocktail party after the show. As some of you know, I’ve written a column on the K&L spirits blog for years called “Drink & Watch,” where I pair alcohol with movies rather than food. Mr. Soderbergh, who for some reason gets a kick out of those articles, thought it might be fun to take this idea and turn it into a party. As many of you also may know, the Alamo Drafthouse allows you to order food and alcoholic beverages while you’re watching a film, so we’re planning a special cocktail list with Steven’s drink of choice: Singani 63, the grape-based Bolivian spirit he discovered while filming Che on location. We’re big supporters of the brand here at K&L, but we also understand that the spirit needs a bit of an introduction. That’s why we’re inviting you out to the movies on Monday the 23rd to watch a great film, drink some great Singani cocktails, listen to Steven talk about the film, then have a drink with the man at our private after-party. It’s the most exciting event we’ve ever hosted, in my opinion!
Tickets (21 and over) are available here via the Alamo Drafthouse website where you can choose your own seat and reserve your spot:
ERIN BROCKOVICH & SINGANI 63 SCREENING PARTY – $15
Drinks are not included with admission, but there will be a specialty menu for you to order from while in attendance.
I’ll be there with Mr. Soderbergh in tow. We’re looking forward to hosting you!
A NEW BARREL OF KENTUCKY DELICIOUSNESS!
As the market for unique and interesting Bourbon continues to be crowded, competitive, and catty, you’ve got to rely on your strengths as a retailer. As a buyer, I think my biggest strength (and maybe my only redeeming quality, to be honest) is my palate; the ability to know what tastes good and what doesn’t. You might think quality is an obvious characteristic to everyone, but believe me it isn’t. Anyone can pick the oldest cask in the line-up, or the one with the highest proof. You don’t need to be a whiskey master to do that. But when the stocks start dwindling and everything is less than nine years old (as is the case right now at Four Roses), you’re going to figure out real fast who can assess the winners and who can’t.
I offer as proof of our fine palates this delicious new Four Roses selection that we picked out this past Fall. It’s a hair under nine years old and it’s nothing short of scrumptious. I think just about everyone in the Redwood City store went in for a bottle after tasting it this week. It’s just a charming bottle of booze!
Four Roses 8 Year, 11 Month Old “K&L Exclusive” Single Barrel OESO Cask Strength Bourbon Whiskey $64.99 – The first selection from our 2016 trip to Four Roses has arrived and it’s absolutely as charming as we remember it. Aged just a hair short of nine years, this OESO selection has a mash bill of 75% corn, 20% rye, and 5% malted barley and uses the O yeast strain known for imparting a rich, full-bodied, and vanilla-laden character onto the whiskey. Bottled at 53.25% ABV, the Bourbon is full of sweet oak and baking spices galore on the nose. The palate follows suit with vanilla, cinnamon, and cloves balanced by the sweetness from the charred barrel notes. Simply put, it’s the type of whiskey you look forward to coming home to. It’s full of flavor, never overpowering despite the cask strength power, and balanced on all fronts. It’s not difficult to understand, nor is it hiding many deeper secrets. It shows you everything it has right off the bat: creamy vanilla, lots of sweet spice, and a healthy dollop of oak for good measure. Another winner purchased directly from the Four Roses cellar.
MORE COMPASS BOX RARETIES!
After the madness of the holiday rush ended, I went back to some of our favorite suppliers to see if there were any trophies left unclaimed. It turns out that Compass Box had a few gems still available, so I snagged the last few bottles of each. The “Three Year Deluxe” was one of my favorite whiskies of the year, so don’t sleep on these:
Compass Box “Three Year Old Deluxe” Limited Edition Single Malt Whisky $279.99 – Composed of less than 1% three year-old malt whisky produced near the village of Brora, 90% malt whisky of an unstated age from the same distillery and around 9% peaty malt whisky distilled on the Isle of Skye, regulations only permit us only to share details of the age of the youngest component! No matter. For it is this three year-old that is most important to this whisky. Aged from new-make spirit in first-fill American oak casks, the rich vanilla notes, waxy mouthfeel and decadent baked orchard fruit notes from the larger parcel of Highland malt whisky provide a beautiful platform on top of which the brooding qualities of the peaty malt whisky and the clean, bright character of the three year-old parcel are able to shine.
Compass Box “The Circus” Limited Edition Scotch Whisky $249.99 – Limited Edition release of 2,490 bottles worldwide. Bottled March 2016. Producer Taste Notes: A lithe frame and opulent mouthfeel showcasing the supple softness of mature grain and the complexity of aged Blended Scotch Whisky. Brimming with dried fruit character, a luscious maltiness and nuances of almond and hazelnut.
Compass Box “Spice Tree – Extravaganza” Limited Edition Malt Whisky $139.99 – This is a blend of 60% aged malt whisky from the Clynelish distillery, 20% aged malt whisky from the Dailuaine distillers, and 20% aged malt whisky from the Teaninich distillery. This blend is then matured for another four and a half years in 49.8% first filled Sherry butt, 2.6% American oak, 27.7% light/medium toast hybrid cask, 4.3% refill hybrid cask, and 15.6% heavy toast hybrid cask. The hybrid casks are specially created by Compass Box with toasted cask heads that impart more oak flavor to the spirit, resulting a very rich whisky.
Our new container of Old Particular single malt docks in Oakland next week! I’m looking forward to sharing some of those casks with you shortly. Watch the spirits blog as well for news about our new Italian amaro finds, and check out our upcoming Armagnac adventures tomorrow at On the Trail.
Have a great weekend!
David Driscoll Assistant Head Buyer