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Curious & Unfiltered

Valentine's Day is for Lovers (of Spirits)

Make this season's gifting extra delicious with these craft spirit choices. Set the mood with these gorgeous and tasty bottles which complement classic Valentine's Day gifts.  
Chocolate, coffee, bourbon. All the good stuff.


Botanicals and florals that smell (and taste) absolutely divine.

The hard-to-get, limited edition, only-comes-around-once kind.

For when a sunny-spot getaway isn't in the cards but you still want to vibe like you're oceanside without a care in the world.

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Cocktails to Showcase Tanglin Gin

This new gin from Singapore has a delicious blend of unusual botanicals that bring unique flavors to classic cocktail recipes.

Cocktail in a wine glass with ice. Text "Tanglin and Tonic".

Ingredients

1 part Tanglin Gin
4 parts tonic
Cinnamon stick
Orange wheel

Method

Fill a glass with ice. Pour in gin. Top with tonic (Mediterranean preferred.)  Garnish with an orange wheel and a single cinnamon stick.

Red cocktail in small glass. Text, "The Bitter Negroni".

Ingredients

3 parts Tanglin Gin
2 parts Americano Cocchi Rosa
1 part Fernet-Branca
Orange peel

Method

Add all ingredients to a mixing glass with ice. Stir until very cold, then pour into a fresh glass (ice or no, your choice.) Express the oils of an orange peel into the glass and garnish.

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Celebratory Cocktails

A few favorite cocktails featuring bubbly that are perfect for festive occasions!

cocktail in champagne flute with coffee liqueur

Ingredients

1 part ODVI (or another armagnac, cognac, or brandy)
1 part Mr Black
3 parts bubbly of your choice
Luxardo Maraschino Cherry.

Method

Place a maraschino cherry in the bottom of a champagne flute. Combine cognac and Mr Black in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake until well chilled. Strain into the champagne flute over the maraschino cherry. Top with chilled bubbly.

French 75 champagne flute with lemon peel garnish

Ingredients

1 tsp simple syrup
1/2 part fresh lemon juice
2 parts gin
4 parts champagne*

*any dry bubbly will work beautifully

Method

Add simple syrup, then lemon juice, then gin to a champagne glass. Stir. Pour champagne atop.

Note: This is best served very cold, so ideally the bubbly (and even your glasses!) should be chilled. If using a sweeter sparkling wine, adjust simple syrup amount to taste.

The airmail cocktails with lime garnishes and confetti strewn about

Ingredients

1.5 parts aged rum
.75 parts fresh lime juice
.75 parts honey syrup* (or to taste)
3 parts champagne or sparkling white wine

Method

Add all ingredients (except the bubbly) to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake until well-chilled. Strain into a tall, ice-filled glass. Top with sparkling and garnish with lime.

*Honey syrup: mix equal parts honey and hot water. Let cool. Store refrigerated. 

French 95 bourbon cocktail aerial view with orange twist

Ingredients

1 part bourbon or rye
.75 parts simple syrup
.5 parts fresh lemon juice
4 parts champagne*

*any dry bubbly will work beautifully

Method

Add simple syrup, lemon juice, and bourbon to a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake until very cold. Strain into a well-chilled champagne flute and top off with bubbly. Garnish with citrus. 

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The New Classics: A Craft Spin on Iconic Cocktails

Experiment with something new in a classic cocktail favorite. Try these recipes, they're simple to prepare and don't call for anything crazy.

All you need on hand are a few top-quality craft spirits and you'll soon be enjoying drinks that are a cut above the usual. Another sign of your excellent taste.

Bottle of Del Maguey Vida and Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur with a cocktail recipe.
Bottles of NY Distilling Ragtime Rye and St. George Absinthe Verte next to a cocktail recipe.
 

Del Maguey VIDA Mezcal

Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur

Ragtime Rye - New York Distilling Company

St. George Absinthe Verte

Bottle of Luxardo Maraschino and Kill Van Kull Rum next to a cocktail recipe.
Bottles of Dorothy Parker Gin and Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur next to a cocktail recipe.

All Points West Kill Van Kull Rum

Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur 

Dorothy Parker Gin - New York Distilling Company

Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur

Bottles of Abelha Prata Cachaca and Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur next to a cocktail recipe.
Bottle of Black Button Bourbon Cream Liqueur next to a cocktail recipe.

Abelha Organic Cachaça

Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur

Bespoke Bourbon Cream

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

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Spooky Sips for Halloween

This year, Halloween is on a Saturday. Prime spirits time.

Below find four of our favorite craft spirits to help set the Halloween mood. 

Bottle of Compass Box Peat Monster over backdrop of mountains and valleys.

Compass Box Whisky - The Peat Monster

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St. George Spirits - Absinthe Verte

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It had to be the Peat Monster. Just look at that ghoulish face on the label. Savor the monstrous smokiness of this top-quality Scotch for a delicious Halloween treat.

How To Enjoy: Pour yourself a dram and sip away!

A serious contender for most essential Halloween spirit, not only because of its ghoulish green color. Many of the classic Absinthe cocktails fit right in on a frightful night: consider Death in the Afternoon and The Corpse Reviver #2.

How To Enjoy: Experience a Death in the Afternoon with one part Absinthe to four parts dry bubbly.

Bottle of Corsair Triple Smoke American Whiskey over back drop of baking ingredients.
All Points West No Added Sugar Kill Van Kull Rum Buy Online
 

Corsair Distillery - Ryemageddon

All Points West Distillery - Kill Van Kull Single Pot Still Rum

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Ryemagedon is your must-have whiskey for any apocalyptic-themed Halloween eve. Rye-ding out the end times is the only way to go.

How To Enjoy: Make the bracing Brain Duster. It's equal parts rye, absinthe, and Italian vermouth. Like a Manhattan with extra oomph.

Enjoy this wholly original rum with a scary sounding name: Kill Van Kull. (Though to be fair, it's named after a tidal strait between New York & New Jersey). 

How To Enjoy: Make a Deadly Dark & Stormy by adding 1/4 ounce Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur to the traditional lime, ginger, beer, and dark rum drink.

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Fall Cocktails We're Feeling

Here are a few delicious drinks perfect for when the weather starts to turn!

All Points West Whiskey bottle with maple syrup for Maple Whiskey Sour recipe

Maple syrup season is reason to celebrate. This is a drink that's tasty chilled, or can even be served warm for a spin on a hot toddy.

Ingredients  

1.5 oz All Points West Malt & Grain Pot Still Whiskey
1 oz fresh lemon juice
2-4 tsp maple syrup (to taste)
pinch of cinnamon

Directions
Add ingredients to a cocktail shaker 2/3 full of ice. Shake well. Add fresh ice to a glass, strain in the cold cocktail mixture. Sip and savor!

 

Damn the Weather (Gin & Vermouth) cocktail macro close-up

Pairs well with fall's dark and brooding mood. Delicious botanical dimension from the gin and vermouth adds a welcome complexity to the sweet sour of orange. 

Ingredients
1 oz Bulrush Gin
1/2 oz orange juice
1/4 oz Carpano Antica Vermouth
1/4 oz Triple Sec
Orange twist

Directions
Add ingredients to a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well. Serve on the rocks or strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange twist.

 

French 95 bourbon cocktail recipe

Swap bourbon for gin, add a splash of bubbly and enjoy the sophisticated counterpart to the French 75 which just so happens to be perfect for fall.

Ingredients
3/4 oz Black Button Four Grain Straight Bourbon
3/4 oz simple syrup
1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
Champagne (or another kind of bubbly)

Directions
Shake the first four ingredients with ice and strain into a coupe. Splash in champagne (any kind of bubbly will do!) 

Drinkware recommendation: an Urban Bar Crystal Coupe from our friends at KegWorks.

We curate collections of excellent, hard-to-find spirits. Explore our selection here. For a limited time we're offering free shipping on select bottles.

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Delicious and Easy Cachaça Cocktails for At Home Mixing

Cachaça isn't as well-known a spirit as some of the others, but man, it makes for a crazy good cocktail.

Here are a few suggestions for the best simple and easy to make at home cachaça cocktails.  These will have you savoring delicious flavors in no time. 


All recipes courtesy of Abelha Organic Cachaça, a new-to-the-US brand that we are proud to be featuring here on Curiada!

The Classic Caipirinha

A long-time bartender friend - she really knows her stuff - said of this one, "It makes a damned good Caipirinha and the flavor doesn’t disappear when you add lime juice."

Two Classic Caipirinha cocktails surrounded by limes on a wooden table.

1.5 ounces Abelha Organic Cachaça Prata
2 tsp sugar (caster or superfine if you have it)
1 lime

Muddle half a lime with the sugar in a glass.  Add crushed ice, then pour the cachaça atop and stir. Top up with a bit more ice and enjoy!

 

The Latin Fashioned

Enjoy this in front of a fire or as an after-dinner drink for a Brazilian riff on an iconic cocktail.

Bottle of Abelha Ouro Cachaca sitting on a stone table next to a small glass with a cocktail in it.

2 ounces Abelha Organic Cachaça Ouro
2 dashes Angostura Bitters
1 sugar cube
few dashes plain water
Orange slice
Luxardo cherry

Place sugar cube in an old-fashioned glass and saturate with bitters, then add a dash of plain water. Muddle until dissolved. Fill the glass with ice cubes and add aged cachaça. Add an orange slice and a cocktail cherry if you're in the mood.

Drinkware recommendation: switch it up with Nautical Rocks Glasses

 

The Plantacao

A beautiful pink hue and a taste to match. 

Bottle of Abelha Prata Cachaca on a stone table next to an elegant cocktail glass with a pink cocktail in it.

1.5 ounces Abelha Organic Cachaça Prata
.75 ounces freshly squeezed lime juice
10ml sugar cane syrup (or simple syrup)
1 tsp Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur

Shake all ingredients with ice and fine-strain into a chilled coupe. Twist a lime zest over top and discard. Cocktail cherry on top if it suits!

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Ten Spirits for Sweater Season

When the weather turns we usually stop sipping on spritzes and lean more toward the warm-me-up spirits.

Below are a few we'd recommend for moments that are distinct to this time of year: when we're not yet in the thick of fall, but summer is more or less well and done.

After a brisk evening walk, when you shivered just a little bit on the way home:

 
An excellent sipping bourbon that delivers big warmth Amaro for flavors both relaxing, and complex

 

When lighting a fire after dark for the aroma of wood-smoke as much as for the heat:

 
An abundance of smoky aroma and flavor Big spicy rye flavor that's the perfect accompaniment to campfire

 

To wrap your fingers around something warm while sitting outside on a leisurely, blustery day:

 
Pour a little into your coffee to amp it up all around
Make a gin hot toddy with honey, hot water, a cinnamon stick, and in this case, orange instead of lemon, which will complement the botanicals.

 

For something new, surprising, and delicious to share while watching the game with friends:

Warms while sipping, but stellar in mixed drinks, too A micro-distillery with an award-winning whiskey, for those in the know

 

For mixing unique cocktails on a bright, autumn-esque day:

 
Peppery flavor and a gorgeous hue makes this a terrific bottle to have on hand for shoulder season This vodka's chile flavor brings heat to both the palate and the body
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Local to Somewhere, a New Collection

Local to Somewhere, a New Collection

We got to do one of our favorite things this week: launch a new collection!  That means we spent the last few weeks learning all about these fascinating bottles and the entrepreneurial teams behind them.

This collection is called Local to Somewhere because each of these spirits (in addition to being great-tasting and of excellent quality) has a unique way of evoking the place in which it's made. Whether that's the location itself, its geography, history, the ingredients it uses or its production method, it's fascinating to see how the where informs the what, the how, and the why. 

We've got a modern interpretation of Aquavit, a spirit of Scandinavian origin that is quickly gaining popularity in the US.  We've got vodka from Siberia, an Irish whiskey that sets the Irish whiskey standard, and an amaro from the hills of Friuli, Italy, crafted by one of the only remaining grappa distilleries in the country. We've got a lovely tequila añejo from a Jalisco distillery that's been producing tequila for more than 80 years, a Scotch that's an extremely drinkable blend of different peaty Scotches, and a Pink Pepper gin which is an innovation on a Mid-Atlantic style of gin from the best micro-distillery in Newark, NJ.

We also have a bottle of bourbon from a very special place in Upstate New York, the grain-to-glass Black Button Distilling, our featured artisan of the month. This four-grain straight bourbon is made from rye, wheat, corn, and barley, all of which is grown locally at a nearby farm in the Finger Lakes region. Black Button Distillery has a deep commitment to living local. You can read more about that in our featured artisan profile

We hope when you have a moment you'll explore and discover what's unique and uniquely local about each of these bottles. And that next time you take a sip from one of them, right after thinking, "Damn, that's good," we hope you'll be reminded of the specific ways in which where this spirit comes from has shaped why it exists, how its made, and what it is.

Explore the full collection.

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Spirits that take you places

Spirits that take you places

Spirits, more so than most things, are often inextricably linked to a specific place. While travel likely isn't in the cards at the moment, we think you might enjoying taking a closer look at some of the locales that are so central to the identify and creation of several of the spirits in our Local to Somewhere collection.

Take a quick video tour of the La Alteña Distillery, home of Tequila Tapatio and El Tesoro.

Learn all about the history of the single pot still whiskey in this fantastic exploration of Midleton Distillery and the distinctively Irish whiskeys it produces. Among them is Redbreast, considered the standard by which all other Irish whiskeys are judged.

 Get the insider's view of the distilling process at Black Button Distilling in Rochester, New York. Wait until the end where the founder specifically discusses the process of distilling their Four Grain Straight Bourbon.

Journey to the hills of Friuli, Italy and soak in the beauty of the Nonino family distillery. Learn all about the single-origin grappa that is the foundation for Amaro Nonino Quintessentia.

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