The 5 Best Infused Spirits

13 10 2009

1)  Jim Beam’s Red Stag | “From the woods of Kentucky emerges the newest member of the Beam family. Created with four year old Jim Beam Bourbon, Red Stag by Jim Beam™ has been slowly infused with natural black cherry flavors for a smooth, unique taste.”  I was expecting something a little sweeter, but was pleasantly surprised at the smooth, rich flavor from this bourbon.  Great with Ginger Beer!

bottles_w_rasp2)  Hangar One Fraser River Raspberry | “From upper Washington state, the Meeker raspberry makes a startlingly fresh-tasting vodka. We make only one batch a year, in June, when the berries are ripe.”  I know this is more of a summer flavor, but I recently had this amazing vodka with a dark chocolate souffle.  Stunning!  So the vodka itself is late summer and I’ll stretch that into fall with a nice choclate dessert.

3) Hangar One Spiced Pear | “Seasonal bottling (October). From Colorado, tiny high-desert pears with intense pear_bottleflavors & aromas. Beautifully focused and very clean, with just the right amount of pear flavor, so you actually enjoy it as a vodka. Perfect chilled & straight up: classic martini. The main (subtle) spice is clove.”  It’s no surprise, if you have read my prior posts, that Hangar One holds two spots in my top five.  This vodka is the essence of the holiday season.  Perfect on the rocks, in a cocktail or try melding this with some warm apple cider.  It doesn’t get much better!

4) Compass Box Orangerie | “Orangerie is made from smooth, sweet Scotch whisky infused with the hand-zested peel of Navalino oranges and subtle accents of Indonesia cassia bark and Sri Lankan cloves.”  I was introduced to Compass Box years ago in New York and was amazed.  Orangerie makes a very unique cocktail.  I like this spirit with a dash of sweet vermouth and chilled.  Great fall flavors.  Check out the other Compass Box catalog as well, they are making some fine blended whisky.

0400000002439_xl5) Gabriel Boudier Dijon Saffron Gin | “Made to a 19th century Indian colonial recipe that contains nine fresh botanicals including juniper, coriander, lemon, orange peel, angelica seeds, iris, fennel. plus saffron which gives a delicate spicy character”.  This is a fun gin!  Sure it doesn’t follow my methodology about pure ingredients as well as the Hangar One products do, but it is unique and brings a certain twist to a standard gin martini.

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