Whiskey Review: Old Crow Bourbon

When I started reviewing whiskeys my wife asked me a very important question: am I only going to do the “good” ones? No, I responded, I need to do them all. In order to understand the height of perfection, I needed to also understand the depth of awfulness that was available. I needed to understand what would constitute a zero star spirit so I could properly calibrate my scale.

In other words, I made a mistake.

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Building a Drop Front Standing Desk: Learn From My Mistakes

My wife works from home these days. She has her own office setup in our spare room, and while she has a decent desk, the lack of real-life interaction with other people means that she often spends the entire day sitting at that desk. She had asked me to look into getting her a standing desk of some sort, but none of the options seemed very appealing — either way too expensive or pretty ugly. So, overestimating my budding woodworking skills, I volunteered to build her one.

In theory everything was as easy as pie. We found some plans for a design she liked online (here from BuildSomething.com) and I had most of the requisite tools already in my workshop (theoretically). But along the way I made three critical errors that resulted in an end product that I couldn’t even give away for free.

Here’s how I screwed up and how to avoid it in your next woodworking project.

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Custom Leather Cigar Smoking Kit

For me, smoking a good cigar is as much about the ritual and the environment as it is about the cigar itself. It’s a solid hour of time where I know I can just sit and relax, enjoying the solitude of the outdoors or the warm company of friends. So when I started getting annoyed that my lighter would go missing from its spot or that my cutter was making a racket in my pocket as I walked around, I decided that I needed a way to keep all the necessary tools in an easy-to-grab kit that wouldn’t also look terrible. Read More

Whiskey Review: Nikka Pure Malt Red

Last July, my wife and I were in Paris getting ready to tie the knot. We were there with a group of close family and friends, and looking forward to enjoying one of our favorite cities with some of our favorite people. Mission number one after we arrived was to stock our beautiful hotel patio with plenty of wine and whiskey for guests. I happily accepted this task (it seemed a good bet this would be the easiest item on my wife’s to-do list), and my brother-in-law and I dutifully ventured out in search of the essentials: a box of Cuban cigars, and a good bottle of whiskey.

The cigars were quickly located — in a cigar store on the Rue St. Germain, I procured a box of Montecristo Petit Edmundos. The second item was a little harder to find. That is, until we stumbled across a small shop called La Maison du Whiskey. At first glance it looked average, with a wide enough selection of spirits to justify the name… but then a salesperson mentioned the basement. As we walked down the stairs, it was like walking into the storeroom in the last scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Whiskey as far as the eye could see, with every imaginable type represented.

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Whiskey Review: Maker’s Mark Straight Kentucky Bourbon

There’s one sure fire way to know my wife’s grandfather has been in the room: an open bottle of Maker’s Mark placed somewhere within arm’s reach of the comfiest chair. Not gunna lie, I kinda want his life. Maker’s Mark has positioned itself as a “premium” whiskey brand meaning that in my formative years I always considered it to be too far outside my price range for consideration, but with that well-traveled man’s endorsement, I decided that it was worth a try.

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Cigar Review: Quorum Robusto

I like good cigars. Who doesn’t? The problem is that good cigars usually cost a good amount of cash. Keeping the humidor stocked when the weather in Texas isn’t surface-of-the-sun-hot is tougher than usual, so I’ve been looking for solid options of a less expensive variety. When I found a brand of cigar available for less than a tenth of my usual afternoon smoke, I was intrigued (and incredulous) so I took a bundle home to test them out myself. Read More

Gin Review: Dry Line Barrel Reserve Cape Cod Gin

I’m a sucker for anything aged in oak barrels. My wife is a sucker for both Cape Cod and gin. So when we heard about South Hollow Spirits new barrel aged gin, we thought it was too good to be true. A single spirit that we both could enjoy, that had the complexity of a good whiskey and the fruity brightness of a gin? We needed to investigate further. And thoroughly. Very, very thoroughly. Many drinks later, I think we’ve formed an opinion. 

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