Aug 14, 201212:44 PMThe Telegraph
The Premier Blog of the West
Triple Threats: Three High-Test Ways To Cure Your Thirst
While enduring the heat of the summer days, it’s not always advisable to indulge in too much of anything — alcohol included. But if you can only have one drink, sometimes you want to make it count. An old friend of mine (what’s up, John?!) was fond of Long Island iced teas when faced with the prospect of an open bar and/or one-drink happy hour, but that’s not to everyone’s taste. Here’s a triple threat of potent potables with high alcohol by volume: one wine, one whiskey, one beer.
Michael David Winery’s Earthquake (web)
Longtime Lodi, California, winemaker Michael David bottles up a prizefighter with its annual Earthquake series, this time with a very big-hipped Cabernet Sauvignon. The Earthquake wines always exhibit the classic traits of that year’s variety, and then some. This Cab has the earthy nose and velvet finish you’d expect, but it’s spicy and aggressive with a 15 percent ABV. The series is vinted from (and inspired by) old-vine growths that date back to the San Francisco earthquake, hence the inspiration for the name. Each year, this collection comes out in limited quantities, so snap some up if you have the chance — it’ll only get better with time.
Balcones True Blue Corn Whiskey (web)
Most whiskey distillers, regardless of origin, try to achieve a uniform product in terms of taste, color, and alcohol content. “Cask strength” refers to spirits bottled from the batch at full strength (not watered or blended), and they can be unpredictable. Balcones is a Texas distiller that prides itself on creating corn whiskey with character worthy of the Lone Star State, and its cask-strength True Blue Corn Whiskey has plenty of it at 130 proof. The bottle will typically have the proof handwritten on the label, because each cask is slightly different. True Blue is a great change of pace from your run-of-the-mill bourbon — warm sweet notes of honey at the start are followed by intense bursts of cinnamon and corn that mellow out very quickly. Don’t you dare put ice in it or mix it: This is what real firewater tastes like.
Avery Uncle Jacob’s Stout (web)
Colorado’s Avery Brewing is a stalwart of the craft-brewing revolution and has developed a cult following in bars around the country. With its Annual Barrel offerings, Avery is creating barrel-aged beers that are unique enough to make the most die-hard beer nerd weep with joy. Brewed once and never again, these are truly works of art. Witness their Uncle Jacob’s Stout — a thick, molasses-like creature imbued with the character and color of the bourbon barrels in which it was aged. Be forewarned: At $20 a bottle and 18 percent ABV, this is a serious beer that is not to be undertaken lightly. However, those brave souls who sip of it will never forget its dark majesty.