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Barrel-Aged Peychaud's

Sounds great.

Mar 12, 2015
sku in Spirits

Connemarra single malt Irish whiskey

Most are triple distilled but the whiskeys made by the Cooley Distillery, including Connemara, are double distilled.

Mar 12, 2015
sku in Spirits

Connemarra single malt Irish whiskey

The current TJ's Single Malt is from Bushmills. I haven't had it yet. I really enjoyed the previous incarnation which was from Cooley, but that one is long gone.

Mar 12, 2015
sku in Spirits

Jim beam rye?

That's correct; higher proof and more expensive.

Mar 09, 2015
sku in Spirits

Jim beam rye?

It's brand new and probably not out in many places yet. I think it's supposed to be a fairly wide release.

Mar 09, 2015
sku in Spirits

Lost Prophet?

There will probably be more Lost Prophet. That series (Diageo's Orphan Barrels) has seen pretty wide release. I still see bottles of the previous releases on the shelf. Also, it's not Stitzel-Weller whiskey; it was aged there but it was distilled by Buffalo Trace.

The state of American whiskey has been tough lately. Prices are up, limited releases are hard to find.

As to Willett, they have two series of rye, an Indiana rye that ranges from 4 to 8 years old and a rye they distilled themselves (their first release of their own stuff) that is around 2 years old.

Jan 25, 2015
sku in Spirits

Irish artisan spirits producer distills oatmeal stout

Indeed, though I wish they were aging it for more than two months.

Jan 19, 2015
sku in Spirits

Recommended liquor blogs/sites?

Another good one for industry news is Shanken News Daily: http://www.shankennewsdaily.com

Jan 13, 2015
sku in Spirits

Suggestions for order of whiskey tasting

Nine is a huge tasting. Far too many in my opinion. Remember, this isn't wine, it's minimum 80 proof. Your guests will be plastered by half way through.

If you want to do a broad tasting, I would taste five in the following order.

1. Start with Irish, which tends to be lighter. Pick either Greenspot or Red Breast. They are very similar, so you aren't going to benefit much from tasting them both anyway as the represent the same style (single pot still) of Irish Whiskey.
2. Glenfiddich. A bit heavier than the Irish, but still on the light side and a good example of a basic single malt.
3. Weller or Old Rip Van Winkle. Again, no need to have both as they are the same style of bourbon (wheated).
4. Rye is quite spicy, so it goes next. You have three very different ryes listed. Masterson's is Canadian rye, Dickel is an Indiana rye and Leopold is a craft rye. If you're trying to give people a general sense of rye whiskey, I'd opt for Dickel or Masterson's.
5. Lagavulin. End with the powerful blast of peat you get with Lagavulin as a great example of peated Scotch.

Have fun!

Jan 10, 2015
sku in Spirits

Golden Mongolian Restaurant - Koreatown

For at least a decade, there has been a very small Mongolian population in Koreatown, but this is the first time I can recall a Mongolian restaurant opening. (Note that this is not the once ubiquitous Mongolian BBQ style; this is an actual Mongolian restaurant).

Located at the intersection of Wilshire and Virgil, Golden Mongolian Restaurant opened a few weeks ago and also has a sushi menu, though they weren't serving the sushi the day I visited. The Mongolian dishes are listed as "traditional" on the menu. Mongolian is not a cuisine with which I am readily familiar, so I was excited to give it a try.

We started with a salty milk tea ($1.50); the salty element, which you might think would detract, actually worked very well in the tea. I'm not much of a tea drinker, but I couldn't stop taking sips, loving the combination of tea spice, milk and salt.

The steamed lamb soup ($9.50) was one of the best lamb soups I've had. It featured a deeply intense lamb broth with thinly sliced lamb. Some of the lamb pieces were chewy with connective tissue, but the broth was amazingly rich. It was served with a fried pancake, like a Chinese scallion pancake without the scallions, that was crisp on the outside and tender within - perfect for sopping up soup.

Tsotsgiitei Bansh ($6.25 for 10 pieces) are steamed beef dumplings served with thick sour cream. The dumplings were filled with a nicely spiced beef meatball and went very well with the sour cream. Like many of the dishes, this one felt like a melding of Russian and Northern Chinese cuisine which obviously makes sense geographically.

Huushuur ($5.95 for 3 pieces) are described on the menu as flat, fried beef dumplings (or something like that). They are large flat dumplings fried in a flour-based dough. They had nice flavor and were served with a pickled cabbage slaw.

Lastly, Tsuivan ($8.95) is a fried noodle dish featuring home made noodles, beef, peppers and carrots. The noodles were delightfully chewy and the slivers of beef were very tasty, but the use of red bell pepper was a bit heavy handed and dominated the flavor. I would have liked just the noodles and beef. Still, I might order it again just to get those noodles.

All in all, this was a lot of fun and the prices were extremely reasonable. The lamb soup was probably the stand out dish, but everything was enjoyable.

Golden Mongolian Restaurant
3012 Wilshire Blvd.,
Los Angeles, CA 90010
(213) 263-2141

New Cassell's

I had heard they had the same machine, but it looked different to me. Maybe they built another, smaller one or took it apart or something.

Dec 30, 2014
sku in Los Angeles Area

New Cassell's

I was a regular at the old Cassell's so I thought I'd try the new one in the Normandie Hotel and 6th and Normandie. Old signage is up as decoration. The menu is similar with a few added elements, including pies, a coffee bar and homemade sodas. The saddest thing for old timers is the lack of the condiment/dessert bar. Burgers come with potato salad and Thousand Island on the side but if you want blue cheese or other dressings, you have to pay extra. I went for a basic cheese burger.

The burger was good, though I ordered medium rare and it was medium. The bun is a nice, buttery brioche. While it's a fine burger, it's smaller and not really anything like the old Cassell's burger. The horseradish potato salad was decent but not as strong as the old version, and you only get a little cup full versus the all you can scoop bar at the old place.

It's a decent burger place for a neighborhood without a lot of great burgers, but it's not Cassell's.

Dec 29, 2014
sku in Los Angeles Area

Van Winkle & E-S Water?

They don't distill it. Pappy's grandson Julian III runs the company along with his son Preston. They don't make the whiskey, but they select what goes into their bottles from Buffalo Trace and other sources.

Dec 26, 2014
sku in Spirits

Van Winkle & E-S Water?

Sort of. The distillery is called Stitzel-Weller (SW). It was the distillery that was actually run by Pappy Van Winkle. The Van Winkle family sold the distillery in 1972 and the new owners shut it down in 1992. The Van Winkle bourbons did indeed used to be sourced from the SW distillery (not just the water, the actual bourbon). Given that the distillery closed in'92, the Van Winkles began to run out of it and they began using bourbon from other distilleries about ten years ago in their various whiskeys (depending on age). The family partnered with the Buffalo Trace distillery so that they would have a permanent source for their whiskey and now most of it is made by Buffalo Trace. There probably is not any SW whiskey left in anything except the 23 year old, and next year it likely won't have any either.

Dec 26, 2014
sku in Spirits

E H Taylor Single Barrel??

I second everything Scubadoo97 said in his excellent response.

Dec 12, 2014
sku in Spirits

Glencairn glass for bourbon?

The Glencairn is very popular among bourbon drinkers. I think it would make an excellent gift.

Dec 12, 2014
sku in Spirits

SGV Chinese Top 10

Funny. I just saw it too, and it seems like a pretty decent one. She must read CH.

Dec 03, 2014
sku in Los Angeles Area

SGV Chinese Top 10

Excellent list! Thanks.

Nov 29, 2014
sku in Los Angeles Area

SGV Chinese Top 10

Thanks for the introduction to how the board works. Very helpful for a newbie like me!

Nov 29, 2014
sku in Los Angeles Area

SGV Chinese Top 10

I'd love to find a great Shanghainese place (not a huge fan of No. 1). Updates on what's the best XLB, hand cut noodles, northern style lamb dumplings, anything else. I'm pretty good on dim sum and Sichuan though always happy to hear new tips.

My kids would also love to find a sweet & sour fish in the style they used to do at Chung King in San Gabriel.

Nov 28, 2014
sku in Los Angeles Area

SGV Chinese Top 10

I'm in a bit of a rut for SGV Chinese and as my favorites have closed, I haven't adequately replaced them all, so I want to get an idea of what's great now.

Give me your top 10 Chinese places (any region/style) in the SGV and your favorite dishes at each.

Thanks!

Nov 28, 2014
sku in Los Angeles Area

3-4 bourbons as a gift

This is a very good one with lots of conversation back and forth.

http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums...

Nov 23, 2014
sku in Spirits

3-4 bourbons as a gift

I'd be careful with the cheat sheet. Lots of errors.

Nov 22, 2014
sku in Spirits

3-4 bourbons as a gift

The Smooth Ambler Old Scout series is mostly high rye and might provide a good contrast. High West is a great option; all of their stuff is good.

From the list of stuff he likes, I bet he would like Blanton's as well.

Four Roses Limited will be near impossible to find, but their standard Single Barrel is very good and lots of retailers (probably Park Avenue and Astor in NYC) have cask strength single barrels that they have specially picked.

For something different, you could try a wheated bourbon. Weller 12 year old is excellent stuff, very different from anything you named, also the new Maker's Mark Cask Strength is very good.

Nov 21, 2014
sku in Spirits
1

Few Bourbon has hit $60/btl. in NYC......

Few has the raw wood and botanical notes that are fairly typical of young, craft bourbons, so you should probably look for others in that category. You might want to try are McKenzie Bourbon or Hudson Baby Bourbon.

Nov 12, 2014
sku in Spirits

Whiskies for Fall

Indeed, as it happens there was an article about the new Michter's distillery yesterday. They just installed their still.

http://www.bizjournals.com/louisville...

Oct 24, 2014
sku in Spirits

Whiskies for Fall

It's true that They are working on a Kentucky distillery which they project will open around 2015, but not a drop of the whiskey they are selling was distilled there.

Oct 16, 2014
sku in Spirits

Whiskies for Fall

FYI, Michter's is not a distillery. It used to be, but it closed long ago and the current Michter's has nothing to do with the distillery that made the original Michter's brand save the name. The Michter's label is a brand that buys whiskey from other distilleries and bottles it with their label.

Oct 14, 2014
sku in Spirits
1

Was Gelato Bar Los Feliz sold?

I know Gail Silverton sold the Studio City Gelato Bar. Did she sell the Los Feliz branch too? I went there today for the first time in a while and the gelato was terrible. It was artificial tasting and bland, very different from the great, high quality stuff they used to have. The baked goods and other things were also downgraded (Doritos instead of Cake Monkey?!?)

Oct 10, 2014
sku in Los Angeles Area

Whiskies for Fall

I second Greenspot. Great suggestion!

Oct 09, 2014
sku in Spirits