This blog was originally published at on 12/23/2014

So some kind folks have been sending products my way to sample, and I thought why not reward their generosity with a word or two here and there? If I'm fortunate enough to receive and enjoy the products, I'd like to share it more broadly.

One of the greatest learning tools we have in this industry is the comparative tasting- when we have the opportunity to sample products side by side and make an informed assessment on the benefits of a brand (or lack thereof.) 

I was a lucky enough duck to be one of the tasting writers for last year's Ultimate Spirits Challenge, and it was a wonderful experience because how often do you get to taste 20-30 fantastic products in the same category- side by side and think critically on the matter??? Pretty infrequently, I'll wager, no matter who you are.

Bringing it back to the topic on hand, I'm fortunate to have accumulated a tremendous collection of spirits in a range of categories, so each time I receive something new, I can place it in context, and in good company. Do I love them all? Nope, but I can appreciate the wealth of quality products available on the market today and hope to speak knowledgeably about them- independent study in the extreme.

So this is not in fact my first review, though Powell & Mahoney (non alcoholic mixers) will be that... but I just wanted to say that for anyone who has sent me product (or who cares to- you can email me at's what you can expect from me- I can't promise to write a blurb on every product but I will try- if I dislike the product I will post nothing, but if I enjoy it, I will post tasting notes, my general impression (if it's great for the consumer, trade etc), and if I enjoyed it in a cocktail I will also say that. Objective being to disseminate information about great products, and to keep it positive, always.