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Places & Faces

Q&A with Charles Joly

Your bar, The Aviary, is one of the most exciting in the country. What is your process for creating drinks here that might be different than how you have done it in past bar programs (Drawing Room, etc.)? I would...

St. Louis Top Ten Bars

Marked by its iconic Gateway Arch, the tallest manmade monument in the Western hemisphere, St. Louis is Missouri’s second-largest city after Kansas City. It sits near the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers, with over 300,000 population in...

Autry Cellars

Autry Cellars autrycellars.com 5450 Edna Road San Luis Obispo, CA 93401 Tasting hours: 11am-5pm daily 805.546.8669 Steve Autry, a former aerospace engineer turned winemaker, became a fully licensed brandy producer in 2012. In a sheet metal building at the southern cusp of the distillery trail,...

Interview with Leigh Lacap

From coffee barista days to bartending his first gig at San Diego’s great Craft and Commerce (www.craft-commerce.com), Leigh Lacap is schooled on balance and technique, but also imparts a playful, feel-good approach that many a bar manager could learn...

Distiller Interview with Andy & Charlie Nelson

Brothers Andy and Charlie Nelson fully awakened to their rich distilling family history in 2006 when their father Bill took them to Green Brier. Green Brier was home to the original Nelson Distillery, which closed in 1909 during Tennessee...

New Release Roundup for September 2020

My bottle review column (last month’s edition here) is less about tasting notes and more about what is unique, new or trending in spirits alongside my ratings (on a 1-5 rating scale). Now more than ever, small-batch distillers and...

Ten Favorite Bars from Around the World

There are bars, then there are bars. Like the world’s best restaurants, the top bars push boundaries in innovation, historical accuracy, spirits selection, service, design and magical environment, unusual glassware or techniques, or sometimes all of the above. As...
Paso Robles Distillery Trail map

Blazing a Trail in Paso Robles: Central Coast Distillers Stake Out a New Route...

I’ve packed my car with essential gear and headed to California’s Central Coast. Wine and red oak barbecue country calls for folding knives, wine keys and lots of bubble wrap. With over 4,600 wineries and an estimated 600,000 acres...

Max the Stillmaker

A Brazilian living in Rhode Island decides to design a still and contacts a Chinese manufacturer to build the prototype. The Chinese tell him they’ll be at the Independent Spirits Expo and he ought to come meet them there....