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A Spirited Attempt at Mixology

Unless I find myself at a bar with an extensive list of amazing cocktails and ingredients, I have just a couple of go-to liquor drinks — vodka tonics and whiskey gingers (or whiskey sours, when Meyer lemons are aplenty), with the occasional margarita thrown in for good measure. At home, I’ll often try out different mixers, but I don’t typically bring home new liquor varieties, so I was pretty excited when I had a couple interesting samples land on my doorstep.
G’Vine Floraison Gin de France. I’ve never been a gin drinker, but this has me rethinking my stance. Made from grape vine blossoms instead of grain, G’Vine Floraison is fruity, floral, and oh, so crisp and fresh. It’s flavorful enough to be perfect with tonic (talk about an awesome G&T!) or soda water … and, in fact, it’s so smooth that I found I had to exercise a little control to keep from sipping it a little too quickly.
Calvados Boulard V.S.O.P. Issued from ciders produced in the geographical area of Pays d’Auge, Calvados Boulard VSOP blends different Calvados Pays d’Auge from four to 10 years old before aging in casks to achieve the proper flavor. It’s described as having a “rich fruity nose with a light woody touch, toasted nut notes and hint of brioche. Well balanced harmony between vanilla, wood and ripe apple compote purée due to aging in French oak little cask.” The recommendation was to enjoy neat or on the rocks, but … that didn’t go over so well with any of my group of friends — it was a little too strong and fragrant. However, I did like it quite a bit mixed with club soda and some orange juice — the tartness of the juice seemed to complement the warmth of the liquor really nicely.
Are you adventurous when it comes to trying new spirits? I’m not always, to be honest, but it’s always fun to find a new favorite!Kristen

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