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9 Category-Defying Spirits

9 Category-Defying Spirits

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Mezcal-gins? Red absinthe? You've got to check these out

Not that long ago, you just needed a few bottles if you wanted a well-stocked home bar: some bourbon, cognac, gin, rum, Scotch, vodka, and, if you were adventurous, tequila.

Now there are, of course, countless varieties of those staples, as well as a slew of new creations like barrel-aged gins and vodkas made from honey and milk sugar.

But some distillers aren’t satisfied staying within the confines of traditional spirit categories and are getting seriously creative. How creative? They’re coming up with completely new types of liquor.

So, check out these nine truly unusual and inventive bottlings and then let us know which one you’d like to try.

Pierde Almas +9 Mezcal-Gin
We love making Negronis with both the traditional gin and also with smoky mezcal. But thanks to Pierde Almas +9, we no longer have to choose between the two spirits. The brand infuses its Espadín Mezcal with nine gin botanicals including juniper berries, coriander, fennel, and orange peel. Problem solved.

This story was originally published at 9 Category-Defying Spirits. For more stories like this join and drink better. Plus, for a limited time get How to Cocktail in 2013, a cocktail recipe book — free! Join now.

These 9 Bubbly Spritzes Were Made for All-Day Drinking

Top off any aperitif, hard spirit, or juice with sparkling wine and a splash of soda water, and it’s immediately summer-ized. These spritzes are thirst-quenching, festive, and consumable with day-drinking levels of ease. Plus, no one ever broke a sweat popping a bottle of bubbly.

Wicked Recipes

Shake and serve in a tall glass with ice, and top with cream soda. Fresh mint is the perfect garnish.

1.5 oz Wicked Dolphin Key Lime Rum
.25 oz Lime juice
.25 oz Lemon juice
.5 oz Mint infused Simple Syrup
2 Pieces Carambola (star fruit)
Club soda

Muddle the carambola with the lemon, lime and rum. Add your mint simple syrup, and tumble in shaker with ice. Pour contents into double rocks glass, and top with club soda. Garnish with a carambola crown.

2oz. Strawberry RumShine
1oz. White Creme da Cacao

1.5 oz Wicked Dolphin Cold Brew Coffee Rum
.5 oz Raspberry Liquor
8 Raspberries
Coca- Cola
Your favorite brand of vanilla ice cream

Shake the rum, raspberry liquor and fresh raspberries. Strain into a tall glass with NO ice, add a scoop of vanilla ice cream, and top with Coca-Cola. Add a raspberry skewer for garnish!

1oz. Gold Rum
2oz. Cola
2 lime wedges

1oz. Crystal Rum
1/4oz. Amaretto
1/4oz. Falernum
1/2oz. Lime juice
1/2oz. Simple syrup
2oz. Pineapple juice

1oz. Wicked Dolphin Silver
1/4oz. Amaretto
1/4oz. Falernum
1/2oz. Lime juice
1/2oz. Simple syrup
2oz. Pineapple juice

Hello folks, I was wondering what blogs, sites, or newsfeeds/streams you might recommend for keeping up on booze news in this day and age. While of course I'm always up to the task of looking so.

Finally found it. Expensive shipping (most of the cost) and only in 500 ml bottles, but available from The Whiskey Exchange, London. This is the original, real thing, not the orange-flavored vers.

15 No-Fuss Backyard BBQ Side Dish Recipes

Those with a creative eye know firsthand that inspiration is all around us. Whether you're energized by the earth tones of nature, a color-filled walk through a local farmer's market, or even by a quick scroll through Instagram, you never know what might spark a new creative project.

In the spirit of inspiring your next masterpiece, we're excited to partner with Bounty to fuel the next generation of artists and designers forward by launching a national design competition. We're calling on graphic designers to apply for a chance to see their work featured on a new Brit + Co and Bounty paper towel collection, set to launch in 2022.

Aside from the incredible exposure of having your illustrations on paper towels that'll be in stores across America next year, you'll also receive $5,000 for your art a scholarship for Selfmade, our 10-week entrepreneurship accelerator to take your design career to the next level (valued at $2,000) and a stand alone feature on Brit + Co spotlighting your artistry as a creator.

The Creatively You Design Competition launches Friday, May 21, 2021 and will be accepting submissions through Monday, June 7, 2021.


Who Should Apply: Women-identifying graphic designers and illustrators. (Due to medium limitations, we're not currently accepting design submissions from photographers or painters.)

What We're Looking For: Digital print and pattern designs that reflect your design aesthetic. Think optimistic, hopeful, bright — something you'd want to see inside your home.

How To Enter: Apply here, where you'll be asked to submit 2x original design files you own the rights to for consideration. Acceptable file formats include: .PNG, .JPG, .GIF, .SVG, .PSD, and .TIFF. Max file size 5GB. We'll also ask about your design inspiration and your personal info so we can keep in touch.

Artist Selection Process: Panelists from Brit + Co and P&G Bounty's creative teams will judge the submissions and select 50 finalists on June 11, 2021 who will receive a Selfmade scholarship for our summer 2021 session. Then, up to 8 artists will be selected from the finalists and notified on June 18, 2021. The chosen designers will be announced publicly in 2022 ahead of the product launch.

For any outstanding contest Qs, please see our main competition page. Good luck & happy creating!

Sparkling Mango & Spice

Courtesy of Volley

Christopher Wirth, co-founder and president of tequila seltzer brand Volley, came up with this sweet, yet low-in-sugar cocktail.


1.5 oz tequila
1 oz Organic Mango Jalapeno Mixer
3 oz Volley Zesty Lime Spiked Seltzer
Garnish with a lime wheel

Add tequila and Organic Mango Jalapeno Mixer to shaker. Add ice and shake well. Pour into Collins glass over fresh ice. Top off with Volley Zesty Lime Spiked Seltzer and stir once to mix. Garnish with a lime wheel.

Best Flavored: Hangar 1 Buddha's Hand Citron Vodka

Hangar 1 is the brainchild of St. George Spirits’ Lance Winters, who set out to create the first-ever naturally flavored vodka line. He ended up making Hangar 1, a brand now known for its unusually flavored vodkas (think California Rosé or Makrut Lime). Now a Proximo Spirits brand, each batch is made with a combination of pot-distilled Viognier grapes and column-distilled wheat in a repurposed aircraft hangar in San Francisco.

One of the best flavors of the bunch is Buddha’s Hand, a quirky cousin of the lemon. While many flavored vodkas on the market are packed with sugary flavors, the purified lemon extracts from the fragrant citron combined with jasmine, basil, and apricots that will make you rethink flavored vodkas forever.

9 Creative Ways to Cook with Liquors and Spirits

Cooking with spirits such as vodka, tequila, or bourbon adds instant oomph to dishes from savory to sweet. Purge your liquor cabinet with our clever ideas and delicious recipes.

From summer cookouts to winter holidays, it’s easy to build up a surplus in your liquor cabinet during the year. Unlike a bottle of wine or can of beer, a standard fifth or liter of hard alcohol can take some time to finish. Spirits have a long shelf life and don’t need to be used up right away. An open bottle will keep for six to eight months if stored properly, and an unopened bottle will last even longer. Sure, you can use extra liquor for cocktails, but you𠆝 be missing out on a myriad of clever culinary uses. From preserving fruit to enhancing sauces and glazes, spirits can boost sweet and savory recipes by adding elegance and complexity.

Below, we explore nine simple ways to cook with spirits from whiskey to gin to tequila. With each idea, we offer tantalizing recipes to put your know-how to the test. Whether you call them spirits, liquor, or hard alcohol, our versatile guide is sure to spark inspiration in the kitchen. From boozy bourbon butter to a rum-infused pan sauce, here’s how to think outside the (martini) glass and harness the culinary capabilities of spirits.

Cocktails + spirits

Imbibe is liquid culture. In every issue of the James Beard award-winning magazine and on our website, we celebrate drinks as a distinct culinary category, deserving in-depth exploration of the people, places, cultures and flavors that make the world of drinks so fascinating.

Sign Up For Imbibe's Newsletter


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Our Craft

We never planned to become distillers. But one frigid January night, Lake Superior, vast, majestic, mysterious, called us with a bidding we could not refuse. "Come," she whispered to us. And we knew we would.

We are here to help you drink better.

The nature and culture of Northern Minnesota are our inspiration and terroir. The pristine beauty of Lake Superior, the North Woods and the Boundary Waters are distilled in the flavor of everything we make. It's difficult to imagine a more perfect place for making distilled spirits. We craft superior spirits that thoughtfully blend tradition and innovation. We forage the Northwoods for wild botanicals we use local and organic grains, handcrafted Minnesota oak barrels, and the clean, cold water of Lake Superior. Distilling the essence of this great watershed into the finest spirits possible is our passion. Doing so in a way that cares for this special place is our vocation.

What makes Vikre Distillery what it is?

1. Lake Superior Water [aka, the world's greatest!]

2. Culinary creativity woven into all our flavors - Drawing on our founder's background in food and recipe development. We make what we truly love and hope you'll love it too.

3. Passionate stewardship of resources we use in making our spirits - we are a triple bottom line company, meaning we prioritize people and planet as much as profits in our decision making.


OUR CAFE FRENCHIE PATIO AND INDOOR COCKTAIL ROOM ARE NOW OPEN DAILY, NOON TO 10 PM. All service is now table service. Please check in with the host to be seated. Reservations are only accepted for our private guided tasting experience (see below).

We continue to require face coverings to enter the distillery, but they may be removed once you’re seated. Face coverings are not required outdoors.

Our retail shop is also open for cocktail kit and bottle takeout service! You can order ahead of time here on our website if you like.

At this time, public tours are not available.

When visiting, please use our front entrance at 525 S. Lake Ave., in Duluth.

PRIVATE INDOOR TASTINGS: We are currently offering private indoor tastings by reservation only on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Groups of up to 6 adults (no minors, please) may enjoy a private, guided experience in the distillery with a Vikre host. You’ll taste 4+ Vikre spirits and learn about the distillation process and the local ingredients and pristine Lake Superior water that make our spirits so unique. At the end of your formal tasting, you’ll have time to relax with a full-size cocktail of your choice off our current menu, served with complimentary “fancy bar mix.” Your Vikre-logo souvenir rocks glass is also yours to keep, plus you’ll receive exclusive savings on bottles, cocktail kits, and merchandise in our retail shop! This experience is by reservation only via OpenTable (see the reservation widget below). $45 per person. Seatings available: Fridays 5, 7 & 9 p.m., Saturdays noon, 2, 4, 6 & 8 p.m., and Sundays 2 & 4 p.m.

P.S. We can sanitize and reuse bottles! Bring in your used bottles and get $1 off a purchase for each one.

Come Visit or Just Say Hi!
525 Lake Avenue South, Suite 102 Duluth, MN 55802
[email protected]


AVAILABILITY: Please search for the specific time slot you’re interested in to see if it’s available. FRIDAYS: 5, 7 & 9 p.m. SATURDAYS: 12, 2, 4, 6 & 8 p.m. SUNDAYS: 2 & 4 p.m.

DEPOSIT & CONFIRMATION: A phone number is required when making your reservation. We’ll call you the Tuesday before your reservation to confirm your slot and collect your deposit.

Watch the video: Snarky Puppy at Shapeshifter Lab performs Flood


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