Recent Posts in Spirits Category

October 17, 2012
A NEAT Night
Posted By Ariela Kozin
Leave it to owner Aidan Demarest to finish off NEAT 's first year of business with a bang. To celebrate the major feat, Demarest invited some of the industry's finest to enjoy a live band (The ...
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October 08, 2012
A Little Piece of Ireland
Posted By Ariela Kozin
Among the flock of bars that open and close every year in Los Angeles, Tom Bergin's Old Horseshoe and Thoroughbred Club has prospered for over 60 years. Despite a recent make-over that forced the bar ...
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July 31, 2012
Red Carpet Wine & Spirits
Posted By Jamie Solomon
At first, Red Carpet Wine looks like your average retail store. Stepping out of the brutal Glendale heat, I was welcomed by a refreshing blast of air. As I meandered the rows of wine and spirits that ...
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July 10, 2012
Captivating Caribbean Cocktails
Posted By Jamie Solomon
Bahama Breeze Island Grille is a casual dining restaurant that makes you feel as if you have escaped to the Caribbean...and what is a true vacation without a cold cocktail in your hand? Bahama Breeze ...
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April 24, 2012
Adventures in Victorian Drinking II: Kentucky Derby Edition
Posted By Sara Joyce Robinson
Every spring, as the first Saturday in May approaches, my thoughts turn to the ponies. To the great lady of American horseracing, the Kentucky Derby. I can almost hear the roar of the stands, and ...
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April 10, 2012
Irreconcilable Differences
Posted By Sara Joyce Robinson
I've known my husband for fifteen years (married for almost six), and in that time we have (of course) disagreed often. Our first argument happened over a game of Monopoly. We had differing financial ...
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March 27, 2012
Wednesdays Call for Whiskey
Posted By Megan Wieczorek
Whiskey has long been hailed as the quintessential man's drink, so imagine my surprise and delight when I arrived at the Next Door Lounge's "Whiskey Wednesdays" to find a table dominated by women. As ...
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March 26, 2012
Adventures in Victorian Drinking
Posted By Sara Joyce Robinson
It happens every time I watch Masterpiece Theater. I develop a craving for some archaic food or drink. Like Turkish delight, claret, or mead. Something I have never actually tasted, but sounds so ...
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November 09, 2011
Any Excuse to Shoot Lasers, Right, Scotland?
Posted By Zack Jenkins
Researchers at Andrews University in Scotland have figured out the best way to test scotch-whisky authenticity-fire a laser at it! It sounds like a perfect Star Wars moment for alcohol lovers, doesn't ...
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February 17, 2011
Clear, Non-fat Chocolate Dessert
Posted By Becky Sue Epstein
It's Godiva. The vodka, not the truffles. Well, we might have had the truffles, if there had been any left. But we ate them as soon as we opened the box. The Godiva people sent over chocolate and ...
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February 14, 2011
A Dinner Party Hosted by a Great Scot
Posted By Becky Sue Epstein
I like the way marketing spirits and wines is changing. Instead of summoning the press to a morning seminar or mid-afternoon comparison tasting, some companies are demonstrating the way their wines or ...
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January 26, 2011
How to Drink Great Vodka Every Night
Posted By Becky Sue Epstein
Start at 14. Most guys probably start around then, just not officially. But if you’re seriously interested in the spirits business—as opposed to just drinking—you can become a Brand Ambassador and ...
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January 13, 2011
Galliano L'Autentico
Posted By Becky Sue Epstein
When I was young, I eyed the long, tall, yellow Galliano liqueur bottle with suspicion, when I saw it on people’s home bars. Rather than a mark of sophistication, I looked at it as a demonstration of ...
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December 22, 2010
Averna Amaro dal 1868
Posted By Becky Sue Epstein
Averna. The word reminds me of taverna. In my mind, there’s group of us lingering over coffee at the end of a long, particularly warm day early spring. We’re in a little town west of Palermo, in a ...
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September 26, 2010
Courvoisier Updates Image with Connoisseur Collection
Posted By New York Barfly
Courvoisier is changing things up with the launch of three new Cognacs. First up is their Connoisseur Collection. These two new labels will start hitting shelves in October, and aim to stand out with ...
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August 02, 2010
Kanon Vodka Launches, Jello Shots in Tow
Posted By New York Barfly
When spirit brands launch, they hire bartenders to showcase the product. It’s rare that a liquor company comes up with something so inventive – and so tasty – as Kanon Vodka’s “Reverse Mojito”. This ...
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July 12, 2010
Smirnoff Splashes Down with Mango and Peach
Posted By New York Barfly
It’s flavored vodka mania! During the past few months, we’ve witnessed the launch of countless vodka concoctions. Absolut has their Berry Acai, Three Olives now slings a bubble gum label, Ciroc is in ...
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June 07, 2010
Decoding the Shaker Face.
Posted By New York Barfly
What does your shaker face say about you? That’s the question that one cheeky website asks. Shaker Faces ( ) thinks that you can learn a lot about your bartender from the face that ...
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May 25, 2010
Get Ready For Maker’s 46
Posted By New York Barfly
The folks down at the Maker’s Mark distillery in Loretto, Kentucky have only ever made one thing. Until now. A new label from Maker’s Mark is on the way to the market. Deemed Maker’s 46, this spirit ...
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May 11, 2010
A Bar Bottles their Mixers for Retail
Posted By New York Barfly
Most high-end New York cocktail bars make their ingredients in house, but only one is getting ready to bottle their mixtures and sell them retail. The West Village’s Employees Only restaurant is set ...
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April 19, 2010
A $1,000 Mint Julep, For a Good Cause
Posted By New York Barfly
This year’s Kentucky Derby is May 1st, and you’re going to need something to put your mint julep in. Tiffany & Co. has created a special receptacle to commemorate the race. They’ve made 73 silver ...
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April 10, 2010
How to Make Tequila
Posted By The Liquid Muse
The Liquid Muse takes a trip to Jalisco to find out how tequila is made at Jose Cuervo. Find more at
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April 05, 2010
New York Gets a Cocktail Festival
Posted By New York Barfly
Everyone summer, cocktail lovers and industry professionals flock to New Orleans for Tales of the Cocktail. This year, New York is trying to create their own world-class libation festival. Spirits ...
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March 22, 2010
The Magic of Agave Nectar
Posted By New York Barfly
In the span of a few months, a new ingredient has found its place behind many of New York’s top notch bars. Agave Nectar, made from the heart of the tequila producing plant, is replacing simple syrup ...
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February 22, 2010
The Scotch and Curling Connection
Posted By New York Barfly
With the Olympics well under way, alcohol companies and bars are using some innovative marketing to ride on the coattails of the winter games. Gold medal martinis and Olympic drinking specials are ...
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February 08, 2010
Shochu, The Next Big Thing?
Posted By New York Barfly
New York drinkers have seen a trend of single spirit bars dominating the cocktail scene. The city’s drinking public has moved on from wine and beer bars, they now head to Tequila or Rum focused spots. ...
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January 25, 2010
Angostura Bitters Shortage Affects Cocktail Boom
Posted By New York Barfly
Cocktail makers might have to ration the dashes of bitters in their recipes due to a looming shortage of the popular Angostura brand. Word has it that distributors and sales reps are running low on ...
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December 28, 2009
Another Jägermeister Competitor Enters the Ring
Posted By New York Barfly
Spirits companies have been hard at work trying to come up with their own proprietary herbal blends to counter the long time dominance of Jägermeister. In 2008, Hungarian liqueur Zwack was released to ...
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November 30, 2009
Ardmore Online: A Decades Old Scotch Goes Digital
Posted By New York Barfly
Spirits companies are seeking new ways to engage consumers in the digital age. For Ardmore, a Single Malt Scotch Whisky, this meant going 3-D. No, not donning the funny glasses and watching ...
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Who writes for THE TASTING PANEL?

We have an international network of experienced editors and writers who cover all aspects of the beverage trade, with a focus on today's most happening brands and the people who produce and use them.  Our stable of writers and photographers can and do cover stories across the country and abroad.

Do you accept freelance pitches?

We are not accepting freelance pitches at this time. However, if you are an experienced wine and/or spirits writer and have an interest in being assigned stories, you may send an email query and published writing samples to and you may be considered for upcoming assignments in your area of expertise or geographic locale, depending on our editorial needs.

How can I have my spirits brand or wine reviewed or otherwise featured in THE TASTING PANEL?

We accept samples year-round for consideration for possible review in both Meridith May's "Publisher's Picks" column and Anthony Dias Blue's "Blue Reviews" column. Please see our Sample Submission Guidelines.

If you are interested in having your brand covered in a custom feature story, contact our VP of Marketing and Advertising, Bill Brandel (

Do you host visiting spirits producers and winemakers?

We do often meet with winemakers visiting the Los Angeles area and taste with them in the tasting room in our offices in Encino. Please contact Meridith May ( to make arrangements.

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