Featured Bourbon: Macallan Rare Cask

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Macallan knows a thing or two about whisky, in fact, they know about everything. With their new batch, they sought out to create an experience along with the action of drinking. The November release makes Rare Cask a new member of the prized Macallan collection, but a top tier bottle at that. IMG_6667 2

This carefully mastered bottle contains a flavoring of mahogany-red wood at its heart. That deep wood whisky is then showcased with sherry seasoned oak casks and lightened with natural color. The scent of Rare Cask leaves you with notes of vanilla and sweet citruses.

“Rare Cask combines knowledge, skill, passion, commitment and creativity to create a remarkable whisky worthy of its name. Crafted to showcase complexity and depth, Rare Cask is drawn from the broadest spectrum of casks used in maturation on The Macallan Estate.”

If you aren’t already familiar with Macallan and their collection, here’s a shot of info. Their beautiful distillery is located in Scotland surrounded by a 485 acre estate. The surrounding environment, including the woods, rivers, and plateaus have always been an inspiration to the Macallan flavors. Their obsession with quality and mastery is unmatched, and is a main reason behind being one of our personal favorites.

We have a limited amount left, here, at Mystic Wine Shoppe. This is definitely an addition you do not want to miss out on. A new taste for collectors and connoisseurs, yet also a great introduction into becoming a whisky fanatic. 

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Guess who’s coming to dinner? It’s Ken Forrester – He loves a good meal!

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I am fortunate that when my daughter was in elementary school, she picked her friends well.  What I mean is that she hung out with a group of elementary school girls whose parents I adore.

Best of all, everyone lives within a few blocks of each other. So, twenty years later, the girls have all gone their separate ways, but we parents, now a group of empty nesters, continue to see each other almost every weekend for dinners, election night gatherings, holidays, birthdays and lots of laughs.

This group is bound not just by our parenting experiences but we also we share a passion for politics, travel, the love of a good argument and we are all devoted to creating good food. It doesn’t have to be fancy, (we’ve had amazing hot dog and bean dinners- homemade beans, of course-) but it’s always delicious.
Last Saturday at Andrea and Dennis’ house on Jason Street, was no exception. In fact, Andrea is probably the most serious cook in the group. She worked as a professional caterer and also had her own business providing meals to go that she made at home.  And, she knows wine. So a dinner at Andrea’s means that not only do I agonize over what to make for a dessert or appetizer, I also put some serious thought into the bottle of wine that I’ll bring to share.

Pork and chorizo stew was on the menu. Andrea had suggested a Gewürztraminer
(white and light) but I went with a red and matched the earthy flavors in the stew with a silky yet substantial Ken Forrester Renegade 2013, a blend of Grenache and Syrah from South Africa. I was glad I did.

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This wine did exactly what wine is supposed to do. It complimented the food (not that Andrea’s cooking needs any enhancement!). The slight heat in the stew, along with the green rice, spiced with poblano papers set the wine off perfectly and revealed its subtle notes of plum, black olive and a trace of chocolate that made me pour myself another glass to accompany the bourbon chocolate cake that someone else had brought for dessert. We lingered over the table, went back for seconds on the pork stew, sliced a little more off the chocolate cake, cleaned up the edges of my lemon meringue pie and were reminded again of just how lucky were are to have daughters with such exquisite taste in parents. Here’s to old friends, a new wine and to friends who can cook!

 

Thanks for reading, Carol Band

December’s Eggnog Cocktail

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Tis the season to be merry, buy gifts and drink eggnog cocktails! This month we’re pulling out the good old eggnog to create a warming cocktail that will have you singing “fa la la la la la la” all evening long. Feeling weary about using eggnog in your cocktail, don’t! This smooth, bold and delicious drink makes the perfect mate with vodka and other spirits.  Read on for all the tasty details…

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Ingredients:

  • 2 Ounces Vodka (we used Kettle One Vodka)
  • 1 Cup Eggnog
  • 3 TBSP Cinnamon & Sugar (for rim and topping)
  • 2 TBSP Chocolate sauce

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Mix It UP:

  • Pour vodka, eggnog and 1 TBSP of chocolate sauce into a shaker and Shake Shake Shake
  • To make rim:
    • place the chocolate sauce on a plate
    • mix cinnamon & sugar together and place on a plate
    • place the top of the cup into chocolate sauce then into the cinnamon mix
  • Pour the shaken mix into the sugar rimmed cup and enjoy

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Add Ons:

  • This recipe could also be great with Kahlua and/or Baileys

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We hope you enjoy this delicious cocktail with friends and family this holiday season! Thank you for all your continued support.

Your friends at Mystic Wine Shoppe

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Brewery of the Month: Castle Island Brewery

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Our featured brewery this month is located in Norwood, Mass. It’s Castle Island Brewery, sound familiar? This industrial, yet cozy environment provides a fun, welcoming experience with communal tables and board games. Not to mention, they have delicious snacks from Mi Niña tortilla chips, Chico de Gallo salsa, Moody’s, to some Kalahari Biltong jerky. Yum! Depending on the Taproom-v2season, they also have rotating food trucks, giving you a new experience every visit.

Company Founder, Adam Romanow, fell in love with the industry when he dropped his boring desk job for a brewing apprenticeship. In May of 2011, he decided to open a brewery of his very own. Ronamow took his time to research locations and types of brews to ensure a quality brewery. Finally, in March of 2015, Castle Island found its home. They successfully turned an empty warehouse into the beautiful brewery it is today. They even pulled an all-nighter to brew their very first batch of beer. It was a long time coming, but it was the thoughtfulness and passion that has made Castle Island so well-known (and delicious).

Now let’s get to the important part, the brews.

47038511_10101051595840803_5058845023643107328_n (1)Righteous Goals Sour Blonde Ale: This guava mixed brew leaves you with a fruity, tangy taste. This sweet brew contains hops of pilsner, white wheat, and flaked oats. “Proceeds from Righteous GOALS benefit the Massachusetts Chapter of the ALS Association, whose mission is to discover treatments and a cure for ALS, and to serve, advocate for, and empower people affected by ALS to live their lives to the fullest.”

Keeper New Age India Pale Ale: They really overloaded this brew with hops, including simcoe and cascade. Providing a balance with multiple malts, they packed a punch that even beginners can try. A smooth choice for pros.

Hi-Def Double IPA: This IPA is full of fruity flavors. With bursts of melon, papaya, and tangerine, this beer is beautifully balanced with a touch of honey and heavy hops. Make this a year-round favorite.

Candlepin Hoppy Season Ale: This is your beer for anytime and anywhere. Candlepin is an easy, light brew with a mix of47350049_10101051595800883_4662727607341547520_n (1) columbus and citra. Make this an addition to your next tailgate.

Can’t wait to try them out? You’re in luck. Not only can you visit Castle Island Brewery to get a taste, but we carry all four of these brews at Mystic Wine Shoppe! Stop in and find a new favorite.

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Bourbon Tasting Recap

It was another successful Winter Whiskey tasting! We continue to be so very grateful for the support of this community! Guests enjoyed sampling six delicious Buffalo Trace Bourbons along with locally made snacks.  Everyone was engaged and learned a lot about different bourbons (including us). It’s an annual tasting that we LOVE to host and we can’t wait for next year.  Thanks to everyone who came out and thank you to Buffalo Trace for sharing your Bourbon and knowledge with us.

 

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bourbon tasting

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Thanks again to everyone who joined us! Make sure to visit us for our Friday Beer Tastings from 6-8pm and our Saturday Wine Tastings from 5-7pm.

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The Holiday Spirit is a Phantom: BOGLE PHANTOM 2015

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I’m not Jewish, but my husband is and, as is the case with holidays both secular and religious, it often falls upon the woman to create the traditions…which in my house means food.Potato-Latkes-300x257

So it has come to pass that I, the non-Jew, have become an expert at making latkes. I think that the crisp potato pancakes are the one thing that Hanukkah has over Christmas.

At our annual latke fry on Sunday, I grated both sweet and Yukon gold potatoes and served them with applesauce and sour cream, of course, but also with a hearty bowl of Portuguese kale soup and a romaine-free salad.

The soup is robust and smoky with chorizo and kielbasa, kidney beans, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, carrots and kale. But it cries out for a substantial red wine to elevate it from peasant food to festive holiday fare.

IMG_1318Bogle Phantom 2015 is just that wine.

 

Don’t be intimidated by the label that proclaims “mysterious and hauntingly seductive.” This is a very approachable blend  (44% Petite Sirah, 44% Zinfandel, 10% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Sauvignon) that pairs well with comforting winter dishes like beef stew, pork loin and…my kale soup.

The girls and I opened it before dinner, let it breathe a bit and sampled it while pondering the New York Times crossword puzzle. Then we set the kitchen table and poured some for everyone.

It’s smooth but bodacious, yet it doesn’t overwhelm the tongue with tannins. This will become the winter house wine here on Bartlett Avenue.  Even my daughter (a millennial!) who tends to gravitate toward pinot noirs gave this wine high marks. It’s loaded with subtle flavors and it drinks like a high priced bottle. Good thing we had two.

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P.S. I made “Craft Beer Menorahs” for the “kids” and picked up some really interesting local brews to wish them all “Hoppy Holidays!”

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10 Holiday Gifts You’ll Love

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The holiday season is officially here!!  Are you in search of a great gift this holiday season?!  We’re guessing you’re saying “um, yes of course… please help.” Don’t worry, we’re here to help with these 10 great gift ideas. Not seeing a gift idea you love? Head into Mystic Wine Shoppe and let our team of experts help you pick out the right gift.

 

10 Holiday Gifts You’ll Love

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1.Jim Beam Red Sox limited Edition Single Barrel Bourbon Gift Basket: This is the perfect gift basket for the Red Sox fan in your life! Not a Jim Beam fan, come and create your own custom gift basket!

 

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2. Ken Forester Wines: Two great wines out of South Africa –

  • The Gypsy: The character is somewhat ‘wild’ a little brambly with hints of nutmeg, cinnamon, dark spices, with vanilla scents and a distinct, concentrated red-fruit focus. Great for laying down and keeping for at least ten years but already rewarding if allowed to breathe in a decanter.
  • The FMC: The pinnacle of what we consider to be the finest expression of the grapes of this varietal – an icon chenin, a challenge to the world!  Rich, layered with dried apricot, vanilla and honey.

 

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3. A Midwinter Nights Dram: A limited engagement with only 4 left!!  This is a delicious blend of straight rye whiskeys.

 

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4. Patron Tequila Mini Gift Pack: The perfect stocking stuffer!

 

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5. Caymus Vineyards Wines: Calling all cab lovers!!!

  • Cabernet Sauvignon: This wine serves up a bevy of berry aromas and flavors. Its layered and rounded palate make it a delectable choice with a thick and mouthwatering grilled ribeye.
  • Caymus Special Edition: A truly legendary wine, Caymus Special Selection is a wine that Cab lovers simply can’t get enough of. Introduced more than 30 years ago, Special Selection is a vivid expression of Cabernet Sauvignon from the Napa Valley. Starting with the foundation of their Rutherford estate vineyard and then securing contracts for long-term farming control of vineyards across the valley, Caymus has been able to solidify the extraordinary character and over-the-top quality of this very special wine vintage after vintage.

 

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6. Willett Rye Whiskey: A special release!!! Even a quick nosing reveals that Rye nose of grassy, herbal goodness with a sweetness that follows it. The palate is well balanced with a herbal mintiness, intertwined with a sweetness that dances on your tongue until it exits with a spiciness. This is a great utility whiskey to drink neat, make an Old Fashioned, or hold up to a rock.

 

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7. The Dalmore 18: Dalmore’s trademark style is luscious notes of orange, chocolate and spices, and the 18-Year-Old bottling is a terrific example. Aged in both bourbon and sherry casks, it has seductive notes of vanilla, dark chocolate and candied orange on the nose, followed by a full-bodied, spicy palate of cinnamon and stewed fruit. Recently reduced to just $174

 

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8. Opus One Wine: The essence of time is expressed in Opus One by the character of each vintage. Place, often defined as terroir, represents the geography, the climate and the essential human element which is captured in the wine’s balance between power and finesse, structure and texture.

 

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9. French Wines: Not sure which wine to choose, how about three delicious French wines… you can’t go wrong with any of these wines.

  • Terres Brulées Cornas Syrah: A deep ruby-black with purple hints. Blackcurrant, dark cherries and blackberries, with spices, licorice and cocoa on the nose. A very rich mouth-feel with flavors of black fruit, jam, vanilla, spice and mineral notes. This wine has firm tannins and a long lasting finish.
  • Bila-Haut Occultum Lapidem: he Occultum Lapidem displays great dark garnet-red color in the glass. The nose is laden with aromas of black fruits, pepper, leather and graphite with hints of shrubs. On the palate, the fleshy quality of the wine is apparent straightaway from the attack. Rich and dense, the wine finishes with a balance of fruit and delicate tannins.
  • Prémices: A pure, elegant style, with an alluring raspberry puree note leading the way, while light blood orange, red currant and plum fruit flavors follow close behind. Nuances of incense, mulling spices and rooibos tea flitter throughout. The finish is silky and persistent.

 

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10. Santa Rita Casa Real Cabernet Sauvignon: This full-bodied wine has beautiful complexity, with flowers, sandalwood and subtle currants, a dense centre palate and a long finish. Purity in cabernet sauvignon. Drinks great now or you can cellar it
for 10 years.

 

We hope to see you soon at Mystic Wine Shoppe! Let us know what you think about this years gift guide!

 

Blueberry Holiday Cocktail

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We’re getting into the holiday spirit with our November Cocktail of The Month! This delicious and easy-to-make cocktail is sure to be a holiday hit at your Thanksgiving table or at your holiday bash.

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Ingredients:

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Make it:

  • Place 8-12 frozen berries into glass cup
  • Pour 2 ounces of blueberry vodka into glass
  • Top it off with sparkling cider

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We hope you find this cocktail makes the perfect addition for your holiday get-together!  If you’re looking for a great hostess gift, stop into Mystic and pick-up a holiday gift basket or charcuterie board.  Not into cocktails, check out our Turkey Day Wine Guide!

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Cheers!