About US SPIRITS

The spirit industry in America is much like the beer industry; some large corporate distillers turning out good quality vodka, gin and whisky along with a growing number of artisan producers of these same products.

In large cities such as Chicago and San Francisco, small distilleries turn out superb spirits, many of them organically produced. Vodkas and gins are most common, but there are even a few examples of single malt whiskey.

This is certainly an encouraging alternative to the commercially produced spirits in the US, but the truth is that these artisan spirits are a drop in the bucket next to the huge amount of vodkas, gins and whiskeys made by the large companies and are sold in huge numbers; given the promotional money spent by these firms.

But the new competition is a bright sign at least in terms of some of the famous whiskey producers that have recently introduced specialty bourbons, aged for a dozen or more years, many of them single barrel products. They are responding to a public looking for more high quality American spirits. The success of these products is a great thing for the American sprits industry.
Top Picks for USA
207652
Whidbey Island Distillery
Blackberry Liqueur
Opaque violet black color. Exotic bold aromas and flavors of spiced berries and apricots, floral honey, exotic tea, and chocolate with a tangy, moderately sweet medium body and a warming, complex, finish with nuances of Asian spices and cola. A fantastically flavorful and complex berry liqueur.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
211442
Balsam
American Amaro
Tasted Neat. Dark brown black color. Complex, spicy herbal aromas of anise, gingerbread, chocolate spice raisin cake, and pink peppercorn with a velvety, vibrant, moderately sweet medium-full body and a warming, long bitter barks, wormwood tea, sarsaparilla, and grilled citrus peels finish. A bold, fantastically rich and balanced amaro with cascading waves of flavor. Tasted as Vermouth. Dark violet black color. Bright, spicy, fruity complex aromas of cherry rhubarb pie, rich baking spices, delicate herbs, and chocolate drizzled blood orange with an even, racy, sweet medium body and a tingling, long bitter barks, wormwood tea, toasty cedar, and cardamom finish. A sensationally vibrant and flavor packed vermouth with great balance, style and length; sure to be a hit on its own or in craft cocktails.
96 points $31.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
209482
broVo
Jammy Red Vermouth
Dark garnet color. Bold, floral, herbal aromas of menthol mint, pine sap, eucalyptus, grilled grapefruit, and stewed wild berries with a supple, sweet-and-sour medium-to-full body and a warming, very complex, long candied jasmine, candied orange peels, ginger mint gum, and peppery Asian spices finish with silky tannins. A fantastic roller coaster of forest and Asian spice flavors for adventurous cocktails.
96 points $19.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221922
Hoodoo
Chicory Liqueur Legba Reserve
Nearly opaque mahogany color. Aromas of charred vanilla bean, pecan, roasted coffee, freshly charred oak, and dates with a round, vibrant, sweet medium-to-full body and a warming, complex, long warm spices, chocolate cookies, sage, hazelnut latte, and candied roasted root vegetables finish. A fantastic complex liqueur that will charm your guests and gussy up classic cocktails; superb.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217466
BOM BOM
Coco Mochanut Liqueur
Creamy medium brown color. Attractive aromas of dream bar and latte with a creamy, bright, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, long toasted coconut, caramelized nuts, chocolate cannoli, and sweet cream finish. A great creamy coconut chocolate liqueur that is sure to please.
94 points $24.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216033
Underground
Herbal Spirit
Opaque bronze black color. Aromas and flavors of anise cookie and honeyed raisin toast with a silky, soft, moderately sweet light-to-medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-length orange pepper, saffron, and sassafras finish. A elegant, nicely styled herb spice liqueur.
94 points $19.95 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
213511
Sassy Girl
Rum C.R.E.A.M
Creamy bone white color. Bright, attractive, creamy spicy aromas and flavors of key lime pie with graham cracker crust, light egg nog, coconut macaroon, and oatmeal cookie with a creamy, soft, sweet medium-full body and a tingling, complex, medium-long horchata and coconut flan finish. A delicious and delicately spicy cream liqueur.
94 points $16.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
212122
La Crema
Especial Horchata Liqueur
Opaque creamy color. Attractive, toasty aromas of carrot cake and pumpkin pie and toasted coconut dream bar with a creamy, bright, moderately sweet medium-full body and a smooth, complex, medium-long sweet creamy horchata and graham cracker crusted mince meat pie finish. A delicious, complex and layered cream liqueur.
94 points $14.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
210560
SomruS
Original Indian Cream Liqueur
Creamy clear color. Rich, complex aromas of cardamom and lemon yogurt with an oily, bright, sweet medium body and a seamless, layered, medium-long rose water pastry, sweet cream, and Indian spice cake finish. A vibrant and rather unique Indian spiced cream liqueur.
94 points $24.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221740
Toadstool
Notom Amaro No. 1
Bright golden amber color. Herbal, citrusy aromas of flamed orange peel, cinnamon spice tisane, black licorice, and stout with a round, vibrant, bittersweet medium-to-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long hot cinnamon candies, wormwood, clove, lemon drop candies, and buckwheat honey finish. A spicy, herbal liqueur with intense yet balanced bitter notes.
93 points $28.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab