Bar

Admiring the Selection at Lexington's Blue Grass Tavern

Rare Bourbons Not Named Pappy: A Budding Collector’s Guide

Call it the Pappy effect if you want, or just plain business savvy, but most distilleries saw an opportunity in limited, premium bourbons in the early 2000s. At one of Lexington's best bourbon bars, the Blue Grass Tavern, we laid eyes on some of the absolute best.

Whiskey Wisdom

Bourbon Terms, Explained by the Pros

A full command of bourbon terminology is a necessity when it comes to distinguishing between distilleries and knowing what's in your glass. We asked employees in the bourbon industry to arm us with a basic vocabulary.

Not Poppin' Bottles

Wine Preservation’s Silver Bullet

Through crafty engineering, some physics, and one medically precise needle, the Coravin 1000 uncorks a world of wine possibilities (without pulling the cork).

A Study in the Finer Points of Drinking

The Perfect Bar Cart

Alcohol remains an enduring motif in the great American narrative. That’s probably because those that wrote it drank, and drank well — epitomized by the enduring symbol of the most sophisticated of drinking cultures: the bar cart. What follows is just one interpretation of how the home bar should look and taste. Like with all things great, a great bar cart is a long term investment and requires time to develop. It’s not necessary to stock everything; ours is listed simply to help guide those starting from scratch in the finer points of home drinking. Click, learn and imbibe well.

Get Your Glass in Order

The GP Guide to Beer Glassware

There are serious benefits to matching your glass to your beer. Here's our guide to the different types of glasses and the brews you should sip out of them.

Yes We Can

10 Canned Craft Beers To Drink Now

Today, at least 400 craft breweries are canning more than 1,400 beers. These 10 are the best of the major styles, from double IPAs to strong ales.

Here's your soda, jerk

Pop Cultured: Make Great Soda at Home

Given new life by the advent of SodaStream, the do-it-yourself home soda stand is becoming increasingly popular. With the ability to tailor CO2-infused drinks to individual tastes (and control sugar content), pop-aficionados and mixologists alike can don Dr. Pepper’s lab coat to keep themselves awash in bubbly. These are the best soda makers for doing just that.

Gifts He'll Actually Remember in the Morning

12 Guys of Christmas: The Mixologist

What to call a man who obsesses over alcohol? A connoisseur? A fanatic? A drunk? We call him The Mixologist, and you know him well. He’s the man whose cupboards are stocked with more bitters than spices, whose basement is reeking of homebrew, whose glass is always half-full -- at least. And yours too, for the Mixologist prides himself in the cocktails he makes and the beer he serves. He’s an enabler of fun, an anti-Scrooge, a Holiday MVP. He’s every character in Billy Joel’s Piano Man -- in fact, he does a mean Billy Joel if the night goes late enough. So cheers to The Mixologist. Here are a few gifts he'll cheers to.

Only good things in store

Mix It Up: Great Store-Bought Mixers

A decent drink can be hard to find, especially when you’re at home. For the do-it-yourselfers who would rather the "do" simply be mixing the strong stuff with the not-so-strong stuff, we’ve compiled a list of the top five mixers you can find in your friendly neighborhood high-end liquor store. All you have to do is add booze, ice and maybe a wry wink as you drop in the cocktail straw.

Ensuring your scotch survives, even if you don't

The Flask by The Macallan x Oakley

The fine single malt makers at The Macallan have teamed up with Oakley to create a limited edition box set and spirits container packed with enough raw masculinity to rob the entire Expendables cast of decades of sequel paychecks. While the traditional groomsmen pleaser is designed to serve as a portable and discrete vessel for drinking on the go, The Flask is a boldly designed, laser welded masterpiece whose material spec sheet reads like the space shuttle's.

Old School, High Quality, No BS

Owen & Fred

In the constant pursuit of a high-quality, stylish lifestyle, it's understandable that we men may stray from the path a time or two -- a truck stop frozen burrito here, a discount-grade pair of white socks there. Most times, though, we regret purchasing shoddy products. Owen & Fred, The Store For Men is a response to just such disappointing gimmickry, providing the superbly crafted choice for everything from dopp kits to ties to kitchen accessories and all the rest.

Fill 'er up

Portland Growler Co.

It can be emitted by your stomach, your dog or your angry in-law, but the best form of the low rumble is the growler, beer drinkers' response to the doggy bag. Portland Growler Co. knows their way around these 32- and 64-ounce jugs o' joy better than just about anybody. The (you guessed it) Portland company proudly designs a range of growlers, which are then slip cast, trimmed and made to order by Mudshark Studios (also of Portland, of course).

Do Go Tipsy Into that Good Night

5 Drinks to Enjoy While Watching the World End

There are a number of different ways to use your final hours on this earth: You could scramble for last-minute supplies, or put the finishing touches on that coffin bunker in the backyard. Pack up and bug out to hopefully greener pastures, perhaps; visit with family and friends for some final goodbyes, if you're the sentimental type. The way we figure, though, this final Friday affords you the perfect excuse to settle down, put your feet up and enjoy one last drink (or five) and enjoy the show.

12 gifts for the booze lover

12 Guys of Christmas: The Mixologist

The Mixologist’s gotten you into plenty of blissful adventures, most of which ended without real long term damage to your record or your marriage. He’s a passionate guy, and he knows his craft: beer, that is. Malts, mash, wheat, barley, rye, and oh yes, sweet sweet delicious hops — he sucks them all down, grinning...

Delicious to the bitter end

Woodford Reserve Bourbon Aged Spiced Cherry Bitters

A key cocktail element hasn’t gotten much love lately, but Woodford Reserve Bourbon Aged Spiced Cherry Bitters brings small batch excellence back to our favorite drinking “dash”. The notable bourbon maker teamed up with Bourbon Barrel Foods, blending standard gentian root with cherry and spices to create a unique alcoholic add in. The bitters are...

The best kind of warmth

Crown Royal Maple Finished

As thoughts of crackling fires, the laughter (and possibly screaming) of little children and more than your fair share of gingerbread descend upon you in the coming weeks, you might need some holiday cheer to get yourself through it all. What better time to start planning for the requisite imbibing by picking up some Crown...

A different kind of pot sticker

Magic Wall Kitchen Organizer

Throwing “it” against the wall to see what stuck used to be a hasty solution. Not any longer, my friends. In fact, with the Magic Wall Kitchen Organizer (~$340+), it’s encouraged. Knives, pots, pans, tins, tools, keys and even the kitchen sink (although we don’t recommend it) now have a designated vertical stowage space on this...

Have booze, will travel

Libations Bar Cart

Gone should be the days of plastic fraternity tumblers filled with warm beer and a properly unclaimed bottle of peppermint schnapps laying sideways behind the sofa. You’re an adult now (right?). Hosting friends means having the right spirits at hand for magical concoctions, without the mess. The Crate & Barrel Libations Bar Cart ($599) can...

Double barreled flavors

Tasting Notes: The Balvenie DoubleWood 17 Year Old

The gentle chill of early fall spurs dreams of crackling fires, wool blankets and some good single malt Scotch. To fulfill that last desire, we looked to The Balvenie’s latest release, DoubleWood 17 Year Old. Created by Malt Master (what a title) David Stewart, DoubleWood is aged in vanilla-imparting oak casks for 17 years and...

A non-partisan pleasure

White House Beer Recipe Kit

Regardless of your politics, a brew with the president would be pretty cool. While you wait for your invitation to the White House, try one of Northern Brewer’s White House beer recipe kits ($37+). When that call does come through, you’ll be able to wax intellectual with the leader of the free world about “sweet...

Ditch the canteen, break out the stein.

Pat’s Backcountry Beverages

It’s not exactly practical to lug bottles of beer or soda when you’re roughing it in the great outdoors, but if you can get your hands on something other than water and coffee, it’s a welcomed treat for your parched lips at the end of an active day. Pat’s Backcountry Beverages allows you to do...

50 Ways to Toast America

The American Cocktail

Looking for a way to celebrate Merica’ year round? The American Cocktail: 50 Recipes That Celebrate the Craft of Mixing Drinks from Coast to Coast ($13) should do the trick. This helpful bartender companion, written by the trustworthy purveyors of liquid culture over at Imbibe Magazine, covers a unique selection of 50 favourites from master...

Oktoberfest on demand

Professional Microbrewery

We’ve found home brewers to be a zealous lot, with arguments about proportions of barley/hops/secret ingredients, the virtues of top versus bottom fermenting, and the pursuit of a beer that rocks ABV and IBU values. With a small investment ($45K), you can put your brewing efforts on Viagra and move directly to the top of...

A Vine Time

Peugeot Clef du Vin

Winos rejoice! Though the Peugeot Clef du Vin doesn’t purport itself to transform a bottle of Yellow Tail Cab Sauv to a Caymus, it will give you a glimpse of what your wine could taste like if left to properly age. Utilizing an alloy of various metals, the Clef du Vin accelerates reduction of oxygen...

Layering down the party

LayerNation El Tirador Shot Dispenser

Having a product made by Dutch entrepreneurs that’s seemingly named by Spaniards makes almost no sense, but then again, what do you expect when dealing with a machine made explicitly to shock and amaze booze drinkers? The LayerNation El Tirador (Spanish for “the shooter”) is a drink dispenser whose power lies in its ability to...

Brooklyn Born

Tasting Notes: Greenhook Ginsmiths American Dry Gin

We’re suckers for good gin, so when one pops up in our backyard, we uncap some vermouth and chill our martini glasses. Greenhook Ginsmiths American Dry Gin ($30) is a new product from the Greenhook Ginsmiths Distillery in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Led by ginsmith Steven DeAngelo, the distillery utilizes a vacuum method that lowers the atmospheric...

Starting relief pitcher

Ice Core Beer Pitcher

With spring in the air, the NHL already in playoff mode and the NBA’s second season about to start, there are a number of reasons to have the boys over for a beer. The Ice Core Beer Pitcher ($13) is a simple accessory that ensures your suds will stay ice cold, out on the patio...

Jailbreak your beer

Dogfish Head Randall Jr. Personal Beer Infuser

Even with the current renaissance of commercial craft brewing, many of us still feel the need to tinker or create our own. Sure this stout is fantastic, but what if I added some espresso beans? Leave it to a Gear Patrol staff and reader favorite, Dogfish Head, to devise an easy and low-cost solution. The...

Tanin Toter

Zebag Wine Carrier

Leave it to the French to create a better way to schlep wine from chateau to chateau. Wrapped-up in its hexagon tote form, the Zebag can hold and insulate six bottles securely. When not on the move, the carrier can unroll into “bar mode”, functioning as an 11 bottle rack, or simply hang in a...

Booze without borders

Loll Designs Wallbanger Outdoor Bar

The Loll Designs Wallbanger is essentially an outdoor version of the Urbancase Emergency Cocktail Station we highlighted back in August of 2011 — sold for roughly half the price. Urbancase designer Darin Montgomery worked with the modern outdoor furniture manufacturer on the Wallbanger, named after the famous 1950’s mixed drink invented by Duke Antone, to...

Mobile Moonshine

Cuppow

For the moonshiner on the go — or if you just happen to recently score a crate of Mason Jars at the local flea — may we introduce to you the Cuppow. A collaborative project from the business incubator, Fringe Union, the Cuppow provides a watertight, BPA free top turning the canning jar of your...

Rack Opinion

The Rack by J.L. Lawson & Co.

Can a key rack inspire lust? It might if it comes from the Joshua Tree, CA shop of J.L. Lawson & Co. Applying three generations of machining knowhow, father and son duo Floyd Lawson and son Anthony have created an impressive collection of small steel goods and accessories. Their latest creation, The Rack ($58), might...

Shot Class

The Bullet Cocktail Shaker by Metrokane

For some strange reason, bar tools have consistently remained the lone torch carrier for Art Deco styling, long after the movement’s influences faded from architecture, cars, and graphic design. The 18/8 stainless steel Bullet Cocktail Shaker by Metrokane ($20) epitomizes this trend better than most and should up the caliber of your next home soiree,...

Receptacles for do-it-yourself aging

Templeton Rye Whiskey Barrels

Used whiskey barrels are a hot commodity in the spirits market. Reposado and Anejo tequilas and many Scotches age their products in used whiskey barrels, which impart softer flavors and aromas than new casks. But even if you’re not buying barrels for a full-scale spirits operation, don’t let that stop you from procuring one for...

Mixology 101

PDT Cocktail Book Leather-Bound Edition

New York’s famed Please Don’t Tell nails the hidden speakeasy vibe like few other establishments in the city. For example, gaining access to the snug cocktail lounge requires patrons to find the hidden entrance located behind the vintage phone booth in the attached hot dog joint Crif Dogs. Jim Meehan’s inventiveness behind the bar, however,...

The closest you'll get to drinking with Shackleton

Alfred Dunhill Antarctic Whisky Cabinet

The Alfred Dunhill antarctic whisky cabinet is a soon-to-be heirloom that any fan of fine booze and craftsmanship can appreciate — even if few on this earth could ever afford such an extravagance. The three bottles included in this set are faithful replications of Mackinlay’s Rare Old Highland Malt Whisky from the 1907. In case...

Hipster

Innate Trad Flask

Scotch must have been invented for autumn. Whether you’re warding off the chill on a Saturday afternoon in the bleachers, recounting adventures around a campfire or rewarding yourself for an afternoon of splitting wood, nothing warms the soul (and the belly) like a good single malt. And there’s no better way to drink it than...

Cheers Without Fear

Nesting Steel Shot Cups

The days of housing tequila on a Friday night may be in your taillights, but these Nesting Steel Shot Cups ($32) are still a great-looking alternative compared to typical jiggers. Sets of four 24 gauge 1008 cold rolled steel cups are available in slate gray teflon or nickel-plated finishes, and all are made in the...

Waste Not, Want One

Joseph & Morph Double Dish

Pistachios, olives… Jolly Ranchers — all three offer great snacks for guests to munch on, but what about those irksome shells, pits and wrappers? Designed by Joseph Joseph, the Double Dish ($18) is a brilliantly simple concept: a normal bowl atop a curved bowl, which offers an out-of-sight repository for snack debris until it’s time...

It's Five O'Clock Somewhere

Urbancase Emergency Cocktail Station

Given the latest headlines about the economy, a stiff cocktail is quickly becoming one of the only remaining bastions of calm we men can cling to. The Emergency Cocktail Station ($850) from Urbancase is a tongue and cheek interpretation on the role booze plays during these hard times that isn’t exactly priced for a recession....

Serves You Right

Urbancase Sidebar

The Urbancase Sidebar ($3,100) is a proper workspace worthy of any aspiring mixologist. More than just a pretty face, the handcrafted walnut cabinet features a laterally sliding panel which hides adjacent compartments for liquor and glassware, providing some much needed personal space between your Macallan and that handle of Old Grand-Dad you swear was left...