Every day it seems like there’s a new distillery in Brooklyn or a new small batch reserve bourbon coming out of Kentucky. We’re thankful for all that, of course. But when it comes to whiskey, best to leave it to the experts. The experts, in this case, are Powers, an Irish distiller that’s been making the stuff in pretty much the same way since 1791. They’re as ubiquitous as Jameson in Ireland and most of Europe, but only started selling their stuff this side of the Atlantic more recently. They’re making up for lost time, though, with their newest release, John's Lane. It’s an homage to the distillery’s centuries-old process, aptly named after the tiny Dublin road on which the distillery was founded and where it stood for most of its storied history until the scale of production became too big for the distillery to handle.
The idea behind John's Lane was to scale down production and use old-school, time-tested distilling techniques that are only feasible in small batches. For starters, John's Lane is made in a pot still, a giant copper beaker that’s heated directly for a more even and flavorful distillation; this is the hallmark of premium whiskeys the world over. The batches are aged for 12 years in American bourbon casks, lending the whiskey some of its sweet, woody flavors. Sure, we can wax on about the craft and our affinity for anachronistic distilling methods, but in this case the proof is in the sipping. Powers John's Lane took home the award for Best Pot Still Irish Whiskey at the World Whiskies Awards 2012 and brims with a plethora of flavors -- from honey and sweet toffee to charred wood, spice and tart green fruits. Even better? It’s only $70 a bottle, which is a remarkable steal for a whiskey this good.
Excellence, innovation, craftsmanship, and an unwavering desire to challenge expectations -- these are the constants that have captivated our attention since Gear Patrol's inception in 2007. This year we're proud to announce the next step in our role as a champion of quality in product design and execution: welcome to the GP100. Our inaugural product awards are dedicated to honoring the 100 best consumer products released during the calendar year by companies of all sizes and scope.
The GP100 is not a ranking or a contest. These selections represent the collective expertise of our entire editorial staff, who have scoured every corner of the vast product universe -- from automotive and electronics, to men's style essentials, home goods, spirits and outdoors -- to find the inspiring and the practical, the ground-breaking and the traditional, the priceless and the accessible. In short: products that define or defy their respective categories to better the life of the modern man.
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