There’s only one piece in the food sections this week that got my attention. Read the Clay Risen article in the New York Times to discover how many of the new small-batch whiskey distillers are, let’s say, cutting corners innovating to get to market quickly–who wants to wait four years?! But Risen is unimpressed with these green liquors. The mad science of ultrasound machines, pressure chambers, and tiny barrels yields whiskeys that have a “sterile note,” that “lack depth.” “Impurities may have been removed; nothing seems to have replaced them.”
This was timely reading as I visited the new booze shop on 14th St. NW today, Batch 13. It specializes in small batch wine, beer, and American whiskey. The space is airy and good-looking, but the second floor hasn’t opened yet, so the whiskey selection is still tiny…though intimidating. With my habit, I cannot afford bottles of bourbon that cost more than $50, which most of them were. (See our cheap bourbon tasting.) Now I can pose as a skeptic–how long exactly were these bourbons aged?
That said, the beer selection is really exciting. Even for me, and I happily drink Miller Lite. Also, this recent piece from Eric Asimov about Sancerre’s slightly more economical cousins helps me navigate the wine section.