Aged Serbian Brandy – Manastirka Slivovitz

While visiting some friends recently I had the pleasure of trying this 10 year old Manastirka Slivovitz from Serbia. I have always been a fan of Eau de Vie but have never tried an aged version. It was smooth and delicious and my host seemed to magically keep my glass full for nearly 3 hours. Well played!

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An Epic Scotch: Gordon & MacPhail Macallan 37 Yr. – 1970

Every once in a while a great Scotch will cross my path and I consider myself a lucky person to have had the opportunity to taste it, let alone own an entire bottle.  My father and I decided to put our money together and buy a bottle of the Gordon & MacPhail Macallan 1970 when it was on sale for $199.99 (currently on sale for $299.99) back in December with the idea of having a dram on special occasions.

It is incredible.  Earthy, a bit of smoke, some caramel, and some salt.  We opened it with a few drops of water.  The high alcohol content (53.3) leaves a nice warm feeling in your mouth and the texture is like silk.  Overall, I am completely happy with this purchase and I think it was worth every penny.

Sievers and the City

New York City in the Spring is a wonderful thing.  The first flowers are blooming, the first leaves are starting to appear, and everyone seems to have a spring in their step as they walk down the street.  We were lucky enough to experience a few of these amazing springtime days with our friends from Colorado.

The trip turned out to be an epicurean feast and we hit the following restaurants and bars:

Q2 Thai – A great little Thai restaurant in Hell’s Kitchen.
Basilica – A tiny Italian restaurant in Hell’s Kitchen.
Valhalla – My favorite beer bar in the city!
Hummus Kitchen – Hell’s Kitchen Israeli restaurant.
Sushi of Gari 46 – Our favorite sushi restaurant.
La Sirene – An amazing BYOB French restaurant in SoHo.
McSorley’s Ale House – The city’s oldest bar.
Caracas Arepa Bar – An awesome Venezuelan restaurant in the East Village.
And of course, don’t forget a delicious Halal Cart meal on the day of their departure!

We also hit various places around the city such as Wall Street, Battery Park, 5th Avenue, Central Park, Times Square, and more!  While the girls were out shopping at H&M and Zara, we were riding bicycles around the full loop in Central Park.  It was simply a beautiful day to be outside and moving.

Another highlight of the trip was when we all went to see West Side Story on Broadway.

Here are some photo highlights:

The Dudes @ Valhalla:

The Ladies:

The Happy Couple in Times Square:

All of us in Times Square:

West Side Story:

And finally… the morning wake up call at our house is when the dog comes in and starts licking your head:

A Weekend in the Poconos – Poire Williams and Irish Whiskey

A weekend in the Poconos isn’t complete unless some fine liquor is consumed.  While the food was fantastic (well mostly, I made a forgettable Scotch Broth), I am going to focus on an amazing Poire Williams from France and a lovely 16-year-old Whiskey from Ireland.

Poire Williams is a pear flavored ea-de-vie/brandy/schnapps made mainly in Germany and France.  Most of the times it is around 70 proof (35% alcohol), but this special bottle of Joseph Cartron Poire Williams from France is 98 proof (49% alcohol) and packs a delicious punch.  The sealing wax used to keep the cap on is always a pain to break through, but it gives it a beautiful touch.  Unfortunately I cannot find it anywhere in the United States, so it is one of those items that I get when I travel to Germany.

As for the Irish Whiskey, it is 16-year-old single malt from Bushmills (Northern Ireland).  It is a fantastic whiskey with nutty flavors and a lot of character.  I am guessing that comes from the fact that it ages in three different casks: an American Bourbon cask, a Oloroso Sherry cask, and finally finished off in port wine pipes.  Long story short: Delicious!