As dark spirits and wines keep making noise in the alcohol industry with their rising popularity, there is no better way to celebrate their success and melt the ice with some flavorful blends.
From sorting the perfect Christmas presents to sharing easy to make Christmas-themed cocktails, we have been working to add some glitter to your holiday spirit. But just so you don't miss out on some of the finest dark sensations from our locker, we intend to share a list of wines and spirits that caught the eyes of the judges at the 2021 Bartender Spirits Awards and 2021 Sommeliers Choice Awards.
Black Whiskey from Don Michael, Source: Facebook
Hailing from Peru, Black Whiskey from Don Michael Distillery is the only whiskey in the world made from the Andean black corn. Grabbing a double gold medal at the 2021 Bartender Spirits Awards with aromas of black tea, cinnamon, and tobacco, the whiskey leads to intense and bold flavors on the palate.
It is also ranked 7th on our Top 100 On- Premise Spirits List, making it one of the most favored black whiskies in the market.
Add this highly acclaimed dark spirit to your winter drinking list.
Average price: $54.99 per bottle.
Persistence by Reynolds Family Winery, Source: Instagram
Expressing savory tones of a Napa Cabernet, Persistence bursts with rich nuances of blackberry, spiced plum, cassis, and chocolate. The bold and lush blueberry jam palate is defined by flavors of leather, green tobacco, and cigar box.
Claiming the Wine of the Year by Varietal (Cabernet Sauvignon) and Red Wine of the Year accolades at the 2021 Sommeliers Choice Awards, this full bodied red makes an excellent pair with the prime rib.
Average price: $63.99 per bottle.
Amaro Di Angostura
Amaro Di Angostura, Source: Facebook
Pulsating the rhythms, tropical climate, and beauty of Trinidad and Tabago, Amaro Di Angostura notched a gold medal at the 2021 Bartender Spirits Awards with 94 points on the board.
Driven by a spiced nose, it's dark berry and licorice flavors combine exceptionally to round off an incredibly well balanced palate. The liqueur offers delicious harmony in cocktails and can also be sipped on the rocks.
Average price: $24.99 per bottle.
Carracedo by Bodega del Abad, Source: Facebook
You ought to have a double gold winner with the Wine of the Year by Country (Spain) and Red Wine of the Year By the Glass title holder in your glass during a winter feast. It pairs well with cheese dishes, especially hard sheep cheese and hearty stews.
Carracedo is a lush and brambly mencía from Spain, displaying red and dark fruit tones tangled with floral notes of lavender and rose.
Average price: $17 per bottle.
Basil Hayden's Dark Rye
Basil Hayden's Dark Rye, Source: Facebook
Glowing in rich amber color and ruby undertones, Basil Hayden's Dark Rye presents a rich nose with lots of dried fruit and pineapple aromas upfront. A complex blend of caramel, dried fruits, and brown sugar carry forward a long lingering sweetness.
Sip on this 80 proof whiskey during Christmas to savor the intermingling sweet and spicy flavors or make a classic Manhattan, throwing in a few dark berries for garnish.
Average price: $45.99 per bottle.
Merlot Estate by L’Ecole N° 41, Source: Facebook
Scoring 95 points at the 2021 Sommeliers Choice Awards, Merlot Estate leads to a dense and polished velvety frame of black plums, cherry, and mocha. Acclaimed with Wine of the Year by Varietal (Merlot), the red wine has a palate made up of complex flavors (berries, chocolate, and leather).
L’Ecole N° 41 is recognized as one of the most elite premium wine brands from Washington with the elegance of their Seven Hills Vineyard in Walla Walla Valley. Pair this merlot with grilled beef and caramelised roast veggies.
Average price: $23.99 per bottle.
Terra Mariae Spiced Rum
Terra Mariae Spiced Rum from Lost Ark Distilling Company, Source: Facebook
The only rum on the list, Terra Mariae Spiced Rum, is named after Henrietta Maria, the former Queen of England. To enjoy its complex flavors of caramel, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and orange peel, we suggest you pour the spirit over a few rocks and relish it with every sip.
It was granted Rum of the Year and Rum Producer of the Year titles at the 2021 Bartender Spirits Awards, a feat that credits the craft of Lost Ark Distilling Company.
Average price: $27.99 per bottle.