The Sexton Single Malt

Maker: Proximo, Jersey City, New Jersey, USA (Beckmann Family)

Distillery: Undisclosed but almost certainly Bushmills, County Antrim, Northern Ireland, UK

Style: Sherry cask Single Malt Irish Whiskey

Sge: NAS (4 y/o according to some other reviewers)

ABV: 40% (Bottle reads: “80 proof”)

Michigan State Minimum: $32

Appearance: Dark Copper.

Nose: Old sherry, oak, peach.

Palate: Medium bodied and sweet. Mango, apple, vanilla, caramel.

Finish: Creamy, with stone fruit and alcohol.

Parting words: The first thing that stands out about The Sexton is the, uh, unique bottle. It resembles a giant hexagonal inkwell, uses a variety of fonts, all in gold type, and features a skeleton wearing a top hat. What is the significance of it all? I have no idea. If you ever find out, please let me know.

The whiskey itself is slightly less mysterious. The left side of the label (which you have to turn the bottle to read) claims that it was distilled in County Antrim in (Northern) Ireland. Knowledgeable whiskey enthusiasts know what this means: Bushmills. Add to that the fact that the brand is owned by Proximo, which also owns Bushmills, makes this an open and shut case. Perhaps this was an attempt to move an excess of sherried Malt Proximo had sitting around the distillery.

Despite the weird packaging and half-assed attempts at misdirection, this is actually pretty good. America seems to agree with me (for once), since The Sexton is apparently the best selling Single Malt Irish Whiskey in the country. It’s not as interesting as Connemara or some of the other Irish Single Malts available in Michigan, but it is a lot cheaper, half the price in some cases. The sherry is not overwhelming either, which is a big plus to me, a person who doesn’t like sherry all that much.

Anyway, The Sexton Single Malt is a good sip and a good baragain. It is recommended.

Maestro Dobel: Kakos Market blend (9/11/2013)

Maker: Proximo, Jalisco, Mexico.wpid-20140912_182014.jpg

Notes from label: Single barrel. Aged in French Oak, La Mesa Ranch, barrel No. 3719, bottle No. 174.

ABV: 40%

Michigan State Minimum: $50

Appearance: Clear with abundant, evenly spaced legs.

Nose: Agave syrup, peppermint, lavender, jicama, touch of oak, cracked white pepper.

Palate: Full bodied and sweet. Alcohol, white grape juice, orange rind.

Finish: Black pepper, red dradish, oak, lime peel.

Mixed: I tried it in several traditional tequila cocktails, despite the high price. My preferred method for drinking tequila is with a squeeze of lime, but that didn’t really complement the flavors in this one. It did very well in a traditional margarita and in a tequila sunrise. Did OK in cola with a squeeze of lime but got a little lost.

Parting words: Maestro Dobel Tequila is a single estate tequila from the Cuervo people. It’s technically a reposado, but is actually a blend of reposado, añejo, and extra-añejo tequilas. For some reason it’s been filtered so as to strip away all color from the spirit. Maybe it had an unappealing color or clear was deemed to be more marketable.

At any rate Maestro Dobel is a sweet, easy drinking sipper that works ok in top shelf cocktails too. At this price I would like a little more character and proof, but as it stands I think it’s worth a purchase. Maestro Dobel is recommended.