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Saturday, June 14, 2014

Cocktail ingredients Utah update – June 2014

Enjoy an Aviation Cocktail in honor of World Gin Day!
June brings the beginning of summer, and with summer comes hot weather.  Hot weather and yard work make for thirsty people, so when cocktail hour rolls around Utah amateur mixologists should have plenty of takers for their cocktails. The number of items on SPA (Special Price Adjustment) in Utah this month rose from around 270 for May to a more generous 420 in June.  That means there are some quality cocktail ingredients on sale this month at the Utah DABC State Liquor Stores, so you can get what you need to make some tall coolers or shake up some great cocktails.  Here are some ideas on how to use this month’s sale items to improve your cocktail offerings.

Rye lovers are in luck this month, Knob Creek Rye is marked down 11% to $40.  As for Bourbons, there are about a dozen on sale this month, including single barrel offerings from Elijah Craig and Ridgemont Reserve.  If you like Mint Julep (I know I do), you might want to try one with Jack Daniels Black Label (down 8% to $24.5).  There are not a lot of Rums on SPA this month, but you might want to try some Appleton Estates VX (14% to $18) in a Mojito or the classic Rum and Coke.  

June 14 is World Gin Day, but there are only a few Gins marked down this month.  If you love Gin and Tonics to cool down in the hot weather, you might want to stock up on New Amsterdam Gin (CS# 031475 down 20% to $12), an excellent Gin for the price. Try some Tanqueray ($22) in a Classic Martini

Lovers of Scotch Whiskies should be happy this month: there are nine single malts and eight blends marked down in a variety of sizes.  The single malts range from ten to 16 years old, so enjoy.  The blended Scotch Whiskies include Johnnie Walker 12 year old ($38) and Chivas 12 year for $40.  If you’re searching for a Scotch cocktail to try this month, consider trying the classic Bobby Burns.  The usual mix of Tequilas is marked down in June, but you might want to try my favorite bargain Tequila: Familia Camarena Silver or Reposado, both of which are marked down this month 15% to $17.  If you want something a little more expensive, I also like El Jimador Reposado, marked down to $37.  If you’ve never tried one, give the Tequila Mojito a try. 

Irish Whiskey lovers will be happy to discover that Jameson Black Barrel is now available in Utah for $35 (not on SPA); I had a chance to taste this one in Portland two years ago and can tell you that you will enjoy it.  As to any other sale or clearance items, if you see a great deal on anything at your local state store that other cocktailians might enjoy, post a response to this article.  See the following list “Suggested by the author” for information on how to use the Utah DABC website.  You can check out what else is on sale (e.g. the wines, etc.) by clicking through to the “SPA Product List” to open an online price book in PDF format that shows all of the markdowns for the current month.


Saturday, May 17, 2014

Cocktail ingredients Utah update – May 2014

The Campden Cocktail is quite a treat.
The number of items on SPA (Special Price Adjustment) at the Utah DABC State Liquor Stores this month dropped off again this month into the high two-hundreds.  There are, still, some quality cocktail ingredients available this month, so you might be able to get what you need to shake up some great cocktails.  Here are some ideas on how to use this month’s sale items to improve your cocktail repertoire.

Surprisingly, there weren’t a lot of Bourbons on sale for the derby this month; if you’re into Evan Williams, you’re set.  Otherwise if you want a Mint Julep or a BLT, a liter of Jim Beam is about it this month.  There’s not much in the way of blended Scotch Whiskies marked down this month either: 1750 ml bottles of Chivas Regal are marked down around $5 to $65 and the large bottles of Dewars White Label are marked down to $46.  If you’re searching for a Scotch cocktail to try this month, consider going outlaw with a Rob Roy.

Martini lovers will be pleased to know that they don’t have to go thirsty this month.  Hendricks Gin (8% to $33 makes an excellent Classic Martinis).  The other pick of the Gins this month is the large bottle of Tanqueray (marked down 6% to $45) goes well in a Campden Cocktail; this little known cocktail is one you should try. If you love Tanqueray Gin and Tonics while sitting in the yard in the summertime, this might be a good time to stock up.

The selection of Tequilas this month is not bad!  This month Milagro Silver is marked down 13% range to $26 and the Reposado is marked down 9% to $30. Combine them with Gran Gala Orange Liqueur (an excellent, low cost Triple Sec marked down 14% to $19) to make a dynamite Margarita.  You will also find 1800 Añejo (5% to $37) and Silver (9% to $30) on sale.


As to any other sale or clearance items, if you see a great deal on anything at your local state store that other cocktailians might enjoy, post a response to this article.  See the following list “Suggested by the author” for information on how to use the Utah DABC website.  You can check out what else is on sale (e.g. the wines, etc.) by clicking through to the “SPA Product List” to open an online price book in PDF format that shows all of the markdowns for the current month.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Cocktail ingredients Utah update – April 2014

Tanqueray Taj will put your Gin & Midori to good use.
When Utahans walk into the Utah DABC State Liquor Stores this month they will find that the number of marked down items has dropped back into the “high average” range.  The number of items on SPA (Special Price Adjustment) dropped from around 440 last month to around 356 for April.  Cocktailians who need to stock their bars can still find some nice bargains.  There are some quality cocktail ingredients available this month, so dust off your wallet and your wallet and your shaker and get ready to mix some great cocktails.

There are a few Bourbons on SPA this month; let’s hope they are holding them in reserve for the Derby next month, always a big day for Bourbon.  In the 750ml size there three Single Barrel offerings marked down: Elijah Craig 12 Year (8% to $23), Knob Creek (6% to $33), and Basil Hayden 8 Year (7% to $39).  Sip it, or you can make a very good Manhattan, or perhaps even a Boulevardier.  The only Scotch Whisky marked down this month that you might want to pour into a cocktail like a Blood and Sand, is the Bowmore Legend Single Malt that has a small mark-down to $26.  Johnnie Walker 12 Year 1750 ml. is marked down 6% to $73.

Fortunately, the UDABC didn’t forget about you Tequila lovers.  There are 16 Tequilas (Platas, Añejos and Reposados) on SPA.  My favorites include Herradura Añejo.  This month Familia Camarena Silver and Reposado are both marked down 15% to $17.  It’s Margarita time!  The Rum deals are few and far between this month if you don’t count the “Spiced and Flavored” category.  Cruzan Dark is marked down 23% to $10, you might want to experiment with a Rum Old Fashioned. 

If you need some Dry Gin, Tanqueray Ten is marked down 9% to $29.  Try it in a Classic Martini.  Always reliable Beefeater is marked down $3 to $22 (try it in a Tom Collins).  If you like Vesper Martinis, Ketel One (it’s great with a lemon twist) is also on SPA for $22.  There are also deals on Belevedere and Skyy, as well as the usual multitude of flavored Vodkas that are better not mentioned.

There are a couple of Liqueurs marked down this month.  Amaretto Di Amore ($12) goes great in Mai Tais and is marked down around 14%.  Midori Melon Liqueur is marked down 10% to $19; try it in a Tanqueray Taj.

As to any other sale or clearance items, if you see anything at your local state store that other cocktailians might enjoy, post a response to this article.  See the following list “Suggested by the author” for information on how to use the Utah DABC website.  You can check out what else is on sale (e.g. the wines etc.) by clicking through to the “SPA Product List” to open a price book in PDF format that shows all of the markdowns for the current month.


Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Cocktail ingredients Utah update – March 2014

Campari Ole will put that sale Tequila to
good use.
When Utahans walk into the Utah DABC State Liquor Stores in March, they will be excited to see that sale tags are more in evidence than they have been during the last couple of months.  The number of marked down items has increased from January and February lows into the “above average” range.  The number of items on SPA (Special Price Adjustment) rose from around 230 last month to over 440 in March.  Cocktailians who have been waiting to stock their bars will see that this is an opportunity.  Quite a few quality cocktail ingredients are available this month, so get ready for some great cocktails.

The UDABC didn’t forget about you Tequila lovers this month.  There are 16 Tequilas on SPA with plenty of Platas and Reposados.  My favorites range from El Jimador to Herradura; and there are four different 1800’s marked down, too.  Leave your credit card at home... it’s Margarita time.  Rum seems to have been overlooked this month.  If you like Dark Rums, Mount Gay Eclipse Barbados Rum is marked down over 15% to $17, try it in a Rum Old Fashioned, but that’s about it for Rums. 

If you need some Gin, my favorite “economy Gin”, New Amsterdam (CS# 031475), is marked down 13% from $15 to $13 (try it in a Tom Collins).  If you have an open bottle of sparkling wine but you’re in the mood for something a little stronger than a Champagne cocktail, try a French 75 – a reliable champagne (and Gin) cocktail that is sure to have just the kick you need.  If you’re more into Vodka Martinis, Tito’s Handmade is marked down 15% to $17 this month.

If you enjoy Bourbons, selections this month range from Jack Daniels Black Label (down 8% to $23) to Blanton Single Barrel (down 5% to $53).  If you want to make a very good Manhattan, or perhaps a Boulevardier, try some Woodford Reserve ($30) or Ridgemont Reserve 1792 ($29).  This month you might want to stock up on your favorite Liqueurs.  Liqueurs like Underground Herbal Spirit ($25) and Frangelico ($23) are on sale, and also an excellent Triple Sec substitute that works well in Margaritas: Gran Gala Orange Liqueur (14% to $19).

As to any other sale or clearance items, if you see anything at your local state store that other cocktailians might enjoy, post a response to this article.  See the following list “Suggested by the author” for information on how to use the Utah DABC website.  You can check out what else is on sale (e.g. the wines etc.) by clicking through to the “SPA Product List” to open a price book in PDF format that shows all of the markdowns for the current month.


Saturday, February 22, 2014

Cocktail ingredients Utah update – February 2014

El Diablo is a cocktail the
Devil himself might enjoy.
As is usually the case in February, a monthly UABC post that appears this late means that there is not much to write about.  If the Utah Mixologist had not stocked up in December and didn’t expect to see around 400 items on markdown in March, he would be really depressed this month.  The number of marked down items at the Utah DABC State Liquor Stores in February has increased only slightly from January.  This month the number of items on SPA rose from under 180 to around 230, barely more than a third of the over 615 items marked down in December.  Obviously, this is not the time to stock your bar, but there are still a few quality cocktail ingredients available.

If you’re into Bourbons, you’re almost out of luck this month.  The pick of the lot is the Knob Creek, marked down $2 to $33, but Evan Williams Single Barrel is marked down, too.  The only Scotch Whisky marked down this month is Macallan Ten Year Old, marked down $2 to $40, so if you’re looking for a blended Scotch to put into a Rob Roy you’re out of luck.  If you need some liqueurs, Amaretto Di Amore is marked down almost 15% this month.

The number of Tequilas on SPA this month has been generously increased from one to four!  Discerning Tequila lovers may want to forgo the Tortilla Gold Blend at $7, but the Herradura Añejo (CS# 003656) marked down $5 to $50 might be worth the investment.  Regular readers will know that a good Silver (or Plata or Blanco) is an essential ingredient in the El Diablo, but this month the only Plata is El Charro, marked down from $17 to $15.  For those who love Cosmopolitans or Vodka Martinis, there are two Vodkas in 750 ml bottles on SPA.  Effen Vodka, down 7% to $25, may interest some of you.

There’s no excitement in the Rum shelves this month.  Bottles of Bacardi 8 are marked down around 16% to $16, and that’s it!  Let’s hope for better pricing next month.  As to any other sale or clearance items, if you see anything at your local state store that other cocktailians might enjoy, post a response to this article.  See the following list “Suggested by the author” for information on how to use the Utah DABC website.  You can check out what else is on sale (e.g. the wines etc.) by clicking through to the “SPA Product List” to open a price book in PDF format that shows all of the markdowns for the current month.


Friday, January 10, 2014

Cocktail ingredients Utah update – January 2014

BLT Cocktail: simple, but delicious
When Utahans walk into the Utah DABC State Liquor Stores this month, they will know that Santa Claus has left the building.  Special Price Adjustments (SPAs) originate with the distributors of the products, not the UDABC (only Clearance item price reduction come from the UDABC).  Last month they were generous with the holiday promotions.  This month those promotions are scarce.  The number of items on SPA drops from over 600 last month when Santa was around to under 200 this month.  Cocktailians in search of ingredients who didn’t stock up in December will wish they had.  If this post seems short, you now know why.  The forecast for next month is not much better, so tighten up your belt and wait for March.

If you’re into Bourbons, liter bottles of Wild Turkey 101 and Jack Daniels Black Label are both marked down 10% to for $27. These should make a great BLT; too bad that’s about it for Bourbons.  There is only one Scotch Whisky (a blend) marked down this month: liter bottles of Chivas Regal 12 YO are marked down 7% to $40, so if you’re looking for something to put into your high end Bobby Burns, give it a try.  As usual, the number of Rye Whiskies on SPA this month is low: one: Bulleit 95 Rye Whiskey is marked down 11% to $24; my friends and I almost killed a whole bottle New Year’s Eve, so it’s time to stock up. Try it in a Rye cocktail like the Scofflaw Cocktail.  If you need some liqueurs, there’s not much action there, either. Tuaca is marked down a little over 10% this month; this vanilla and citrus-based liqueur mixes well with Tequila.

Tequila lovers may shed a tear at the lack of SPA tags on the Tequila shelves; unless there is something wrong with my program, they will find one!  Your option for Tequila deals this month is Epsolon Reposada (12% to $23).  For those who love Vodka Martinis, 1750ml bottles of Ketel One® are marked down 10% to $45, and there is a variety of under $20 Vodkas on sale.  There isn’t much excitement in the Rum shelves either this month: Cruzan Light Rum is marked down 8% to $22 for a 1750ml bottle.

As to any other sale or clearance items, if you see anything at your local state store that other cocktailians might enjoy, post a response to this article.  See the following list “Suggested by the author” for information on how to use the Utah DABC website.  You can check out what else is on sale (e.g. the wines etc.) by clicking through to the “SPA Product List” to open a price book in PDF format that shows all of the markdowns for the current month.