Staff Favorites - David Driscoll

David Driscoll
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David Driscoll likes to drink alcohol when he is not working at K&L. His main interests include wine, beer, and distilled spirits. Before he worked here he went to college at a decent school, got a masters degree from an OK school, worked as a waiter and taught elementary school in Chinatown. He decided to get into the wine business after reading a few books about wine and realizing that one cannot seriously learn about wine solely through reading. His career goals include: trying to convince K&L customers that he does know something despite his youthful appearance, and learning everything about everything about every single wine ever made.


Reviews

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SMWS 36.82 Benrinnes 17 Year Old "Rare Release" Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 12-12-2014
Our second cask from the Scotch Malt Whisky Society is a BIG winner. I love Benrinnes distillery. When we visited the site during the Spring of 2014, the staff couldn't have been nicer and whisky couldn't have been tastier. We're always poaching casks of Benrinnes from Signatory when we see them available because of its rich, vanilla-laden, cookie dough character. This SMWS bottling is a 59% jolt-in-the-arm version of that flavor profile. Big, chewy richness, tons of power through the mid-palate, and a dessert-like finish that really drives home the flavor. Great whisky from an underrated distillery. That's what we're all about!
Price: $149.99 Add To Cart BC 0

1990 Glenfarclas 24 Year Old K&L Exclusive Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 12-4-2014
The 1990 vintage is a soft and supple whisky bottled at 100 proof that really captures the rich, cakey, textural elements of Oloroso sherry. A special marriage of sherry butts all chosen from one particularly good year at Glenfarclas, it's a straightforward, easy-to-like, and deliciously round whisky that offers easy accessibility, but also depth. When you're thinking about 24 year old, sherry-aged single malt it's exactly what you hope it will be. Not big, not powerful, not overly-sweet, not sulphured or bitter from too much time in wood, and not all that spicy. Just flat-out awesome in the most basic of ways. This is our replacement to the 18 year old Glendronach casks we used to do annually. We just added an extra 6 years of maturity. Hot deal.
Price: $169.99 Add To Cart BC 0

Glenfarclas "The Faultline Casks" K&L Exclusive First Fill Oloroso Sherry Casks Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 12-2-2014
The Faultline Casks expression is deceptive in that the 57% alcohol overpowers the sherry at first, to the point that you get mostly malt and grain. With water, the magical flavors are immediately unlocked and all the Christmas cake and fudge begin oozing out of their hiding place. Super fun stuff and very holiday-oriented. What I love most about this, and our other Glenfarclas expression, is that there aren't many whiskies on the market that taste like this. It's a big, explosive flavor that isn't just dark sherry sweetness and oversaturation. It's still a very balanced whisky.
Price: $109.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2013 Mount Edward Estate "Morrison Vineyard" Riesling Lowburn Central Otago
Review Date: 11-18-2014
Hot deal. There's not much, so grab what we have. Petrol, minerality, stoney schist, serious Riesling.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2013 Quarter Acre Viognier Hawke's Bay
Review Date: 11-18-2014
Viognier isn't everyone's bag; it's definitely not mine. But this is just pure peaches and pears, not an ounce of overpowering perfume or flagrant floral notes. There's no sweetness either; instead just a crisp layer of acidity. I wish all Viognier tasted like this. Then it definitely would be my thing.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2013 Quarter Acre Sauvignon Blanc Hawke's Bay
Review Date: 11-18-2014
This is a barrel-fermented Sauvignon Blanc and that wood influence makes a huge difference in the flavor of this wine. I'm not a big grassy, grapefruity NZ Sauv Blanc guy. I like the mineral-driven wines with leesy richness. The Quarter Acre is definitely in the latter group. This is a crisp, stony, acidity-driven SB with great weight and balance. The barrel influence just takes the edge off, rather than providing toasty oak or chardonnay flavors. It's like a high-end white Bordeaux but for a way better price.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Quarter Acre Bordeaux Blend Havelock Hills Hawke's Bay
Review Date: 11-18-2014
I'm not usually one to buy my Bordeaux blends outside of Bordeaux, but for this guy I'll make an exception. This Merlot/Malbec blend is dark fruited, slightly structured, and shows lovely mineral notes underneath all the earth and berries. For the money, it's an absolute incredible find by Ryan, our buyer.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart BC 0

Compass Box Great King Street "Glasgow Blend" Scotch Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 11-11-2014
It's not often we get new, limited releases that are both plentiful, affordable, and this tasty. Imagine the regular Great King Street, but richer, fuller, and with a healthy dollop of peat smoke. That's all there really is to know! Just a super tasty, well-formulated blend from our buddy John Glaser.
Price: $42.99 Add To Cart BC 0

1995 Glenburgie 19 Year Old K&L Exclusive Signatory Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 11-11-2014
This baby is as advertised. WOW....does it deliver on the finish. It starts out subtle enough with standard single malt flavor, but then BAM the richness just comes rolling through on the finish, bringing vanilla, oak spices, and rich malty flavor like "a dump truck driving through a nitroglycerin plant," to quote Christmas Vacation. There's nothing out of the ordinary going on here, just really, really good Scotch. And, my God, is it really good Scotch.
Price: $89.99 Add To Cart BC 0

1998 Mortlach 16 Year Old K&L Exclusive Signatory Sherry Butt Finish Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 11-11-2014
So this guy started as a couple of hogsheads and was then finished in a sherry butt. You can tell because there's a lot of oak action on the nose, almost Bourbon-like with pencil lead, but then morphing into stonefruit. The sherry turns on however in the mid-palate, but as we saw with the Bruichladdich it only highlights the fruit. Holy cow, this is tasty. Lots of sweet apricot and pear notes, but like they were dipped in a bit of cocoa. I'm going back in again and there's another wave of sweet baking spices that washes over the finish. Wow, this is good.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart BC 0

1997 Glen Ord 17 Year Old K&L Exclusive Signatory Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 11-11-2014
We wanted this as comparison to the other 1997 barrels we bought so folks could do a horizontal. Glen Ord is a distillery that we don't see much of and we usually like it (partially because of the exotic nature of drinking Glen Ord). This is more subtle and less-pronounced than the other casks on this list. There's a lot of straight-forward sweetness and soft fruit, but it will take a discerning drinker to appreciate the nuance. But I know there are easily 272 guys who will really enjoy this bottle. 58.3% makes this a great rocks whisky.
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart BC 0

1990 Bruichladdich 23 Year Old K&L Exclusive Signatory Refill Sherry Butt Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 11-11-2014
23 years and 10 months old. Not quite 24, but close. Rather than fresh sherry, we have a refill which is really what Bruichladdich needs: just a bit of sweetness to help accent the salty goodness. In this case, it works like utter magic. There's a kiss of rich caramel on the initial sip, but the back end goes more towards the fruit and sea salt. It's absolutely charming and, if I were to do a blind tasting of all these new Signatory whiskies, I think I would have chosen this first. There's something just perfect about the flavor profile. It's everything I want from single malt. This is right there with the Blair Athol.
Price: $159.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2001 Bowmore 12 Year Old K&L Exclusive Signatory Refill Sherry Butt Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 11-11-2014
This one we did at full proof rather than 46% like the last barrel. The 59.1% is key to bringing out the best in this Bowmore. It's so powerful that the peat almost turns into that medicinal note, which is surprising given the level of richness from the refill sherry. It's nothing at all like the other Bowmore we brought in a few months back though. That was all campfire smoke and lazy vanilla, perfect for sipping on a cold winter evening. This is all high-tone phenolic notes with just a bit of sweet sherry that quickly explodes into something beyond all of those elements. It finishes entirely differently from where it begins. Bowmore collectors will be stoked.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart BC 0

Fuenteseca Ensamble "2014 Edition" K&L Exclusive Extra Aņejo Tequila 750ml
Review Date: 10-28-2014
What I love about blanco tequila is the intensity of the pure tequila flavor: the pepper, the citrus, the sweetness of the fruit, and the freshness of the finish. I personally don't drink much mature tequila. When we made the original Fuenteseca, however, we were so excited about using the tequilas between 10 and 21 years of age, mainly because no one had ever tasted a tequila that old! It was a bold new spirit that needed to be unleashed on the world. With that excitment we managed to bring whisky drinkers over to tequila in numbers we never imagined possible. This time however we wanted to show tequila drinkers, guys like me who love the vivacity of youthful tequila, that Enrique's mid-range mature spirits (the four to eight year old tequilas) can offer the same level of complexity while maintaining their freshness. Whereas the goal last time around was to make a ultra-mature tequila for whisky drinkers, the goal this time was to make an ultra-mature tequila for tequila drinkers. If you like spice and intensity, you're going to love this new 2014 edition. It's everything we hoped it would be.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Tongue In Groove "Cabal Vineyard" Pinot Noir Waipara Valley
Review Date: 10-25-2014
Very light and peppery for a Pinot Noir. I really enjoyed the zippy Rhone-like flavor for a change. It's like a lighter Syrah or a spicier Pinot Noir. Very dynamic and easy to drink.

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