Koval Rye Chicago Whiskey

Provenance: Chicago (40% abv)

Available at: Vineyards Wine, 17223 Chesterfield Airport Road, Chesterfield, vineyardswine.com; $40.99

Koval Distillery is bringing a trio of white, or unaged, whiskeys to the St. Louis market. The rye offering is distilled from 100 percent organic rye, unlike most aged rye whiskeys, which contain much less than 100 percent rye. Since Koval does not age the spirit in oak, the true flavor of the rye grain shines through. A curious silky feel with deep peppery and floral notes dominates the palate.

The Bitter End

  • 1.5 Koval rye
  • .75 Cocchi Americano
  • dash of navan liqueur
  • dash of Fever Tree Bitter Lemon Soda

| Preparation | Build over fresh ice and top with a heavy splash of Fever Tree Bitter Lemon Soda.

Spirits of St. Louis Island Time Amber Rum

Provenance: St. Louis (40% abv)

Available at: Randall's Wines and Spirits, multiple locations, shoprandalls.com; $22.99

The good folks at Square One Brewery have entered the distillation business in style. This amber rum is made from golden cane molasses from the sugarcane fields of Louisiana and aged in oak casks. Smooth vanilla flavors dominate this quality entry from a local distiller.

St. Louis Daquiri

  • 2 oz Amber Rum
  • 1 oz fresh lime
  • .75 oz simple syrup
  • .25 oz Aperol

| Preparation | Shake. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with a lime wheel.

Skinos Mastiha Spirit

Provenance: Greece (30% abv)

Available at: The Wine & Cheese Place, multiple locations, wineandcheeseplace.com; $32.99

This spirit is in a category of its own. I have tasted nothing to compare it to. Distilled from tree sap called Mastiha, Skinos has an eerie, flowery sweetness. Notice light hints of pine or evergreen, with a texture and silky sensation that linger. Mastiha sap has a storied past for its medicinal applications, so drink to good health!

Skinos Sazerac

  • 2 oz rye whiskey (Rittenhouse preferably)
  • .50 oz Skinos
  • dash of Absinthe

| Preparation | In a rocks glass, add ice and a heavy splash of Absinthe; Fill with water.

In a separate mixing glass, combine the rye and Skinos. Add ice and stir for 30 seconds.

Empty absinthe/ice mixture from rocks glass and strain the rye/Skinos into the rocks glass. Garnish with an orange twist.

Award-winning sommelier and mixologist Chad Michael George is founder of Proof Academy, which covers everything from wine and cocktail list consulting to spirits and mixology education.