This might be an easy topic to misunderstand. It’s not me being greedy or being a lush – it’s me wanting to give you the best review possible of the spirit I try.
Whenever someone has offered to send a sample of their product to us – or anyone else in the CSOWG, for that matter – I always say two things. 1, “Thank you very much!” 2, “Please send us a fifth (750 ml).”
Why a fifth?
Well, you see, let me give an example. One thing you have to remember is that we’re COCKTAIL bloggers, for the most part, mixologists by hobby or trade, and we like to play with the spirit to see what we can do with it. But even without that, the example might illuminate.
Recently we were sent a mini of Firefly Sweet Tea Bourbon. I’m not going to deny how much I liked the vodka version and I’ve bought a good bit of it.
Unfortunately for me, the night that I tried the mini they sent me I also got some kind of stomach bug. I won’t give you the details of what happened a few minutes after drinking it but – uhhhh – yeah.
And that’s it. I’m out of Firefly Sweet Tea Bourbon. Unless I pay for my own – and really, I have LITERS of the vodka version at home, so why should I? – that’s my chance to try it.
Now Firefly lucked out. I found some samples at $1 a bottle, and I tried it. Now I know how I feel about it (which is generally “meh”, right now, because I only bought a little). If I had more, I could experiment with some drink making, but to be honest, I can’t be bothered to do so. I have so many other things I need to work on…
Let’s use another example. The other day I was out with my brother and a friend, and we ran into another friend at a local bar (Harry’s Tap Room). He was there with his boss who insisted on buying us shots of Cuervo Reserve de la Familia. These shots were $25 a PIECE. No way we’d buy them on our own!
And they tasted like ass.
If I could find a nicer way to phrase it I would, but that’s what happened. He asked the waiter for them chilled, so maybe it was the ice, but that was some of the worst tequila I’ve ever had – and for $25 a shot, I’m not going to risk it by ordering it again somewhere else.
One chance, one try, one fail.
Finally, sort of the opposite.
I love the Del Maguey Crema de Mezcal. Ever since I first had it – having made fun of Marshall for buying it – it’s been a staple in my bar, especially post-cigar. Then, the other night, I left the bottle out on the porch after my cigar.
We’ve had a lot of really hot days out. And it’s 80 proof – but 10% agave. Would it be okay?
Let me put it this way – if it’s been a mini, it’d have been thrown out.
Knowing it’s something I like, I paid the $40+ for another bottle just so I could compare them. I do sacrifices like this for you, our dear readers, because I love you so much.
And yeah, it’s okay.
So there’s a lesson here. When we ask you for a full fifth of a drink, we’re not being greedy or drunk. We just need room to experiment. Booze gets drank in a number of different ways, sometimes spilled, sometimes straight, sometimes mixed. We appreciate and thank everyone who gives us stuff to help us help YOU find what’s good out there – but honestly, give us some room to work!