Today we journeyed out to Ace Beverage in NW DC for a visit and the gathering of creme de violette. I'm going to let Marshall talk more about our trip there, but I will say that it was a great place - very friendly, great selection, and good prices. We'll definitely be going there more.
I, of course, bought more than I expected.
Back row, from left to right: The Peat Monster malt scotch whisky, Rittenhouse 100 proof Bottled in Bond, Wasmund's Rappahannock pot stilled non chill-filtered single malt whisky, Creole Shrubb Liqueur Creole Clement, Rothman & Winter Creme de Violette, Batavia-Arrack van Oosten, Vya Extra Dry and Sweet vermouth.
Front row, from left to right: Regatta ginger beer, Fever-Tree tonic water, Fever-Tree ginger ale, Oak Aged Arrogant Bastard Ale.
That's one of my cats in the background playing with the straw thingamabob that came on the bottle of Creole Shrubb.
The big reason we went was the Creme de Violette and the Batavia Arrack (I like to call it "Bavaria Attack" because I'm a dork). I've never had either but I'm eager to try them out.
The oak barrel aged Arrogant Bastard was a complete surprise to me and made me very happy. I'm a big fan of Arrogant Bastard Ale so I can't wait to try this out. It's rare that someone with a kegerator would say this (heh) but I've got too much beer. I bought a six pack last night of the Blue Moon Spring Ale (which I may use for a beer cocktail for spring) and now this, plus what we have scattered around. I've got to find places to stash it all.
The Peat Monster scotch is actually not for me, it's for one of our good friends Roy. He's a huge fan of really peaty scotches, so when I told him about it from the store he knew he had to have it.
I was very happy to see that they had Vya vermouth. I've been wanting to try it for ages given the raves I've seen about it on various other cocktail blogs, but this is the first place in the DC area that I've found that carried it. And even better, they had it in smaller bottles so I can try it out and hold off on the big bottles until I polish off some of the other myriad kinds of vermouth I have.
The Fever Pitch tonic water and ginger ale is a brand I've never heard of but Joe spoke very highly of it. He said that some people had thought it better than the Q. If you read my tonic water review a few days or so ago you know my thoughts on the Q versus the Stirrings, so I'm eager to try out the Fever Pitch. And the ginger ale is something that I'm on a huge kick for right now, so I thought I'd try it out. Thus also why I have the Regatta ginger beer from Jamaica.
I've also been on a Grand Marnier after dinner kick - having a Grand Marnier and a beer as my drink or something like that. I think it's a bartender thing, as it's usually bartenders who do that (though it seems usually with Budweiser while I typically have a Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA or a Rogue Dead Guy). The Creole Shrubb is a rum-based orange liqueur and Marshall has really liked it. Even better for me it was on clearance at Ace, so I got it for fairly cheap, and hey, the cats got a new toy out of it, too. Hopefully they don't eat it and get sick.
(Speaking of furry quadrapeds, damn things are all annoying today. I think it's cause Matt and Cathy are out of town.)
I picked up the Virginia single malt because I make it a point to try any Virginia whiskeys I come across. Joe told me this is best with a bit of water or a couple of ice cubes - once I'm sure I have enough ice (long story, don't ask) I'll have to give it a shot.
I haven't had any of the Rittenhouse Bottled in Bond 100 proof but hey, it's cheap, and Marshall swears by it. I was also going to try the Old Overholt but I know Virginia's ABC carries it as well, so it wasn't a "must get". They did have Pinch scotch, which I've been wanting to buy as a mixing scotch, but I decided to hold off buying that for now.
There were a lot of other things I wanted to get there, but alas, I only have so much time (and room), so for now, this'll have to do.