Posted on

APRIL 2015


Flossie, whose weight is estimated by a large-animal veterinary at “45 stone”, or 630 lbs (Reuters).

This enormous cat, raised by the family of Albert Billings, a Shropshire (UK) farmer, was of normal size when born but reached 15 pounds in six weeks. Flossie’s tail was docked when she reached 150 lbs because it was damaging household objects; the tail itself weighed 17 lbs.

Billings now keeps the cat in his barn (below), where it consumes about a bag and a half of dry cat food each day. Billings covers his costs by charging admission to see the cat (now 3 1/2 years old) on weekends and by selling its feces to a specialty fertilizer supplier. When it purrs, the sides of the barn vibrate visibly. It once attacked and seriously injured a cow.


Dear friend of fine spirits,

Save money to pay your taxes: take 15% off any bottle, 20% if you buy 12 or more.

    Mezcalero no. 12: agave cupreata. I commissioned this mezcal after tasting a cupreata mezcal at an event in Oaxaca. Cupreata (or papalote) is a wild agave that does not appear in Oaxaca state; it grows only in a relatively confined area of mountainous terrain in Michoacan and Guerrero states at some 3500-5500 feet. Los Danzantes turned to Emilio Vieyra in San Miguel del Monte (Michoacan), who captured and perfectly balanced the slight copperish overtone that gives the agave its name. Our Texas distributor liked it so much he bought the entire bottling; we held 72 bottles for this catalogue. It will go fast; limit two per customer.  “Los mezcales se parecen a su tierra, a su gente”, says Vieyra.

Russell Henry Dark Gin. I say simply, buy this: if you don’t think it’s among the planet’s finest spirits, a friend will. It’s the London Dry after spending a year in oak, and you cannot prepare yourself for how it tastes, unique and extraordinary. Something magic happens when all those redistilled botanicals spend time with one another, slowly oxygenating through those quiet oak staves within a bath of beautifully prepared alcohol.  We have about 100 cases, most of it fully allocated to distributors, 96 bottles held for this catalogue. Limit two per customer.

I retasted the Infusion Works brandies, bottled about a year ago. Sitting around has made them even better, way more than we expected. They are perfectly balanced, with beautiful fruit (or spice) intensity. Try the Seville Orange and you will never buy Grand Marnier (25% sugar) or Cointreau (33%) again.

Check out the December posts on the Craft Distillers Facebook page: some good stuff on artisan raicilla.