Food & Drink

Fort Worth Cocktail Week kicks off with Texas Spirits Tasting Party

The label for Cold Hammer Stills’ Chocolate Peanut Butter Liqueur
The label for Cold Hammer Stills’ Chocolate Peanut Butter Liqueur

The inaugural Fort Worth Cocktail Week is about, well, cocktails. And there was a manu of a half-dozen cocktails, each one featuring spirits from a different Texas distillery, at Monday night’s kickoff event, the “Texas Spirits Tasting Party.”

But it was more about the sampling and the sipping. The party, which took place at the Mopac Event Center on Rogers Road behind University Park Village, followed a drill familiar at tasting events. Pay admission. Get a card with checkboxes by each of the brewery logos. Get sample-size offerings, have the checkbox checked. Chat with distillery representatives if the ... spirit moves you. Move on.

Cocktail Week is the brainchild of Fort Worth Weekly, and organizers put together a good lineup of distilleries: Acre Distillery, a cool bar/coffeehouse on the eastern edge of downtown Fort Worth that has its distillery on site; San Antonio-based Alamo Premium Distillery, which makes rum and moonshine as well as whiskey; Firestone & Robertson Distilling Co., makers of TX Blended Whiskey and perhaps Fort Worth’s best-known distillery; Trinity River Distillery, which just held its grand opening on 1734 E. El Paso St. No. 130 (in the same complex as Wild Acre Brewing Co.); and Houston-based Yellow Rose Distilling.

One of the newest distilleries, Cold Hammer Stills, is based in far east Fort Worth, off of FAA Boulevard near Dallas-Fort Worth Airport. It impressed us with its ... Chocolate Peanut Butter Flavored Liqueur.

Yes, this Reese’s in a glass sounds like it’s for people too wimpy for a straight shot of whiskey, but at 70 proof, it packs a punch, and has a pretty good burn to go along with the sweet flavor.

And Cold Hammer leans sweet: Its other flavors include Almond Enjoy (you can probably guess what that’s modeled after), Chocolate Cappuccino, Gas Light Cinnamon and something called Black Widow, a 107-proof liqueur described as “have a spicy herbal flavor with a slight smokiness. A nose of cloves, cinnamon and ginger with hints of cardamom and allspice.”

The Texas Spirtis Tasting Party was Cold Hammer’s first public event, and manager Dan Vallot siad in an email that they received a lot of positivive feedback. The distillery debuted in stores last week — well, store, McKinzie Liquor and BBQ at 154 N. Riverside Drive in east Fort Worth. “From my understanding, they sold 10 cases in two days,” Vallot says, adding that expansion into the big package stores such as Goody Goody and Total Wine is expected to come soon.

Vallot says the flavors have been in developement for more than four years. “They are designed specifically to make people happy,” Vallot said in his email. “One taste and people get to travel back in time. Our flavors automatically trigger good memories for people and it reminds them of when they were young and carefree.”

Fort Worth Cocktail Week continues tonight with a Tiki Party from 6 to 10 p.m. at The Usual, 1408 W. Magnolia Ave.; tickets are still available at this writing. On Thursday, there will be a Bourbon Bash from 6 to 10 p.m. at Thompson’s, 900 Houston St. in downtown Fort Worth. Friday’s event, titled Gin vs. Vodka, is from 6 to 9 p.m. at 2901 Crockett St., the former home of Waters Bonnell’s Coastal Cuisine in West 7th. For ticket info, click the links.

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