TOASTING WITH THE STARS: the celebrity-owned spirits we’re loving this N.Y.E.

We're starstruck by the bevy of top shelf booze brands with famous faces behind them. Here's our A-list... guaranteed to make your New Year's Eve cocktail menu shine.


words by Spoorthi Satheesh

courtesy of King St. Vodka


Well here we are approaching the end of 2020, a year we're not soon to forget (we couldn't if we wanted to!) Looking back, it had dramatic plot twists, edge-of-your-seat moments, comedy galore and tragedy aplenty. We laughed, we cried, we stood up and cheered, we threw things at the screen. In so many ways, watching it unfold was like watching a movie; it was too surreal to be real. Could any year be more deserving of a Hollywood ending than this one?


We all know that New Year's Eve without potent potables is like a movie without popcorn, so it's likely you're headed to the liquor store soon. No matter how big or small a celebration you've got planned, this New Year's Eve can be a little more hip-hop, Academy Award-winning, rock & roll (or country... or heavy metal) if you fill up your cart with the right celebrity spirits.


So, when stocking your bar this New Year's Eve, go ahead and shoot for the stars!


AVIATION GIN

If you're particular about your gin, then you and Canadian-American actor/film producer Ryan Reynolds have something in common. In 2018, Reynolds became the ambassador and partial brand owner of Aviation Gin. Its formula is a medley of botanical flavors infused with cardamom, coriander, French lavender, anise seed, sarsaparilla, juniper, and two types of orange peel. Mix that with Reynolds’ charisma and you've got yourself a blockbuster.

Click here to locate Aviation Gin at a purveyor near you.



BARRYMORE PINOT GRIGIO

The beloved child actress Drew Barrymore - now grown-up but with her contagiously youthful spirit still very much intact - enjoys exploring new wine regions and vintages when she's not busy winning Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild awards. Drew's eponymous Barrymore Pinot Grigio captures her fresh and fun personality with its crispy, fruity flavor. The silky wine, with its caramel and pear notes - along with white grapefruit, lychee, and peach undertones - is perfectly scripted in our opinion.

Available at ABC Fine Wine & Spirits. Click here for store locator.



D'USSÉ COGNAC

Endorsed by rapper/songwriter/record exec Jay-Z, D'USSÉ Cognac is a bold yet notably smooth cognac that was conceived by senior cellar master Michel Casavecchia after almost twenty years of curating the prestigious Château de Cognac. D'USSÉ’s V.S.O.P stands for “Very Superior Old Pale,” meaning that it's been aged for at least four years. Concocted with woody aromas, blended fruit, and an accent of honey, we think it's "got bars" like Jay-Z's countless Grammy-winning hits.

Click here to locate D'usse Cognac at a purveyor near you.



KING ST. VODKA

Kate Hudson's adoring fans (ourselves included) know that the Golden Globe-winning and Academy Award-nominated American actress loves a creative challenge. Drawing inspiration from her memories of hosting friends at her former digs on NYC's King Street, Hudson developed a vodka that casts her as herself: a leading lady who enjoys a good Dirty Martini. The result: King St. Vodka - a gluten-free, alkaline water-based blend that's distilled seven times and made in small batches in Santa Barbara, California. Also, the brand prides itself on being a female-led craft label... and we’ll drink to that!

Click here to locate King St. Vodka at a purveyor near you.



MANSINTHE

Marilyn Manson is best known for his wholly original fusion of metal and industrial music - and also, of course, his controversial onstage persona. Lesser-known fact: he's a painter and absinthe enthusiast. Manson is seen holding the intoxicating green spirit as an accessory in his various art exhibitions, including 2003's Golden Age of Grotesque, Manson's homage to late nineteenth century Parisian decadence and Weimar Era "degenerate art". Mansinthe, the artist's signature brand distilled in Switzerland, owes its complex flavor to a blend of herbs, flowers, and the leaves of Artemisia absinthium... otherwise known as "wormwood". Also worth noting is the label bearing a painting by Marilyn himself, titled: When I Get Old. Look, we realize Mansinthe isn't for everyone, but then again, neither is its creator. Either way, we're intrigued.

Available at a Total Wine & More near you. Click here for store locator.


SANTO MEZQUILA

When good friends who share a common passion come together on a project, amazing things are bound to happen. Such was the case when rocker Sammy Hagar and chef Guy Fiere - two guys whose combined talent for tequila rivals each one's individual mastery of his craft - joined forces with Juan Eduardo Nuñez - the third-generation master distiller at El Viejito, founded in 1937 in the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico. This holy trinity (if you will) took classic, old world-style tequila to a higher place with Santo Mezquila. This, the world’s first agave blend made from 100% Blue Weber Agave and 100% Espadin Agave, mixes agave's inherently smooth aroma with an earthy, light smokiness and a hint of herbs. Is this taste revelation a result of divine intervention? Guess we'll never know... but the fact that it tastes divine is something we can be sure of.

Available at Bevmo! (click here for store locator) and other fine retailers.



TWO LANE AMERICAN GOLDEN LAGER

Though the hugely successful singer/songwriter has has been nominated across the charts, it's Luke Bryan's achievements in country music for which he's best known and honored. Bryan partnered with Two Lane Golden Lager to create Two Lane Ale. The pair is so perfectly in rhythm, it's like a couple dancing the Country-Western Two Step; Two Lane is deeply rooted in Southern values and an immense love for country music, just like Luke Bryan himself. Brewed in Daleville, Virginia at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains, and combining the mountain waters with homegrown barley, you can bet your boots that every satisfying sip brings the true taste of country.

Click here for the Two Lane store locator.



VIRGINIA BLACK AMERICAN WHISKEY

Drake is the epitome of smooth, and so is his Virginia Black Whiskey. The Toronto-born rapper/singer/songwriter partnered with American spirits entrepreneur Brent Hocking to create this decadent buttery blend finessed with the aromas of maples syrup, popcorn and mild oak spice. As you can plainly see, the bottle is golden-toned just like Drake's amazing voice, and also embodies his superstar swagger.

Available at Total Wine & More. Click here for store locator.




WILD TURKEY LONGBRANCH BOURBON

Dimpled, daring, and devastatingly handsome, multi-award-winning actor and producer Matthew McConaughey is also extremely driven (and we're not just talking about those debonair Lincoln car commercials). What initially started as his quest for a bourbon that suited his discerning taste ended up as a creation crafted during a two-year collaboration with Eddie Russell, one of the master distillers of Wild Turkey. The artfully balanced Wild Turkey Longbranch 8 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is nuanced with a Texas twist (surely no coincidence being that McConaughey hails from The Lone Star State). Uniquely refined with Texas Mesquite and American Oak charcoals, we find its subtle hints of smoky sweetness as irresistible as Matthew's sexy stubble and Southern charm.

Click here to find Wild Turkey Longbranch Bourbon near you.


We're quite confident you can't go wrong with this cast of characters, but please do drink responsibly, stay safe, and have a stellar New Year's Eve. Cheers!