December 2012 - Eau-de-Vie & Specialty Spirits

This month's Spirits feature is Eau-de-Vie & Specialty Spirits
Eau-de-Vie & Specialty Spirits Reviews
199814
Monte Sabotino
Gran Riserva Superiore Grappa Stravecchia
Bright golden color. Rich aromas of pickling spices, toffee, pistachio nougat, and ginger, dried fruits with a plush, fruity medium-full body and a long, layered finish with notes of creme brulee, praline cookie, sweet spices, orange tea, and honeyed fruitcake. Absolutely delicious.
97 points $89.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200810
Fazenda Mãe de Ouro
Cachaça
Clear with a nickel straw cast. Aromas and flavors of fresh meringue, plantain skin, Brazil nuts, straw mat, and earthy cane stalk with a silky dryish medium body and coconut water, dried tropical fruit, peppery spice, soil and banana leaf accented finish. Great purity and sense of place. The perfect cachaça for elegant and innovative cocktails.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
198085
Seco Herrerano
Varela Hermanos
Clear. Rather neutral aromas of powdered milk, banana bread, and coconut with a soft, off-dry medium body and a very clean, vanilla cream and powdered sugar accented finish. A great, highly refined aguardiente that tastes like a very fine white rum.
94 points $14.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200170
KAPPA
Pisco
Clear. Floral spiced plum, soufflé, and pink peppercorn aromas with a silky, fruity-yet-dry medium body and a lively mineral, orange blossom water and pepper finish. Very stylish and vibrant; will be great in cocktails.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200605
Bauzá
Pisco Reservado
Pale straw color. Intriguing aromas of chili pepper bbq rub, grilled pears and apples, nougat and spicy carrot cake with a soft, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a nutmeg laced egg nog and custard spice cake finish. A delicious after dinner style sipper or novel cocktail choice.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200459
Gabriello Santoni
Grappa Brunello
Clear. Aromas of creamy nougat and banana cream pie with a hint of saddle soap and suede. Supple with a fruity medium-to-full body and a vibrant peppery spice, mineral, sandalwood, melon gelato, and dried fruit chutney finish. A powerful digestif with tons of complex flavor.
93 points $34.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199291
Espiritu de Elqui
Pisco Reservado
Pale golden silver color. Aromas of honeycomb, dried peach, and toasty nut brittle with a very soft dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a floral, creamy, nectarine gelato, orange blossom water, chalk, and pink peppercorn finish. Very graceful oak aged pisco.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200525
Barsol
Supermo Mosto Verde Italia Pisco
Clear. Intriguing aromas of banana, dried peach, salted nuts, and spiced plums with a silky, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a long, elegant potpourri, apricot, pear, spice and mineral finish. Excellent balance and nuanced flavor.
93 points $39.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199813
Monte Sabotino
Gran Riserva Superiore Grappa Barricata
Golden yellow color. Subtle aromas of creme brulee, panettone, and spicy praline with a satiny dry-yet-fruity medium body and a graceful spice, toffee, cola, sandalwood and mineral accented finish. Lovely balance and style.
93 points $59.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200524
Barsol
Selecto Italia Pisco
Clear with a nickel cast. Aromas of spiced prunes, peppercorn, dried flowers, and honeycomb with a supple, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a long, layered finish with stone fruits, pepper, spice, bubblegum dust, and grassy earth. Will be great in cocktails.
92 points $34.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199816
Le Opere
Grappa Di Prosecco Monovitigno
Clear. Aromas and flavors of spicy poached figs, peaches and pears and peppercorn with a supple, fruity-yet-dry medium body and a long, tangy, creamy, mineral accented finish. Well balanced, flavorful, and very approachable.
92 points $39.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200577
Bauzá
Pisco Reservado Aniversario
Golden amber color. Oak lead aromas of creme brulee, dried peach and pear, praline and brown spices with a very soft and creamy dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a zesty, citrus zest pepper, and banana pudding accented finish. Very attractive and almost whisky-like in its character and sipping appeal.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200448
Cachaça Samanaú
Prata Cachaça
Clear with a nickel cast. Aromas of toasted meringue, brown sugar, straw, and raisin soda bread with a supple, dryish medium body and a peppery, herb, cinnamon bark, mace, and mineral accented finish. Stylish with pleasant layers of flavor.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200523
Barsol
Selecto Acholado Pisco
Clear. Attractive aromas of floral scented candle and oil and spicy peach preserves with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a lively and tannic mineral, whole nut, and pepper finish.
89 points $29.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200460
Gabriello Santoni
Grappa di Nobile
Clear. Interesting aromas of marinated cucumbers, raisin-apricot compote, olive skin and leather with a silky, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a long, seamless sweet cream, granola, bran, and tropical fruit gum accented finish. Vibrant and delicious grappa for all applications.
89 points $29.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200461
Gabriello Santoni
Grappa di Chianti
Clear. Distinctive aromas of sweet and savory fruit and vegetable (broccoli, zucchini) chutneys and relishes with a silky, fruity medium body and a papaya-mango sorbet, peppery spice, and chalk accented finish. Lots of complex fruit and vegetal character.
89 points $29.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200449
Cachaça Samanaú
Ouro Cachaça
Pale golden straw color. Aromas of nutmeg, cinnamon flan, dried fruit, and suede with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warm creamy fig, graphite, cedar and pink peppercorn accented finish. A nicely aged cachaça for cocktails.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199873
Tamborine Mountain Distillery
Grappa Della Nonna
Clear. Aromas of panettone, fig paste, and delicate baking spices with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a lively pepper, mineral and dried fruit nuanced finish. A solid after-dinner grappa or try in cocktails.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199872
Tamborine Mountain Distillery
St Michael's Wort Herbal Eau de Vie
Clear. Fresh herb patch, mint, cola, and fruit cake aromas and flavor with an off-dry medium body and a lightly medicinal Ricola lozenge and menthol accented finish. Distinctive and chartreuse like.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200434
Berneroy
Fine Calvados
Brilliant amber color. Aromas of baked apple and citrus and nuts with a buoyant dry-yet-fruity medium body and a grassy, peppery earth and mineral finish. A solid calvados for mixing.
88 points $19.90
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
198233
Alma De Bohemio
Honey Rum
Amber color. Richly dimensional Manuka honeycomb and bison grass aromas and flavors with a silky, moderately sweet medium body and a gentle delicate brown spice and nut accented finish. A nice digestif-like liqueur.
88 points $19.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200413
Ole Smoky
Original Moonshine
Clear. Aromas of dusty corn meal, hominy, and polenta with a supple, dryish medium-to-full and an corn oil and syrup and pepper finish. A solid moonshine for cocktails.
88 points $25.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199815
Le Opere
Grappa Riserva Number 18
Pale golden color. Aromas of zucchini-date bread, coconut cream, and tropical fruit chutney with a silky, fruity medium body and a sweet creamy finish with hints of macadamia chip cookie, raisin bran, pudding and pepper. A lively digestif.
88 points $39.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199874
Tamborine Mountain Distillery
Aquavit
Clear. Intriguing cologne-like aromas suggest root beer float, almond torte, and honeyed rye toast with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a cola, Beemans gum, and pepper accented finish. Fun, flavorful and will mix brilliantly.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199876
Tamborine Mountain Distillery
Sugar Cane Spirit
Clear. Aromas and flavors of fresh meringue, banana leaf, and coconut water with a silky, off-dry medium body and warming cane stalk, wet stone and peppery spice finish. A rather cachaça-like sugar cane spirit.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199868
Tamborine Mountain Distillery
Eaux de Vie de Pomme
Clear. Aromas of spiced green apple, waxy honeycomb and dried mint leaf with a soft dryish medium body and a mineral, pepper and cream accented finish. Nice intensity of spicy apple flavor will work well in cocktails.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200604
Bauzá
Pisco Reservado Crystal
Aromas of pistachio gelato and peach creme brulee with a creamy, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a mocha creme Anglaise, dried fruit, and pepper finish. Different and highly mixable.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200462
Fidelitas
Kirschwasser
Clear. Aromas of dried sour cherries and a bit of earth with a satiny dryish medium body and an oily, cherry stone, mineral and birch bark accented finish. A nice dry styled cherry eau-de-vie.
87 points $26.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199871
Tamborine Mountain Distillery
Apricot Schnapps
Aromas of apricot Jell-O, watermelon sorbet, and cream pie with a silky, fruity light-o-medium body and a lively spicy apricot pit and river stone accented finish. Tasty and dainty apricot flavor for sipping or mixing.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200519
Barsol
Primero Quebranta Pisco
Clear. Aromas of glued wood and dusty raisins with round, dryish medium body and a chalk, banana leaf, twig, coconut water, honeycomb and pepper accented finish. A rustic, earthy pisco of crafty pisco sours.
86 points $24.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199817
Le Opere
Grappa Di Barolo
Golden straw color. Aromas of dried fruits, nougat, pepper and cream with a round, fruity-yet-dry medium body and a toffee, raisin scone, herb and peppery spice accented finish. A pleasant all purpose grappa.
86 points $39.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199870
Tamborine Mountain Distillery
Peach Schnapps
Clear. Intriguingly complex aromas of zucchini bread, peach sorbet, dried fruits, nut brittle, sassafras and herbs with a supple, dryish medium body and a peach pit, pear skin, dried flower, and citrus oil accented finish. Interesting; try in artisan cocktails.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
199818
Di Fresca Vinaccia Veneta
Grappa
Clear. Aromas of dried fruits, spices, praline, and suede with a supple, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a warm peppery, golden raisin scone, sweet whipped cream, and mineral finish.
85 points $19.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200456
Hidden Marsh Distillery
Judd's Wreckin' Ball Corn Whiskey
Wood toned aromas of salty roasted whole nuts and corn and lumberyard with a soft, dryish light-to-medium body and a and a mild nutshell, powdered sugar, and grain husk finish.
85 points $27.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200526
Whistling Andy
HOPSHNOP
Clear. Aromas of dusty grain flour, honeyed fruitcake, waxy honeycomb and dough oregano herb bread with a soft, off-dry light-to-medium body and a mild dried hop, talc and cinnamon raisin toast accented finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
200414
Ole Smoky
Apple Pie Moonshine
Pretty amber copper color. Aromas of doughy unbaked apple pie, gym bag, saffron, sage, and salty roasted nuts with a supple fruity medium body and a brisk spicy apple pie filling finish.
83 points $25.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
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