November 2016 - Liqueurs & Aperitifs

This month's Spirits feature is Liqueurs & Aperitifs
Liqueurs & Aperitifs Reviews
217380
Merlet
Creme de Cassis de Saintonge Liqueur
Opaque dark violet color. Fruity, herbal, complex aromas and flavors of honeyed cassis, delicate spice and herbs, dark chocolate hint, and root vegetable with a thick, moderately sweet full body and a smooth, complex, very long cassis jam, floral honey, and hint of menthol mint and ginger finish. A fantastically rich and pure creme de cassis.
97 points $20 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217609
Finest Roots
Tentura Liqueur
Dark reddish bronze color. Complex, spicy aromas and flavors of cinnamon stick, spicy apple pie crust, delicate herbs and pepper, and turmeric with a round, bright, moderately sweet medium body and a warming, engaging, medium-long cinnamon red hots, chestnut honey, and bitter roots and barks finish. A complex, cinnamon herb-spice liqueur with lots of cocktail possibilities.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217610
Finest Roots
Mastiha Liqueur
Slivery straw color. Exotic, green, herbal aromas and flavors of tomato on the vine and asparagus, pine needle and sap, dill weed and pickling spices, and conditioned wood and leather with a satiny, vibrant, sweet medium body and a subtle, long brown spices, vanilla custard, and verbena and herbs finish. An exotic herbal liqueur that will be fun to mix with.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217376
Drillaud
Elderflower Liqueur
Pale slivery straw color. Herbal, floral aromas and flavors of potpourri, piney herbs, candied rose and lavender, and grapefruit peel with a satiny, tangy, sweet medium body and a smooth, complex, long candied kiwi and lychee and melon sorbet finish. A bold, vibrant elderflower liqueur with complex layers of flavor.
95 points $17.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217405
Merlet
Creme de Peche Liqueur
Brilliant golden amber orange color. Pure, fresh, fruity aromas and flavors of ripe whole peach, peach cider, and floral honey with a glycerous, vibrant, moderately sweet medium body and a tingling, involved, very long rose water, mango-peach sorbet, and pink peppercorn finish. A fantastically rich and flavorful peach liqueur for all applications.
95 points $20 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217466
BOM BOM
Coco Mochanut Liqueur
Creamy medium brown color. Attractive aromas of dream bar and latte with a creamy, bright, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, long toasted coconut, caramelized nuts, chocolate cannoli, and sweet cream finish. A great creamy coconut chocolate liqueur that is sure to please.
94 points $24.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217353
Bepi Tosolini
Amaro Liqueur
Dark dark brown color. Attractive, spicy, herbal aromas and flavors of artisanal root beer, caramelized fruits and nuts, ginger beer, and cardamom and nutmeg with a glycerous, vibrant, moderately sweet medium body and a tingling, subtle, long honeyed nuts, peppery spices, bitter herbs, roots, and barks, and menthol mint finish. A nice, supple amaro that will make a good introduction to the category.
94 points $29.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217381
Merlet
Lune d'Abricot Liqueur
Brilliant golden amber color. Complex, attractive aromas and flavors of dried apricot, white chocolate toffee, sesame nougat, and peach blossoms and honeycomb with a syrupy, bright, sweet medium-to-full body and a sleek, elegant, very long apricot jam on raisin scone and hint of chocolate orange peel finish. A superbly pure and flavorful apricot liqueur with great length and depth of flavor.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217420
Bonollo
Amaro
Dark copper color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate orange peel, caramel bread pudding, and cola with a glycerous, tangy, fruity sweet medium-to-full body and a warming, amusing, medium-long turmeric, exotic peppercorns, delicate bitter bark, and cedar and slate finish. A delicious, well-poised bitter liqueur with great length and subtle bitterness that will make a great introduction to the category.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217382
Merlet
Creme de Fraise Liqueur
Dark garnet color. Fruity aromas of strawberry preserves and butter, toasted hazelnut and citrus, and swiss cocoa with a satiny, tangy, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a seamless, complex, very long honeyed strawberries and blood oranges, strawberry gastrique, and hint of potpourri finish. A rich, pure, strawberry liqueur with superb vibrancy and depth of flavor.
93 points $20 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
214799
Jackson Morgan Southern Cream
Southern Bread Pudding Liqueur
Creamy taupe color. Aromas and flavors of raisin bread pudding, pecan pancakes, and creamy latte with a round, soft, moderately sweet medium body and an interesting, medium-length custard and wintergreen mint finish. A fun, slightly minty cream liqueur.
93 points $22.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
214800
Jackson Morgan Southern Cream
Peppermint Mocha Liqueur
Creamy light brown color. Creamy, minty aromas and flavors of chocolate mint cookie and sweet mocha cream with a creamy, bright, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and an effortless, interesting, medium-length Frango mint and whole cream finish. A well made, tasty creamy chocolate mint liqueur.
93 points $22.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216113
Vya
Sweet Vermouth
Dark bronze color. Herbal, spicy aromas and flavors of sassafras, cocoa, herbs and barks, and brown spices and gingerbread with a silky, bright, fruity medium body and a smooth, refreshing, crisp spiced citrus, apple pie filling, and mocha toffee finish. A solid, fruity vermouth with a nice balance of sweetness and bitterness that will be very versatile.
93 points $22.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217479
Breckenridge
Bitter Liqueur
Brilliant golden straw color. Herbal aromas and flavors of bitter roots, radish and horseradish, ginseng and gentian, and citrus with a satiny, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, very long bitter wormwood tea and medicinal bark finish. An intensely bitter and astringent liqueur for cocktails or daredevil shots.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217293
Barrows
Intense Ginger Liqueur
Hazy silvery emerald straw color. Spicy, peppery aromas and flavors of fresh cut ginger with a glycerous, lively, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a peppery, elegant, very long crystallized ginger, lemon custard, ginseng, and white pepper finish. A very rich and pure ginger liqueur with pleasing balanced heat and a long finish.
93 points $32.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217239
Cynar
Bitter Liqueur
Copper color. Herbal, peppery aromas and flavors of medicinal barks and herbs, peppercorns, chestnut honey, and cedar paper with a satiny, vibrant, bittersweet medium-to-full body and a warming, involved, long wormwood tea and brown spices finish. A vibrant, well balanced bitter liqueur.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217148
Merrys
Irish Cream Liqueur
Creamy tan color. Creamy, sweaty aromas and flavors of pistachio cookie, caramel gelato, nougat, and cheese with a creamy, soft, moderately sweet medium body and a silky, delightful, medium-length sweet cream, spumoni gelato, and spiced nuts finish. A very tasty, well balanced Irish cream liqueur.
92 points $10.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217074
Wild Turkey
American Honey
Brilliant gold color. Fruity, sweet aromas and flavors of candied orange peel and mango, orange blossom honey, corn bread pudding, and delicate spices and herbs with a glycerous, lively, sweet medium-to-full body and a warming, interesting, medium-long caramelized nuts, dried fruits, and peppery spices finish. A nice comforting flavored whiskey liqueur.
92 points $23 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217432
Whidbey Island Distillery
Boysenberry Liqueur
Opaque dark garnet color. Fresh, jammy aromas of boysenberry pie and lozenge, delicate sweet and peppery spices, edible flowers and fancy soap, and potter’s clay with a satiny, tangy, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a tingling, complex, medium-long spicy fruit cake, sarsaparilla, and mint finish. A nicely layered liqueur with pure boysenberry fruit and hints of Alpine herbs and spices.
91 points $29.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217352
Saliza
Amaretto Veneziano
Bright golden amber color. Musty, spicy aromas and flavors of marzipan pastry, spiced cherry, and sesame candy with a glycerous, tangy, medium body and a polished, complex, long chocolate orange peel and cherry, almond frosting, and pepper finish. A vibrant, flavorful amaretto.
91 points $29.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217375
Mephisto
Absinthe
Brilliant chartreuse color. Aromas and flavors of black licorice, mint tea, tonka bean, and pepper and dill with a lightly tannic, vibrant, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a hot, complex, long wormwood, praline, milk and honey, and ginseng finish. A tasty, spunky absinthe with good balance and drinkability.
90 points $31.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217240
Kova
Coffee Liqueur
Clear brown black color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate covered espresso beans, nuts, and dried fruits, brown sugar roasted nuts, and cappuccino with a glycerous, soft, very sweet medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length banana flan and latte finish. A nice creamy, fruity coffee liqueur.
89 points $13.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
214798
Jackson Morgan Southern Cream
Whipped Orange Cream Liqueur
Opaque creamy electric orange color. Creamy, citrusy aromas and flavors of orange creamsicle and orange jell-o with a glycerous, soft, moderately sweet medium body and an effortless, breezy whipping cream finish. A pleasant orange-vanilla liqueur; try in coffee.
89 points $22.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217294
Galliano
L'Aperitivo Liqueur
Bright red color. Aromas and flavors of lemon polished wood, fresh herb medley, hibiscus and rooibos tea, and zested grapefruit peel with a silky, lively, off-dry medium body and a tingling, elegant, medium-long coriander jelly and bubblegum, persimmon and rhubarb, mixed peppercorns, and sassafras finish. A fun, lighter styled bitter liqueur for carefree enjoyment; try with an IPA in a beertail.
88 points $17.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217416
Kahlúa
Chili Chocolate Liqueur
Dark brown black color. Aromas and flavors of fresh coffee, chocolate cake and cacao nibs, and toasted raisin nut bread with an oily, vibrant, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a peppery, intriguing, long ancho pepper jelly, chili powder, and cinnamon red hot candy finish. A fun, peppery coffee and chocolate liqueur that will be fun to play with in cocktails.
88 points $18.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217419
Mozart
Chocolate Liqueur
Opaque dark brown color. Creamy, sweet aromas and flavors of chocolate marshmallow cookie, fruitcake a la mode, and toffee with a thick, bright, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a smooth, engaging, medium-long cocoa powder, hot chocolate, and roasted pecans finish. A very pure, tasty, and rather elegant chocolate liqueur.
88 points $19.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217130
Bertina
Elderflower Liqueur
Straw color. Floral, fresh aromas and flavors of elderflower, lychee, delicate fresh herbs, and passionfruit-papaya relish with a silky, tangy, sweet light-to-medium body and a silky, stimulating, medium-length honeyed apple and melon finish. A tasty and balanced elderflower liqueur.
88 points $24.90
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216319
The Big O
Ginger Liqueur
Bright brushed amber color. Green, spicy aromas and flavors of ginger beer, sassafras, and chocolate cream with a satiny, bright, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a warming, delightful, medium-long nougat bar, crystalized ginger, and pepper finish. An interesting candied ginger liqueur.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216279
Disaronno
Riserva Liqueur
Clear golden amber color. Nutty, grainy aromas and flavors of frosted almond cookie, cherry brandy and dried fruit, honeyed grain and heather, and caramelized nuts with a silky, bright, moderately sweet medium body and a warming, engaging, medium-long minerals, moss and meadow, and pepper finish. An interesting Scotch whisky based nut liqueur with an elegant edge.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217242
Mr. Stacks
Holiday Nog Cream Liqueur
Opaque bone white color. Creamy aromas and flavors of delicately spicy egg nog, spumoni gelato, and whipped cream with a creamy, vibrant, sweet medium-to-full body and a seamless, appealing, medium-length whole milk and sugared buttered finish. A nice mellow egg nog liqueur.
87 points $5.49 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217374
Van Meers
Stroopwafel Liqueur
Amber color. Toasty, nutty, attractive aromas and flavors of roasted nuts, Belgian waffles, and s’mores with a syrupy, soft, sweet light-to-medium body and a smooth, relaxed caramel-nutmeg sauce, pancake syrup, and hint of cellophane finish. A nice, nutty caramelly liqueur that will be fun to play with in cocktails.
87 points $12.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217241
Michael’s
Celtic Irish Cream Liqueur
Creamy manila color. Creamy, nutty aromas and flavors of roasted nuts, vanilla peanut fudge, caramel, and coconut with a creamy, soft, sweet medium body and a seamless, captivating, medium-length egg custard, cream, fruit cake, and pepper finish. A nice cream liqueur for holiday festivities.
87 points $17.88
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217244
Old Tom Horan
Irish Cream Liqueur
Creamy khaki beige color. Creamy aromas of caramelized nuts, powdered milk, pepper dust, and cheese danish with a glycerous, bright, moderately sweet light-to-medium body and a tingling, engaging, breezy fruity caramel, cookies and ice cream, milk, and hint of marzipan finish. A solid cream liqueur.
87 points $17.88
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217364
Mr. Boston
Creme de Banana Liqueur
Pale straw yellow color. Sweaty, candied aromas and flavors of circus peanut, banana pudding, and banana with a satiny, tangy, moderately sweet light-to-medium body and a smooth, brisk spiced apple and citrus finish. A pleasant fruity sweet banana liqueur for mixing.
86 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217350
Bepi Tosolini
Fragola Strawberry Liqueur
Brilliant ruby with little berry floaties. Fruity, jammy, earthy aromas and flavors of strawberry jelly, black walnut nougat, hint of milk chocolate, and wet hay with a syrupy, bright, moderately sweet medium body and a peppery, interesting, medium-length berry stems and pepper finish. An earthy, fruit wild strawberry liqueur with the emphasis on the wild.
86 points $29.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217258
Cascadia D’Amore
American Bitter Liqueur
Light gold color. Herbal, complex aromas and flavors of turmeric soda, cardamom, coriander and caraway, and incense with a satiny, vibrant, moderately sweet body and a peppery, complex, long gentian, juniper honey, and camphor and menthol finish. A subtle herbal bitter liqueur with lingering bitterness and astringency.
86 points $34.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217243
Mr. Stacks
Pumpkin Spice Liqueur
Creamy mauve amber color. Attractive, creamy aromas and flavors of pumpkin cheesecake with a graham cracker crust and carrot cake with a creamy, soft, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length pumpkin spiced creamer finish. A tasty pumpkin pie like liqueur.
85 points $8.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
214802
Rum Jumbie
Rum Liqueur
Bright copper color. Fruity aromas and flavors of tropical fruit punch soda, vanilla cola, and tobacco with a glycerous, tangy, moderately sweet medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-length spiced orange, nuts, pepper, and fruity gum finish. A fun, spicy orange liqueur for cocktails.
85 points $19.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217146
Kavalan
Sweet Cream Liqueur
Opaque taupe color. Creamy, fruity aromas and flavors of papaya-banana custard, caramel gelato, warm eggnog, and delicate spices with a satiny, bright, moderately sweet medium body and a smooth, delightful, medium-length pistachio ice cream and whole milk finish. A nice creamy liqueur with a fruity, tropical twist.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217351
Bepi Tosolini
Exprè Espresso Liqueur
Minutely hazy brown black color. Roasted aromas and flavors of dark roasted espresso, spiced dark chocolate, caramelized nuts, and brown butter with a satiny, bright, sweet medium-to-full body and a smooth, amusing, medium-long fig pastry and dark latte finish. A flavorful and balanced espresso liqueur.
85 points $29.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217076
X-Rated
Peach Blush Fusion Liqueur
Neon reddish orange color. Tropical, candied aromas of fruit punch soda and popsicle with a lightly tannic, tangy, moderately sweet light-to-medium body and a tingling, cheery peach hard candy and soda, dried flowers, and pepper finish. A nice fruity tropical peach treat; serve cold on the rocks.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217295
Standard Wormwood Distillery
Wormwood Rye
Brilliant amber color. Interesting aromas of pipe tobacco, pencil shavings and halvah, toasted raisin bran and pumpernickel nut bread, and Playdoh and clay with a silky, flat, dryish body and a peppery, engaging, relaxed smoked nuts and raisins, lapsang tea, cedar bark and dust, and peppercorns finish. A curious, lightly smoked, lightly bitter whisky.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
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