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Friday, August 27, 2021

Some recent spirits I have tasted --

1.Dun Bheagan Single Malt Islay +576397 $54.90 750mL.: extremely intense, bottled straight from the cask. Small batch.  Eight years old. Some herbal complexity with strong floral notes makes this a real treat. Smokey peaty all the way...could be challenging for some. 43% ABV. Good value. Quality/Price rating is 92 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.

2..Bas-Armagnac de Montal Les Hauts de Montrouge X.O. 700 mL. +21564 Vintages October 2021 $112: comes in a wooden gift box (it's that time of year again). From the producers of the finest Armagnac in the region. Armagnac has only 10% of the production of Cognac; it has a single distillation only. Uses all four grape varieties allowed. Comprised of about 12 years-old distillates, deep nose of roasted nuts, full fruity flavours with a soft peachy off-dry finish. Some mocha is evident. 40% ABV. A steal at this price. Quality/Price rating is 93 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.

3.Bas-Armagnac de Montal Les Hauts de Montrouge 2002  700 mL. +11426 Vintages October 23 2021 $99.95: comes in a red gift box for the Christmas holidays. There are about 181 producers, and many make single vintage bottlings (unlike in Cognac). Hence, there are many bottles of older Armagnac brandies (10, 15, 20, 30 year olds) that sell everywhere in the world -- but in small lots. Montal's 2002 was aged a minimum of 19.5 years in oak. Armagnac sells well in Quebec – they recognize a bargain. Extremely aromatic with overtones of caramel, vanilla, dried fruits, and oak character. 40% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 92 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.

4.Antica Valle Francescana Limoncino 500 mL. +17161 October 23, 2021, $45. 30% ABV, with a 2% infusion of lemon peels: decanter comes with two glasses and a gift box. Exceedingly fresh flavours with that citrus tang of sharpness from the essential oils. Largely hand-peeled in Umbria. Terrific as an ice cream topping (which is how I had my 40 mL sample). Sales of lemoncello or limoncino in total make it the number two liqueur in Italy, after Campari. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.


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