Showing posts with label French Single Malt Whisky Review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label French Single Malt Whisky Review. Show all posts

Brenne Cuvee Speciale Review



Yesterday When I Was Young”

Whisky Review # 871

Country: France
Region: Cognac
Brand: Brenne Cuvee Speciale
Type: Single Malt French Whisky
Age: NAS (Around 7 Years)
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 40%
Maturation: Fresh French Limousine Oak Barrels + Cognac Cask Finish
Chill Filtration: Yes
Price Range: US$ 55-65 (May 2020)
Price/Quality Ratio: 👎The price does not justify this Young, Thin, Bland Malt
Buying Advice: 😒This does not work for me at all I'm afraid.

Colour:

Chardonnay (Artificially Coloured)

Nose:

You immediately smell the Fresh Oak, so common in West-European Whisky. It is also quite usual to find a Varnish note when nosing this type of Whisky and it's present here as well. Other than that the Nose is Young, Light, Thin and a bit Artificial. Not really unpleasant but nothing remarkable as well. It's different when you compare it to Scotch Whisky but that's perfectly okay of course. The Alcohol is quite present.

Main Aromas:

Sweet Barley, Toast and Margarine, Vanilla, Grass, Apples and Pears, Fresh Oak, Floral Soap, White Wine, slightly Sour Berries, Tutti-Frutti, Varnish and Banana Ice-Cream.

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Heather-Honey, Caramel, Toffee, Coconut, Fresh & Dried Herbs, Milk-Hazelnut Chocolate, Lemon-Infused Cleaning Agent and PVC Pipes. I also get an Aroma  that I can't pin down exactly but it's a mixture of Bakeries and Butcher shops. Extraordinary!


Palate:

Young, Thin, Sugary Sweet and slightly Edgy. The Alcohol really spoils a bit of the fun. A few Sour notes as well.

Main Flavours:

Sweet Barley, Toast & Margarine, Vanilla, Grass, Hay, Tutti Frutti, Milk-Hazelnut Chocolate, Apples and Pears, Sour Berries, Floral Soap, Fresh Oak, Banana Ice- Cream, Licorice and Pepper.
   
Supportive Flavour Accents:

Heather-Honey, Toffee, Coconut, Nougat, Lemon, White Wine, Cinnamon, Melon & Cherry-Flavoured Cough Syrup.

Finish:

Short/Middle-Long and Sugary Sweet. The Alcohol remains very present. It's all quite Light, Young, Thin and a little Rough. Some Bitter Oak notes as well. It doesn't feel sufficiently matured. I find Sweet Barley, Caramel, Toffee, Vanilla, Nougat, Tutti Frutti, Toast and Margarine, Milk-Hazelnut Chocolate, Coconut, Herbs, Apples and Pears, Banana-Flavopured Ice Cream, Pepper, Licorice and Cherry-Flavoured Cough Syrup.

Drinking Advice:

You can carefully add a few drops of Water to get rid of the slightly aggressive Alcohol. But be careful as this Malt is already quite Thin as presented.

Rating: 71

Nose: 20 - Taste: 17 - Finish: 16.5 - Overall: 17.5

Drinking Experience Neat: Below Average

Conclusion:

Brenne was launched in 2012 by a former professional ballerina named Allison Parc. She formed a partnership with an unknown farm distillery in the Cognac region that has been producing eau de vie since the 1920's. Allison's dream is to introduce terroir to the making of Whisky. The Brenne projects uses two types of heirloom Barley, grown organically in the fields around the distillery. The yeast is a strain owned by the distillery and already in use for generations. The Spirit is then distilled twice in Alembic Charente Stills, normally used for the Cognac production. The Cuvee Speciale then matures for around 5 years in new French Limousine casks before being finished for around two years in Cognac Barrels. After maturing each bottle is drawn from a single cask.

I'm not impressed by this Cuvee Speciale. There's nothing special about it. It's Young, Thin and a bit lifeless. There is some promise in the Spirit though and I'm curious to try a well-matured Brenne. There's already a 10 Years on the market and that should be better than this not fully-matured Cuvee Speciale. So while I enthusiastically support any new projects and understand the need for cash I refuse to pay US$ 60 or so for a not fully matured thin Single Malt. Je suis desole! 

Cheers!

Jan van den Ende                                                                        May 4, 2020

Allison Parc, Founder of Brenne

Rozelieures Fume Collection Review


“L’Important c’est la Rose”  

Whisky Review # 851

Country: France
Brand: Rozelieures (Fume Collection)
Type: Single Malt Whisky
Age: NAS (Said to be 8 Years)
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 46%
Maturation: Ex- Fino Sherry Oak
Chill Filtration: Yes
Price: Around US$ 60-70 (January 2020)
Sample provided by Mauricio from Brazil. Many Thanks!
Price/Quality Ratio: Borderline Okay
Buying Advice: 😐It's nice to sample but I wouldn't buy a full bottle.

Colour: Amber (Possibly Original Colour)

Nose:

Please give this Rozelieures sufficient time in the glass before Nosing as it opens quite slowly. It's a quite Young Whisky and there's still a bit New Make feel to it although at the same time it's not overly Fruity. There's a subtle Smoke Aroma around. The Alcohol is quite noticeable though. The Sherry influence is limited and I would assume that Refill casks have been used for maturation. It's not at all bad for a Young Whisky but it is a bit underwhelming.

Main Aromas:

Slightly Burnt Buttered Toast, Yeast, Dough, Malted and Toasted Barley, Sweet Dried Fruit like Sultanas and Raisins, Hay, Grapefruit, Sour Berries & Oak Char.
    
Supportive Aroma Accents:

Honey, Caramel, Vanilla, Butterscotch, Pancakes with Syrup, Nuts & Nutshells, Lemon, Orange, Pear, Mint, Wet Stones, Espresso and a hint of Plastic/Rubber.

Picture Credit: Rozelieures

Palate:

Young and on the Thin side. A mix of Sweet, Bitter and Sour notes. The Alcohol is rather present. Quite Spicy! The Earthy Peat-Smoke is there but remains in the background. It's a nice touch though.

Main Flavours:

Malted and Toasted Barley, Burnt Toast, Yeast, Orange and Lemon, Grapefruit, Red Grapes, Green Apple, Dirty Earth, Nuts and Nutshells, Oak Char, Leather, Pepper, Cardamom, Ginger, Aniseed and Soot.

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Honey, Vanilla, Caramel, Syrup, Hay, Pear, Cognac, Glue, Espresso & Rubber.  

Finish:

Short/Middle-Long. Quite Sweet at first but with a few Bitter and Sour notes towards the very Dry end. The Spicy Alcohol kicks around a bit. I find Toasted and Malted Barley, Burnt Toast, Vanilla, Cocoa Powder, Dirty Earth, Orange & Lemon Peel, Grapefruit, Green Apple, Unripe Pear, Oak Char, Menthol, Pepper, Cardamom, Ginger, Aniseed, Cumin, Cognac, Earthy Smoke and Soot.

Drinking Advice:

I added a bit of Water and that helps to control the Alcohol a bit on the Nose. Some Fruit coming through (Apricot). Palate and Finish don't improve though. I advise you to sip it neat.

Rating: 82

Nose: 20.5  - Taste: 20.5  - Finish: 20.5  - Overall: 20.5

Drinking Experience Neat: Good

Conclusion:

The Distillery Grallet-Dupic is located in the village of Rozelieures (Lorraine) and was founded in 1860 by Michel Grallet. This family-owned business has been distilling for more than 150 years and grows its own Barley. It started producing Eau de Vie but since 2002 it also distills Whisky. It's the first French distillery that works with lightly peated Malts. All Whiskies produced are Single Malts and Double-Distilled. The whole process of distilling to bottling is done at the farm.

It's one of the better French Whiskies I have tasted to date. It's a pity that it's bottled at such a relative Young age. I would really love to try a well-matured Whisky from this distillery The potential is there I feel but it's not fully exploited (yet). As it is, the Alcohol is a bit too dominant and spoils part of the fun. I kinda like this Spice mixture though. Not so strange as I am a big fan of Indian food! 

Cheers!

Jan van den Ende                                                                 January 10, 2020

Distillerie ROzelieures
Picture Credit: Rozelieures

Lehmann Gold Review


“La Douce France”

Whisky Review # 770

Country: France
Region: Alsace
Brand: Lehmann Gold
Type: Single Malt Whisky
Age: 7 Years
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 40%
Maturation: 6 Years in White Bordeaux Wine casks & 1 Year in Sauternes casks.
Chill Filtration: No
Price Range: US$ 60-65 (October 2018)
Buying Advice: 😉 Just forget about Scotch and enjoy this Spirit as it comes!

Colour:

Golden/Copper (Natural Colour)

Nose:

Relatively Young. Lots of Sweet Dried Fruit. Quite different when compared to Scotch Whisky. More like a mix of Bourbon, Cognac and Fruit Liqueur. Not bad though.

Main Aromas:

Toasted Barley, Butter Kekse (German Butter Biscuits), Dried Fruit like Apricots and Plums, Bread Dough, Orange, Stewed Orchard Fruit, Papaya Cream, Grapes and ripe Bananas.

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Fresh Croissants, Wood Chips, Honey, Vanilla, Floral notes, Mandarin, Cinnamon, Pepper, Tobacco and Dusty Track.

Yves Lehmann - Picture Credit: Tourisme Obernai
Palate:

Bitter-Sweet, Buttery, Creamy and a little Spicy. Don't compare it to Scotch. Just enjoy it as it comes.

Main Flavours:

Toasted Barley, Butter, Milk, Dried Fruit like Apricots & Plums, Candied Orange, Stewed Orchard Fruit, Grapes, Pastry, Tobacco, Toffee, Pepper and Cinnamon.

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Slivovitz (Plum Brandy), Vanilla, Mandarin, Nuts, Banana, Oak & Milk Chocolate.

Finish:

Bitter-Sweet, a little Thin and on the Short side. The Alcohol is more noticeable at this point. I find Toasted Cereals, Butter, Cream, Stewed Pears, Plum Liqueur, Oak Char, Vanilla, Mandarin, Honey, Pepper, Cinnamon, Milk Chocolate, Licorice and Tobacco.

Drinking Advice:

I added a few drops of Water and that improves the overall drinking experience although it does not significantly change the Aroma/Flavour profile.

Rating: 81.5

Nose: 21 - Taste: 20 - Finish: 20 - Overall: 20.5

Drinking Experience:

Good (Neat) - Okay/Good (On the Rocks).

Conclusion:

The J & M Lehmann distillery was founded in 1850 by Joseph Lehmann and is located in Obernai. It's the oldest artisan distillery in the Alsace. The distillery uses pure spring water from the heart of the Vosges Mountains for the distillery process. The Spirit is distilled twice. Next to Whisky, the distillery also produces Liqueur, Vodka and Eau de Vie.


The Lehmann Gold Whisky shows that this French distillery knows how to distill spirit. I'm pretty sure their Fruit Liqueurs and Marcs are of high quality. With the Lehmann Gold Whisky they did not try to imitate Scotch Whisky. They just followed their instincts and used their ample experiences with the distillation of Grains and Fruit. The result is certainly not bad. Lots of (Dried) Fruits & Pastry. If you are in the region and enjoy the local Choucroute d' Alsace you might consider a Lehmann Gold as an after-dinner drink alongside your coffee. Cheers!

Jan van den Ende                                                                October 25 , 2018


Picture Credit: Cyclinginalsace.com