Jan 14, 2017

Louis Roque Vieille Prune...

Louis Roque Vieille Prune (42.0%): Now this is an interesting one... A brandy distilled from plums. Yes, it is kinda like an aged Slivovitz but also not... A different kind of plum known in France as "prune"  is used in the process. As you all know the name "prune" refers to any kind of dried plum in US but actually it is derived from the French word which indicates that specific kind of plum... Anyway, to avoid any confusion let's say now that it is distilled from fresh prunes in Souillac, north of Armagnac region by Louis Roque. And as I learned also from Serge Valentin a.k.a. Whisky Fun this specific type of brandy making started to create an alternative way to produce distillate after phylloxera wiped all the vineyards in France but got popular and some producers kept making it even after.

Oh, one last thing: After you manage to peel the rock solid wax from the bottle (it took me a good 15 minutes) you will see that it has a wine bottle style cork. You need a cork screw to start with and more importantly you will need to save that cork carefully because if you end up damaging it you better have an old cork lying around somewhere at home. Ok, enough talk, let's pour...

Color: Light amber, polished copper with very thin legs.

Nose: Well, plums... Yes, it noses like Slivovitz in the beginning. After allowing it to air a minute or two herbal and floral aromas evolve, almost like a cordial now. Garam masala, nutmeg and cardamom pods. Elderflowers, juniper berries and sloe gin.

Palate: Not so sweet on the palate... Maybe I was preparing myself for a liquor like palate after the nose but it's not like that. Very much like an aged Slivovitz. Toasted oak, burnt plums on a plum tart and young eau de vie. French pastry shop: Almond croissant, pain aux raisin and creamy pastry fillings. Viscous and thick.

Finish: Long with sweet burns on either side of the tongue. Definitely finishes sweeter and thicker than the palate. Chestnut honey, burnt sugar and toffee.

Overall: I liked it... Actually I liked it way more that I thought I will. Maybe because I am familiar with Eastern European plum brandies or maybe it ended up being less sweet than I though it will be but I think I will enjoy it once in a while as an digestive and a late night drink. Would I buy another bottle when it is finished? Yes, I would... Probably not right away but sometime. Nice to find something I can enjoy sipping that I was not familiar with before. Recommended to folks who like to be adventurous...

Price: $45