Copper & Kings "Geogr&phy"...

Copper & Kings "Geogr&phy" (54.0%): Not sure if it is the best choice for these days (probably not...) but I am reading Dan Simmons' "The Terror". It is a long fictionalized travelogue of the lost expedition to locate the Northwest Passage in 1845. So, I am neck-deep in naval history, traveling to unknown and man against nature kinda stuff. Therefore when I read the label this morning saying: "For intrepid adventurers, famous explorers & social travelers." I was like: "Hell, yeah..! This is the bottle I am uncorking today..!"

It is a blend of Copper & Kings' own distillate and some brandy sourced from South Africa. Both spirits are pot distilled from Colombard and Chenin Blanc grapes and aged in ex-Bourbon barrels. Besides Joe Heron's roots being from South Africa they have actually an additional angle about how they came up with this particular idea. Both countries share the common history of being early Dutch colonies and apparently they started distilling brandies (brandewijn) around the same time in late 17th century. Copper & Kings wanted to do something to honor this shared past and they created this blend... It is non-chill filtered and non-adulterated like all other Copper & Kings products.

Color: Light amber with an orange hue with slow moving thick and oily legs around the glass.

Nose: Tons of orange jump out of the glass: Candied orange peels, orange jam and orange eau de vie. Alcohol burn and fresh quince slices. It noses younger compared to other Copper & Kings special releases I tasted before. It's dusty... Dry clay, chalk and lemon twist. Quince paste and sweet vermouth. Adding water didn't change quite a lot, maybe added some milder citrus aromas: Clementine and Earl Grey loose tea leaves.

Palate: The orange theme continues: Orange marmalade, kumquats and pomelo. Dry and tad bitter at this abv... It might be easily the power of suggestion after learning the "Dutch Connection" story or maybe it is because of all orange references but it also reminds me some high proof fruit jenevers I tasted before. Adding a few drops of water helps to add some sweeter notes: Custard, burnt top creme caramel and eucalyptus drops. Easier to drink and much more enjoyable now.

Finish: Medium to long with some young alcohol, orange peel and spearmint.

Overall: Not something you would expect from the story behind the bottle. Actually I am not quite sure why I said that... I think I was expecting a drink with an older feeling, with more wood influence or maybe something closer to what I would imagine being served in an Explorers Club. Well, I was wrong... This is a quite youthful, vibrant and incredibly fruity brandy. It is summery, citrusy and fresh. Thanks again to Joe Heron and Copper & Kings for the sample.

Price: $50