Trendy spirits

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The number of French distilleries is increasing as well as the range of spirits they produce. Let’s discover some of their most innovative and latest releases.

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 Mistral Gin
Pink is not only trendy for wines. Nowadays some gins also have this colour such as the Mistral produced in Provence. Its slight pinkish hue comes from the maceration of thyme flowers and grapefruit that come in addition to other botanicals such as eucalyptus, basil, fennel, mint, grains of paradise, orris root and of course the traditional juniper, cardamom and coriander seeds. The whole gives a gin with a fresh and complex nose on eucalyptus, lavender, grapefruit and spices, while it has a delicate palate with notes of Provence herbs, juniper, pine, spices and citrus fruits.
Price : €45

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 Pastis XO Château des Creissauds
Known for its vintage pastis made from plants grown on its estate, Château des Creissauds innovates by offering the world's first 6-year-old pastis. This XO pastis is based on the 2014 vintage which after 12 months in casks spent 5 years in a barrel that previously contained cognac. Aging that gives it roundness, fat, light oak and honeyed notes without masking the complexity and flavors of fennel, anise and liquorice characteristic of the vintage. Only 450 bottles of this treat are released.
Price: €145

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 Caviar vodka L'Orbe
L'Orbe is not the first caviar vodka to have been created, but it is the one that best reproduces the flavors of this exceptional delicacy. On the palate, first comes the vodka of Polish origin made from rye that stands out with its velvety texture and subtle toasted notes. Then arises the taste of Royal Baeri caviar, also from Poland, buttery and iodized enhanced with notes of hazelnuts. Very aesthetic, the 50 cl bottle has a modern design that gives a glimpse of the process allowing this fusion of flavors with in its center a tube containing 15 g of caviar, each grain of which is encapsulated in a permeable membrane made of algae through which its taste is transmitted to vodka.
Price: €135 for a 50 cl bottle.

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 Sequoia, a single malt from Vercors
Despite its name, Sequoia single malt is an unfiltered French whisky with no chill filtration, malted, distilled and aged in the Vercors. It comes from organic barley grown around the distillery. Only 3 years old, it seems older due to a first distillation in a low pressure and low temperature (50 ° C) still. Unique in the world, this process allows better extraction of aromas. Mostly aged in old cognac barrels, Sequoia has a slightly toasted nose with hints of cereals and citrus with a hint of spice while the slightly woody palate offers flavours of citrus, hazelnut and cereals. A fine and elegant whisky that will please novices and amateurs alike.
Price: €58

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 Blue Denim Gin
Released this fall, this gin has a name that leaves little doubt about its origin. The city of Nîmes where was invented Demim jeans canvas. Made from grape alcohol, this gin includes 14 organic botanicals, mostly of Mediterranean origin, such as thyme, basil, lemon, citron, rosemary, lavender, pine needle, glasswort and Camargue fleur de sel. Very aromatic and complex, it has a sweet nose of citrus, tangy candy with notes of pine and thyme while the palate is dry with flavours of pine needle, Provence herbs, hints of white pepper and a slightly salty finish.
Price: €50

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 Attribut 1, a Gin with kiwi
Opened barely a year ago in Lot-et-Garonne, in Nérac, the Grand Nez Distillery is already making a name for itself with its Attribut 1 organic gin launched in June. Made from grain alcohol, it is indeed the first in the world to include kiwi among its twelve botanicals alongside lemon verbena, chamomile, citrus fruits as well as juniper, coriander and cardamom. These ingredients are locally sourced or from fair trade. The nose is fruity with perceptible kiwi and lemon verbena and these flavors are also are found in the mouth alongside citrus fruits.
Price: €40

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 Aveux Gourmands, a whisky by Benjamin Kuentz
A whisky blender, Benjamin Kuentz has accustomed us to release finely chiselled single malts. His latest one, Aveux Gourmands, is no exception to the rule. Ample, fine and complex, it is made with a distillate from the Brittany Warenghem distillery aged in Sauternes Grand Cru casks from Château Rayne Vigneau. This combination gives a nose of honeyed almonds and cooked fruit as well as a palate with coconut, pineapple and caramel flavors plus subtle salty notes.
Price: €52 per 50 cl bottle

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 44°N Gin
44 ° N, this unusual name for a gin is pronounced 44 degrees north and evokes both its alcoholic degree and the latitude of the region where the distillery is located, the Alpes Maritimes. More precisely, Grasse, the Mecca of perfumery which seems to have inspired its creators both for the design of the bottle and for the techniques used for its production: vacuum distillation, ultrasonic maceration and supercritical CO2 extraction. It is made up of no less than twenty-two botanicals including orris root, angelica, Sichuan pepper, citrus fruits, centifolia rose, mimosa, jasmine, lavender and sea fennel. A gin with a subtle nose on rose and citrus fruit with marine notes, while the mouth evokes Provence and citrus fruit with additional floral and peppery notes.
Price: €75

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 Black Cane, an aromatic white rum
Produced by Bologne, a Guadeloupean distillery, Black Cane gives another aromatic dimension to white rum. Although it will make your cocktails even better, you don't need to add fruit juice, lime or cane sugar to experience a symphony of aromas and flavors on the nose and palate. Tasting it alone is enough. It owes this characteristic to the fact that it is distilled from black cane, a very aromatic non-hybrid variety but today very little cultivated because it gives low yields. Very complex, the Black Cane rum has a nose of citrus, exotic fruits and liquorice with herbaceous notes and the same fruits flavours are found in the mouth accompanied by fresh cane and a hint of spices followed by a very long finish.
Price: €35

November 27, 2020
Thierry Joly