Monday, February 13, 2017

Domaine Baraillon 24 year, 92.8 proof, Bas-Armagnac.

Distilled: 1975, Bottled: 1999. Robert Chadderon Selections, New York.

Baraillon is the gold standard of Armagnac, so can this one match up? It's got a sweet/honeyed nose, with a whiff of nutmeg. It's said to be a blend, so I'm not sure about which varietal of grape was used, but it doesn't taste like much Folle Blanche in here.

If Sku (my spirits idol) were reviewing this, he'd say it's got notes of "sandalwood."

Even at only 92.8 proof, it has the body of a non-chill filtered spirit, and could actually be cask strength, given the age. But it's just kind of so-so. It tastes like a blend for sure, but it lacks oomph. Honey, a bit of spice, some tannic oak . . . but I'm hardly floored.

Now, I hate when other blogs smugly review some Unobtainium unicorn, like a sherried Ardbeg bottled in 1997 that was limited to a 28 bottle bloodtub and given only to undercover Taiwanese diplomats at a methane sustainability conference in Geneva. Not only is that kind of review totally useless, but the blogger always add some cheeky epitaph, like, "Good luck at auction!" It feels like a taunt.

So is it OK when I'm reviewing old bottles? Yes, because I'm special. In fact, I'm one of the most incredible people I've ever met.  And everything I do is amazing, whereas this Armagnac is merely solid.

83 pts, B-. An easy sip but a bit of a miss from my favorite producer. If anything, shows how importance of the palates of 
Charles Neal and K&L's David Driscoll & David O.G. When they walk the Baraillon barn and pick out a cask, it makes a big difference.

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