Saturday, January 14, 2006

Expecting Delight, Experiencing Mediocrity

While shopping I was aghast to find my preferred Brandy was not available at my liquor store.

While checking with the distinguished gentleman who is the resident expert on brandies I asked for a suitable alternative.

He recommended Calvados Coquerel while noting that it was indeed a distant second to my preferred Calvados Boulard.

As usual the gentleman was spot on in his recommendation.

While having an appealing apple flavor and aroma it subtly missed the mark set by finer vintages. Add to this a finish that was closer to burning than gently warming fire as the drink spread through my system definitely relegated this brand to a second-only-if-I-must place in the beverage hierarchy.

While I prefer a Calvados brandy I do not rule out the other fine brandies available made outside this tradition. Honorable brands are available like Asbach Uralt, Cardenal de Mendoza and Lepanto.

Add to this pleasant but not excellent evening was a variation in my cigar of choice. As the shop was out of La Gloria Cubana Series R #6 maduro cigars I tried a limited release cigar the La Gloria Cubana Series R EPC.

Missing was the strong yet smoothly elegant flavor that was consistent from first draw upon the cigar until finish. While smooth this cigar lacked the character and vitality of its less distinguished, by price if nothing else, cousin.

I look forward to a more precise pairing to bring forth the wonder and awe at excellent craftsmanship in the near future.

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