The Schtick: A blend of 4 different armagnac, at 4 different ages, L’Encantada XO is arguably an exercise in madness, but it’s a bit more tame than that. Blending is common in many industries, but here we see 4 particularly nice vintages: a 1989 Pibous, 1987 Pibous, 1994 Cassou and a 1997 Bellair. This is bottled at cask strength, with no funny business, at 46.8% ABV. Let’s get to it.
Disclosure: PM Spirits asked me to review this and sent some along.
ABV: 46.8% ABV
Nose: Bright and effervescent on the nose. Lovely bouquet of pepper, raspberry, caramel, a hint of rising dough and blackberry before the grape fiesta begins. It’s really a party of jammy fruit, rich oak structure and a hint of minerality. Diverse and complex.
Taste: Initially we’re met with a pinprick of heat, but it quickly subsides. The presence on the palate is wonderful and very fruit forward. No oak here. Grape, blackberry, raspberry. Faint cocoa note. More fruit than dessert or oak, which is excellent.
Finish: Short finish, and a bit hotter and drier than I’d like, but the complexity is there. More toffee on the finish than the palate or the nose, but still enjoyably fruity. Oak is here quite a bit more as well, which I’m not certain fits as well as I’d like.
Overall: Quite nice overall, and certainly very good. The progression from nose to palate to finish is generally pleasant, though the finish is what prevents this from really reaching for the stars. Lovely fruit character overall, but this will have to stay a 6 due to wrinkles in the finish. Don’t let that put you off, though, as L’Encantadas character for quality is certainly present throughout.
Thanks for reading!
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