In 1932, Raymond Castarède took over the family company. His wife, then his son, Jean Castarède, have continued to celebrate this french brandy. Today, it is Jean Castarède’s daughter, Florence Castarède who runs the company. She loves to travel the world and share her family's extraordinary heritage. She is the 6th generation of the Castarède family to run this business.
By law VSOP Armagnac must have spent at least 4 years in oak. However the Castarède VSOP has spent at least 8 years ageing in oak casks. This Armagnac is 100% Folle Blanche from the Castarède estate vineyard, located in Bas-Armagnac. This grape variety produces fine and often floral eau-de-vie with great elegance.
It has a warm amber colour and you can see the legs clinging to the glass that are indicative of its long barrel ageing. There is a fruity and pleasant nose, with aromas of light pepper, coconut and walnuts as well as a honey and glazed plum finish. The palate is subtle and balanced. The flavours confirm the characteristics brought forward by the aromas.
Beinn an Tuirc Distillery occupies a former piggery building located on Torrisdale Castle Estate in Kintyre, Scotland. The estate comprises around 1,200 acres of hill, forest and farm land and boasts magnificent views over the Kilbrannan Sound to the Isle of Arran. Kintyre Gin is made at Beinn an Tuirc Distillery. It is the latest brain-child of laird, Niall Macalister Hall who refuses to rest on his laurels and continues to come up with innovative ways to diversify the estate.
The small copper pot still was imported from Germany and has a fill capacity of only 230 litres, resulting in a truly hand crafted gin. The still is run on electricity supplied directly to them from their own hydro-electric scheme. Their fine looking still is named Big Don, a nod to Niall and Kenny’s father who sadly passed away during the initial stages of the distillery’s development. A keen gin drinker, and luckily for us, someone with a great sense of humour, Donald will be watching on with interest!
They use 12 botanicals in Kintyre Gin, which have all been sustainably sourced. To achieve the characteristics of a very flavoursome and well-balanced spirit, the gin consists of 10 commonly used botanicals, with the addition of 2 which are unique, namely Icelandic moss and sheep sorrel - both grow on the estate in abundance. Either through maceration or vapour infusion, these produce a gin which is has earthy and spicy characteristics, being deep in flavour, with a very pleasant floral aroma.
A gin truly from the Isle of Jura: not only are the 15 botanicals foraged there, but it is – unusually for island gins – distilled there too. It's a gin produced by a trio of wild ladies on a truly wild island.
If the term “full bodied” can be applied to a gin, it applies to Lussa. Jura honeysuckle, rose petals, ground elder, water mint, ground elderflower, lime flowers, rosehips, lemon balm, orris, sea lettuce and coriander are all used in the gin, along with spring water from the nearby Lussa glen.
Round, warm, fruited, citrussy and a wee bitty spicy: this is a real “boutique gin”.
Armagnac is one of three “Appellation contrôlée” French brandies. The other two are Cognac and Calvados. Armagnac is the oldest one, and the most ancient spirit in France and probably in the world. Indeed, traces of distilleries going back to the 14th century were found in the region. Armagnac officially celebrated 700 years of history in 2010.
The main varieties of grapes used for the distilling wines at Janneau are Ugni Blanc, Folle Blanche, Colombard, and Baco. All are white grape varieties. Only unfiltered, natural white wines, obtained through traditional vinification methods without racking-off so that the wines still contain their lees, are used to make 'Armagnac’.
This is a 5 year old Armagnac with a light body and a fruit driven flavour. It is a superb when used as a digestif with notes of apricot and oak on the palate. It is particularly well suited to being included in a cocktail. This 5 Year Old represents a soft style, which is intense and fruity. There are strong aromas of vanilla and plums with a pleasant subtle taste of burned barrels due to the ageing in new Limousin oak casks. It is surprisingly smooth.
This Arran Gold Liqueur captures the essence of the island in a bottle. This geography is key to the character of Arran whisky and its liqueur. Here they make a spirit that reflects a range of regional influences, yet achieves a rare and unique personality all its own. Rather like the island itself.
The Arran Gold Cream Liqueur is in a class of its own. Since its launch in 2004, it has become incredibly popular and everyone who has tasted Arran Gold agrees that they would happily change over from their usual brand in favour of this deeply delicious treat. Made with a healthy dose of Arran, this is a cream liqueur where you can really taste the quality.
Arran Gold has the colour and appearance of liquid toffee and creamy fudge. The aromas are of chocolate, cassis and a wee touch of fresh mint while the flavour has a lovely sweetness with honey notes.