One of our tasting companions in Paris was gifted a membership with “Flaviar“. So when she decided to have a French themed tasting, she decided to leverage this new membership to discover something “different” and “new”. Which can lead to wonderful discoveries or complete duds!
Enter Le Pertuis – sounds quite French, oui? Mais no. Turns out this particular whisky was actually distilled in Scotland, then brought to France to finish in ex-Bourbon, Cognac, and Pineau des Charentes casks.
Le Pertuis 5 year 42.6%
- Colour – Light gold
- Nose – Sweet hay and honey, some ripe prunes, comes across as an uncomplicated easy drinking dram, lightly fruity, toffee sweet
- Palate – Simple, bit of spice, very straight forward
- Finish – Peppery
Overall it was innocuous, if a tad insipid – nothing unpleasant but equally nothing really stood out. We set it aside, hoping more would be revealed in the revisit.
- Nose – A bit more sweet n sour, slightly salty, hard toffee… with more time, the toffee became even more pronounced, joined by chocolate milk
- Palate – Still simple yet peppery, faint cinnamon
- Finish – Similar, just this time with a hint of anise
As an “appetizer” to get things going, fair enough. But would I run out to buy? Certainly not.
What more do we know about Le Pertuis and this whisky? Here’s what the Flaviar folks have to say…
A “pure malt” Whisky from northwestern France that’s worth a dram.
Île de Ré is a a 90 square-mile barrier island just off the coast of northwestern France. Saint-Martin-de-Ré is a small commune — one of ten on the island — that fronts the Pertuis Strait. In short… this might be the last place you would expect to find a Whisky maker. But sure enough, this small, idyllic, French hamlet is where they make small batches of Le Pertuis Whisky using locally-grown grains and old-world craftsmanship.
Technically, Le Pertuis Whisky is a Pure Malt. This means that their base Spirits is 100% malted barley, but it might be distilled in more than one location. Seems that demand for their signature Spirit outstrips the capacity of the stills on site, so a bit is farmed out to other houses to keep up the supply. They age their Spirit for five years in new oak before finishing it in three different seasoned barrels — ex-Bourbon, Cognac, and Pineau des Charentes casks. The results of each are blended to taste. And it’s darn tasty too.
- Appearance / Color – Mahogany
- Nose / Aroma / Smell – A cornucopia of fruit — tangy grapefruit, baked apples, and cocoa.
- Flavor / Taste / Palate – Complex with fruitcake, figs, cinnamon, chocolate, and dried apricot.
- Finish – Medium length and warm with sea-salt toffee.
However it is possible the details on the website for Le Pertuis differs than the bottle we tasted – which clearly and transparently indicated the whisky originated in Scotland. Hmm…
What else did we explore in our French focused evening?
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