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Best Liqueurs

 

The Fifty Best Liqueur Tasting 2018

 

The Tasting:
The Fifty Best held a “blind” tasting with 17 members of the spirits judging panel and 15 liqueurs. The judges were informed of the flavors during the tasting, but not the brands. Strict tasting rules were applied. The order of service was established beforehand by lottery. Each of the liqueurs were poured into fresh glasses from new sealed bottles, and served at slightly above room temperature. Only ice water and neutral, unsalted chips and crackers were available to cleanse the palate.

The scoring was done on a 5-point system, with 5 as the best. Double-Gold, Gold and Silver medals were awarded according to a set range of final point scores received from the judges. There were no Bronze medals awarded in this tasting.

The tasting notes that follow are summaries of the judges’ opinions, with all replicated commentary eliminated. The states/countries of origin are identified for each brand.

 



DOUBLE GOLD MEDAL WINNERS

Queens of Denmark Strawberry Liqueur
(Denmark)

Nose: Caramel, maple, strawberry, raspberries, plum, banana, black cherry, strawberry jam, raisins, dried fruits, black olive, nutmeg, cinnamon, pine.

Palate: Strawberry, cherry, black currant, sweet grapes, citrus, balsamic strawberry, strawberry syrup, strawberry puree, caramelized strawberry, fruit rollup, Middle Eastern spices.

Finish: Strawberry, liquid fruit rollup, floral, creamy, silky, soft, full flavored, balanced, strawberry fields forever.


Double Gold Medal
Double Gold medal



Queens of Denmark Strawberry Liqueur




J.A. Baczewski Hazelnut Liqueur
(Austria)

Nose: Hazelnut, walnut, pecan, nutty, Nutella, chocolate fudge brownie, chocolate cake, coconut, caramel, burnt sugar, coffee, black tea, bourbon.

Palate: Hazelnut chocolate, pecan, nutty, chocolate fudge brownie, cacao, creamy, vanilla, burnt sugar, coffee, spice, pine, bourbon, lightly sweet, vibrant.

Finish: Hazelnut, pecan, bitter nuts, chocolate, dark chocolate, chocolate covered mint, cocoa, vanilla, bourbon, silky, smooth, I love this nocci candy, heartwarming, great dessert liqueur.


Double Gold Medal
Double Gold medal

 



J.A.Baczewski Hazelnut Liqueur




Huana Mayan Guanabana Rum Liqueur
(Mexico)

Nose: Pineapple, pear, apricot, red delicious apple, lemon peel, dried apple, honey, tropical candy, marmalade, Chambord, elderflower, floral, coffee, cream, butter.

Palate: Caramel, buttery, candy, vanilla bean, honey, pineapple marmalade, spiced apple jam, apricot, apple, quince, lavender, elderflower, honeysuckle, floral, perfume, hazelnut, saffron, smoke, silky.

Finish: Pineapple, apricot, quince, buttery, creamy, dried raisin syrup, elderflower, smoke, almost tangy, yummy, delicious.


Double Gold Medal
Double Gold medal

 



Huana Mayan Guanabana Rum Liqueur




Southern Star Double Shot
Coffee Bourbon Cream Liqueur

(North Carolina)

Nose: Coffee, bodega coffee, cappuccino, espresso, mocha, chocolate, cocoa, chocolate milk, creamy, tiramisu, toasted almond, nutty, chewy.

Palate: Coffee, mocha, coffee candy, chocolate, chocolate milk, cream, tiramisu, wafer cookie with cream, butterscotch, toasted hazelnut, toast, bourbon, very well balanced.

Finish: Candied coffee, creamy coffee, milky, soft bourbon, not too sweet, smooth, integrated, perfect to sip, breakfast of champions, delicious.


Double Gold Medal
Double Gold medal

 



Southern Star Double Shot Coffee Bourbon Cream Liqueur




Kalani Coconut Rum Liqueur
(Mexico)

Nose: Coconut, raw coconut, pina colada, Coco Lopez, pineapple, vanilla, sugar candy, tropical notes, light floral, almond, hazelnut, Malibu rum.

Palate: Coconut, sweet coconut milk, coconut syrup, coconut cream, pina colada, creamy, caramel, honey, dried fruit, almond, hazelnut, nuts, smooth, beach drink.

Finish: Coconut, silky coconut, coconut cream, creamy, dried fruit, nuts, pecan cream, Almond Joy, smooth, silky, rich, tropical, luscious.


Double Gold Medal
Double Gold medal

 



Kalani Coconut Rum Liqueur




Queens of Denmark Black Currant Liqueur
(Denmark)

Nose: Black currant, black plum, cassis, diced fruit, Concord grape, red grape juice, prune, dates, stewed black currant, stewed prunes, hibiscus, floral, herbal wine.

Palate: Black currant, blackberry, cassis, dark cherry, apple, lemon, citrus, red grape juice, juicy, stewed prunes, creamy prunes, red wine, earthy, tart, balanced, silky.

Finish: Black currant, cassis, dried raisins, balanced, flavorful, silky, smooth, mellow, interesting bitter edge, hard to stop drinking, great for cocktails.


Double Gold Medal
Double Gold medal

 



Queens of Denmark Black Currant Liqueur




GOLD MEDAL WINNERS

Queens of Denmark Apple & Quince Liqueur
(Denmark)

Nose: Quince, dried dark raisins, golden raisins, dried apricot, coconut, honey, molasses, burnt sugar, maple syrup, buttery, caramel, candied pecans, hint of praline, pecan pie, walnut, nutty, hay, black tea, curry, madeira.

Palate: Quince, apple, berries, apricot, blackberry, elderberries, coconut, pineapple, sliced orange, citrus peels, candied orange, prunes, soft sweet raisins, golden raisins, elderflower, nutty, pecan pie, creamy, buttery, burnt sugar, cinnamon, black tea, sherry.

Finish: Apple, berries, pineapple, dried apricot, golden raisin, marmalade, dried coconut, pecan, curacao, sherry, balanced, flavor lasts to the end, mellow.


Gold Medal
   Gold medal



Queens of Denmark Apple & Quince Liqueur




Queens of Denmark Elderflower Liqueur
(Denmark)

Nose: Elderflower, jasmine, herbal, currents, pear, tangerine, mandarin orange, citrus, honey, prune, dried fruit, floral, anise, Northwest hops, rum, subtle pine, wood, mouth-watering tartness.

Palate: Elderflower, sweet flowers, floral, nectar, cherry, currant, pineapple, grapefruit, citrus, orange peel, honey, dried fruit, curry spices, cayenne, amaro, tart, creamy, ripe, savory.

Finish: Elderberry, elderflower syrup, orange, pineapple, orange jam, nectar, floral, ripe, tart, tangy, soft, clean, balanced, rich, savory, delightful.


Gold Medal
   Gold medal



Queens of Denmark Elderflower Liqueur




kkAda Caramel Liqueur
(Washington)

Nose: Caramel, cream, vanilla, honey, maple syrup, hazelnut, walnut, pecan, nutty, gingerbread, latte, coffee, cumin, spice, slightly smoky, sweet bourbon.

Palate: Caramel, cream, crème brûlée, caramel syrup, hazelnut syrup, maple syrup, honey, vanilla, cane, cotton candy, gingerbread, pecan, nutty, coffee, bourbon, balanced.

Finish: Caramel, creamy, pecan, hazelnut, macadamia, gingerbread, maple, cocoa, mocha, Tia Maria, candied bourbon, well balanced, smooth, integrated.


Gold Medal
   Gold medal



kkAda Caramel Liqueur




Amaro dell’Etna
(Italy)

Nose: Blood orange, bitter orange, light citrus, burnt orange, burnt sugar, herbal, Ramazzotti, amaro, classic, lovely, yummy.

Palate: Blood orange, grapefruit, berry, bitter orange peel, dried fruit, burnt sugar, ginseng herbal, dry herbal stems, ginger, anise, mint, tree bark, fernet, Campari-like, bittersweet, smoke, rich, classic, complex, great for after dinner.

Finish: Herbal, ginger candy, raisin, light mint tea, nutty, burnt sugar, bittersweet, rich, smooth, mellow.


Gold Medal
   Gold medal



Amaro dell’Etna




Rivulet Pecan Liqueur
(Kentucky)

Nose: Almonds, salty soy nuts, nutty, caramel, creamy, dulce de leche, maple, burnt sugar, vanilla, slight raisin, toasty, bourbon, amaro.

Palate: Pecan, nutty, Toblerone nougat, caramel, dulce de leche, hazelnut syrup, maple syrup, toasted coconut, guava paste, semi-dry fruits, honey, mint, cinnamon, spiced rum, balanced.

Finish: Walnut, burnt almond, nutty, cacao, caramel, creamy, milky, maple syrup, complex, so yummy.


Gold Medal
   Gold medal



Rivulet Pecan Liqueur




SILVER MEDAL WINNERS

Pomp & Whimsy Gin Liqueur
(California)

Nose: Apple, quince, pear, melon, bergamot, lemon, citrus, honey, juniper, elderflower, floral, perfume, herbal, spicy, pepper, gin.

Palate: Quince, pear, lemon, blood orange, citrus, lemon peel, tangerine zest, honey, apple Jolly Rancher, candied melon, herbal, rose water, violet, elderflower, juniper, pine, almond, sweet spice, saffron, semi-sweet, slightly tart, light rosé.

Finish: Violet, floral, juniper, piney, orange blossom water, juicy, herbal, mint, light, balanced, soft, silky, smooth.


Silver Medal
   Silver medal



Pomp & Whimsy Gin Liqueur




Vicario Monk's Secret Herbal Liqueur
(South Carolina)

Nose: Chinese herbs, herbal, anise, licorice, amaro, citrus, blood orange zest, grassy, leafy, black tea, genever, Tabasco, salinity.

Palate: Dozens of herbs, medicinal herbs, herbal, juniper, cardamom, eucalyptus, green pepper, grassy, leafy, minty, menthol, licorice, cinnamon, blood orange zest, toffee, caramel, sweet Chartreuse, Campari, amaro.

Finish: Herbal, minty, peppermint, grassy, leafy, Earl Grey tea, coffee grinds, bitter, amaro, great digestif.


Silver Medal
   Silver medal



Vicario Monk's Secret Herbal Liqueur




No. 27 Ozark Honey Liqueur
(Missouri)

Nose: Honey, clover honey, caramel, marmalade, apples, raisins, crackling oat bran, wheat, corn, vegetal, pecan, nutty, tree bark, herbal, anise over espresso, delicate.

Palate: Honey, vanilla, creamy, very raisiny, dried raisins, apples, citrus, agave, floral, herbal, nutty, black tea, hot tea with molasses, honey oats, rye, wheat, grain.

Finish: Honey, light maple, creamy, nutty, wheat, grain, citrus, green tea, smooth, flavorful, yummy.


Silver Medal
   Silver medal



No. 27 Ozark Honey Liqueur




La Dorita Dulce de Leche Liqueur
(Pennsylvania)

Nose: Caramel, creamy, vanilla, nutty, café au lait, coffee.

Palate: Caramel, dulce de leche, creamy caramel, toffee, cream, milky, chocolate coffee, nutty, smooth.

Finish: Caramel cream, creamy, praline, honey, slight spice, coffee, soft.


Silver Medal
   Silver medal



La Dorita Dulce de Leche Liqueur

 

 

 

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Comments or questions welcome, please e-mail to: editor@thefiftybest.com

 



 
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