More Pellehaut Vintages
It turns out that while Charles and I were tasting at Château Pellehaut in Gascony last month, our warehouse was uncovering some lost cases of back vintages bottled for us originally in 2017. The timing couldn't have been more advantageous as the rising power of the Euro is making the value proposition with some of my ongoing purchases more difficult. I think you're all going to be pretty excited to see these values below continue at their last retail price, however. If you're unfamiliar with the Pellehaut Armagnacs, now is the time to jump in. They are incredibly accessible, very Bourbon-like in their profile, and ridiculously affordable for the money. They're the ultimate gateway drug into the world of French spirits if you're coming from a whiskey lover's point of view. Check out the deals below (there ain't much, so don't snooze):
1973 Chateau Pellehaut 44 Year Old K&L Exclusive Tenareze Vintage Armagnac $159.99 - While Pellehaut has since switched to entirely Folle Blanche grape varietals, the 1973 vintage is composed of 90% Ugni Blanc. The palate opens with loads of caramel and a creamy richness the spreads quickly. The aromas are quite Bourbon-esque, with hints of soft vanilla and charred oak drifting out of the glass. The complexity of the brandy is astounding - candied fruit, stewed prunes, toasted almond, baking spices, and earthy warehouse notes, all swirling around at the same time. For an Armagnac of this quality, at an age of more than 40 years old, the price we negotiated is amazing.
1986 Chateau de Pellehaut 31 Year Old K&L Exclusive Vintage Tenareze Armagnac $89.99 - This 31 year old vintage Armagnac is one of the most ridiculous deals we've ever procured from the producer. Huge richness marries with decadent raisined fruit and tons of vanilla from the charred oak. Then, the most curious thing happens: the finish begins to flutter with floral and perfume notes, before completely shedding that skin and moving right back into a textural, raisined fruit finish. It's unbelievable: both the brandy and the price!
1994 Chateau de Pellehaut 22 Year Old K&L Exclusive Vintage Tenareze Armagnac $79.99 - The 1994 is less driven by the oak and has more of the fruit character at the forefront—that little flurry of spice and floral nature that Folle Blanche tends to bring to the party. Again, the quality to price ratio is off the charts. No one can top Pellehaut in the bang for your buck category.
1996 Chateau de Pellehaut 21 Year Old K&L Exclusive Vintage Tenareze Armagnac $89.99 - Why the higher price for the 1996? Because it's pretty much the best vintage of Pellehaut there is. Big, spicy, woody flavor explodes right off the bat from this 21 year old, 50% brandy. This is another crossover Armagnac, the one you'll want to buy if you like Bourbon and think Armagnac might be something you want to try. The raisiny fruit aspect of the Folle Blanche comes in on the finish, but this is all about the concentration of the wood and the spice.
2000 Chateau de Pellehaut 17 Year Old K&L Exclusive Vintage Tenareze Armagnac $59.99 - Another Bourbon-like brandy with lots of spice of peppery notes from the Folle Blanche. This is for the guys who like Jefferson's 17 year old Bourbon. There's a lot of sweet oak and a lot of great length on the finish with a lovely, rich mouthfeel.
2001 Chateau de Pellehaut 16 Year Old K&L Exclusive Tenareze Armagnac $62.99 - The 2001 vintage is going to be a bourbon-drinker's delight: there's a rich, round mouthfeel of charred oak and creamy vanilla, supplemented with more texture from the raisined fruit. It's anchored entirely in richness, and there's plenty of spice on the finish to keep it interesting. Distilled from 100% Folle Blanche, it's a slam-dunk deal if there ever was one.