Lous Pibous 1995/2021 Cask #141 51.2% for L’Encantada

Nose: Potent, with deep oak and purple fruit flair. I was always blown away by the difference in gum in the USA and in France as a kid. France had the US beat for fruit, with epic Apricot flavors. But the USA sold huge hunks of chewing gum perfectly crafted to pry off fillings and get stuck in hair. Bubblicious grape gum may not have retained its flavor long, but what a chew. Julie has been buying cassis juice to mix with sparkling water for the kids. It was for the kids, but I love it so much, I am customer #1. I love those darker fruit concentrates. My buddy San came over to my rooftop last Thursday and brought blackberries from his fathers “tree”. I thought, bullshit, they only grow on vines. Turns out those insanely delicious treats are mulberries. First time having them and I am all in. So dark fruits and oaky oaky goodness. But not sawdust or fresh cut. I spent a good part of my life living in oak groves, with acorns littering the ground, and hints of moss climbing up these majestic trunks. Nature’s playground. Smells of wet, earthy nature.

Palate: Bit of heat on the first sip, then a big wave of flavor coats my mouth. Wood forward, although perhaps less of the full on cabinet spices. A shake of cinnamon and then back to the forest floor. Dark soil. Shiitake mushrooms and bamboo shoots. Unwashed under ripe black berries. Under all that power, the finish is a hint thin and turns herbal with tea tannins; like a lemon yerba mate. Even minutes after I can taste it, with a slightly chalky vibe.

Rating: 6 / 10 – Each of the notes are something to love. It’s really quite in line with my palate, but there is a minor imbalance in the force. I’m struggling to point at the gap. I’d buy one if the price is reasonable, and if not, it’s cool, tonight I am glad I tried it. It could be either a 6 or 7 and I went back a number of times. 6 it is. Oh, cool. Hasn’t tried this Pibous. Thanks kiddo. Turns out I bought one of these and hadn’t opened it yet. Not feeling too bad about the purchase and would put this as a middle of the pack pibous.

My daughter has been entering tasting notes into the distillates as a summer job. She was wondering how much a name affects the score, and I told her that it is perhaps one of the biggest factors. Humans are suckers for a story and prestige. She said I should do more blind tastings if I want my reviews to be honest. So, we made a blind sample grab bag. Picked 20 samples out of my collection at random. And each night I pull one out blind and try it and can’t look at the label before tasting. An experiment to see if my average rating goes up or down. She also put a few things I’ve had many times in there to test me. Fun. Tonight is the first.