The Tasting Panel magazine

July 2018

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124  /  the tasting panel  /  july 2018 CATEGORY REPORT A Swedish Classic Returns to the U.S. Market S weden's original and top-selling O.P. Anderson Aquavit has been reintroduced to the United States. Aquavit is the national drink of Sweden, and though it's relatively unknown outside of Scandinavia, O.P. Anderson's celebrated reputation in the region dates back to the compa- ny's founding in 1891. Lightly aged and made with fennel, cumin, caraway, and anise, O.P. Anderson's flavor profile packs a memorable punch. In Sweden, Aquavit is most traditionally con- sumed neat after the recitation of a drinking song. For those looking for a gentler, less rowdy way to imbibe, O.P. Anderson Aquavit is a great substitute for gin or vodka in many traditional cocktails, like a more savory take on a Negroni or a spicier Bloody Mary. It also pairs well with hearty Scandinavian cuisine like smoked trout and salmon. smoked trout and salmon. The Best of France: Guillotine Vodka W hen most consumers think of vodka, they list potatoes or wheat as the top ingredients. Many would never dream of a vodka made from grapes, but once they taste Guillotine, they'll become converts to this elegant rendition of the spirit. Made from Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, and Chardonnay grapes grown in France's Champagne region, Guillotine Vodka recently won the French Vodka of the Year award at the ninth annual New York International Spirits Competition. To make the Guillotine Originale ($50), the grapes are handpicked and distilled at a 100-year-old distillery using French artisanal techniques. The Heritage expression ($80) then sees this base spirit aged in Cognac and Armagnac barrels made from Limousin oak. "Guillotine Vodka was designed to deliver an ultra-premium experience and provide a spirit of the utmost caliber while honoring the traditions of our people," says Paul Berkmann, President of Guillotine parent company Bastille Day. BASTILLE DAY

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