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Posted: September 13, 2013
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PALATE: Blows into the mouth with an effervescent gust of mints and anise. After the brisk introduction, it turns on the charms with toffee, vanilla, maple and nougat candies. And right when you're tasting walnuts, out comes another spicy slap, with the sharp report of lemon.
FINISH: Ultimately it starts to purr again, and calming waves of wheat and dessert candy leave you contemplating another ride. While this whiskey is as complex as differential equations, it is no gentle tube ride down a flavor river. It's a roller coaster. Steady, now.
Note: This stuff is born to go in Manhattans. It's got the flavor span to match up with any manner of sweet vermouth or bitters, and has the fortitude to stand up for itself. No silent partner this. Mix it two parts whiskey, one part vermouth.
CIGAR PAIRING: Regius Grandido (7 inches by 47 ring gauge, $7.95, 91 Points, Cigar Aficionado June 2013). The smoke of this attractive Churchill is dense and velvety, layering the palate with leather, tea and nutty intonations. The finish is warm and toasty. A medium-bodied cigar. The first thing the Forgiven does is to get into the nap of that velvet and shake it up a bit, teasing out previously unnoticed spices. The Regius replies with its calming influence: "Settle down, big fella." And the whiskey responds by roliing over and showing its nutty underbelly. The cigar answers with its leather, and they both go off together for a playful romp. Great interaction between elements that are in essentially different weight classes.
Arturo Fuente Don Carlos No. 2 (6 inches by 55 ring gauge, $12.50, 92 Points, Cigar Aficionado October 2013).
This reddish-colored torpedo burns and draws superbly, balancing nut and cocoa flavor with a touch of red pepper spice and sweet cedar. The cigar strives to keep up its balancing act amid the pokes from the whiskey. Ultimately it gives up a bit more of its spice, while maintaining a dominance from its rounder flavors. The Forgiven smooths out some under the influence of the Fuente, and much of the Bourbon notes become more evident, with its vanilla and caramel flavors coming to the surface. This pairing attacks the marriage from a different angle, but is just as pleasing as the former.
Comments 3 comment(s)
hanging chad — September 15, 2013 7:46am ET
JACK BETTRIDGE — NEW YORK, NY, UNITED STATES, — September 15, 2013 10:08am ET
hanging chad — September 15, 2013 12:18pm ET
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