Monthly Archives: January 2016
Cupula da Cachaça is a bi-annual independent ranking of the best 50 cachaças in Brazil. A list of 50 cachaças selected by the public is tasted and tested blind by a jury of people who know their ‘pinga’. A hard and dirty job indeed. Any volunteers?
Two years ago, the Vale Verde 12 years old won the award of best cachaça. Vale Verde 12 was once again amongst the 50 selected cachaças this year (together wit hits younger sibling the Vale Verde 3 years old).
Last night the jury reached its verdict. So we hereby present you the 40 best cachaças for 2015-2016.
- Porto Morretes Premium – 3 years old in oak wood
- Reserva do Gerente Carvalho – 5 yo oak wood
- Companheira Extra Premium – 8 yo oak wood
- Sanhaçu Umburana – 2 yo umburana wood
- Reserva 51 – 3 yo oak wood
- Leblon Signature Merlet – 2 yo French oak
- Porto Morretes Tradição – 6 yo oak
- Weber Haus Extra Premium Lote 48 – 5 years in oak + 1 year balsamo
- Da Tulha Carvalho – 3 yo oak
- Anísio Santiago/ Havana – 8 yo balsamo
- Harmonie Schnaps Extra Premium – 10 yo oak
- Vale Verde – 12 yo oak
- Cedro do Líbano – 1 yo white oak
- Germana Heritage – 8 years oak + 2 years balsamo
- Magnífica Reserva Soleira – 3 yo oak
- Dona Beja Extra Premium – 12 yo French and Portuguese oak
- Mazzaropi Carvalho Francês – 18 months French oak
- Bento Albino Extra Premium – 6 yo oak
- Havaninha – 6 yo balsamo
- Canarinha – 2 yo balsamo
- Casa Bucco Ouro – 6 you oak + balsamo
- Reserva do Nosco Ouro – 4 yo French oak
- Áurea Custódio – 3 yo oak
- Canabella Ouro – 2 years jequitiba + 1 year castanheira + 6 months umburana
- Weber Haus Amburana – 1 year umburana
- Weber Haus Premium Carvalho Cabriúva – 1 year oak + 1 year balsamo
- Werneck Ouro – 2 yo oak
- Magnífica Carvalho – 2 yo oak
- Maria Izabel Carvalho – 1 yo oak
- Santo Grau PX – american oak solera matured
- Da Quinta Amburana – 1 yo umburana
- Indaiazinha – 8 yo balsamo
- Engenho Pequeno – 2 yo jequitiba
- Espírito de Minas – 2 yo oak + jequitiba
- Vale Verde Extra Premium – 3 yo oak
- Sebastiana Castanheira – 1 yo castanheira
- Claudionor – 1 yo umburana
- Reserva do Nosco Prata – unaged
- Werneck Safira Régia – 3 yo oak
- Sapucaia Reserva da Família – 10 yo oak
So what can we learn from this year’s Cupula?
First of all…age doens’t matter, with the over all winner being only 3 years old.
Second: oak still does the trick, with 8 cachaças in the top 10 matured in oak.
Third: maturation counts, with only 1 unaged cachaça in the top 50
Fourth: Minas Gerais is loosing its status as cachaça heartland, with only 2 cachaças in the top 10. Parana takes over with two out of three cachaças in the top-3 !
Fifth: we still have a lot to taste here at the Sugarcane Collection; having tasted only 6 cachaças from the top-50. Time to hunt us down a sponsor !!
The Cachaça : Taverna de Minas Ouro
Origin: Itaverava, Minas Gerais
Distilled: ca 2012 in pot stills
Bottled: ca 2014
Matured: Oak, for 2 years
ABV: 39 %
Nose: elegant nose with sugar cane juice combined with softer wood influence. Fruity aroma’s (dried fruits) and a touch of warm vanilla. Also some fine sawdust.
Taste: in our humble opinion, this is a cachaça that goes both for mixing and sipping. The sugar cane juice is present and powerfull but never overwhelming. Again a nice woody influence with that touch of light vanilla and those dried fruits. First attack in the mouth is a bit alcoholic but gets smoother very fast. Toasted oak.
Finish: mediumlong on the same notes as the taste, drying towards the end. Well balanced cachaça indeed.
Our Score: ****
The Cachaça : Sapucaia Real 18 years old
Origin: Sao Paulo – Brazilië
Distilled: before 1996, in small pot stills
Matured: American white oak
Only a few more days and Cupula da Cachaça announces its bi-annual top-50 of best cachaças. So it’s time to discuss a real beauty with you. One that hasn’t made the list, simply because it’s availability is very limited. Only a couple hundred bottles were made.
All cachaça is guaranteed minimum 18 yo, making it the oldest cachaça available (some older cachaças on the market have younger cachaça mixed in)
The Nose: this can compete with the oldest agricole rums. Rich and very delicate, with pleasant fruity notes (mango). It even reminds us of old Longmorn whisky. Smooth, soft, with subtle hints of vanilla, and a warm sea breeze. Hints of brown sugar, but much more refined that old rum, much fresher too. Even some aniseed playing on the background.
Taste: Holy smoke!! Forget everything you know about cachaça. This is so playing on another level. This isn’t even another league, it’s another sports! The delicate sweetness is perfectly balanced with the wood influence that never gets bitter. Sugarcane influences are there, but you have to look hard to find them. Fruity notes again: lychee and pineapple on syrup. I once tried some 20 years old grappa, and this kinda reminds me.
Finish: Very consistent with the taste, and that can only be a good thing. Medium long, with again that perfect balance between sweet, fruity and wood. Some liquorice plays on the tongue as well.
Did someone say that there is no such thing as perfection? Think again: when it comes to cachaça : this is sheer and utter perfection indeed. Take your best shot at it, good folks at Cupula da Cachaça: but I’m pretty sure I already found my winner !
Our Score : ***** – yes: 5 stars allll the way! Only two places you can still find a few bottles of this beauty: at the distillery in Brazil, or at http://www.cachacashop.be (yes, they do ship international) and TasTToe / TasTToe Two in Belgium